Progressive dieting.

Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food. (Hippocrates)✌️✌️✌️

When out and about I'm often asked for details of my diet. Random Strangers wanting my mystical magical secret🍕.
These intrusions are totally my fault, most of the time I am walking around dressed looking like I'm ready for carnival🤣🤣.

What can I say? I've worked bloody hard and have never looked like this before💪.

People assume to be lean I would be living on steamed chicken and broccoli! Plain boiled rice or even avoiding carbs all together. No burgers, no pizza, no ice cream.... Nothing remotely enjoyable!
Even worse, they believe its the miserable lifestyle THEY would have to live in order for them to lose body fat, look better and feel better!
While it's true cutting out all "junk" from our diet will help you lose weight, is it sustainable??? Can you stick to it long enough to truly change your physical appearance for the better? 🤔.
Perhaps there is a better way?

Most of us understand its completely unreasonable for us to suddenly adhere to advanced training schedules used by ultra elite athletes. Why would we suddenly try and eat like one? Surely steady progression is better?? 🤔

The biggest mistake I made when I was younger was "Going all out". Changing too many things all at once.
Eating carefully weighed steamed chicken, rice and broccoli out of tupperwear containers definitely helped drop a ton of unwanted weight. However I was so miserable and bad tempered I had alienated myself from pretty much the rest of humanity🥦😭.
It was totally unsustainable and resulted in a rebound effect that left me in a fatter state then when I started.

My all time favourite totally bonkers, very limited study!

The 2010 convience store diet

During a lecture discussing quality vs quanity of food for weightloss, Professor Mark Haub, head of Human nutrition at Kansas state University. Decided to prove his point by undertaking a little experiment: with himself as the Guinea pig 🐽.

For ten weeks he decided to live on a diet(?)predominantly made of twinkys, peanut butter, donuts and doritos!!!!

He lost an incredible TWENTY SEVEN Pounds of bodyweight!!! 8.5% drop of body fat!!!! from 33.4% to 24.9%.
He lowered his bad (LDL) cholesterol levels to healthy levels.
He lowered his blood pressure to healthy levels!!!
His point. Quality of food isn't as important as quantity!

How the hell did he achieve this!!! Professor Mark Haub worked out his daily calorie requirements at an estimated 2600cals daily.
He consumed 1800cals daily.

A big calorie deficit.

It's important to note, to help meet basic bodily requirements and minimise the health risks of such a ridiculous diet he consumed one third of his diet in the form of green vegetables and protein powder.

His results were incredible; But when asked if he would recommend the diet he stated....

Absolutely not!! "we do not know the long term effects of eating large quantities of such highly processed foods."

My conclusion.

-Calories are just a unit of potential energy in food.

-Body fat is stored energy (calories).

All diets work on by creating a calorie deficit. Whether it's because you cut out sugar, bread, meat, fats, carbs, drink meal replacement shakes, juice or even demonise certain foods as "Sins". Its all a way of getting you to eat less total calories (energy). *How long can we maintain this type of abstinence??? 🤔 *

When we start dieting we have a window of opportunity!
Our diet does not have to be perfect, we can lose body fat and get healthier eating our normal foods, at least in the short term.

Our biggest risk factor is obesity.

Once we have the calories and portion sizes down; introducing better quality foods will definitely lead to better performance both physically and mentally.
It will also help us avoid some horrible obesity related diseases.

Diets with massive changes and restrictions are very very hard to sustain.

It is far better to change one thing at a time.
Starting with,

-Reducing calories by carefully monitoring portion sizes.

-Next comes adequate protein.

-Vitamins and minerals content.

-Adequate Fiber.

Over time we should aim to consume.

-Less simple sugars.

-Less processed foods.

-Less crap quality takeaways.

-Better quality fresh foods.

-More fresh fruit and vegetables.

-Et cetera.

We aim to make better choices over time!

By making small changes we allow our body, mind and pallet to adjust.

One of the biggest pleasures in life is our food! We eat when Happy, when sad, when stressed, or even to celebrate; we often make eating a special social occasion.
If we cut out all our favourite "junk/evil" food, we are going to make ourselves very miserable,and increase our chances of developing bad association with foods. This can lead to eating disorders and misery.

Our long term goal is to eat good nutritious food for most of our meals but no foods are forbidden, earn your treats.

The short term is to create a calorie deficit eating the foods we normally eat but learning about our choices.

Did you know a Nandos chicken pitta is 418cals ( while tescos chicken club is 523cals!!( My idea of choices.

You can easily overeat "healthy foods."
No foods are "free."
It's all about energy balance.
Body fat is just stored energy.

For fat loss there is no such thing as evil food.

just energy dense, nutritionally crap but bloody yummy food.
One of the main reasons I do a long run Sunday morning and cut back on snacks throughout the day is for a full tub Sunday night♥️❤️.