Nutrient Timing – Does it matter when you eat your food?

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Don’t eat after 6 pm.   You have a 2-hour “FREE” window after workouts to eat whatever you want, without any negative effects.   It is better to eat your carbohydrates earlier in the day rather than at night.   How do we know what to believe when there are SO MANY different opinions out there??   There are some very long standing ‘myths’ out there that I’d like to go over, and hopefully clear up some common questions I get about nutrient timing.  What I mean by nutrient timing is when you eat what throughout the day or in other words, when you take in your carbohydrates, your fats, and your proteins.     Point #1 - Late night eating does not make you fat.  Your body is not on a 24-hour clock.  What matters is how much you ingest vs. how much you burn over time.     Typically the main reason people believe in this myth is more due to the types of food they are eating late at night, rather than the sole fact that they are eating at night.     Does this sound familiar? You come home after work and are both stressed and ravenous.  You start picking at foods while you’re making dinner, you eat your dinner, and then you are in a quest for something sweet to cure your cravings.  So you eat half the bag of chocolate chips in your baking cabinet because you don’t have any other chocolate in the house.   Believe it or not, it does not matter as much WHEN you eat, it matters WHAT and HOW MUCH you eat.   Your body does not store fat more readily at night than at other times during the day.  Just make sure you are taking in the right amount of calories, and proportions of proteins, carbohydrates, and fats to ensure you are reaching your goals.   If you eat all the food you are supposed to before 7 pm, then you shouldn’t be eating past then, BUT if you find yourself at 8 pm with 30g of carbohydrates and 20g of protein left to eat in your day, I hope you’re making yourself a sandwich to get you there!     Point #2 - You do not have a “free” window after your workout to eat whatever you want without negative effects.  Although, you can definitely improve your recovery and performance by timing of your food around your training.   So before you think I’m contradicting myself, like I mentioned WHEN you eat does not outweigh what and how much you eat.  Although, the timing of your foods can have a positive impact on your results as long as you have the proper amounts and quality of food in place.     If you have the right amount of proteins, carbohydrates, and fats determined in a day that you should be eating, but are trying to figure out how to split it up into your day, then here is what I’d advise:
  • Having a meal with sufficient amounts of protein every 3-5 hours.  This will prevent your body from pulling amino acids (building blocks of protein) from other muscle tissue to supply itself.  AKA - You won’t have muscle breakdown due to lack of calories and can keep your ‘gainz’.
  • Eating 3-5 meals per day will help you get the proper amount of calories necessary without feeling too hungry at any point, as well as not having to eat HUGE meals to reach your caloric goals for a day.  
  • Your post workout meal is important because this is when you are starting your recovery process.  As soon as we’ve stopped ‘gasping for air post-workout’, our recovery phase has begun.  What does that even entail?
    • Replenishing muscle and liver glycogen stores (aka our energy stores which are fueled by CARBOHYDRATES)
    • Muscle Repair which can be aided by protein intake
    • Restoring fluid and electrolytes
    • Helping the immune system to handle the damage of exercise and the stress it causes on the body (don’t worry - it’s a good stress!)
  So if you are trying to figure out how often to eat and when to eat what, keep these two things in mind:
  1. Worry first about how much and the types of food you are eating before you start worrying about the timing of those foods.
  2. Eat 4-6 meals throughout the day evenly spaced out and include a good lean protein source with each.
  3. If you are weight-training/exercising consistently, try to have slightly larger meals pre-workout (1-3 hours prior), as well as post-workout (within 90 minutes) to aid in performance and recovery.  These meals are where I would focus a larger amount of calories to restore glycogen to muscles (aka from carbohydrates) as well as aid in muscle tissue repair (aka from a lean protein source).  

This Week at OCF – 3/13

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CrossFit Kids Program - STARTS April 1st!

We know how much you all love CrossFit, so why not share the fun of CrossFit with your kids? Give them something different than their normal sports practices and something that will help them grow into strong, capable young adults!

Here are the details:

  • We must have a minimum of 10 sign-ups or else we will not be able to go forward with the program
  • Dates: April 1st - May 20th (8 weeks)
  • Cost: $150
  • Day/Time: Saturdays @ 12-1 pm
  • Ages: 12-16 y/o
  • Location: O’Hare CrossFit
You can sign up HERE!! Or email with any questions you may have. Time for the whole family to get the CrossFit experience!

Nutrition Seminar + 5-Week Nutrition Challenge

Looking to get that summer body started?? We have you covered! We are going to be hosting a Nutritional Seminar and following it up with a 5-week Nutritional Challenge to help you lose weight, gain muscle, or just look good in that bathing suit come July!

