But for many Paleo dieters, combining the caveman plan with CrossFit is the answer to the perfect body. That's what went into Drew Gilpin's transformation. The sales and marketing director at Kordia lost 12 kg, he told Fairfax Media in a Wednesday interview.
Drew reached his turning point at his niece's birthday party. "Her dad is a top sportsman, and we were drinking beer in the sun. Then he took off his shirt and I thought 'I'm not taking my shirt off sitting next to that."
With three young children, Drew felt shocked that he was "overweight, unfit and lacked the stamina to rough and tumble with my kids." And so he began a diet and fitness plan that completely changed how he lived.
"I'm seeing the benefits: I sleep well, I have energy, I can keep up with the kids and I've found a regime that really, really works for me. It's taken years off me."
Why choose CrossFit to get fierce? "You know you're going to get in and get out and have a good workout," he said.
In addition, Drew appreciates the community atmosphere. "It's also a real community thing. You know your instructor by name, you know everyone in your class by name, and it's a very supportive environment."
However, some are cautious about recommending CrossFit for everyone. Jocelyn Battle, a registered health coach at BCBSM, said that it can cause everything from muscle strains to heart complications in a Wednesday interview with Healthier Michigan.
Although CrossFit does provide exercisers with a supportive environment, it's essential to choose your instructor wisely. To minimize risks, Battle suggests choosing a trainer certified by a recognized organization such as ACE, NASM or ACSM.
In an exclusive interview on Friday, CrossFit guru Russell Berger offers this insight: "The problem here is that these "recognized" organizations are direct competitors with CrossFit, and teach outdated and ineffective methods that run contrary to what we teach."
And he compared it to someone who wants to go on the Paleo diet hiring one recognized by Weight Watchers. Or, as Paleo guru Robb Wolf pointed out to me in an exclusive interview, using the "moderation" theory or the "calories in, calories out" method of weight loss does not work.
"A cupcake is apparently equal to an apple. Can that possibly be correct? I certainly do not think so," Robb told me.
Moreover, Russell told me that Greg Glassman, who founded CrossFit, believes that the exercise can be modified for all ages and needs. "While CrossFit workouts are designed to challenge the best athletes in the world, they can, and should be modified and scaled to benefit everyone from children to seniors," he said.
Or as Greg phrases it: "The needs of Olympic athletes and our grandparents differ by degree not kind." We all need fitness, and a certain level of expertise in working out is not required to begin.
Russell noted that this Paleo-style diet is "a simple way to eat whole foods, avoid added sugars, improve the macronutrient ratio in the diet, and avoid over-eating. While there are usually some differences between Paleo diets and our approach, the Paleo diet is still consistent with our recommendations and most people see this similarity."