It has begun. The diet. Ew.
As part of my 25 before 25 list I included number 6, get fit. In this light I have officially started the diet. I am not excited about this. Mostly because it involves my being hungry, which I do not enjoy. So far it hasn’t been so bad, actually. But seeing as the start date was April 23rd, I haven’t really been going that long. I also have admittedly not been 100% faithful to said diet (I’ll work on it). In addition to the diet. Off ice workouts started the first week of May, but seeing as they haven’t been going on that long I’m not exhausted AND hungry. . .yet.
First, I want to say that I’m not exactly on a diet in the traditional sense – it’s more of a diet in the dictionary definition. 1di·et noun \ˈdī-ət\ 1 a: food and drink regularly provided or consumed b: habitual nourishment. I particularly like b. It is a change from how I have been eating recently, but what I’m looking for is more of a way of eating than a ‘diet with a start date and an end date, with x number of lbs (or kilos) lost in between’.
I am very glad to have a partner in this experience. They recommend you ‘diet’ and workout with a partner (I’m not convinced this is necessary…but I really like it). Mostly it gives me someone to complain to when I’m hungry, but have to wait another hour to eat. (I’ve actually decided to make an active effort not to complain, but we’ll see how well I succeed in this.)
Evelina and I aren’t following any of those crazy diets. (Crazy in my opinion, people who do them claim they love them – I question their honesty.) We’re not Paleo/HFLC-ers. It’s not our style. I would describe out diet as a combination of things we’ve learned. In college Evelina was given a diet from a strength and conditioning coach designed to reduce fat and increase muscle, with a final goal of getting to a desired body mass index (BMI). It basically includes eating 6 times a day at 3 hour intervals. So, 6:30, 9:30, 12:30, 15:30, 18:30, 21:30 for example. Three of which are meals and three of which are snacks. All of which are of appropriate portion size to estimate a lower calorie intake than calorie expenditure for the day. The foods we aim to consume are low sugar,unprocessed foods. An increase in vegetables at every meal – it is very hard to consume too many vegetables. White rice/breads, potatoes and in general carbs consumed in a lower quantity than your average Jane, but they’re not forbidden per se. I’m actually going to continue eating, well, whatever I want.
Something I’m bringing to the table is the idea that you’re allowed to cheat, while dieting, 10% of the time. So 6 meals a day 7 days a week, means that for 4 meals in one week you’re allowed to cheat. As in eat foods that we’re trying to reduce our consumption of. There are no limits in what you eat on a cheat meal, only a limit in quantity. you can’t, for instance, have a cheat meal for dinner of 29 hot dogs. That’s unnecessary, although quite impressive. You still have to maintain portion size. I learned this idea/technique of allowed cheating from precision nutrition. A great website with a ton of free info on dieting/exercising. (They also have a number of products and programs – none of which I have purchased or partaken in, but they do have a particular cook book which is definitely on my wish list.) It seems like a very well-rounded, knowledgeable environment. I imagine those who partake in the programs the offer are very satisfied with them.
The most important thin I’ve learned from my not-so-extensive reading on precision nutrition (as well as an array of other diet/strength and conditioning forums) is that you must find what works for you. And it is perfectly okay to adjust your diet and exercise schedules over and over until you find the best option.
A huge aid in this search for the best diet/exercise combo is recording what it is you are doing. The ‘precision’ in precision nutrition refers to this. They argue that it is difficult to identify what you want to change, and by how much, if you don’t know exactly what you’re doing. In that light Evelina and I have measured ourselves and recorded the data. I’m going to start a food log, and I really want to buy a scale. Evelina is against it. (Hence why we measured and didn’t weigh.) I mean the ultimate goal for us isn’t necessarily a number on a scale, but a satisfaction with our outward appearance, a diet that keeps us happy and healthy, and, well it wouldn’t be so bad if I could squat 10-20 more kilos by the end of the summer. So, I suppose we cans tick tot he measurements. It’s a more exact way to measure muscle growth and fat loss anyway. I’ll just have to accept that we’re not going to be ‘scale people.’ (Did anyone else just get images of green reptile-people covered in scales? Just me?)
This is what we measured (edited for content):
We’re going to take measurements every two weeks. I feel this interval is far enough apart so that you might see some small adjustments from date to date, but close enough that later when I make a graph you can really get an idea of the degree of the changes. (Oh yes, a graph is happening!) We also took before pictures, but I wouldn’t want to subject you to that. Nor do I want to lose my few faithful followers (who I appreciate dearly!!)
If you’re interested, I absolutely recommend checking out what hey have over at precision nutrition. If you’re looking for workout routines I definitely recommend crossfit – this is what I want to do when I quit playing hockey. We’ll see if I have the stamina. Or ability to do 100 pull ups. I can tell you now, I do not.