As promised, here’s how you can be a part of the CrossFit 204 Eat Less Crap challenge.

Below, you’ll find four different levels of commitment. All are equal, and despite the numbering system, there is no hierarchy. If you struggle with your diet and give up pop for a month, we consider that just as valuable as completely eliminating sugar and processed food. Every change matters, no matter how small. In fact, the first small changes might be the most important of all.

If you want to join in, post your commitment in the comments section below, whether you come to the gym or not. We’ll also write the commitments on a whiteboard at CrossFit 204, and we’ll hold each other accountable, because we’re building a fit community.

As one word of advice, be specific when choosing your goals. Pick something concrete. “I will eat five more servings of vegetables a day” is way more effective than “I will eat better.” Be concise!

With out further ado, here’s the deal:

Level 1: The Thing That Sucks Most

Level 1 is like the triage desk at the hospital: what’s the worst thing happening right now, and how do we fix it?

If you look at your diet and can see something glaringly out of place for a person who’s working out and concerned about fitness, it’s time to deep-six that thing.

Probable culprits include potato chips, candy, pop, ice cream, white bread, alcohol, drugs, cigarettes, doughnuts, milkshakes, fried foods, fast food, Lucky Charms breakfast cereal, all-you-can-eat buffets and so on.

These are the things that are truly and obviously out of place, the things you know are bad but haven’t gotten rid of.

At Level 1, we’re asking you to give one bad thing up for a month. Giving up The Thing That Sucks Most can be tremendously empowering and will help you learn that change is possible.

If you want to bring now-forbidden food items into the gym, we’ll keep them there as a statement of your goal, and at the end we’ll walk them over to the food-hamper bin at the next Bombers game. We’re not trying to pawn off crummy food on the poor, but bad food is better than no food at all, and throwing it out seems wasteful.

Level 2: And Your Little Friend, Too

In Level 2, you’re going to eliminate several Things That Suck. Now we’re getting into combos like chips and pop, ju-jubes and Twinkies, beer and cigarettes, country and Western music. You know, horrible pairs of things that have a negative effect on your life.

You can, of course, eliminate a whole whack of things. We’ll take any number of bad dietary and lifestyle choices you want to eliminate.

Level 3: Conscious Eating (Use Your Big Brain)

In Level 3, we’re asking you commit to one “big-picture” change that’s part of a plan for revamping your diet. We’re not telling you to go Paleo or Zone or whatever. We’re asking you to commit to something that will implement a significant change in your eating habits for a month.

You might commit to eating regular meals and not skipping breakfast. You might commit to cooking the week’s food Sunday night. You might commit to making a meal plan for the week and sticking to it. You might simply make time to shop for groceries twice a week so fresh, healthy food is always in the house. You might plan a way to avoid those god-awful office cake parties that happen with disturbing regularity.

You can, of course, integrate some aspects of levels 1 and 2 with Level 3 if you have some crap in your diet.

Level 4: Brave New World

In Level 4, we’re asking you to take some larger steps toward overall health and fitness. At this level, we’ve already cut out the crap and we’re looking to really dial things in. We’re asking you to get busy addressing at least one big-picture item that represents a significant change in your life.

Look at replacing grain-fed meat with grass-fed meat. Try out important things like kale and coconut oil. Consider adding a fish-oil supplement to your diet. Research good fats and figure out how to work them into your diet. Get rid of boxed food and processed food.

Buy organic food. Shop two or three times a week for fresh food and stop going go down the aisles at the supermarket; the healthy stuff is around the edges. Try out new healthy recipes. Source out high-quality local foods and work out which combinations will make you feel the best and give you the best results in the gym. Read books on nutrition and put pictures of your meals on Facebook.

You’re committing to fully eating like a real human athlete should eat—and you’re feeling great!

Post goals and commitments to comments! Have fun!

Comments closed


Well Mike and I are ready to go. We’ve committed to Level 4. Truthfully, grocery shopping wasn’t all that different. I stocked up on coconut oil, almond meal, flaxseed meal and more vegetables than the crisper can hold, and shortly we’ll order our grass-fed meat.

Some things were taken out of the cupboards as part of Level 1 and 2 commitments, including peanut butter, crackers and Kathy’s cinnamon buns (these were significant for Mike), and Merlot (this was big for me). We also sent a host of condiments and salad dressings down to the basement storage fridge.

