Crossfit / Paleo Progress Report

Tuesday March 6, 2012

Saturday, March 3rd marked the end of the 60 day Performance Nutrition Challenge I participated in at my Crossfit gym.   We are still finishing up some performance workouts at the gym, so our coach won’t announce the winners until the end of the next week, but I thought it would be a good time to celebrate my progress and share how I’ve changed.

First, a quick history.   I started Crossfit in November 2011.   It was crazy hard, and I was crazy out of shape, but I loved it and kept coming back for more.  At the beginning of January, I decided to join the food challenge, aka “eat Paleo”.  This seemed insane to me — I had no idea how I would be able to give up all those foods I loved — breads (bagels! pasta!), sugar and dairy (ice cream! chocolate!), but I knew folks had dramatic success so I was willing to give it a try.

It was hard, initially. I definitely had cravings and I felt like 75% of my time and energy was devoted to what we would eat next and how to prepare it.  But I surprised myself by sticking with it (I had 2 cheat days over the whole thing) until eating clean became the norm.   I also worked out 5 -6 times a week during this stretch.

So.. after all that hard work, how did I do?   Here is the “after” me:


Obviously, I am a dork and have no clue how to pose myself, but I feel great and am proud of how I look.   Here’s some of my stats:

Weight:  Dropped 14 lbs  (closer to 25 lbs down since starting in Nov.)
Waist:  Down  2.5″ (since starting in Nov, I went from a bulging size 14 to a size 10)
Hips: Down 1.5″

The challenge wasn’t just about “losing weight”, but was meant to measure our overall fitness.   We did workouts at the beginning and are repeating them at the end.  So far, I have seem incredible improvements.  Here are some of my  fitness stats:

My overall strength improved dramatically.  I can now:

Back Squat: 203lbs (+30 from January)
Shoulder Press: 78lbs (+10)
Deadlift: 253lbs (+60)

Another test we did was the maximum number of pull-ups and push-ups we could complete in 5 rounds.  I was able to do:

158 push-ups (on my toes; +105 from January)
63 pull-ups (using bands for assistance; +32 from Jan)

Lastly, here are some before and after pictures.  I am a little embarrassed to be showing off my “before” to the world, but I think it demonstrates the power of Crossfit and “eating clean”.

2012 Paleo Challenge1.jpg

If anyone is on the fence about “trying Paleo” or thinks “I could never do that!”  I encourage you to try a 30 day challenge.  Believe me, if *I* can do it, anyone can!

Whole 9 Life has a 30 day challenge which is a great place to start.  If you are interested in learning more about “Paleo”, Robb Wolf has a book, The Paleo Solution: The Original Human Diet, which also has a 30 day plan and is another great resource.

And for the record, Yes, I realize my story is just another example of the 20 step story of a typical Crossfitter.

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21 Responses to Crossfit / Paleo Progress Report

  1. 1
    Yvette says:

    Way to Go! You look great.

    I also eat Paleo and have never felt better. But have not done CrossFit…yet!

  2. 2
    Angie says:

    You look amazing! I have so many doubts about my ability to do this challenge, but your success sure does make me want to try!

  3. 3
    Ryan says:

    So proud of you Kendra!!

  4. 4
    Tyler says:

    Very impressive! You should be so proud of your discipline and dedication!

  5. 5
    Heather Peterson says:

    You look amazing!!!!

  6. 6
    Hilary says:

    Kendra you are so beautiful, what an amazing success story you’ve had and the journeys not over! Keep up the hard work, we are so proud of you!

  7. 7
    Laura says:

    I love your arms!!!! Ok everything looks great buy your arms!!!!! Way to go, you are totally an inspiration!

  8. 8
    Jimbo says:

    Nice work K!

  9. 9
    Susan says:

    Have also done the Paleo for 60 plus days..I am feeling so much better, no highs and lows…can’t believe the foods I ate were giving me such a roller coaster of feelings…Good for you..Am still going Paleo until I get this extra weight off!!

  10. 10
    Kendra says:

    thanks all!

  11. 11
    Kim says:

    Way to go girl! You look awesome. Thank for sharing the results.

  12. 12
    Iris says:

    WOW Kendra – that’s all I can say – WOW!!!!!!!!!! You have worked so hard and what a great payoff. I knew you were looking skinny as can be, but did not realize it was so dramatic! You have my vote for the big winner no matter what Chef says! Congratulations!

  13. 13
    chi says:

    Go, K, go!!!!

  14. 14
    Courtney Mac says:

    Your stomach/waist looks amazing!!
    Congrats and way to go!!

    (now go treat yourself to something yummy and non Paleo!)

  15. 15
    Karen Dunham says:

    Great job, Kendra!!! You look great. So what food do you miss most? I miss cheese….but to eat it again would probalby make me miss it more! ha.

  16. 16
    Renee says:

    Wow Kendra! You look amazing! Especially your stomach. You have almost sold me on a paleo diet. I’m going to try some of your recipes. I wish had the time and money to do crossfit. I was reading a blog that’s new to me ( and saw that she does crossfit and uses paleo recipes.

  17. 17
    Patricia says:

    Kendra, what a goal to have achieved–congratulations on your perse verance AND your discipline! You look great.

  18. 18
    Michelle Wright says:

    Work it, girl. I am SOOOOO proud of you! and excited for your contagious enthusiasm. GO GIRL!!!

  19. 19
    Rachel says:

    I’m so inspired by you and your story! I’ve tried paleo twice now and had great results but gradually slid back into my old lifestyle because I was overwhelmed by the food limitations and the stress of so much planning. I was also worried that I wouldn’t be able to make enough food for my toddler to eat. Anyway, I’m going to give it another try and use your menus as guidelines. Your park and local recs have been so helpful for our family plans, so why not this too?! Thank you!

  20. 20
    val says:

    I am just starting crossfit -and *thought* i was in good shape but even the mini wods in the foundation classes are hard. The oly lifing style is hard. How long did it take for you to not feel like you were doing something wrong. i worry about my form

    • 20.1
      Kendra says:

      Val — oly lifting is tough, especially if you don’t have previous experience (I didn’t). It took more than a month to even remember which move was which (didn’t know my snatch from my clean & jerk).

      It does take time, but it will get there. It is also something that takes years to perfect. Hopefully you have good coaches — they key is to start with light weight as you learning technique. Your form will not be perfect, but it will get better with time and practice!

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