Update on “Huge in a Hurry” Workout/Diet

by Dan on December 7, 2009

Hey guys,

I see some differences in physique from the new workout/diet already, but no real numbers to speak of yet. I’m still about 170lbs with a 15-16% bodyfat.  What’s more interesting for me to write about is the challenges of sticking to the habits and restrictions of this endeavor.  I’ll go into some of the experiences.  All of my tracking of foods is through TheDailyPlate.com

Protein:

As I said in the previous article, my goal was to get 180g of protein a day.  It’s actually not as hard as it sounds.  A few protein shakes at 30-40 grams a each makes it pretty simple, and on several days, I could hit 180g without a single protein bar or shake.  Fish, beef, cottage cheese, and chicken all have quite a lot of protein as well, so this was pretty easy to adjust to.  Of course the bigger issue is spacing it out.  There’s been a couple days when it’s 4pm and I realize I’ve only had 20g protein for the day.  It’s a very similar feeling to realizing you haven’t yet started on a 20 page college term paper due tomorrow.

Carbohydrates:

Keeping carbs down to 225g a day isn’t so hard, especially when switching carb sources from grains to fruits and vegetables, as recommended by Chad Waterbury in the book “Huge in a Hurry.” I limit myself to eating grains two times a day, and they have to be whole grains each time.  I’m not being too strict on how many grams can be from grains vs. fruits/veggies/beans.  Surprisingly, some breakfast cereals can pack a massive amount of carbs in a small quantity.  One of my favorites, Kashi Autumn Wheat, can have 80g carbohydrates in just 2 cups.

One way I’ve found to lower the amount of carbs in grains is to either eat oat cereals (Cheerios, oatmeal), or too eat puffed wheat cereals (Arrowhead Puffed Wheat, or anything that looks like Honey Smacks without sugar added)

Adding more vegetables into my diet has been an unexpected pleasure.  I’m getting more creative with how I snack.  Sometimes I’ll just have a green bell pepper by itself.  Other times I’ll cut up some red cabbage, and then make a homemade dressing of olive oil, vinegar, and lime juice and spread some over it.  It can be hard to eat so many vegetables, however, once you’re stomach is pretty full from the protein.  I’ve found the more vegetables I eat, the better I feel for the day.

Fat:

My goal here is 90g a day of fat.  This is MUCH harder than it sounds.  Keep in mind I’m avoiding fried food.  If I could go to KFC or Taco Bell every day, this task would probably take care of itself.  Instead, most of my fat is coming from fish, cheese,  olive oil, nuts, and peanut butter.  Sometimes I’ll mix some olive oil into food I’m preparing, or add peanut butter to a vegetable snack.  The diet doesn’t really worry about saturated fat so much, so cheese is treated as a legitimate fat and protein source.   Even with this leeway, however, it is often difficult to get past 50g fat a day.  Additionally, I’m working to balance the Omega 3′s and Omega 6′s as much as possible, even taking fish oil capsules on days where I don’t have fish.

Calories:

This is another challenge that’s much harder than it looks.  If you’re eating 180g protein a day, you get full a lot faster.  I could easily stop eating after 1600 calories for the day, but on this diet, I’m supposed to hit 2430.  Since I’m not supposed to have much carbs over 225g, the remainder has to come from fat, which as I’ve said, is not easy.

Avoiding Junk Food or “Forbidden” Food:

This actually has been easier than expected.  Part of the reason why I can avoid the white grains, sweets, and salty snacks, is that I’m pretty full from the increased protein intake.  I do get the cravings sometimes, but they’re pretty easy to pass on.  Sometimes when I drive close to a Wendy’s, I hear part of me say “You’ve been good Dan, have a Chocolate Frosty.  It’s only 300 calories and you’ll burn it right off.”  I just pass by and stick to my plan.  There are also time when I’ll go through my cupboard and find some Thai Rice Noodles that I love, or a really nice looking Pepsi mini bottle.  I thought of throwing all that stuff in the trash, but they’re good to keep around for a weekly “cheat meal” or “cheat day.”

I find that every time I bypass a junk food opportunity, my resolve gets stronger, and I actually get more confident in other areas, including dealing with people, and working more diligently.

Cheat Meals

Once a week I’m allowed to splurge.  This is often considered a “cheat meal,” but I take the more liberal approach and extend it for the whole day.  This is a day where I don’t have to count calories, or anything else for that matter.  It’s a healthy refresh that helps you keep your sanity.  This week I went to “On the Border” and had the Taco Melt, along with the Border Brownie Sundae with Vanilla Ice Cream.  It did the job, giving me a tasty treat with a ton of calories, white flour, and sugar.  I wasn’t able to finish either.  Perhaps this was partly my self control kicking in and letting me know I didn’t have to eat everything on my plate if I was full.

I’ve read in multiple places that not only is a cheat meal/day psychologically healthy (preventing burn out, random splurges, insanity, etc.), but it actually helps your body build more muscle and cut fat in the long run.  There’s a chemical compound called leptin in your body which goes down during stress, and intense dieting.  Having a cheat meal/day boosts it back up again.

I was thinking it would be hard to get back on the wagon the day after, but I went to the gym just fine and stuck to the diet goals.  As for the workouts, it hasn’t been a problem at all getting to the gym three times a week, as instructed in the plan.

So far, things are going great.

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

1 Anand December 9, 2009 at 4:50 pm

Hey Dan,

Cool blog. I like your articles on releasing. I’m also working on getting in shape. Currently I’m at 165 lbs and 11% bf. I’m looking to get to 180 lbs and 8% bf.

One thing that helps me get enough fat is adding ground flax seeds to my protein shakes. One tbsp has about 6 grams of fat. I’ll usually add 2 tbsp to a protein shake. They also help balance your ratio of omega 3 to omega 6.

Also adding avocado to my salads has helped up the fat intake. A whole avocado has about 30g of fat. I’ll typically add 1/4-1/2 an avocado to my salads.

Another thing that really helped me improve my results was supplementing with HCL. You can read more about it here:

http://www.charlespoliquin.com/ArticlesMultimedia/Articles/Article.aspx?ID=45
http://www.charlespoliquin.com/ArticlesMultimedia/Articles/Article.aspx?ID=46

Good luck with your physique transformation.

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