In a private Highlands Ranch CrossFit Facebook group, members share recipes, nutrition successes and even cooking problems.
“One of our members, matter of fact, posted that her husband thought she was an axe murderer trying to cut a [spaghetti] squash,” recalled April Lockler, the nutrition coach for the Box in Colorado. “Another member chimed in to help alleviate that difficulty.”
And when the Denver Broncos took on the Carolina Panthers in the 2016 Super Bowl, the group started collaborating for healthy party snacks. She explained getting the members excited about their nutrition comes down to two things: community and making it relatable.
Community is built through nutrition challenges at Lockler’s Box. But Lockler explained the challenge is simply an introduction. If members want more nutrition help, Lockler will tailor a program to their goals. She’ll also tailor it to life, which is her second way to get members excited. “We try to relate [nutrition] to real life, so that they’re excited and they’re set up for success week in and week out,” she said.
At CrossFit Desert Wolf in Riverside, California, members will go through a 90-day challenge. The owner of the Box, Andy Ledford, explained he tested out various time periods and found three months worked best. He said if someone falls off the wagon, they have a chance to get back on it.
From time to time, the 90-day challenge is run differently. For instance, Ledford recently had the challenge set up like a UFC bracket. Members were paired together based on body fat percentages. At the end of the challenge, whoever lost the most body fat would move on to a second round.
However he sets up the challenge, Ledford always gives away big prizes — $800 in cash, a package of monthly memberships, gift certificates to stores like Lululemon, etc. — that are funded by the challenge’s entry fee.
Nicholson also said the challenges are a way to build hype and promote the other nutrition options CrossFit 214 offers. However, he explained the proof is in the results. “It’s pretty easy to get people excited once you have a few success stories,” he explained.
But it’s hard to get members focused on nutrition unless you know their goals. That, said Nicholson, is the first step. While initial goals might deal with aesthetic or health reasons, over time those goals usually change. “[Members] start to see that there’s more to fitness than they may have initially thought,” said Nicholson.