Sun, March 5th, 2006, 04:54 PM
bradh is offline
Join Date: Jun 7th, 2005
Stats: 6', 255lbs
The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Nutritional Programs
Here’s my take on it. I call these principles, "The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Nutritional Programs," a shameless and possibly illegal play on Steven Covey’s book, "The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People." (Great book, by the way—you should read it sometime.)
These aren’t the newest techniques from the latest cutting-edge plan. Rather, they are simple, time-tested, no nonsense habits that you need to get into when designing a good eating program.
1. Eat every 2-3 hours, no matter what. You should eat between 5-8 meals per day.
2. Eat complete (containing all the essential amino acids), lean protein with each meal.
3. Eat fruits and/or vegetables with each food meal.
4. Ensure that your carbohydrate intake comes from fruits and vegetables. Exception: workout and post-workout drinks and meals.
5. Ensure that 25-35% of your energy intake comes from fat, with your fat intake split equally between saturates (e.g. animal fat), monounsaturates (e.g., olive oil), and polyunsaturates (e.g. flax oil, salmon oil).
6. Drink only non-calorie containing beverages, the best choices being water and green tea.
7. Eat mostly whole foods (except workout and post-workout drinks).
So what about calories, or macronutrient ratios, or any number of other things that I’ve covered in other articles? The short answer is that if you aren’t already practicing the above-mentioned habits, and by practicing them I mean putting them to use over 90% of the time (i.e., no more than 4 meals out of an average 42 meals per week violate any of those rules), everything else is pretty pointless.
Moreover, many people can achieve the health and the body composition they desire using the 7 habits alone. No kidding! In fact, with some of my clients I spend the first few months just supervising their adherence to these 7 rules—an effective but costly way to learn them.
Of course, if you have specific needs, or if you’ve reached the 90% threshold, you may need a bit more individualization beyond the 7 habits.
I suggest you base your meal plan on the habits above. Train hard and don't be short-sighted.
“We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.” Aristotle
Hell, there are no rules here-- we're trying to accomplish something.—Thomas A. Edison