Here are the details:

  • Seminar Date: Saturday, April 1st @ 11 am (FREE)
  • Nutrition Challenge Start Date: Tuesday, April 4th
  • Cost of Nutrition Challenge: $100

What will the challenge include?

  • Individual Meal Plan Help
  • InBody 270 Body-Fat Testing at the beginning and end of the challenge
  • Approved Foods List
  • Weekly Email Check ins with Nutritional Coach Becca Chilczenkowski
  • Help with struggles, plateaus, and accountability
Keep your eye out for how to get signed up for the challenge or email with any questions!

Friday Night Lights Info

We only have 2 weeks left of the Open! Each week has been absolutely amazing and we couldn’t have the energy we do without all of you amazing athletes and your supporters.

Just a quick reminder about each week of the Open:

  • Make sure you sign up for a heat time during the week and be ready to go at that time!!
  • Try your best to stick around and cheer on all of the athletes participating - everyone deserves a fan!
  • Do your best and be proud of your efforts!! We are proud of you, that’s for sure!

As always, friends and family are more than welcome to come and cheer you on. Show them all of your hard work and all of the amazing things you are capable of!

Heats start at 6:30 pm each Friday, see you there!

Keep that Fire Burning

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Keep that fire burning.  Don’t lose that spark.  And if you do for what you’re doing currently, find it in something else.     With so much talk going into the 3rd week of the Open, I felt it was important to present a different perspective.  As a 5x participant, the meaning of it has shifted throughout the years.  It has become a way for me to re-ignite that spark, and has represented a time of reflection and reinvention for me.  Every year, I put myself in position to not only challenge myself and face any fears that I may have surrounding gymnastics movements, a major weakness of mine, how long a workout will be, or how much it’s going to suck… but inadvertently, I set myself up for success, in feeling a sense of empowerment and accomplishment at the conclusion of each season.  Every year, I feel better  and have been able to do something I was not able to do the year before, and that fires me up.   So to all my peeps doing their very first Open that didn't get to see a pull- up in last weeks workout, dont sweat it…it simply serves as a reminder that there is work that needs to be done.  We all started somewhere and consider this…. You are already successful and have so much to be proud of; you have completed 2 workouts in a competition that you never thought yourself capable of doing.  You stepped outside of your safe zone, not knowing in the least what to expect, and in case you haven't heard, thats where the magic happens.   Coach Rocio

This Week at OCF – 3/6

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Running Club - Only 3 Spots Left!!

Running club starts NEXT week and will help you on anything from:
  • Running form
  • Running pace for different races and workouts
  • Running endurance
  • Getting ready for your next race, whether it is your first 5k or your first marathon!

Start Date: Wednesday, March 15th Days and Times: Wednesdays @ 7:30 pm and Sundays @ 9:30 am Location: Grant Park Recreation Center (44 W Golfview Dr, Northlake, IL 60164)

To sign up - email now and save your spot before they are all gone! If you want to learn more about what running club is all about, or to learn more about the coach of running club, Triton’s Track Coach Mike Olsen, then check out the informational video HERE!

Weightlifting 101 Session Ends

We wanted to extend a huge congratulations to all of the amazing members who took part in the most recent WL 101 session! It was our largest session yet, and we had so much fun with everyone. Check out the highlights from the most recent session! If you’re interested in taking part in the next Weightlifting 101 session, look for more information on one starting in May!

OCF Member of the Month – February 2017

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Cindy Lou

February 2017

Cindy Lou has been a member for nearly 3 years now and she has accomplished so much in her time at O’Hare CrossFit. She has ran a marathon, she has taken part in multiple CrossFit Opens, and she recently also just joined in on our Oly 101 session!

She is a staple in the 7:30 pm #Wolfpack crew and she has always been a friendly face for newcomers to OCF and to the 7:30 pm class. In her time at OCF, she has also undergone a major physical transformation and seen amazing success with weight loss and strength gains.

We couldn’t be more proud of all that Cindy has taken on since her time at OCF and we know she is capable of so much more down the line.

