T Nation

The Zone Diet


#1

Whaddaya think? Good? Bad? Ugly?

I looked back at the training logs from my pre-injury (2 years ago) glory-days of biathlon training with 8-10 hours of long-slow-distance training a week with 4-5 hours of strength training. Race simulation every few weeks.

Now I have nowhere near those energy levels. I try training, but it just doesn't work out too well. The only difference I can really see is that back then I was following "The Zone" diet to the letter. I'm thinking about going back to it.

Any serious objections?

40% carbs, low-glycemic.
30% protein, mostly from food sources.
30% fat, monounsaturated + fish oil.

The only change I might make is to include some high-GI carbs and quickly-absorbed protein during and right after my workout.


#2

If it works for you, go for it.

Honestly the macro levels seem to be just above a maintenance type level, don't see anything wrong with them.


#3

It's a good diet, but most people who train require significantly more calories than the book calls for. The ratios are good, but make sure you're getting at least 1 gram of protein per pound of LBM, then calculate from your grams of protein.


#4

Thanks. Maybe in a few months I'll post a pic of the results or something. :slight_smile:


#5

It depends on what you're trying to accomplish. I don't like it for cutting nor bulking. I think the best cutting diet is mostly protein and fat and the best bulking diet is mostly protein and carbs. I also disagree with combining nearly equal parts protein, carbs, and fats in every meal. John B's on the money with macronutrient combinations.


#6

most people who train require significantly more calories than the book calls for.

Well it says that once you reach your optimal bodyfat% you're supposed to keep adding fat until the weight stops coming off.


#7

Pretty solid overall. Actually when it was first introduced there was a huge buzz over it. MM2K back in the good ol' days had a three-part interview w. Dr. Sears about his diet. I do think the recommended kcals are too low though and I like Berardi's version (30/40/30) better along with using the P/C and P/F meals.

The funny thing about the Zone diet is a lot of the so-called experts refer to this as a "low-carb" diet.


#8

100% Alberta Beef:

The "just add fat" part isn't right for most people who seriously train. That's what I mean about the calories being too low. Most athletes or lifters who follow Zone-style diets do far better calculating their daily caloric requirements and following the 40/30/30 protocol.


#9

Alright. I'll try that. Daily caloric requirements and then 40/30/30.