Ron Harris hat geschrieben:Congrats to Flex, and my diet has begun at last!03/21/2011
First off today, I want to congratulate the Welsh Dragon, James "Flex" Lewis, on his successful comeback via a commanding win at the IFBB British Grand Prix in London this past weekend in the 202 Division.
Flex had last competed in 2009. After a controversial (which just means it was extremely close) win at the Atlantic City Pro show over my friend Jose Raymond, he finished that season off with fifth place at the 202 Showdown in Las Vegas. That's the show I refer to for all intents and purposes as the 202 Mr. Olympia.
He took all of 2010 off to make improvements, as it was clear that the best 202's like Kevin English, David Henry, Eduardo Correa, and Jose Raymond were all very thickly developed. Flex has always had amazing shape and good overall size, but needed more in the arms, chest, and back to match his shoulders and lower body. Condition is never an issue, he knows how to come in shredded with guidance from the man called The UK Guru and Yoda, Neil Hill. With his very busy traveling schedule making appearances for Gaspari Nutrition, he couldn't add the size he wanted to and still diet for a contest. The strategy paid off, as Flex has beefed up in the right areas and still has his shape intact.
I first met Flex when he approached me at the 2005 Mr. Olympia expo. At that point he had won the Junior British title. He struck me as a humble, sincere young guy (he was only 21or 22 at the time), and it was tough for me to decipher his thick Welsh accent. He went on the next year to win the light-heavyweight class at the British Championships, but lost the Overall to Heavyweight Troy Brown. In the UK, just one man a year gets a pro card! He got it the next year when he once again won his class, but this time nabbed the Overall as well. I've stayed in touch with him the whole time. Though I was only able to talk to him for MD for a little while before he signed with FLEX magazine, luckily through my position writing for Gaspari I've still spoken with him on and off ever since.
Congratulations to Flex, and now I am looking forward to seeing how he stacks up against Jose and the rest of them with his improvements. I also wonder if he'll be facing Jose in May at the New York Pro? Jose has also make good improvements since 2009 despite competing many times, so it would make for an interesting matchup.
And now, my news. This past Friday marked sixteen weeks out from the NPC Team Universe, so my diet started when I woke up that morning. I began taking 3 caps of Gaspari's new fat burner Phenorex when I got up at 6:30, then took 2 more around 1 PM. The first dose will always be when I wake up, and the second dose will happen 30 minutes before an afternoon meal.
For the first time, I am also taking progress pics every Friday night in the same exact spot and lighting conditions. What's more, I am finally humbling myself and doing it the most realistic and least flattering way, which is using the flash on the camera. All my gym pics are with overhead lighting and far more complimentary, but that can also give you a false sense that you are leaner than you really are. When you look ripped in a photo taken with a flash, which essentially fills in all the shadows, you are REALLY ripped!
As for my diet, I am trying something new, and it has nothing to do with my usual way of eating not being effective. I have gotten into great condition many times. But about six weeks ago, Janet started on the 'Paleo Diet' which many CrossFit athletes follow now. I never would have considered it for myself except that Janet's lower stomach has always had a bit of distension, which we used to think had something to do with the two hernias she's had. This diet, which is summarized at the end of today's blog, is gluten-free. Gluten is something most of us are supposedly allergic to, and this allergy causes bloating in the stomach and colon. "Yeah, right, whatever," I thought when she told me that. Lo and behold, about three weeks into the diet I noticed that despite her bodyfat not being too different at all (she's not trying to get leaner), her belly was clearly flatter. Now at six weeks in, it's almost totally flat. It's been many years since it looked that way.
My gut has always been on the large side, even when I am dieted all the way down. As long as I remember to keep it sucked in, it doesn't look bad; but if I let it relax, yikes! I have a thick midsection and large hips anyway, but if I can reduce the protrusion of my gut it can only help my overall V-taper.
I've written so much already that I will have to save a daily breakdown of how I am eating for next time (I'll include cardio info then also). Rest assured it's nothing miraculous, as I have seen many different types of contest diets deliver results. Besides which, eating as I do will not guarantee the same results. Many people make the assumption that if they are roughly my size, eating the exact meals that I do will deliver the same results. That's not taking into account that we ALL have different metabolic rates, some of us are more sensitive to carbs than others, etc. Bottom line, my diet may not be great for you and yours might be wrong for me too.
That being said, I will leave you with a summary of the Paleo Diet from the web site http://paleodiet.com
Talk to you all next time!
What Is The Paleo Diet?
