The CrossFit prescription for eating.

February 22nd, 2019 by Phil Brown

Someone asked me about nutrition the other day. I was at my local big chain health club, saying hi to people and using the free weights section to practice some stuff (we have yet to install our new floor at The CrossFit Place. He got me thinking about how many people at my gym – paying clients, giving their money over monthly to the man – are simply not seeing any visible change in their body composition. The man who asked me advice was clearly somewhat overweight, yet he is a regular in the gym, putting time and effort into his training and simply not achieving the goal he wants. Yes, there are questions to be asked about the quality of  training in many people’s programs. Intensity, variety and frequency play a contributory role in affecting our body composition. However, putting ALL of that aside for now, let’s look at it very very simply: what you are eating is the most influential factor affecting your body composition. Look at what you are eating, change what you are eating, see change..

At CrossFit, we have a very simple prescription that can be used as a basis for good eating. If followed, change will occur. These guidelines have no reek of what many would term a “diet” (in fact, a we are all on a “diet” – the word simply describing what we eat). They simply offer a guide for those who don’t want to make things difficult  or complicated for themselves. For those who want to take things further, they provide a simple jump off point.

Eat meat and vegetables, nuts and seeds, some fruit, little starch and no sugar.

There you go. Boom. Try it. See the difference over a couple of months.

Eat meat
Get your protein from the best quality meat you can: lamb, beef, pork, chicken. It’s all good.

Leafy greens. Yum. Get your quality carbohydrates here, rather than from starchy foods like pasta, rice, sketty, spuds. Definitely avoid refined sources such as white bread, cakes, biscuits etc.

Nuts and seeds
Get yummy fats and oils from these babies. Good for snacks instead of chocolate or “low fat” crud that comes in a tub of some kind with lots of labelling (that’s another article)

Some fruit
One thing our government seem to have forgotten in their 5 – a – Day recommendation: fruit is sugar, albeit with added natural vitamins and nutrients……however, go easy. Think SOME. 1 or 2 pieces a day. An apple here or there…..berries rock.

Little starch
See above. Our bodies simply won’t use the amount of starch found in a “supermarket-based” diet – avoid starchy, dense carbohydrates. Think green, think lean.

No sugar
Our. Bodies. Don’t. Need. All. The. Sugar. We. Feed. Them.

Try it and see. Think 40/30/30 as a ratio for protein/carbohydrate/fat and give it a couple of months. For amounts, you could simply look at a standard dinner plate and fill  just under 3/4 with veggies, a 1/4 with meat and add a bit of fat for good measure.

Interestingly, I feel it is worth adding that before I discovered CrossFit, I was eating pretty near to the prescription. It works. What CrossFit suggest is nothing new. Many others before have proven that eating this way leads to good health.

More study:

Check out this interview with CrossFit founder Greg Glassman.


5 reasons to get your niggly shoulder sorted!!!

January 22nd, 2019 by Phil Brown



The shoulder is the most mobile joint in the body. Over 15 muscles cross the joint and are active in it’s motion and stability. It truly is a marvel of engineering and balance. When it is working right that is……..

Most of us at some point or other in our lives will suffer from shoulder pain of some kind and to varying degrees. This is basically due to its high level of mobility, which makes the potential for injury higher than, say, the much deeper and stronger hip joint.

If shoulder pain results from a clear injury; with a significant loss of function (for example an impact injury in a rugby player), then the path of treatment and rehabilitation is pretty much a given. However, many of us carry shoulder pain that has not resulted in a profound loss of movement, but may have been caused by a sporting accident, a fall or a repetitively poor posture or movement pattern that is perhaps work related. If the pain is bearable and the movement in the joint not impeded too much, we can tend to grin and bear it and “wait till it gets better on its own”. It is true that the body needs time to heal and that one cannot force this process, but there are reasons why seeking treatment and advice from a professional will benefit us in the longer term.

Below are 5 reasons why seeing a manual therapist with a “niggly” shoulder is a good idea, rather than waiting for your shoulder to get better on it’s own.


1. Move BETTER!

When your shoulder is in pain, even a low level of pain, your movement will adjust to avoid it. It is very difficult to be aware of this and this new pattern, however subtle, can change the pattern of movement in the joint, making it less efficient and even prone to further injury. Seeing a professional who is experienced at assessing shoulder movement and shoulder health can prevent unhelpful and unconscious patterns from establishing themselves and hampering shoulder function long term. A manual therapist can spot such patterns and provide appropriate exercises to re-establish correct movement and strengthen the joint following injury.


2. Mmmmm RELIEF!!!

Some modes of manual therapy, such as deep tissue massage, can be
very relieving.
Deep tissue and sports massage are very effective techniques for reducing the stiffness in
muscles and connective tissue that builds up in a sore shoulder. The feeling of freedom
following such treatment can be profound. Pain and stiffness can be reduced quickly
so that rehabilitative exercises can then be prescribed for strengthening and re-establishing
normal movement.



If you have been suffering from low grade pain for a long time, it is a good idea to see your GP.
She will be able to check you over and make sure there is nothing that needs medication or
other forms of treatment. It may be that an x-ray would be useful to check the bones of the
joint. Other forms of imaging can also confirm the health of the ligaments that support the joint.



4. Better..stronger!

A good therapist will construct a programme of rehabilitation for you. This programme will be made up of exercises and perhaps stretches that  are designed to restore full range of movement and to improve strength and stability. Engaging with a professional in these activities means that your “niggly” shoulder will end up stronger and healthier than it was even before it was injured.



5. Win -win!

The experience of working with a good manual therapist can often stand you in
good stead in the future, as you will learn more about good posture and also how to keep your
shoulders being re-injured. This will often mean changing your lifestyle habits and engaging in
a programme of fitness that will result in a better posture and healthier and stronger
shoulders. Regular and appropriate fitness training will also have a positive effect on your
overall health!

So, don’t keep putting up with your “niggly” shoulder! Get in touch for a consultation today with a professional who can put you on the right track to being not only pain free but stronger and healthier!

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