Written by BITE Coach Jordy Milstein and featuring BITE Nutrition members and coaches rocking the Crossfit Open 17.1
In the grand scheme of things, the Crossfit Open is only five workouts out of the whole year. Most of us won’t progress any further in the Crossfit season once the Open is over (and if you do, hats off to you!). So there really isn’t any need to get all hyped up and stressed out over five little workouts. Right?
While logically that might be true, it’s also one of the only opportunities that each of us gets to compete against some of the best athletes in the world. It gives us a chance to see how we stack up against our best friends, our coaches and even the most elite athletes, so naturally we want to give each workout everything we’ve got.
Here are a few tips to get you prepped for that next WOD (workout of the day), and keep in mind that these can be applied to any workout whether it’s 17.2, a local competition or just your usual daily training!
#1: Eat well beforehand but don’t overdo it.
We understand that you want to give that workout 100% effort, but at the end of the day it’s still just one workout. Even if it’s 20 minutes of what feels like dumbbell torture, it won’t be any more volume than your regular training. In fact, it’s probably less than a normal day’s work, so there’s no need to go crazy and “carb load” right before the workout.
With that in mind, you do still want to get some good nutrition in to fuel your performance. Make sure that your pre-workout meal has some good carbs paired with lean protein and a small amount of healthy fats. Some examples are oatmeal with greek yoghurt and peanut butter, sweet potato with chicken and avocado or brown rice with tuna and almonds. Eating a balanced meal around 2 hours before your workout will keep you fueled without making you reach for the bucket in the middle of your burpees!
If the workout is longer or harder than what you’re used to then some intraWO nutrition could be a good idea. A drink of gatorade or coconut water mixed with protein powder would be a perfect choice to sip before, during and after the WOD.
#2: Stick to what you know
Don’t try out a new pre-workout meal or supplement if you don’t know how it’s going to affect you. If you want to try something new, right before an important workout probably isn’t the best time to do that. I’ve tried a different pre-workout meal and either felt lethargic because the meal was too heavy, or felt like I didn’t leave enough time for it to digest before training. If you know that eggs on toast makes you feel amazing before training then stick with that! There’s plenty of time to test other things out later.
#3: Stay hydrated
This is crucial, especially in warmer weather. Having a drink bottle to sip on during a WOD is great, but if you barely drink any water for the rest of the day then you’re really missing out. Proper hydration throughout the day helps to regulate body temperature, prevent dizziness and fatigue, and helps to transport nutrients around your body to keep you energized.
#4: Eat a little extra later that day
When it’s all over with, we know you’ll want to be recovered as soon as possible to get back to training! Again, there’s no need to go crazy but there’s also no harm in having a larger portion of pasta, going out for pizza or treating yourself to a piece of cake.
#5: Plan ahead for an early morning session
If you’re someone who trains first thing in the morning and you don’t even want to think about eating before the WOD, there are two things you can do. First, make sure your evening meals the night before have some good carbs and protein in them. Not only will that help you sleep well and feel well rested, it will also provide the fuel needed for your workout. Secondly, try some intraWO nutrition as mentioned above.
#6: Go easy the day before
If you plan on doing the Open WOD on Thursday evening or Friday, keep in mind that you don’t know what Dave Castro is about to throw at you. So take it easy in the gym the day before. Wednesday is not the day to test your 1-rep max squat or deadlift. Spend some extra time doing some stretching and mobility work. If it’s your thing, maybe have a bath and make sure to get a good night’s sleep!
Jordy Milstein is our resident Aussie, which makes her instantly awesome. She has a Bachelor’s degree in International Development and is working toward a certification with Precision Nutrition. She has worked as a nutrition coach for the past several years, and is also a qualified personal trainer. Want to work with Jordy? Sign up here!