The most common question I hear relating to health and fitness is “What is the perfect diet?”, or “Will diet X work for me?”. For starters, yes, Atkins, Paleo, P90x and Insanity diet plans will work for you. In general, these are fantastic diet plans. You are cutting out the junk that is making you fat; white bread, processed foods, sweets, and sugar in general. If you haven’t figured out these basics in your quest to improve your life, regardless of fitness/physique goals, stop reading. Go back to whenever you starting seriously working out tell yourself not to waste the time. Lift all you want, run forever, but diet is the key component. It sucks, I know. Diet is the game breaker. Before we go any further, I’m going to assume you are serious about improving your diet, and therefore are willing to follow these five building blocks to every successful diet.
1) Stop eating refined flour
2) Stop eating sweets (refined sugar)
3) Stop drinking soda and alcohol
4) Eat more vegetables (90% of you don’t eat enough)
5) Drink water, when you are thirsty, and with every meal
That’s it. Those are your building blocks. You should not be considering these five basics as part of your trial and error. These are steadfast; this has less to do with you looking like Brad Pitt in Fight Club and more to do with you not being another pudgy fucker. If you don’t want to follow these principles, great, go back to the repeat episode of Teen Mom and your bag of Cheetos now. Have some pride in yourself.
OK so we have these basic principles down, you are 85% there. It really is that easy. People like to assume celebrities are ripped because they have the money to pay for a chef and a personal trainer. That is only partially true. The bottom line, and all that matters, is they are willing to do the work, both physically and mentally to get what they want out of their bodies. Stop making excuses. The information is easy, and available, it’s up to you to use it. If you follow the five rules above, and work out a few times a week, you will see drastic improvements. Have willpower, be a better you.
Once you have the 5 basic principles down, now comes the fun part! Mix and Match. Something that works for one person isn’t going to work for another. An obviously drastic example is that someone who is trying to pack on a shitload of muscle (most gorillas in the gym) and someone who is trying to carve out their six pack (skinny guys who refuse to eat enough to pack on the muscle they want) need entirely different diets. One needs carbs; the other wants very few carbs, etc. It doesn’t just stop with what your goals are though; every body truly is different. Things that will work for one 6’2 190lb person might make another person of the same physique feel bloated and lethargic. So try all sorts of combinations. Try no dairy for a week. Try EXTRA dairy for a week. Try five servings of carbs each day (whole grains), try one. Try varying amounts of red meat. Use tofu (not too often for estrogen reasons). Fruits and veggies? Eat up. Figure out what makes you FEEL the best. How do you feel when you wake up, afternoon, night? Once you are feeling good all day; rested, energetic, awake, “clean”, you have solved yourself. You now have your perfect diet.
I have listed my perfect diet below.
4 Egg Whites
1 Serving Steel Cut Oatmeal
1 Cup Strawberries
1 Greek Yogurt
1 Cup Veggies
1 Serving Almonds
Post Workout 6:00pm:
Recovery Drink (I use Accelerade)
Chicken/Fish/Steak (once a week)
This meal plan leaves me feeling clean and energetic from the moment I wake up to when I go to sleep at night. It took four years to figure out what worked best for me, and it may take you just as long. Each trial and error, you are learning, and improving yourself. The diet above may seem like way too much food to you, or too little. For my purposes, it’s perfect. Find out what works for you! There are literally 100’s of different combinations you can try when fine tuning your diet. Get the basics down first, after that, only good things will come.
Be the best version of yourself.