This is long and (probably) rambling, but if anybody has the fortitude to read through it, I value your opinion.
The recent article by Mike Boyle got me thinking a lot about my views regarding lifting and nutrition. There is a lot of information on this site about what is optimal, and my knowledge is far beyond what it would be otherwise. However, I find myself falling into a trap where I ignore what brings me satisfaction or pleasure in favor of what I’m told is right. I suspect I am taking the advice on this site to an extreme that is hampering my efforts by making things too difficult or too unenjoyable for me to succeed.
For example, after a lifetime of being a skinny bastard (High School wrestled in 103 weight class to give you an idea), I find myself at 210 at 5’9 with MUCH more muscle but unacceptably chunky. I decided it’s time to shed some of this fat I’ve accumulated from years of eating so damn much. So I got my ducks in a row in accordance to what the experts preach. Veggies at every meal, no ‘other’ carbs except PWO, blah blah. All the things we preach around here.
But you know what? It’s a damn pain in the ass, I feel like total shit, and I’m not convinced it’s necessary. If I was 10% bf trying to drop down to 3%, maybe. But to drop hypothetically from 20% to 10%? Maybe I just need to keep busting my ass in the gym and start making healthier food choices. If I want a 100% whole wheat sandwich with yogurt on the side for lunch, then that’s what I’m going to eat and to hell with carbs. It’s not like I’m eating donuts.
I’m going to keep it basic. Try to consume lots of protein, make an effort to include fruits/vegetables, and avoid obvious junk foods (particularly fast food which is my nemesis). Then I’ll see where that takes me. I’m not going to worry about the details until progress stops.
Otherwise, I think I burn myself out by going too overboard. 6 months of a good diet is better than 1 month of a perfect one, I figure. I think the effort/reward is all out of whack if I take it to perfection.
So what do you guys think? Do we take things too seriously and hurt our efforts in the long-term by making it too difficult? Are many of the core nutritional principles preached around here excessive for the average person and more intended for dropping down to a contest weight than a healthy one? Can I achieve my goal of seeing my abs again by following more ‘traditional’ nutrition guidelines (which include plenty of whole grain bread/pasta) any time it strikes my fancy?
Whether you’re interested or not, I’ll keep you updated over the next couple months.