We have a few awesome cookbooks that I have already dived into, and we’re excited to experience a higher level of health and fitness for the next month. I have a feeling we’ll never look back.

We’ll tell you how it goes in the blog. Mike was already moaning about peanut butter last night, until I fired a no-sugar, high-fat, high protein almond square in his mouth. Lesson learned: be prepared!

Good luck everyone!


    Natural peanut butter isn’t ok??


      I think when I complete the challenge, I will indeed go with natural peanut butter, or maybe I’ll just stick with almond butter. I’m specifically getting rid of Kraft Creamy Peanut Butter.

      My addiction to peanut butter is not based on taste. I can give it up pretty easily. I just hat paying twice as much for half as much of something.


      When it comes to natural peanut butter, you pay for what you don’t get (hydrogenated oils/sugar etc)


      Hit up costco. You get a jar of almond butter for about $5 that is a decent size. Not your huge jumbo monster kraft peanut butter.. but close 🙂


I’m not too worried about the Level 4 requirements because I’ve put myself completely in Crystal’s care. She’s deep into diet and recipe books (thanks to Deb!) and the fridge is now full of a bunch of stuff I don’t understand but will eat. She’s cooked a ton of stuff that’s stored in Tupperware already for easy grabbing when we run to the gym.

While I know I will miss my evening peanut butter and crackers, I did indeed enjoy that almond square, and I’m looking forward to seeing what these dietary changes will do for me.

Good luck to everyone who’s participating!


My commitment for the month of September is to not eat treats six out of seven days of the week. For me, treats include, chocolate, cookies, cake, any kind of baked good. I have a major weakness for sweets. On the seventh day, I’ll allow myself one treat, not the whole cake.


    Awesome goal, Kaylyn! Great choice!


I am making a level 4 commitment. While I have been “pseudo-Paleo” for over a year, it is time to eliminate the occasional Tbsp of raw sugar, and (gasp) until goals are met, the occassional “adult beverage”. This “Hard Routine” is a minor sacrifice given what others have done for our freedoms. I look forward to an increased accountability and support.


    We will support you from afar, Eric. Thanks for joining in! Please keep us posted throughout.
    I will admit to an occasional shot of gin on Saturday afternoon, but I’m bagging that for the month too. It’s straight coffee from here out….


      I take my coffee like my women….bitter!

      I have been a longtime user of natural PB as a “kick start” in the AM. I eat a TBSP every morning upon waking, and then (depending on the day) either WOD or drive the 80 miles to work. I then eat my breakfast which is almost always 2egg/2 egg whites scrambled with 1 cup of spinach (seasoned with jalapeno salt) 1/2 melon and 2 glasses of water. It fits my blocks and I can have it prepared ahead of time for easy consumption at work.

      I think the PB blast helps to jump start metabolism and get the food burning furnace burning hot!


I am committing to level 3. Since I will be back to work this month, I am committing to make 3 out of the 5 weekday suppers on Sunday night in order to ensure something nutritious is available. I will also meal plan to shop on Tuesdays and Saturdays for the week. I am also committed to BRINGING LUNCH to work every day this month, something I have struggled with in the past. In terms of cutting out the crap, I will be cutting out pop (a big one for me), and junk (cookies, candies, chocolate, chips).


Oh, and I forgot another crap item i will eliminate…alcohol. Yikes!


    Spectacular choices, Lee! I’m excited for you!

Steve Green

Great Blog Post. You should check out my new book now available at Amazon: The Eat Less Crap And Get Off Your Arse Diet.


    Thanks for the resource, Steve!


We are going to commit to level 3. We will have salad 3 times a week, and no pop, cookies or chips for the month. We will not eat after 8pm except for veggies, fruit, hummous, and air-popped popcorn. Time to get eating under control! Thanks for opening this up to those of us who are not a part of your gym mike.

Pamela and Graham


we were going to do good ol’fashion plain, air-popped popcorn…..but maybe for september we will avoid that too and do the jerky and almonds instead….thanks!


I’m in, I posted on the wrong page!!! I’m starting this month, by eliminating ice cream and refined carbs! Good luck everyone! Stay strong!


That is some slammin’ tilework on the wall behind the food and the girl…


    It is pretty nice. You should see the bathroom….


