OCCF Healthy Lifestyle Challenge

3/1/2022 - 4/30/2022

We’ve all heard the old saying, “you can’t outwork a bad diet.” Living a healthy lifestyle is the foundation for the work that we put in at the box, day in and day out. We often find ourselves confronted with a lot of questions about how to live a healthy lifestyle, and improve our nutritional habits.  It is with a desire to answer these questions that we continually run these Healthy Lifestyle Challenges.

Now, we know, the word “challenge” comes with a lot of baggage. The focus on this experience is to provide you with a strong baseline knowledge so that making the right choices becomes just a bit easier.

The Details

  • The Healthy Lifestyle Challenge will run from March 1, 2021 to April 30, 2022 (approx. 8 weeks).
  • This is an INDIVIDUAL challenge.
  • There will be an entry fee of $50, per person. (Cash only please; you may charge the card on file, but the cost will be $52)
  • Prizes will be awarded to the top 3 individuals that accumulate the most points recorded over the challenge.
  • Participants will accumulate points based on the set of criteria listed below (see The Points section).
  • We are using the “honor system” when it comes to logging points.
  • You must weigh-in on either February 28 or March 1 (if you cannot make it to the gym, a picture of you on a scale is fine).
  • You must weigh-out either April 29 or 30.
  • You may weigh-in and weigh-out only once.
  • Weigh-ins and weigh-outs must be performed on the SAME scale each time.
  • You have the option of using the containers provided to you from previous challenges for meal prep.
Nutrition Calculator

What does all this mean?

We know that there are a million diets on the market, all trying to convince you that they are the only way to shed pounds and slim down. We don’t believe in fads. This challenge is about providing you a strong foundation for smart, healthy, lifestyle and nutritional choices, no matter the circumstance. We’re going to try and keep it simple by setting the standard of a healthy lifestyle.


Better Food Choices

Check out the infographics below. There are 3 columns to choose from for each macro. Ideally, you'll be eating anything that had parents or lived at one point. This means nothing processed, nothing with a long shelf-life, and nothing with preservatives.

Not too much

Portion control is one of the keys to a successful nutrition plan. The goal is to eat the right amount for your needs at each meal. You will be allowed a specific amount of protein, carbohydrates, and healthy fats based on the information you input into the online calculator. If you choose to use the containers, you will be allowed either 3 or 4 containers full of food depending on your starting weight. This should provide you with enough sustenance to not require “seconds” or the need for snacking. In either case, if you eat more than allotted you will not be allowed to track this point.

Mostly plants: Vegetables

We know, it can be a scary word for some. But during this challenge they’re unlimited! The variety is endless, particularly with Spring right around the corner. Try something new!

Proper Hydration

Drink at least ½ your body weight in ounces of water. (i.e. a 200lb individual would drink 100oz of water within a day to earn this point.)


Alcohol consumption interferes with glucose regulation (disturbing normal blood sugar levels), in part by disrupting the action of regulatory hormones like insulin and glucagon. Also, consumption of alcohol provokes an unhealthy psychological response by reducing inhibitions—thus making it all the easier to make poor food choices when under the influence of even small amounts of alcohol.

How points are awarded

Points will be tracked using SugarWOD. Just like recording your workouts, you will select the Lifestyle Challenge track in the app and record your points on a daily basis. All points must be recorded daily, ideally at the end of the day. Point tracking is on the honor system. Only you know what you’ve done throughout the day, so please, hold yourself accountable throughout the challenge.

1 Point

for for eating real food and sticking to your plan

What’s “real food”? Anything that had parents or lived at one point. Each macro has 3 columns to choose from – Eat More, Eat Some, Eat less. The majority of your food will come from the “Eat More” column. Participants are allowed to consume 1 item from the “Eat Some” column once a day (a protein, carb, or fat), and 1 item from the “Eat Less” column once a week. Think of the once per week as a “cheat”! Your “plan” is what you hope to achieve from this challenge, whether it’s losing weight, eating better/cleaner, or creating healthier lifestyle choices.

1 Point

for avoiding alcohol

Alcohol consumption interferes with glucose regulation (disturbing normal blood sugar levels), in part by disrupting the action of regulatory hormones like insulin and glucagon. Also, consumption of alcohol provokes an unhealthy psychological response by reducing inhibitions—thus making it all the easier to make poor food choices when under the influence of even small amounts of alcohol.

