This article will highlight my personal experience with dieting using the zero carb approach. This dieting method is very extreme and if one doesn’t have the mental capacity to endure then you’re likely to quit and eat a tub ice cream. Cheers
I find that starting is always the easiest and most exciting time of changing your eating habits for an aesthetic outcome. My weight was 192 lbs, body fat was 17% with a little gut, and I wasn’t happy with my look. So I set a 10 week time frame to change that. Why do the zero carb approach? Fast results! But those results come with a price, your sanity. It seems as if whenever I start a diet of this magnitude coworkers, family, and friends decide that’s the time to offer you deliciously looking goodies. And each time I have to give them a 30 minute lecture on what I’m doing and attempting to achieve. The answer I’d usual get is “a cheat meal never hurts right?”. WRONG! The purpose of the zero carb approach is execution with surgical precision, no room for error and no room for cookies.
This was the meal set up I used for 10 weeks:
Meal 1 – 4 whole eggs
Meal 2 – 40 grams whey protein isolate with 1 tablespoon of all natural peanut butter
Meal 3 – 5 ounces of chicken breast with 20 whole almonds
Meal 4 – same as meal 2
Meal 5 – 5 oz of lean meat or fatty fish (salmon or swordfish) w large salad and 1 tablespoon of Extra Virgin Olive
Meal 6 – same as meal 1
Simple right? Heck yes! Easy to follow? You damn right! Easy to maintain? Now that’s a different story.
The Workout Protocol
Most were very curious to hear and witness what I would do for workouts since I wasn’t consuming any carbohydrates. I chose the 6 day per week CrossFit perscription; 3 days working with one day off and repeat. My cardio was the stair stepper/elliptical/treadmill for 30 minutes 7 days a week, increasing work time by 5 minutes each week until I reached 45 minutes per session. The way I gauged my heart rate was actually how I felt. If I was breathing too hard too speak I’d slow down, if I felt like I was falling asleep I’d speed up. Rule of thumb for a steady state of cardio is; if you can carry a comfortable conversation while working up a sweat, chances are you’re doing it right. I would say that doing CF (CrossFit) while on a zero carb diet SUCKS! The first week was hell, the second week was hell, the third week was purgatory and the fourth week was a depiction of a zombie crawling out of the grave. HAHA! But once I reached the metaphorical surface of the real world, I was on cruise control. Note: the CF workouts didn’t get any easier which sucked but the results and the pictures didn’t lie. Overall the workouts hurt in a good way and the diet was firing on all cylinders.
Here are the supplements I used during my diet:
With this set up I didn’t need a medicine cabinet of supplements, some of which I doubt never worked. I’m referencing my past purchases of over-advertised junk some supplement companies sell. Simplicity is key in supplementation, in fact fish oil and a multivitamin is all you’d need if you aren’t running an Ironman.
So it was the morning of week 10, I step on the scale to my surprise…168 pounds! Never felt so fit in my life! The hundreds of burpees, thrusters, pullups and miles ran paid off. I was ready to go on vacation and show off the hard work. But I can definitely attribute my success to always having the end goal in mind, I call it the Alpha Omega principle. You start something that has a specific outcome, if you don’t give in or give up, you’ll get what you want.
Fun facts on how much food I consumed over 10 weeks of this diet:
5.6 kilos of whey protein powder
10 kilos of chicken breast w 1400 whole almonds
10 kilos of lean meat
Enough salad to plant a garden
1 quart of olive oil
1 quart of all natural peanut butter
The journey wasn’t smooth but very fun. I’ve also featured a client of mine who followed a similar setup to yield some awesome results.