Get to know Cindy Lou! 1. When did you start CrossFit and why? I started CrossFit in April 2014. I found out about CrossFit and OCF through my friend Emily and I was so intrigued by her weight loss that I decided to give it a try. When I first started I wanted to work on losing weight and getting ready for a Tough Mudder run. 2. What time of day do you come in? I come in at 7:30pm with the WOLFPACK!!! Love my crew! 3. What is one type of movement you hate and one you love? I HATE burpees with all my heart and soul, and lunges! But I love everything else we do at the gym, especially any type of lower body workout because booty gains! 4. Any big goal(s) set for the next year? This year I’m hoping to cut my marathon time for the Chicago Marathon in October and keep up with my brother and sister. I want to continue working on my weightlifting and finally make it to Performance. Also, drop my body fat to finally have some abs in my life. But overall, I just want to be the best version of myself and see how far I can take my body. 5. Name an athlete that inspires you and why.  (Does not have to be a CrossFitter) I don’t have a specific athlete that inspires me but I love watching all the women who CrossFit. I love how they continue to change the stereotype and do what they love even though it may not be the norm in our society. #StrongIsBeautiful Also, I have to give a special shout out to my wolfpack, they always keep me going and push me to never give up in life and in the middle of a workout. 6. Tell us one fun fact about you. I am currently going to school to pursue my master’s degree to become a Nurse Practitioner, Midwife. So with that being said, I have a goal to deliver a certain amount of babies into this world and a couple of my friends have agreed to let me deliver their babies in the next couple of years. (I know it’s a little weird) 7. You were left on a deserted island.  What one food and thing (i.e. book, music player, etc...) would you want to be left with you? I have to go with sushi and music. I’m always listening to something throughout my day, so any type of music player that can play Spotify would be great and maybe a book too. 8. How has CrossFit helped you in sports? Life? CrossFit has helped me with my overall health and with all my fitness goals. I’ve lost so much weight throughout the years and keeping it off can be very hard but OCF has been the consistency in my life to help do that along with my nutrition. As far as in life in general it has changed me completely. OCF has helped me deal with breakups, death, and everything that life has thrown at me. It has made me a stronger person not only physically but mentally as well. It has helped me realize that with every bad thing that can occur there is good that can come out of it. It continues to help me get out of my bubble and has given me the confidence to go after my goals in life. I don’t think I would be the person I am today without OCF. 9. How have workouts changed for you over the years? I’ve been with OCF for a long time so with that my priorities have changed over the years. When I first started all I wanted was just to be able to complete a workout. Now I’m more focused on getting stronger and working on my form with my lifts and hopefully, moving to performance this year. 10. Rate the following on a scale of 1 to 10:

Check in for Charity – March 2017

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We started Check-In for Charity to help support the many local charitable organizations that are near and dear to our members. We want to be able to give back and get the entire community involved in the process. Our community is the backbone of O'Hare CrossFit and we are here to support you! How It Works Each month we will select a new local charity based on a member recommendation. Members then need to check-in to OCF on Facebook at every visit. We will then donate $1 for every check-in to a different local charity each month. (Donations will be limited to $500 per month) Charity for March 2017 Member - Autumn John The Pancreatic Cancer Action Network is a nationwide network of people dedicated to working together to advance research, support patients and create hope for those affected by pancreatic cancer. My mother passed away from pancreatic cancer 3 years ago at the young age of 55. She died nearly a year exactly from her diagnosis. It has a survival rate in the single digits which is unacceptable and their goal is to increase the survival rate by 50% by 2020. It was devastating and that is why this is the charity I consistently donate to. For more information or to recommend a charitable organization, contact Rocio at


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Jitters are good, we like jitters….   A coach that I really looked up to told me a long time ago, that if you aren’t nervous about the game then you don’t care.  That is something that has stuck with me for years to come.  Granted that was a sport’s related reference, but its impact has carry over far beyond its reach.     Right now, all of us get nervous, about a myriad of different things.  I am at a point where I am very nervous about my future.  I have invested a lot of money in my education, to make something of a once college drop out who fought with his mother to tears about finishing his associates degree.     Some of us are nervous about going on first or second dates with a new found acquaintance.  Some of us are nervous that our low monthly income won’t allow us to afford some of the finer things that we have kept our eyes on for months on end.  Some of us are nervous about this whole thing called the CrossFit Open.   It is good to be nervous, it means that you care.  It means that you have worked so hard to a point where the outcome that you are about to receive will impact you.  Whether that be leaving a first date thanking god that you survived, or paying for a dinner that was a bit fancier than normal.  Or even surviving Open Workout 17.3.     If I were to offer any type of advice, it would be to remember that you’re doing what you do because you love yourself and you care about what will happen to you.  Not every scenario that presents itself will end with dire repercussions, but there will be some that challenge you as a human being and as an individual.  Those are often the one’s that you learn from the most.   Coach Zach