The Grind: Part IV

Part IV:  Nutrition and Notebooks


85 kilos.  On March 19th at 8 am I have to be 85 kilos or less.  It can be for as little as one minute.  But as long as I jump on the scale, and the judge sees that weight for an instant, I’m below 85kg and can compete in my weight class. 

When it comes to my own weight, I float between the 85-88 kg (between 187 and 193 lbs) range on a daily basis, so “making weight” is not much of a concern.  That means no crash dieting, no crazy cutting two weeks out from competition, and definitely no sauna suits are involved in my competition prep.  I avoid placing stress on my body to make an unrealistic weight class and this allows for some flexibility in my nutrition plan.

My nutrition plan is pretty simple and focused strictly on performance. Program design requires a ton of volume in the gym each week, and to support that high level of volume, high quality foods need to be eaten and logged into my food journal.  

Thanks to Coach Elke at ESN Fit I can now describe my nutrition, as 90% paleo.  This time last year we put together a nutrition plan that allows me to stay pretty lean and facilitated great performance but did not require a complete overhaul of my life.  That means I stick to the outside of the super-market and try to get as much lean protein and veggies in as possible. This is not to say I don’t indulge every now and then. Who can resist a burger, wings or, my personal favorite, chicken fingers and French fries from time-to-time? Generally I let myself cheat one to two times per week (depending on how I feel), considering that I typically walk around at the weight I compete at.  

The key to tracking all of this progress is my trusty food journal. If it goes in my mouth, it goes in my journal. Just like my weightlifting journal tracks percentages and insane ramblings from training sessions, my food journal is filled with daily weight changes, supplementation notes, and how I felt after training. It takes effort, but it’s worth it.  These journals are a bit like my manifesto and its not uncommon at work or the gym to find me scribbling furiously like a crazy person.  

My nutrition motto? Eat well, lift well, look good in tights.


Until next week, keep grinding...

If you have any questions about nutrition, be sure to hit up Verge athletics resident Nutrition Guru, Coach Rob at: 

For information about getting your own program designed by Coach Nick e-mail:

To give me feedback, ask a question, or make fun of me drop me a line at See you next week!