So here I am, 14 days into this thing. Basically, my old “staples” of bread, pasta, potatoes, rice and anything (everything) sugar (including most fruit, boooo) are gone, totally replaced by more of the following:
leafy greens (kale, spinach, salad greens)
chicken thighs (the darker the meat, the better)
salmon (I could eat salmon and tuna every day)
butter (yes, more please)
heavy whipping cream (I’m making sauces for everything!)
oils (olive, coconut, sesame, it’s all good)
cheeses of foreign import (especially brie, triple cream is best)
80/20 ground beef (bacon cheeseburger on a romaine bun!)
eggs (omelets for days)
full fat yogurt (with a few blackberries, damn that’s good)
coconut cream (Trader Joe’s sells cans of this, it’s amazing)
nuts (macadamia are not only the priciest but the fattiest too)
So it goes like this: Low Carb High Fat.
The main points: ditching the carbs (which are really sugars in disguise), get back to eating fats (like evolution intended) so your body will burn fat as its main fuel (because I’m already carrying around about 75,000 calories of energy on my body in the form of fat), since the liver and muscles can only hold a limited (small) quantity of glycogen and once it’s gone, you bonk.
This is not the Atkins (or even the Paleo) diet, because oils, creams and full fat dairy is allowed and even encouraged.
Just after 2 weeks I’ve noticed a few things: since I haven’t been on a scale in months I have no idea what my starting weight was but I’ve definitely lost weight, maybe 5 pounds? I really have no idea and I have to state that losing weight is not one of my goals of this diet (although I am losing some), it’s to teach my body to burn its own fat stores as energy for endurance running. Plain and simple.
Long runs on the LCHF: I’ve run them with my heart rate monitor to force myself to stay in the “fat burning zone”. My resting rate is 58, and since I’m 36 years old my max rate is 183, meaning that my optimal fat burning zone is between 133-151 bpm. Go here to figure all that out: http://www.runnersweb.com/running/hr_calculator_new.html
So I’ve been able to log runs of 10.3, 18.5, another 10.3, 19 and 11.6 miles all with NO FUEL WHATSOEVER. Not a single Gu, banana, nothing except water. By staying in that heart zone, my body never goes aerobic and I never have to burn anything except my own fat. Sure, I’ve run them all much slower (about a minute per mile) than I normally run but I’m in the process of teaching my body to burn fat.
I’ll have more in the next coming weeks.