I am going to eliminate my two bad habits: bread and gin (though I rarely consume them together). Bread doesn’t sound too bad, especially when it’s organic, locally made Spelt bread but I eat an alarmingly large amount every week. My diet is already 90% organic and mostly vegan. I eat birds but only out of spite (detestable creatures). Chips, pop and refined sugars I eliminated years ago so this will be a snap for me.


    I feel your pain in giving up gin!

    It should also be noted that Josh hasn’t had a cigarette in about 10 months. Awesome job!

b. smithson

your always after me lucky charms…


    Hide them well, buddy!


I am doin the level 2. I am eliminating refined sugar and bread for the month of September. Holy crap. I said it. This started out as a level one chocolate thing and grew to this commitment after reading everyone else’s comments. I know I can do it as I have done 8 weeks of strict paleo in my time. I have a sugar bread problem and I believe they play a large part in aggravating my asthma. My body, my responsibility. I would like to thank Crystal and Mike for flicking on the light in my brain that has been shut off for awhile. I love the accountability factor as well.


    Right on, Deb! You inspire us every day – and thanks for the books!


I think I’m somewhere between level 2 and level 3. I’m avoiding McDonald’s grilled chicken and all white wheat/white rice. I will eat at least 3 servings of fruit (at least 2 different kinds), 6 servings of vegetables (at least 3 different kinds), and 2 different sources of healthy fats _every_ day.


    Awesome goal, Ryan! That should get you to a 325 bench easy!

    Thanks for the other info!


I think I’m somewhere between level 3 and 4. I am going strictly clean eating all week except Saturday dinner will be my cheat meal. It’s measured meal plans of mostly chicken breast, veggies, yams or brown rice, egg whites and oatmeal. I will be cooking up all my food for the week Sunday and have it pre-measured/packed for 3 meals a day and 3 healthly snacks a day for the week. I will shop for the vegetables a few times a week and add them to my meals daily so they are fresh. I will be sure to eat all my vitamins and minerals throughout the day including the fish oil I love so much…not! I’m an all or nothing kind of girl and have done this for long periods of time before but have had a rough summer at best. 30 days can make a habit, and habits are easier to keep….looking forward to the challenge and getting back to a healthier me 🙂

Thanks for the kick in the butt to get started!


    Right on, Paula – we’re excited for you!

    Mike Shaver

    I’m going to piggy back on Paula’s plan here, and do the same thing. Additional challenge for me is to drink all the water I’ve been meaning to for awhile, along with the protein shakes throughout the day.

    Lets bring it.


      Right on, Mike!

Kelly P

I am committing to Level 3. I go through bouts of being a Paleo superstar and then I run out of groceries or get caught at 2:00 p.m. without a lunch or healthy resources.

My goal is two fold:

1. Grocery shop twice weekly: Sunday major shop, wednesday’ish touch-up shop

2. Bring lunch everyday (and more than I think I need to avoid bonks on the ride home)

Sounds so easy doesn’t it?

I’m not going to lie, I was totally roasting chicken breasts at 7 a.m. so that I would have lunch today….


    Roast away – great plan. Crystal was hammering almond power bars into a pan this morning too.

    Great work!


I love reading all these comments – so inspiring!! Just thinking about being a part of this helps deter me from eating foods I shouldn’t, and that helps me a lot. Especially today when I didn’t plan my eating very well at all. I managed to stave off the hunger with a large coffee. Mmmm… That will ALWAYS be on my diet and I am ok with that! The hardest part about this challenge for me is the fact that I am out of town 3 times this month so cooking for myself will be difficult to say the least. I will do my best, as I am quite motivated. Thanks everyone and keep the comments n suggestions coming!!

Tom Hack

I will start this month will Level 2 change, giving up some of the tasty but unhealthy foods I use as snacks on the weekend or on weekday evenings. I pledge to give up Super Nibs red licorice, all baked goods (including all breads, pies, cakes, cookies, muffins, and doughnuts), pretzels and chips, and all desserts with the exception of chocolate with 70%+ cocoa. I will allow myself nightly desserts on the two nights I am dining in Halifax this month, one slice of banana bread at my staff retreat mid-month, and one dessert on two other dates of my choosing.


    Great plan, Tom! I appreciate your commitment!

Comments are closed.