Wednesday, December 3, 2008

PSMF Day 2

Day 2 didn't go so well in terms of overall target. I ran on all of 40 calories from my post-9:30 a.m. workout blend of Emergen-C and BCAA till I got home at close to 9:00 p.m. -- it also meant that I only had time to have 2 scoops of whey protein, 4 fish oil caps, a tablespoonful of PB2, and 2 slices of whole grain bread before it was bed time. Going without food for a long time really doesn't bother me much, because I've been so conditioned to just keep going (esp. in the Army) with limited amounts of sustenance. In fact, it's odd. I never get hungry when I'm or away from food, but am stricken with the worst cravings whenever it's accessible. Pfffffffttt.

Oh, and yes, I know you must be saying -- bread???? Yeah, I know, that should've been eons away from anything that dares to call itself a PSMF, but it was from Whole Foods and aptly named "Seeduction Bread". Well, obviously, I was see-duced. (On that note, it's a very healthy bread and I recommend it wholeheartedly to anyone who isn't on Paleo/low-carb kind of eating plan. Dense, nutty, flavorful and packed with all sorts of Good Things).

But I used Fitday to total up my calories and macronutrients and it came up to 512 calories (alright, waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay too low), 61.3 g protein, 43.6 g carbs, and 9.0 g fat. Alright. More protein today, no more Seeduction bread, and hopefully a better day! Although I'll have to do 50 burpees to make up for my transgression.

(Oh, and I don't mean to make you tumble from your low-carb/no grains wagon, but here's a recipe for the amazing Seeduction Bread. Look! Isn't it gorgeous?)

Monday, December 1, 2008

PSMF Day 1

Alright, so I'm going to religiously log everything that I ingest for the next 12 days on this blog! This PSMF diet is not going to be fun at all, but I guess there's no harm putting myself through this experiment for 12 days. For those of you who aren't aware, I'm following Lyle McDonald's Rapid Fat Loss Handbook plan. More information regarding this diet can be found on his site. Or you can just ask me if you're interested in finding out more about it.

This diet is unique because it doesn't provide any strict guidelines regarding caloric intake. It does, however, provide a recommendation on protein intake, based on several factors (% of LBM, activity level, etc.). So, basically, you shoot for the protein recommendation while keeping daily carbohydrate intake below 100 g (ideally, lower), and fat intake as low as possible (Lyle does recommend supplementing with 10 g of fish oil daily so as to ensure a decent supply of essential fatty acids). Obviously, there are going to be some tagalong fat and carbohydrate grams in most of the foods that you eat to meet your protein requirements, and you don't have to sweat those.

Using myself as an example, if I were to calculate my strict caloric intake using the recommendation of 204 g of protein, I'd be consuming 816 kcal per day (all from protein). And then I'll have to factor in calories from other sources -- fish oil (90 kcal, all fat), supplements (~50-70 kcal, protein mostly), and vegetables (I'm thinking probably around 100-200 kcal from an assortment of vegetables, since I have the ability to eat up to 8 cups of broccoli in any given day), as well as the tagalong calories that I mentioned earlier (100-200 kcal or so). That will bring me to somewhere in the region of 1,200-1,400 kcal a day. Low, but not insanely so, and sustainable for two weeks or so, I think.

And, for the record, I'll have to regretfully decline all meal invitations till this initial PSMF run ends. It's far easier to keep a tab on my diet when everything that I consume has been prepared by myself, just so I know what exactly's gone into it!

Body Composition
Weight: 127 lbs
Bodyfat %: 19.5%
LBM: 102 lbs
Your Fat Mass: 25 lbs

Diet Suitability
Diet Category: 1

PSMF Diet Recommendations
Protein Per Day: 204 g

Frequency and Duration of Free Meals, Refeeds and Full Diet Breaks
As a category 1 dieter, you should have a full diet break every 11-12 days, resulting in a 2-3 day full refeed. You are not allowed any free meals.

Other Dietary Recommendations
Essential Fatty Acids
10g per day of fish oil capsules or liquid fish oils.

Drink sufficient water to stay hydrated.

