Zone Questions

Well, I just spent a lot of time writing a post of the same topic matter and my computer screwed up severely and I lost everything when I went to post it. So if this feels rushed, and or angry, forgive me.

I have been doing some research and have been seriously considering going on the Zone Diet. With the recommendation of Crossfit, members of the Straight Blast Gym as well as my own personal research and philosophies, it sounds like something that could benefit me tremendously. Although it would be a difficult task to convince my mom to buy the materials (money and burden-wise) and the prep time for some things, as well as making a school lunch would be difficult, but pending on some information I receive, I will do this all.

I have several questions about the Zone and I would love anyone informed about it, and preferably experienced with it to answer. I have an ever changing schedule, due to weekends, and soon summer. So I have questions for all different schedules of mine. Currently I am 127lbs, around 11% body fat and not looking to gain weight or lose much weight (I am planning on wrestling 125lbs next year, so dropping to 125, or gaining to 135 lbs would be acceptable, I am also growing.) My schedule now, and in the future are posted below. My questions are:

-If you are interested in an AM workout (run and/or lifting) what would you do? Go on an empty stomach, have one of their breakfasts, split up a breakfast or move a snack to before breakfast? Also for post workout move the snack, or chose one of the more protein based breakfasts I.E the ones where protein powder are added?

Edit*-Do you and should I add extra protein to the zone diet in the form of a Whey shake or something along those lines?Edit*

-As I said earlier, I am 5'5, 127lbs not looking to lose or gain a significant amount of weight, however a few pounds in either direction is fine, and loss of body fat is certainly welcome (to about 7%). What block system should I be on?

-Finally and most importantly, is the Zone right for me? It would be a challenge for me and my mom to go to the Zone, but I will do it if it is worth it. Also I can maybe get her to go on the Zone because she needs energy and is looking to get healthier. Below I have my current diet and a summary of my exercise schedule for weekdays, weekends, and the summer. It was much more in depth in my first post, but this is being written in between 24 commercials and I have to get to sleep ?

Weekday Workout Schedule:
-Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday (3:00-4:00/4:30)- Lift
-Monday, Wednesday and Friday (4:00-4:30/5:00) – Cardio: typically a 1 mile warm up, followed by sprints of some kind. Taku's intervals, 100meter sprints, Jog-Sprint-Run telephone poles, or anything along those lines for a given period of time followed by about a ½ mile cool-down. If I am feeling over trained, I will skip this, or turn it into a 2-3 mile LSD run.
-Tuesday and Thursday (6:30-8:00/8:30)- Wrestling

Weekend Workout Schedule: (the runs in this are subject to change pending on how I am feeling)
-(9:30) AM run, see above.
-Sunday (3:30-5:30)-Wrestling

Summer Workout Schedule:
-Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday (9:00-10:30) Lift, and most likely sprints one day, LSD the next
-Tuesday, Thursday, Sunday (6:30-8:30 and Sunday 3:30-5:30) Wrestling
Possibly, god willing I get rides, throw some MMA into the mix as well.


-Breakfast (weekdays 6:45, weekends and summer 9:30) ½ cup of oatmeal made with water, half a banana and handful of raisins. One cup of green tea, one giant cup of water. If I am doing an AM workout, I will start off with a piece of toast and one fruit, either a banana or an orange; post workout, a bowl of oatmeal.

-Lunch (weekdays 12:00, weekends and summer 1:00) Sandwich on Whole Wheat bread made with either natural peanut butter, honey and banana or ham turkey and lettuce. One or two pieces of fruit, apples or oranges. Bowl of salad with lettuce, carrots, cucumbers, broccoli peanuts and cranberries, with light Italian.

-Post Lifting/Pre Wrestling-Bowl of oatmeal with ½ banana and handful of raisins, water

-Post Wrestling-Whey Protein shake

-Post Lifting and Running, no wrestling-Whey Protein shake

-Dinner: Meat based (chicken, fish, or when time constrained tuna or salmon burger or frozen fish.) Similar salad as above or steamed veggies, mainly green beans. And side of carb I.E 1-2 scoops rice, little plate worth of noodles or a piece of toast.

Now, after all of this, is the Zone right for me and will I benefit from it? If so please tell me and I will at least give it a week's effort to see how I feel. If possible, how should I cater to the zone with my current schedule.

Thanks to all who read my long post, just reading it all is appreciated and thanks to people experienced with the zone for answering. I really appreciate it.