1 Point

for not eating too much

You will be allowed a specific amount of protein, carbohydrates, and healthy fats based on the information you input into the online calculator. This should provide you with enough sustenance to not require “seconds” or the need for snacking. If you eat more than allotted you will not be allowed to track this point!

1 Point

for getting more than 7 hours of sleep

Look, we know it’s tough…but sleep is super important to your recovery, which is why we’re making it a priority. The 7 hours of sleep should be continuous and your sleep from the night before will count on the following day. For example, you will track your sleep from the night of March 10 on March 11.

1 Point

for proper hydration

Drink at least ½ your body weight in ounces of water. (i.e. a 200lb individual would drink 100oz of water within a day to earn this point.)

1 Point

for excercise

“Exercise” can either be at the box, or outside the box. We suggest getting after it (WOD-ing) at least 3x/week  and then the other days, use your fitness! Only 1 point per day will be allowed. You do not have to log your workouts performed outside the box, but again, we’re on the honor system here, so if you didn’t do anything “physically active”, don’t log a point! Example – grocery shopping is not point-worthy, however, walking your dog for 30 minutes is…

Food List


Protein will go in one of the small compartments of your tray. The leaner the better.

Grass-fed and organic are ideal. Wild-caught cold water fish are best.


Carbs will go in the other small compartment. We want to have nutrient-dense carbohydrates.

Fruits and these starchy carbs will do that for us.


Eat the rainbow!


A serving size of fat is the size of your thumb. Here are the healthy options:

  • Avocado
  • Nuts & seeds
  • Olive oil
  • Avocado oil
  • Fish Oil


The 3 participants that accumulate the most points will split the pot!! The “pot” consists of all the money that is collected from the nutrition challenge entrants (less a small admin fee)!!


First Place


Second Place


Third Place

*in the event of a tie, the winners will be pulled from a hat.


What do you mean by “plan”?

This is YOUR healthy lifestyle challenge. Maybe weight loss isn’t why you’re doing this. Maybe you want to put on 5lbs of muscle, or maintain your body weight, or just make better lifestyle choices. Whatever your “goal” is, that is your “plan”. Your plan MUST be stated at the time you weigh-in.

How is this challenge different?

The 3 winners will be determined by the following:

  • most points accumulated over the duration of the challenge, AND
  • highest % of body weight lost over the 8 weeks

So, if you happen to mess up on a couple of days, you still have a chance at winning, as there are TWO categories determining the winners for this challenge!!

How much food?

The amount of food you are allowed to consume each day will depend on your age, height, and weight entered into the online calculator.

You do have the option of using the trays, as done in past challenges, however the food allotment will be much different.

Pre/Post Workout

Very simply put “pre” and “post” workout supplements are focused on performance. If you are not where you want to be in terms of body composition, then performance is not the priority. For that reason if you are a man over 15 percent body fat or a woman over 22 percent body fat then you do not need to take pre or post workout supplements. If you choose to consume protein powder, BCAAs, or other supplements it will count toward your “eat some” or “eat less” food allowance. Honestly, if you’re eating as prescribed (yah, I said Rx!) then you really don’t need supplements.

The “What About” Foods

These are foods that people commonly ask about.

“What about this food?”