Paleo is a simple dietary lifestyle that is based on foods being either in or out. In are the Paleolithic Era foods that we ate prior to agriculture and animal husbandry (meat, fish, shellfish, eggs, tree nuts, vegetables, roots, fruit, berries, mushrooms, etc.). Out are Neolithic Era foods that result from agriculture or animal husbandry (grains, dairy, beans/legumes, potatoes, sugar and fake foods).
Optimal Foraging Theory says our ancestors mostly ate foods that were easiest to hunt or gather at that specific locale. As nomads we would have adapted to various mixes of foods. Under the paleo concept the quantities consumed of each “in” food is up to the individual. You can make it meat heavy if you want, or more fruit and veggies if you prefer, as long as the foods you eat are paleo. Fruits in the Paleolithic would have been tart and smaller, and you may want to limit modern fruit because of this.
Acceptable oils should be restricted to those from fruits (olive, oil palm, avocado) or tree nuts (coconut, walnut, almond, hazelnut, pecan, macadamia). No high-tech industrial seed oils could have existed back then. Wild game meat would be the ideal, but grass-fed meat is used as a practical substitute. The grass-fed is needed to get the proper balance of Omega 3 (from green plants) and Omega 6 (from seeds) fatty acids. Organ meats and bone marrow are very paleo. No processed meats. Consumption of fat from grass-fed animals need not be restricted. See Gary Taubes's Good Calories, Bad Calories. Fish should be wild-caught. For everything else organic is preferred, as this is the best we can do to get food free of modern pollutants and with the original micronutrients.
The effort to collect most seeds would not be as optimal as collecting other foods, unless collected as a condiment for the seed’s taste. Some meaty seeds, like sunflower, may have been a food. To protect their reproductive cycle, plants put anti-nutrients in seed coverings to discourage animal consumption (phytic acid, lectins, and enzyme inhibitors). Fruit seeds are not supposed to be digested, but to pass through and still be viable. They would never have been a food.
Eat the greatest variety of foods possible. Bush hunters kill whatever they find moving. Foragers note that there are more than 300 edible plants that our ancestors would have known about. Many are leafy greens. A wide range of herbs and spices is encouraged.
Salt should not be added to food. They did not have salt shakers. After removing added salt from your diet your taste buds will lose the tolerance they developed for salt. The same thing happens after sweetness is removed.
The only beverage that is truly paleo is water. You need to drink only when you are thirsty. The best is spring water that has been certified to be free of pharmaceuticals, with no chlorine or fluoride added. Buy in large PET bottles. See report on: Pharmaceuticals lurking in U.S. drinking water. If you want caffeine, organic green tea is the most paleo. It is the least processed. Coffee is a seed inside a fruit and is not edible raw. Fruit juice is concentrated fructose that would not have existed and would not be paleo. A very paleo and healthy beverage would be coconut water.
Agave “nectar” is just the euphemistic marketing name for High Fructose Agave Syrup. It is highly refined and it should be avoided. The only paleo sweetener is raw honey, and only in limited quantities. You could argue that very dilute maple syrup is paleo. If you must have sweetness, another possibility is coconut palm sugar. But best is to get all sweets out of your diet and get over it.
The inclusion of alcohol in the paleo diet is controversial. Our paleo ancestors would have come upon and eaten fermented fruit. Even spurned male butterflies get drunk on fermented fruit. Some have issues with the yeast. In Wild Fermentation (p. 127 in Amazon.com's Look Inside) there is a recipe for spontaneous hard cider that requires no added sugar or yeast. Now the resulting product (6% ABV) does not last long, but it would be paleo! No published paleo diet includes alcohol. But if you are going to drink it, pick one from fermented fruit and water it down to 6%. Another paleo high would have been eating cannabis leaves.
Paleo foods are nutrient dense. Supplementation would not be needed, and would not be paleo. There is one exception: Vitamin D. At least it should be supplemented for those of us that don’t live outside year round, and don't eat liver regularly. See recommendations at the Vitamin D Council. If you don't eat fish often, fish oil is another way to get Omega 3 fatty acids, though some prefer krill oil.
Food should be eaten when hungry – not at set times of the day. They hunted and gathered foods in anticipation of, or in response to, hunger pangs.
This is also called the Caveman Diet, though there is little evidence that many of our ancestors actually lived in caves. Caves with paintings were only visited once a year. The name “Caveman Diet” implies a brutish character that thrived on meat. Stone Age Diet, besides sounding a bit old fashioned, is not correct. The Stone Age also covers part of the Neolithic. Hunter-Gatherer Diet is descriptive, but cumbersome. And other names are primal diet, ancestral diet, and evolutionary diet.