After mucking about with the old 5:2 nonsense and really not enjoying tapping what I’ve eaten each day into MyFitnessPal, I’ve had a bit of a rethink. As you will remember I’m doing the Dryathlon this month so I’m already off the booze. I kinda feel a little ‘better’, but it’s marginal to be honest. A friend of mine at work has suggested the Harcombe Diet as something that might interest me, not as a ‘lose weight’ kind of thing, but rather as a change of eating habits to stick with and benefit from forever. I’m 15st 11lb (221 lbs) at the moment, so as a 6’ male, I’m obese with my BMI of 30. I can’t pretend to be an athlete, so any notion of muscle weighing more than fat being the issue etc. probably won’t cut it here. God knows if I’ll ever be 180 lbs again, but it’s worth a shot I guess.
I’ve been reading ‘Amazon’s best-selling diet book’ which informs me that as I’m vegetarian things will be a little harder on this kind of diet as meat has zero carbohydrate content, which makes it somewhat unique. Still, Zoe Harcombe makes it clear that I can still do it if I’m careful and if she believes in me then I do too! The diet is mostly about removing processed foods and watching what foods you eat in one sitting. Beyond that, once you know what to eat you can pretty much go for it, or so Zoe says.
The diet is split into phases, a sort of kick-start low-carb week to begin with and then off into phase 2 which is more carb-heavy before pulling it all in together in phase 3. In time-honoured tradition I am going to start my diet tomorrow. This isn’t as bad as it sounds as I have to read a bit more of the book to plan what I’m going to eat, and note down what I’m not allowed to eat.
This approach feels more likely to work, and often that’s as much as you need to be successful at something – belief in what you’re doing. I agree with Zoe that calorie counting doesn’t work and is not sustainable, it’s actually pretty dumb. The Atkins diet sounds horrible (tubs of cottage cheese for lunch etc.) and exercise is not going to work for most nine to fivers as there just isn’t enough time or energy left in your average 38 year old’s day to do enough of it to make a real difference.
Some other things I plan to begin as personal guidelines include not drinking alcohol on Sunday, Monday, Tuesday or Wednesday and getting up at more or less the same time each day. I am planning on a 6:45am alarm weekdays and 8am on the weekend. I’m fairly close to that now so regularising it further shouldn’t be too tough and I think that helps me be prepared for the day. I’ve been thinking about bedtime too, I think 11:30pm should be about the latest I’m actually trying to get to sleep for at least four nights of the week. I reckon that’s ‘doable’.
I’m going to record my weight in this Google Spreadsheet so you can all have a bit of a chuckle.
Wish me luck, my friends…