October 21, 2013 Sam Mugavero

Nutrition Challenge 2013

GOAL:  To eat clean, unprocessed foods; log our intake, document how we feel physically and mentally, and learn about how our body responds to the foods we consume.

WHEN: October 21, 2013 – November 18, 2013

Basic Requirements for Participation

Every participant must:

1. Keep a log of everything you ingest. Be detailed and specific, it is not necessary to weigh and measure your foods, unless you think it will help keep you accountable. If after a meal you feel you have over/under eaten, record it, so you can adjust at your next meal.

2. Keep a log of your sleep each night. Record how many hours you slept, if you feel rested, and any events that occurred to disrupt your slumber.

3. Keep a log of how you feel each day. Be specific about your energy levels, mood, and physical states.

***Note: You can keep all this info in one log. Use a page for each day or if you prefer electronic logging, download Evernote to your phone and keep a log there. Evernote is a great resource for logging because you can share it with others and they can check out what you are eating, how you are feeling, and they can help keep you accountable. You can even take pictures of your meals and build them into the Evernote log. I use Evernote with several of my clients to help them stay on track with their fuel and it has proven to be very effective.

4. Take at least 1 picture before the challenge begins and 1 picture at the conclusion of the challenge so we have a record of your body composition changes. If you desire, although not required, take measurements of your waist, neck, chest and thighs.

5. Tell your family and friends what you are doing and get their support! Let them know it’s important to you to learn how your body responds to food.

Levels of Participation

GOLD:  Remove grains/gluten, beans (legumes), sugars/sweeteners (no sugar substitutes even if they are labeled “natural”), and alcohol from your intake.

SILVER:  Remove grains, beans (legumes), and sugars/sweeteners from your intake. Alcohol is allowed, but make sure you are avoiding grain-based alcohols.

COPPER:  Remove grains from your intake.



You must record your “compliance grade” each day.  To keep it simple, there are only two grades; an “O” or and “X”, but you can use a minus sign (O-) if you feel you had a good day, but had a small slip. For example, if you slipped and added sugar to your coffee, but nailed everything else all day, you could give yourself an “O-“.  A large slip receives only one grade…an “X”. Be honest with yourself.

Some things to think about…

1.     What to eat: Lean meats, nuts and seeds, vegetables and fruit, little starch, and no SUGAR!

2.     If it doesn’t rot in 7-10 days, it is probably not food.

3.     Stay away from foods that have more than 5-7 ingredients on the label and the ingredients listed should consist of words that do not require an advanced scientific degree to pronounce.

4.     The perimeter of the grocery store is your friend, the aisles the enemy. Food located on the perimeter is usually fruits, veggies, and fresh protein sources. Food located in the aisles is usually highly processed, boxed crap that has an indefinite shelf life…aka NOT FOOD.

5. If you made a great meal, snap a pic and tell us about it! I'll post it to share with others.


One of the main goals for this challenge is to LEARN how your body responds to the foods you eat and how it feels without the foods you are not eating as a result of participation in the challenge. There is a wealth of information on the web and in books. I encourage you to seek your own answers to questions and educate yourself on why it is important to eat a diet rich in whole, unprocessed foods.  You can also use the “Healthy Eating Guide” I sent you as a quick reference for what to eat.

Here are the websites I visit most often when in need of resources for nutrition and recipes (in no particular order):

a.     http://www.marksdailyapple.com

b.     www.Robbwolf.com

c.      www.whole9life.com

d.     www.paleocomfortfoods.com

e.     www.growinguppaleo.com

f.      http://www.thepaleodiet.com


You CAN do it! Good luck and happy eating!