Unlimited amount of vegetables except starchy vegetables such as peas, carrots and corn. (Alright, I'm going to town on broccoli...)

Limitless Food Choices
Lemon Juice
All spices
Soy Sauce
Diet Free Soda
Coffee (no cream or sugar)
Crystal Light or other sugar free drinks
Teas (no sugar)

1 Multivitamin/day
3 - 5g of Sodium/day
1g of Potassium/day
500mg Magnesium/day
600-1200mg Calcium/day

Recommendations for Athletes
5g of a fast acting carbohydrate 5-10 minuts before workouts.
Possibly 15-20g of carbs (e.g. Gatorade) sipped during workouts.

I'm combining the PSMF with something along the lines of IF (intermittent fasting) because I think that'll work better for my sanity, due to the relatively low calories. I'm shooting for a 14/16-hour fast each day (lasting from 10:00 p.m. to anywhere between 12:00-2:00 p.m. the next day). That'll leave me with an 8-10 hour eating window.

PSMF Day 1 - Monday, December 1, 2008
2 caps L-Glutamine (1500 mg)

Workout (Charge)

1 serving BCAA (5 g): 20kcal/5g P/0g C/0g F
1 serving Emergen-C: 20kcal/0g P/5g C/0g F

9 caps Fish Oil (~10 g): 90 kcal/0g P/0g C/10g F

Uh-oh... I hope there aren't any nasty aftereffects that come from swallowing my day's worth of EFAs all at once. Haha. I'll definitely report back if I'm plagued by noxious fish oil burps. But I haven't ever experienced those before. They sound pretty gross.

1 serving ON Whey Protein + 1 tsp cinnamon + 1/2 tsp vanilla extract: 120 kcal/24g P/3g C/1g F
1 egg white: 17 kcal/3.6g P/0.2g C/0.1g F

Subtotal: 267 kcal/32.6g P/8.2g C/11.1g F

1 egg white: 17 kcal/3.6g P/0.2g C/0.1g F
2 tbsp PB2: 53.3 kcal/5.65g P/3.4g C/1.87g F)

Yes, it's powdered peanut butter. Who knew? This stuff is AMAZING for nut butter lovers aka. Nutheads like myself, since I have a tendency to go to town with a spoon in my hand when it comes to almond butter/peanut butter/general nutty, creamy, fatty goodness. I'll have to review it sometime.

And here is where the fun starts...

1 serving ON Whey Protein + 1 tsp cinnamon + 1/2 tsp vanilla extract: 120 kcal/24g P/3g C/1g F
3 egg whites: 51 kcal/10.8g P/0.6g C/0.3g F

4 cups shredded cabbage: 80 kcal/4g P/16g C/0g F
4 oz cooked chicken breast: 160 kcal/24g P/0g C/1.5g F
2 egg whites: 34 kcal/7.2g P/0.4g C/0.2g F
12 oz broccoli: 100 kcal/12g P/16g C/0g F
8 oz lentil dip: 88 kcal/8g P/16g C/0g F

1 serving ON Whey Protein + 1 tsp cinnamon + 1/2 tsp vanilla extract: 120 kcal/24g P/3g C/1g F
2 tbsp almond butter: 190 kcal/8g P/3g C/12g F

Total for Day 1:
1280 kcal/157.05g P/69.8g C/29.17g F

Only managed to get in 3/4th of my protein requirement today. 204 g is a lot of protein (almost double bodyweight), and it's hard to take in that much protein without tagalong carbs/fats. Oh well. Will try again tomorrow. Overall, pretty pleased with Day 1! Hooyah!

Saturday, November 29, 2008

All Carbed Up

Thanksgiving was awesome. As duly expected, I ingested copious quantities of food, in particular sweet potatoes and stuffing -- both of which I heart with an undying passion. Yay for carbs. As I promised myself beforehand, however, I can't (and won't) let this escalate into a binge-fest spanning the entire period between Thanksgiving and New Year's Day.

