T Nation

Does Dieting Have to be Boring?


#1

So here it is I am 6'0" tall and 230lbs (35yrs) with a measured 23.4 bodyfat and I am trying to diet down by counting my calories and macros. (obvious a noob to dieting)

So far I am cutting 300 cals from my daily diet and will begin shifting/increasing that in a few weeks. (per calculations my maintenance intake should be in the 2900 area) Please correct if I am wrong.

So far so good...but I'm worried about food selection. I mean i'm sticking to the usuals, chicken fish, beef, veggies, eggs, olive oil and so on. But is that really it?

Are there any good books on dieting, I am not looking for magic diets or anything like that. I am looking for the real thing, any ideas.

Thanks, and sorry if there is another post similar. Practically unavoidable.

Deadlift 430
Squat 415
Press 175
Bench 205*4 (Injured shoulder)


#2

John Berrardi has a few good books out there in the subject, if yo google him you'll find recipes as well.

Personally don't have a problem "dieting" because I love eating clean, whole foods


#3

Learn to modify recipes to fit you plan or read recipes and use similar flavor profiles to cook not boring stuff. Healthy is only boring if you make it boring.
Build a list of low/no calories flavors that you can add to meals


#4

Learn to cook and use a variety of spices. There is A LOT you can do with meat, vegetables and eggs. Dieting does not mean you have to severely restrict your food selection. I eat the same stuff whether I'm above or below maintenance, just different amounts.


#5

Dieting is not boring.

You are boring.

Don't look at it as a chore, look at it as a challenge.

And, rise to the occasion.


#6

x2

Off the top of my head, there's... salt, black pepper, white pepper, crushed red pepper, garlic powder, garlic salt, onion powder, basil, oregano, rosemary, thyme, chipotle powder, cayenne, chili powder, dried jalapeno flakes, cumin, cardamom, coriander, turmeric, ginger, wasabi powder, dry mustard, Chinese five spice, cinnamon, tarragon, paprika, cilantro, parsley, sage. Frank's Red Hot, Tabasco, green tabasco, chipotle tabasco, horseradish, brown mustard, yellow mustard, soy sauce, and infused olive oils.

Zero added calories, zero excuses for boring food.


#7

I could add pork, fruit, and dairy to the list.....what else is there????


#8

Kangaroo meat. Supposedly the highest amount of protein per unit of weight per some chart I saw the other day.

But seriously, you should learn to cook. There's a lot more variants of things than I think you realize. Go find an Indonesian or Thai restaurant, and eat some of their chicken dishes for a completely different take on flavors from what you're probably used to. And then learn to make them at home... you can even buy flavoring packs if you don't want to make it from scratch.

One thing worth trying, look up chicken adobo. Take a good size pot. Put in some chicken thighs and legs. Add equal parts of water, vinegar and soy sauce, then add a few garlic cloves, bay leaves, black pepper. Bring to a boil, then simmer it partially uncovered until it's done. Very easy, very tasty, very healthy.


#9

You can get pretty darn creative with "dieting", although some people seem to think it must be chicken and broccoli and nothing else if you're serious.

As Chris mentioned, just condiment wise, there are so many options available. Also, simple methods of preparing foods (ie. chicken) can really make a huge difference. My wife just recently started playing around with our Crock-Pot, and as I'm thumbing through some of the Slow Cooker recipe books we picked up, I'm thinking that there are some great options out there for anyone who is willing to sit down and plan things out. Most dieters can't be bothered though, and I believe that's where you get the "boring" impression from.

S


#10

I'll Echo everyone else, Dieting isn't boring. How you cook your food is. Prep multiple meals, but put some effort and love into them, it'll 1) turn out better 2) taste better 3) be easier


#11

One more thing I'll add though, is that sometimes, in trying to get your dietary adherence to fit into your daily schedule, you just don't have the time for much preparation. I'm totally guilty of cooking a couple of large trays of chicken breasts every Sunday night. They're find for a few days, but by the time Friday rolls around, no matter how I prep them, they're fairly dry and almost rubbery.

If I had more time during the week for a second prep day, I'd certainly do that, but time limitations are something you can't always control. Veggies as well. I start the week out using fresh produce, but by the end of the week, I'm relying on frozen selections. There's always going to be some trade off, but if you're willing to do the work, it's not as bad as some people make it out to be.

S