Tennis fitting into a paleo lifestyle

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created March 13, 2013 at 9:33 PM

Hi! I'm a competitive tennis player and fairly new to paleo (~3 months). I find that some of my matches are almost like sprint workouts and others closer to marathons. I also CrossFit about 2-4 times per week but should be stretching a lot more. Does something like this tend to work with a growing (15-year-old) body? Am I under-doing it? Over-doing it?

In a typical day, I eat a three-egg veggie omelette and some macadamia nuts for breakfast, salad and lean protein for lunch (it's cafeteria food, and, frankly, I'm scared of what evils lurk in grain-fed fatty meats), and grass-fed fattier meats with buttered veggies and a sweet potato/safe starch for dinner. I'll snack if I feel like it and not if I don't. Any additional tips/advice? Hack me please.



on March 14, 2013
at 02:44 AM

Squats, core workouts, jump rope, and burpees are not crossfit. These are foundational movement. Link to that show on the tennis channel. Crossfit is a sport in and to itself. It would be like saying I do soccer to train for swimming.



on March 13, 2013
at 11:16 PM

Why not? I saw a bit about crossfit workouts for tennis players on the Tennis Channel. Squats for improving your serve, core workouts help with serve and many ground strokes, jump rope for coordination and footwork, etc. My son plays tennis and they do burpees and sprints before and after most practices.



on March 13, 2013
at 10:35 PM

I can't possibly imagine why you would do crossfit as a competitive tennis player.

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on March 13, 2013
at 09:47 PM

Can't possibly imagine why you would restrict carbohydrates.

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on March 14, 2013
at 12:53 AM

Worst thing you can do is to under eat and not get enough carbs. I tried to stay Low Carb, because of gut problems, while doing sports but it just didn't work. When I added potatoes and rice back in, didn't cause much problems with my gut, my performance improved ten fold.

Pack your own lunch, it's a PITA, since I have to cook every morning but it's worth it, the food at my school is atrocious.

Use a calorie tracker or something of the sort and make sure you're getting enough calories for someone with your level of activity and I would recommend around 150g of carbs daily, since that's what Paul Jaminet's Perfect Health Diet recommends.

Don't over train. You're young and athletic so as long as your training keeps you happy, keep at it. If you ever get to the point where you can't take the stress of training so much, just take a break, maybe cut down on the CrossFit.

Goodluck. I'm 17 btw, so I know the struggle of being young and Paleo :D


on March 13, 2013
at 11:20 PM

I think it sounds great. As you're probably aware, Djokovic switched to a gluten-free diet and his fitness and play improved.

Given your age and activity level, I would not necessarily restrict carbs, unless you're specifically trying to lose fat or weight or have digestive or metabolism issues you're trying to address. I am guessing you eat a pretty impressive quantity of food, just try to make it all high quality. Eat as many carbs as you're comfortable with, just make them good carbs. Also try not to think of vegetables as yucky, and try to have a good quantity of whatever type you like (raw, cooked, green, starcy, whatever) since they have a broad range of nutrients that you'll need a lot of.

You say you should be stretching more, why do you say that? The benefits of stretching are pretty debatable. You probably want to have good flexibility and range of motion for your tennis game but you're probably working that in practice.

I'd ask your coaches and trainers for advice as they probably have recommendations for exercise and training.

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