Friday, July 25, 2008

The beginning. Again.

Yet again, I'm on another 'plan', 'diet', 'lifestyle', 'regime' etc, etc...

I'm not going to stop blogging about all of my foibles in the controversial world of nutrition. There's too many people out there who are like me! I know it's not PC but I'm probably going to be on a 'diet' my whole life. Whether that's for muscle gain, fat loss, boosting my immune system, allergies or more energy, I've come to the conclusion I MAY NEVER get over it and eat like a 'normal' person.

I like being weird! I really like my new Warrior Diet. I feel so freed from food and have some time on my hands again. I have energy to get through the day and I'm sleeping very well. It's made me pull up my weight lifting socks and get into the gym again. I'm actually managing to do two weights sessions a week... consistently! If other people knew I was eating one big meal a day, they would probably freak out! "Why aren't you eating!", "Skipping meals is unhealthy", "You're going to wreck your metabolism", "Saturated fat is bad for you", "Eating at night makes you fat".... Arrrrghh it goes on! (See my previous post for rebuttal of these reasons.)

'Normal' people... are you out there? What do you eat? Often I've seen women, in caf├ęs, restaurants, at work and at home observe other women eat. Are we all alike? So curious to see exactly what the other eats. Especially 'thin' women, they are the worst of all! They see a relatively slim woman, perhaps like themselves and check whether they eat, what they eat and how much. Why do they do this? Because the unspoken, secret truth is: nearly all 'thin' women don't eat enough food.

All of the crap written in the press about skinny stars somehow losing weight without trying, or that they simply ate right and exercised... is a lie. The ones who do that aren't skinny, they are slim and healthy looking and have been for a long time. The skinny (bony) yo-yo ones starve themselves, have buliemia or cancer. That's my honest opinion.

To look thin and yet 'eat right' and 'exercise', you would have to be an athlete or bodybuilder to maintain such a low weight eating the recommendations of caloric intake various institutions cite. For example I'm 174cms high. According to my age and activity level, nutrition websites say that I should be eating 2373 calories to maintain my weight. HA! When I DID eat that much I reached my heaviest weight VERY quickly. Is there anyone out there who is slim and fit that eats as much as this?! I'd love to hear from you.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Politically incorrect: Warrior Diet

OK so I've been eating very clean with protein at every meal and VERY limited carbs for the last three weeks. I haven't noticed a change on the scales, or how my clothes fit indicating muscle gain and fat loss.

Being a sugar addict and eating NO SUGAR and no treats except one apple a day, it has been killing me. I must admit, my sugar cravings have lessened amazingly, to the point that I no longer crave sugar ALL the time, now just when I'm tired or stressed. It has also dramatically improved my mood and energy levels.

That being said, I am so disappointed that my body hasn't changed at all physically. I FEEL better but I look the same. It really rocks your confidence, especially because I have been SO STRICT. I've amazed myself at my willpower!! Low carb eating is definitely better for your mind, but I want body changes, more muscle in particular. Here's a sample of my recent diet...

Day 1

Breakfast - 2 free range eggs, 2 pieces nitrate free bacon, 1 grilled tomato, 1/4 chargrilled capsicum, white coffee no sugar.
Lunch - Large (3 1/2 cups) salad of shredded grilled chicken breast (one fillet), red cabbage, cos lettuce, raw beetroot, sunflower seeds, apple cider vinegar and extra virgin olive oil (so yummy, love the crunchiness).
Afternoon - Cup of tea with milk.
Dinner - 2 free range eggs, big bowl of homemade cream of cauliflower soup (in a hurry that night).

Day 2

Breakfast - 2 free range eggs scrambled, 3 slices grilled eggplant and 1 grilled tomato, white coffee no sugar.
Lunch - Grilled snapper (about 100g) with lemon butter sauce, steamed baby vegetables (1 1/2 cups).
Afternoon - Cappuccino (weakness! hehe).
Dinner - Cheese platter: assorted cheeses, pickled vegetables, olives, carrot sticks (instead of crackers), avocado, smoked salmon, mineral water in a wine glass! (friends were drinking red wine) I can’t say how much I ate for certain (over a few hours) but I ate until I was satisfied.
Supper - Cup of tea with milk.

Day 3

Breakfast - Tin of sardines on a piece of toasted rye sourdough with butter, white coffee.
Lunch - Large (3 1/2 cups) green salad with a snack size tin of tuna in extra virgin olive oil.
Afternoon - Cup of tea and a handful of walnuts (not enough protein at lunch).
Dinner - Homemade spaghetti sauce (1 1/2 cups) (ground beef with same amount of beef heart minced through) with steamed shredded silverbeet (3 big handfuls) instead of pasta.
Supper - Baked green apple with double cream.

This is just a few days, but I hope it gives you some idea of what I was eating. I try not to eat any processed foods if I can help it, so I cook everything myself. Luckily, I love cooking! If I make a big meal one night, my husband and I can have leftovers for lunch or dinner the following night. This helps as a back-up, I work four days part-time and sometimes just can’t be bothered cooking. I’ll either re-heat some leftovers in the oven, or defrost a couple that I’ve frozen beforehand. Or we’ll have something simple like a Spanish omelette for our dinner.

I often use a crock pot, which is so great if you have to go to work! A lot of the NT recipes can be converted easily into crock pot recipes. I like to cook bone broths and stocks, soups, curries and stews in mine. So easy, so delicious. One of my favourites is ‘Lamb in red wine’. Chuck in your lamb (necks with the bone in work well for this), chunky pieces of carrot, a chopped onion, garlic, a bay leaf, sea salt and black pepper. Pour over wine and water mix 1/3 water to 2/3 wine so it just covers the meat. Leave on low all day and be welcomed by a home filled with heavenly smells. When I first made this my husband thought I had gone French on him!

Obviously I have to work on my coffee addiction (from the diet days above)… But today is my fifth day that I swapped coffee for dandelion tea. I’m not feeling too bad, the lack-of-caffeine symptoms seem to have dissipated somewhat.


I've decided to try the Warrior Diet by Ori Hofmekler. Similar to IF, but you can actually eat if you need to during the day, IF advocates NIL during the fasting cycle. So here's how it goes... Undereating cycle: Breakfast to dinner (PM), then Overeating cycle, a four hour period which you can eat as much paleo style foods as you need to feel satisfied. You can also have red wine with your meal and a small dessert or some carbs to finish up! Obviously the emphasis is not on the sugar, paleo style eating is all about natural foods, but there is no real restrictions on what you can eat. It will work better if your main meal is low-carb, but not necessary especially if your body is craving. It also dictates one session of high intensity weight training, using freeweights and two sessions of cardio a week. Walking on other days is fine, but Ori cautions about over-training.

I'm ready to try! I really need to gain some muscle if I want to protect my health for the future. For all the nay-sayers who say one big meal (albeit containing all the food groups in a whole food state and a whole day's worth of calories!) is unhealthy here's some reading material for you.

MYTH: Eating late at night is bad for you

MYTH: Skipping meals is unhealthy

FACT: Feeding cycles protect the body from disease

Happy reading!