  • If it’s a vegetable eat it, if it’s meat eat it.
  • “Eat less” cold cuts or cured meats
    • Cold cuts and cured meats contain a large number of preservatives to keep them “fresh” while at the grocery store. These contain a high level of sodium, which can negatively impact someone’s blood pressure. They also contain many nitrates which under certain conditions in the body can damage cells and morph into molecules that cause cancer.
  • “Eat some” almond or coconut flour
    • Almond flour is very high in inflammatory polyunsaturated fatty acids which can negatively imbalance your system.
  • “Eat less” canola or vegetable oil
    • These oils can contain unnatural levels of polyunsaturated fats and Omega-6 fatty acids, there are all the additives, pesticides, and chemicals involved in processing. Many vegetable oils contain BHA and BHT (Butylated Hydroxyanisole and Butylated Hydroxytoluene). These artificial antioxidants keep the food from spoiling too quickly, but they have also been shown to produce potential cancer compounds in the body.
  • “Eat less” honey, agave, maple syrup or sweeteners of any kind
    • These items are often cut with things like high-fructose corn syrup and other additives. They are high in calories and often cause imbalances your glucose levels. If it’s a sweetener, you cannot have it.
  • “Eat some” oatmeal
    • Many oatmeals contain a pouch of a high-sugar mixture to make it more palatable. This can lead to a meal that is much higher in calories and less nutritious than one assumes.
  • “Eat less” Atlas bars, Quest bars, or any bars
    • Most protein or meal-replacement bars on the market contain high amounts of fat and carbohydrates. Many contain fillers to make the bars more palatable that have no nutritional value. Again, the focus of this challenge is on whole foods from natural sources
  • “Eat more” nut butters that have no added ingredients other than salt
    • It is easy to make your own at home, believe it or not. Simply blend your preferred type of nut in a food processor until the oil and meal combine into a butter-like state. Add cinnamon, salt or other spices to make a tasty and natural treat.
  • Up to two pieces of gum a day –
    • Nearly all commercial gum contains some level of artificial sweetener. Products like sorbitol, aspartame, and sucralose all affect the body negatively. They are diarrhetics and can play games with brain chemistry.


  • Andy says:

    Hey, how do we log our points on the app?

    • Coach Michael says:

      In SugarWOD, tap where it says “workout of the day” and a menu will appear. Tap on lifestyle challenge and then log your “score” for the day.

  • Kelly says:

    Making Korean beef bowls tonight for dinner. Can we use Braggs?

  • Erica Albert says:

    Just noticed that oatmeal is in the “eat some” category. I usually have plain old fashioned oatmeal for breakfast every morning (not the packets of sugary flavored ones). I’m assuming this type isn’t included, but if it is I’ll find a breakfast substitute for the challenge.

    • Coach Michael says:

      Actually, steel cut, rolled, and old fashioned oats are in the “eat more” category. The goal is to eat more “minimally processed” foods. “Quick oats” are processed in some way to make them easier, and faster, to cook. If you are eating “old fashioned” oatmeal, then you should be ok.

  • John Dunay says:

    I am a fan of sunflower oil but learning some other cooking oils may be healthier options. If you cook with oil what is your favorite kind? What health benefits do you prioritize when you choose an oil to use for cooking?

    • Coach Michael says:

      I like to cook with olive oil. It’s very versatile – it can be used for cooking, pan frying, sauces, dressings… Sometimes I’ll just use the fat from the meat I’ve cooked to coat the pan for the next thing I’m cooking – for instance, today I cooked up some ground buffalo and then used the same pan (and the left-over fat from the buffalo) to scramble some eggs.

      I haven’t tried coconut or avocado oil.

      Whatever oil you cook with, make sure you count that toward your daily allotment of fat, if you’re tracking it that way. It does add up!

  • Victoria says:

    Chicken/beef/vegetable broth…..for the Precision Nutrition challenge, does it count as anything? For example, if I were to make quinoa with chicken stock instead of water, would that be a serving of any of the categories?

    • Coach Michael says:

      Good question! Not really sure how this would apply. I’ll say just be wary of the calorie content when using “stock” versus water.

  • Mike Mendes says:

    If you didn’t make it to the weigh in this weekend, can you still participate? Hope so!

  • Mallory says:

    Is there any protein option that “counts” that is not animal based?

    • Coach Michael says:

      Hi Mallory! So do you eat fish and eggs? If so, you can get most of your protein from those sources. You can check out this article to see if it will help – https://whole30.com/veg-whole30/.

      You can also Google “whole30 vegan” for more information on protein sources. Hope that helps!

  • Jen says:

    I LOVE THE NEW POINT SYSTEM! I know you said groups would be randomly assigned, but I think it would be interesting to have Whole30 teams and container teams- Having done this challenge and also a recent Whole30, I can tell you I’m #teamcontainer!

  • Jen says:

    How should we “penalize” ourselves for eating out? We’re going out for a friend’s birthday Saturday- I’ve reviewed the menu and will probably be “that person” who asks annoying questions of the waiter- But nothing is perfect when at a restaurant!

