1. EAT 115 GRAMS OF PROTEIN A DAY, BEING SURE TO CONSUME PROTEIN WITH EACH MEAL OF THE DAY
2. EAT AT LEAST 5 HAND SIZED SERVINGS OF VEGETABLES A DAY, AGAIN IDEALLY WITH EACH MEAL
3. CREATE A CALORIC DEFICIT. STARTING FEBRUARY 10, 1800 CALORIES A DAY IS THE NUMBER WE WILL TARGET.
Diet is a highly personal effort, with only a few mainstays required for both effectiveness and general health. Within these parameters however there are countless strategies to use, and factors to manipulate in order to see results. We will be trying a handful of these at different points in order to take advantage of various hormonal changes taking place at different times within the program and to see what works best for you, or what is most enjoyed by you. In the end, this is all that truly matters and if there is a method that you take to most, there is no reason this can not be the predominant method used provided it meets the 3 conditions listed above.
Related to this is the notion of diet rigidity, a mentality that should truly be avoided for both mental sanity and effectiveness of the diet. Treating foods as good or bad not only tacks on additional stress, but it is also incorrect. No single meal will play a large role in body composition or health and no single ingredient can be viewed outside the context of what else is being included.
We will attempt to manipulate both the hedonic system (psychological aspect) and the homeostatic system (physiological aspect) in order to both maximize results and feel good throughout this challenge. There will certainly be times of restriction, but there will also be times of programmed indulgence and making it to these points can be a goal in and of itself. Free meals within a week, occasional refeed weekends to up-regulate hormonal mechanisms and the eventual diet break after 3 hard months will all be found within this plan.
At certain times, you may wish to stray from the diet for an un-programmed indulgence and this is completely fine and should be treated for what it is, a necessary mental boost. Consistency is the name of the game and following the game plan 90% of the time means these meals can be had and enjoyed with zero guilt. Paying attention to how you feel is huge, as some feelings may be a response to signaling that something needs to change, if only for the temporary. Done correctly, this does not hurt progress, but rather boosts it.
Specifics will come, but just know that the diet will change throughout the 3 month program, while the aforementioned rules will always be present. Continue to track your intake and the real diet will start February 15, with February 10th marking the pre-phase where we will try to work out potential kinks and play with a couple strategies that may offer the best results
Continue tracking food and see which way works best in order to meet the upcoming demand of 1800 calories a day. Methods include even distribution meals and snacks with only the day's total mattering, and day to day or hour to hour alterations limiting intake at certain times to allow for less restricted eating at other times
FEBRUARY 15-FEBRUARY 28
WEEKLY INTAKE: 12,600 CALORIES -
DAILY INTAKE: 1,800 CALORIES
120 grams protein
50 Grams fat
217 grams of carbohydrate
These numbers represent averages and being within a few grams in either direction is more than ok. The biggest impact will come from not going over the 12,600 weekly mark and being careful to monitor secret caloric sources.