Taylor Morneault1, Matthew Brisebois1, Samuel Kramer2, James Kamla1, Kelvin Wu1, Jerold Corpuz1, Katherine Fowler1, Keston Lindsay3. 1The University of South Carolina Upstate, Spartanburg, SC. 2International Vitamin Corporation, Greenville, SC. 3University of Colorado Springs, Colorado Springs, CO.

BACKGROUND: CrossFit® is a popular high-intensity functional training program. CrossFit® participants may follow popular diets to support their health or physical pursuits, but the specific diets followed by CrossFit® participants remains unknown. The purpose of this study was to survey CrossFit® participants on the diets that they practice. METHODS: The survey was adapted from previous research and pilot tested. The final survey was distributed to CrossFit® gyms via local flyers, email correspondence, phone calls, and advertisement in a CrossFit®-related news outlet. The data were collected and are currently undergoing analysis. RESULTS: Of the 3,260 recorded responses, 681 complete responses were cleaned and analyzed (female 56%, age 38.9 ± 10.5 y, body mass index 25.9 ± 4.0 kg/m2). Respondents had been performing CrossFit® 4.1 ± 1.1 d/wk for 5.6 ± 3.0 y. Two hundred eight (30.5%) respondents were CrossFit® coaches and 58.3% reported actively participating in fitness competitions. Four hundred thirty-four (63.7%) respondents reported following a specific diet over the past 6 months. The top ten reported diets were Macro Counting (20.4%), Paleo (6.9%), Renaissance Periodization (6.6%), Intermittent Fasting (6.5%), Gluten-Free (3.2%), Ketogenic (2.2%), Vegan (1.6%), The Zone (1.5%), Whole 9 (1.5%), and Mediterranean (1.3%). The top five reasons for following a specific diet were to improve overall health (47.9%), improve CrossFit® performance (30.2%), decrease body fat (29.4%), increase energy levels (25.8%), and improve recovery (19.8%). The top five sources of dietary information were the internet (51.1%), coach/trainer (30.5%), nutritionist/dietitian (27.2%), social media (20.4%), and academic journals/peer-reviewed research (20.1%). CONCLUSION: A large proportion of CrossFit® participants may follow specific diets with the intention of improving health and performance. Particularly, Macro Counting may be popular among CrossFit® participants. These findings may support future research on the effects of dietary practices on CrossFit® performance and help form empirically driven recommendations to support the health and athletic performance of CrossFit® participants.

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