Just get the book. The read will benefit you greatly in my opinion.

I've read a week in the Zone, but perhaps I will try the original book. I really liked crossfits journal that Chemicalsage sent out and I definitley think that is enough atleast in the preliminary stages. If anyone as answers to the questions though that would be great.

-If you are interested in an AM workout (run and/or lifting) what would you do?

Either have a small snack before you go or eat a whole breakfast. It depends on how much you want to eat that early. Post workout, I'd eat any normal zone meal. All the breakfasts have equal amounts of protein (approximately). They differ only by the types of proteins you're eating. Also, you don't need to add a whey shake, all your protein requirements are covered by the meals you eat.

-What block system should I be on?

127 * (100-11=89/100=.89) = 113.03 / 7 = 16.14 blocks/day

So we'll say 17 blocks per day for you. This is 1 gram of protein per pound of lean body mass. Eat that however you want, try not to get more than 4 blocks per meal. You could go 1-4-4-4-4, (morning snack, workout then eat meals throughout the day). Or you could eat 4-1-4-4-4, breakfast, then a post workout snack, then meals throughout the day. 4-1-3-1-4-4, if you want to have an extra snack, it's up to you.

-Finally and most importantly, is the Zone right for me?

You know that better than I do. There are tons of benefits from eating this way. Try it for a few days, you'll see. The zone works great for athletes and non-athletes, so mom can definately share in the wealth.

"Although it would be a difficult task to convince my mom to buy the materials (money and burden-wise) and the prep time for some things, as well as making a school lunch would be difficult"

Well, money wise, it's not as bad as you'd think. Buy bulk in everything (tuna, chicken breasts, etc) and it's not too bad. You should be eating that amount of protein anyway for optimal growth. If you aren't eating many vegetables, you should be. You can still eat breads/etc, just eat less of them. The whole 'the zone is too expensive' complaint really comes from 'bread is cheaper'. Sure, it's cheaper, but what better to spend your money on than your health? The energy I have from eating like this is well worth the extra cost. Prep time: there are lots of quick zone recipies. Bring a lunch to school: Why is this difficult? Example: 4 oz meat (ham, turkey, chicken), 2 slices of bread, 1 1/3 tsp olive oil, add some vegetables for flavor.

Ya, if you read a zone book w/ a breakdown of why the zone does what it does, then you should be good. Mastering the Zone is a great book, I'd buy it, only about $15-20. It's important to know why you're eating like this, the results only get better w/ more understanding. Think of how much money you spend on food every year, you can add it in as a food expense.

Also - buy extra light tasting olive oil. Has very little flavor and makes it easy to add to anything.

Here's a link w/ more recipies.

Diet: -Breakfast: 4 block Zone breakfast, drink the tea if you want, it doesn't matter. Something like: oatmeal w/ protein powder, nuts, fruit.

On workout days, I'd probably eat a 2 block meal, then have a 4 block meal after workout. Maybe a small smoothie, fruit, protein powder, olive oil for the snack.

-Lunch Sandwich 1 slice whole wheat bread, with 4 oz of meat, w/ a piece of fruit. Drizzle 1 1/3 tsp olive oil on the bread. Or you could eat a big salad and some meat. Chicken caesar salad maybe?

-Post Lifting/Pre Wrestling- Some zone snack

-Post Wrestling-Some zone meal/snack.

-Post Lifting and Running, no wrestling- snack, or wait for dinner.

-Dinner: Meat + veggies

K, these are just recommendations, eat however you want. As long as you're eating mostly good food, and trying to stick within the block requirements, you should be ok. Also good to know - you should be eating the specified number of protein blocks, at least the specificed number of fat blocks, and somewhere within 75-100% of the carb blocks.

What I expect to happen: increased energy, and your gonna start losing body fat. When you get down to what you want (7%), add fat blocks until you can maintain your weight. If you want to add more weight (bulk) add more fat blocks until you start gaining.

Any more questions? I'll be around all week.

Chemicalsage, your advice is really appreciated. I will most likely buy the book because I discovered a Barnes and Nobles gift certificate today :)

I am going to plan out a week for myself in the comming future, probably next couple weeks, or wait untill summer starts and strictly adhere to it for atleast a week and see how I feel. If I have more questions I'll definitley ask.

Thanks again,


Did ChemicalSage send out a CrossFit Journal?!?

