T Nation

Berardi Grappler's Guide Rule 8

I’ve been reading Dr. Berardi’s Grappler’s Guide to Nutrition, and I have to say it’s great. Been on it for about two weeks now and been dropping pounds while keeping strength, good stuff.

What I had a question about is Rule 8, Plan to Fail 10% of the time. What Dr. Berardi says in a nutshell is the difference between 100% and 90% compliance is negligible, so have four “imperfect” meals a week, including missed feeding opportunities and “Junk food.”

I guess what I’m asking for is some parameters with this. I know that I shouldn’t go out and eat two pizzas for each of these four “imperfect” meals, but with Dr. John being unwilling to talk calories I guess it’s just hard for me to figure out how bad I can be on those four. Does anyone (including the man himself) have any idea or can offer a range? Thanks.

my advice would be to not “plan” any foul ups…the idea that 90 percent will do the trick is good…because well shit happens…but dont say oh i need to go have a pizza cause Berardi said i should only be on point 90 percent of the time…

my point is this…youll slip up…dont plan the slip ups…life will allow fo rit …there will be days youll crave something …if you cant beat it give in to it…if you cant then just indulge guilt free…but i find that planning cheats ends up with some binging…

good luck

That would have been my conventional wisdom too, but he says, and I quote;

“…don’t waste your skips by missing a feeding. Schedule your 10% feeding opportunities and enjoy them.”

So, I can’t think he means have four full-on cheat meals every week, so I guess I’m asking, when I’m scheduling them, where and for how much should I schedule them?

Last time I’ll bump this, but I could really use some insight if any hardcore/old school Berardi guys could help out with it. Thanks in advance.

look up “Berardi cheat meal” and you should get his article on cheat meals.

Eat what ever

Don’t over eat (like me for example)

Do it after training if possible

Don’t miss them, They are prat and pracel of the deal. Nutrition is part psychology. They also help keep your metabolic rate high.

I usually use bubble tea and DQ blizzards.

-chris

[quote]Eli Cash wrote:
Does anyone (including the man himself) have any idea or can offer a range? Thanks.[/quote]

You have to use your discretion. E.g., let’s say you want to lose 2 pounds each week. If each of your 4 cheat meals are 1,000 (instead of, say, the 500 calories you’d usually eat for a normal meal), you’re going to not lose around 2/3 pound of fat (i.e., 2,000 calories worth of fat.)

So you’d only lose ~1.25 pounds of fat. That’s not good. If you, e.g., ate 2000 calories at each cheat meal, you’d not lose any weight. ETc.

Anyhow, here’s what I do:

Right now I’m dieting. I eat 5-6 meals and 2,500-3,000 calories each day. (I only want to lose a pound each week.)

When I “cheat,” I do one of two things:

  1. I train and drink my Surge during the workout. As my post-workout meal, I have a scoop of whey protein. I’ll wait about 15-20 minutes and then eat 400-600 empty calories - usually chocolate chips, but sometimes I’ll just eat otherwise “off limits” food like an extra-cheesy quesadilla, twice-baked potatoes, or pizza. So I’ll still stay in my calorie range. Thus, my cheat meal doesn’t set me back so far as energy balance goes. I’m still burning more calories than I’m consuming.

  2. I eat a scoop of protein, a few fish oil caps to slow down gastic emptying, and then eat 400-600 empty calories.

Ideally, you’d go with 1. But if not, be sure to have protein and some fish with your meal. Also, avoid having your cheat meals right before bed time.

But in general, you need to not let your cheat meal screw up your overall daily energy intake. I.e., if you eat a huge cheat meal, don’t eat your other usual meals. Dial those down a tad.

So let’s say I go crazy on your cheat meal and eat around 1,000 calories. No worries. The rest of my meals for the day will be protein powder or cottage cheese, some flax meal or fish oil, and green caps. At the end of the day, I’ll be in my 2.5-3K calorie range.

For me, I just avoid going above 3,000 on any given day. So if I eat a huge cheat meal, I tweak the other meals.

Others have different approaches, but what I use works for me.

The reason that Berardi says to schedule your cheat meals is because there are times during the week when you know that you are not going to be able to stick to your diet. Examples would be taking your significant other out to dinner, a working lunch with a client, having to go out of town on business.

The point is to schedule your cheats for the times when your life makes it most likely for you to cheat and follow the diet the rest of the time. If one does not go overboard with the cheating the long term difference will be negligble. However, if one has a large pizza and a six pack or two of beer several times a week the difference your diet will make is negligble.