    • Coach Michael says:

      There is no “penalty” per se. The idea is get you to make good choices, even when going out. Ask for 1/2 the meal wrapped up to go when ordering. Get the plainest protein you can. Ask for more veggies and no starch, or if they have a basic starch get it, but get more veggies too. Most restaurants these days are sensitive to people whit restrictions, such as gluten, dairy, etc. Don’t be afraid to ask – it’s your health! As for the penalty, if you eat more than you think is in a container, than you ate too much, so no point for that.

  • Coach Michael says:

    Here are some ideas for “recipes”:
    1. Salmon – make a marinade using a little olive oil, lemon juice, garlic, salt & pepper. Coat your fillets and broil them. SO GOOD!
    2. Bison – I cook my bison meat with taco seasoning. You can do the same with ground, beef, turkey, chicken, whatever.
    3. Chicken breast/thighs – I use the taco seasoning on the chicken and grill it. Let the chicken sit for a couple of hours with the seasoning before grilling it.
    4. Veggies – I’ve been buying the frozen veggies at BJs – saves a TON of time. I use some “steam fresh” and some bulk. I do the same thing with fruit – bulk, frozen.
    5. Sweet potato – smoked paprika, garlic salt, cumin, a little olive oil – bake at 425 for about 15-20 minutes. I cut them into “chips” or “fries”…

    • Jen says:

      Are you making your own taco seasoning or did you find one that doesn’t contain sugar (like Old El Paso does 🙁 ) ?
      My roasted veggies lasted 2 days – used to last a week!!

  • Nicole Dusang says:

    Also tomato: fruit or veggie?

    • Coach Michael says:

      Tomato’s not all that high in natural sugar, and we’re looking for you to get your carbs from fruit and starches. So you should not use it as a “fruit” in this case. Technically, it is the “fruit” of the tomato plant, but used as a vegetable when cooking.

  • Nicole Dusang says:

    Also, does sparkling water count towards our daily water intake?

    • Coach Michael says:

      Yes, it’s water. You can’t have soda, flavored water (certainly flavor your own with lemon or lime though!), or anything like that.

  • Coach Michelle says:

    If a serving size of fat equals 1 tbsp, does avocado still get measured by your thumb size? 1 tbsp of fat = approximately 14 grams of fat. If avocado is being used as a fat source, 14g of fat would amount to more than 1 tbsp.

  • Nicole Dusang says:

    So is it a thumbsize portion of avocado fruit? That is significantly less fat than a thumbsize portion of avocado oil

    • Coach Michael says:

      Anything considered to be a specific “fat” source like oils, should be no more than 1 TBSP – it’s very easy to over pour/use oils, so it’s best to measure. Fruit is fruit, but be careful because as you note, avocado is high in fat.

  • Coach Michelle says:

    Is citric acid in the form of a preservative a NO for food? This is often seen in cans of diced tomatoes, which would technically count as a “veggie”. Meanwhile many fruits such as oranges that would be “OK” foods have citric acid in them.

    • Coach Michael says:

      I would think that’s fine. The idea is go as “natural” as possible, so staying away from canned, or boxed products is best.

  • Kelly says:

    White potatoes allowed?

  • Coach Michael says:

    If you haven’t yet, check out the food container sample, located near the whiteboard. Here’s how it works: fill up the starch and protein section to the top of the container (no mounding!!), then fill up the veggie section as much as you want. Dump it on your plate and add more veggies!! You’re allowed unlimited veggies at each “meal”, so fill up!

    If you’re adding in a fat, remember you’re only allowed a portion the size of your thumb (roughly 1 tablespoon).

    You may only eat the food from the containers – no “grazing” throughout the day – even if it is just veggies!

  • Coach Michael says:

    Hi all – as a reminder, no condiments are allowed – this includes mustard, ketchup, salad dressing and other such items!

    • Kelly says:

      Hot sauce???

      • Coach Michael says:

        Condiments are NOT allowed unless they DO NOT CONTAIN any preservatives, sugars, or other “unnatural” substances. 🙂

        • Jen says:

          So if a condiment is “Whole30 approved” is it “OCCF Challenge approved? 🙂

          • Coach Michael says:

            If it is all-natural, no preservatives, and fits into your container without going over the specified requirements, then yes. Let’s not try to see what we can “get away with”, rather, let’s use these 5 weeks to see how dialed in we can get.

            You may only have 1 thumb worth of fat (about a tablespoon) in each container – this includes what you cook veggies, protein and starches with…so keep that in mind.

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