So it's back to clean eating tomorrow! I'm planning to try out the PSMF (protein-sparing modified fast) beginning tomorrow (Sunday, November 30) and lasting for 12 days (ending Friday, November 12, which is also the day my family gets into town). According to the PSMF guidelines put out by Lyle McDonald, I ought to be consuming 204 g of protein per day, and very low amounts of carbohydrates and fat. It's definitely going to be useful after that mega carb blow-out over the last two days!

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving!

For those who are concerned about blowing their diet during the holidays, here's Lyle McDonald's 10 Tips on Dealing with Holiday Weight Gain.

Alternatively, just eat up and enjoy. It's only one day out of the whole year! (Actually, two for me... it looks as though I'll be indulging in TWO Thanksgiving dinners, today and tomorrow). This definitely necessitates damage control. I'm doing IF (Intermittent Fasting) to soften the blow.

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone! Count your blessings and give thanks! And in the words of my buddy Jay Cohen (who eats organ meats like no others and is currently sitting on 300 lbs of dead animal flesh)... Chow On!

Image courtesy of SomeECards.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Don't Keep Junk in your House!

CrossFit nutrition guru Robb Wolf on refined carbohydrates:


"... We drop you off at the Playboy Mansion, we get you piss-drunk, and we dose you up on Ecstasy. You're NOT going to remain monogamous. It's not going to happen."

You're darn right it ain't!

Videos courtesy of CrossFit.

Saturday, November 22, 2008


35 of each using 65#
Dead lift
Hang Clean
Push Press
Overhead squat
Back Squat
O-Bar rollouts

I am going to attempt to participate in the push up challenge of 100 push ups everyday for 50 days. Today is my second day and my goal is to be able to increase the number of continuous reps by at least two each day. I don't have much trouble knocking out 10 reps at a time but over 15 reps at a time is a real struggle. So here we go, day 2 and so far so good. Hopefully, with a little motivation and the support of others engaging in this challenge I will be able to stick with it.

I am still struggling with the no refined sugar/carbs way of eating (not going to use the word diet as this is really a life style change). I made the mistake of making cookies for my staff and of course had to try one, well it was actually three. But I am back on track and I think for me this is what I need to be able to do, meaning indulge every now and then but still stick to healthier eating patterns on a whole.

Friday, November 21, 2008

What's your Kryptonite?

I'm a huge carb addict. My sweet tooth is relatively mild compared to others (i.e. the other poster on this blog), but I have a severe weakness for doughy, yeasty goodness. In other words, bread. I find Chinese baked goods particularly irresistable.

C'mon, how can you ever say no to this?

... or this? (for the record, I could just eat the tops off those buns in the second photo. They are A-M-A-Z-I-N-G. I'd go as far as to say that they're better than s... alright, let's not go there).

Well, if you haven't already realized, I find it extraordinarily, agonizingly difficult to display resistance in the face of these golden beauties, even though these suckers are loaded with a million calories apiece (alright, I exaggerate, perhaps about 300-400 each). If you haven't tried buns like these yet, I caution you against sampling them, because your tastebuds will sing like no other from the sweet, crusty, fluffy loveliness and they'll be all you think of in your dreams for the next few nights.

Chinese bakeries are readily available everywhere in Singapore. There's typically four or five good old-fashioned, mom-and-pop affairs in each residential neighborhood, where you can get as many as 6 good-sized buns for something like USD $1.00. There's been a recent proliferation of bakery chains just about everywhere back home as well. The undisputed leader is BreadTalk , but I actually prefer the chains that sprung up on the heels of BreadTalk's success (somehow I think the quality of their baked goods is higher, perhaps because they've had to compete with BreadTalk and one another, and also probably because they use more butter in baking. Dang.).

Anyway, carbs like these are my kryptonite. They make me go weak in the knees. I'd gladly subsist on them for the rest of my life (except that it probably wouldn't be long before I keel over from having ingested a glut of white flour, shortening and sugar).

But I'm proud to say that I've been free from processed carbs for 8 days and counting now. I'm hoping to keep this up (obviously, all bets are off when it comes to next Thursday), and continue following a Paleo/Primal-style diet.

Photos courtesy of ieatishootipost and Rasa Malaysia.