Milk - yes I did.

wiggum - np. I was wrestling in highschool, so I know how intense it can get. Better diet - better results. Check out the 'week in the zone' section in the book. It's lots of less strict recipies; that's how people usually eat in the zone. It makes the zone a lot more realistic.


I don't believe that you should be sending this information out. Those who want access to the CF Journal should pay for it. This is how the people at CF earn their money. The funds from the sales of the journal keep the website and the information accessible to all. I hope that you will rethink your position and desist from sending the Journal out.

Milkman: I had similar thoughts before I decided to make the thread. Here's how I see it:

Crossfit makes journals, detailing exercise advice and diet guidelines, training tips, etc. It's only $25 a year for the journals (12). So, they make about $2 a journal. I am sending people one journal, it probably got sent to ~30 people. I don't plan on doing it again, but this journal had such good info on the Zone. I gave people that ONE journal for the following reasons.

1) promoting crossfit - how many people had heard of crossfit before. If they didn't before, they sure will remember them now. They might even think to go to the website and look around. They might buy the journal now, looking for more fitness advice. They might start doing the crossfit program, or visit the website more, or visit the message boards.

2) It doesn't cost crossfit anything, the only possible thing to consider would be lost income. This would happen in the following example: I was thinking of subscribing to the journal, but now I'll wait another month because I got a free one. Lost income: $2. If one person buys the journal for a year, that's $25 they get, right away. And that's real money, and it's a realistic scenario. It's not like I put up an ftp site w/ many journals, I specifically selected this one reading and mailed it out. That's why I asked for e-mail addresses, instead of distributing it in some other manner.

3) No where did I read (I looked) did it discourage from distributing the journals. I assume that crossfit would want to make as much money as possible, and (since I respect the company) I want to support them in this effort.

4) I made no money or other payment from distributing the journal

5) Giving people good information. Crossfit is about helping people, that's part of the reason they provide free programs online.

Do you agree that I should still e-mail out this one journal? Or is the harm still that great from your viewpoint? I see the benefits hugely outshadowing the harm it could do.


I was not insinuating that you were making any money from your effort
nor that your effort was not well-intentioned. The danger (besides the
lost revenue) is that, one could argue, a potentially harmful precedent
is set.

My suggestion would be that you send an email to Coach and Lauren at
CrossFit and just explain the situation. They may love the fact that you
are distributing the Journal. The point is that I think that you should,
and legally you must, gain the owner's approval before you distribute
copywrighted material.

If you have never had contact with Coach and/or Lauren, they are very
nice people and you are correct in your assessment of their motives.
Please just let them know what you are doing. That should eliminate
any potential problems or misunderstandings.

I will do that, thanks.

So when you said: "I hope that you will rethink your position and desist from sending the Journal out."

You mean: "Please just let them know what you are doing. That should eliminate any potential problems or misunderstandings."

What I should have said is "I hope that you will rethink your position
and desist from sending the Journal out without permission." If they
don't give you permission, you have no right to send it out and you will
violating copywright law.

Got the e-mail back, Greg said it's ok. I realize you were thinking about crossfit's best interest. I saw this as a clear example where everyone could benefit from the scenario, so I neglected to get permission beforehand.

Hope you don't hate me too much. :)

Chem, on days I get back from wrestling at 8:00/8:30, you think it would be best to get my dinner immidietly after, then around 9:30 (I get to sleep between 10:00 and 11:00) get like one of the cottage cheese based snacks?

Once summer hits, and I am lifting in the morning, I may also be able to eat dinner at like 5:00/5:30, then a snack immideitly after. That way on wrestling days, I could go like snack; lift/run; breakfast; lunch; dinner; wrestling; snack or something along those lines?

What do you think?

Thanks a lot



I don't hate you at all. It's just that I love Coach, Lauren, and the
CrossFit community. I don't want to see anything happen to jeopardize
what I think is such a tremendous addition to my life.

Thanks for checking. Now get the word out!!



BTW I agree with what you said about getting people interested in Crossfit. If I had more money I would definitey be more interested in the Crossfit journal because of that.

Thanks for sending that out Chem

I have convinced my mom in the comming weeks for me and her to do the Zone for atleast a week. I am planning on getting the book, but if she's about 5'2 and 120lbs, does LIGHT (shes arthritic, amung other things) but consitent body weight and lights weights for arms.

How many blocks do you think she should consume a day (I don't quite understand that equation)

You have to figure out her body fat and then her lean body mass. That is what determines the number of blocks.