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Old 03-13-2008, 09:25 PM   #1
Joe Shininger
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Angry Fell off the Zone wagon...need advice

Hey all...I was Zoning pretty strictly for about 6 weeks, and I was seeing amazing results. However, some recent changes have thrown me way off the mark (school/money/girl probs specifically), and I have reverted back to stress eating. I could use some suggestions/advice on how to get back on track...three main problems thus far:

1. I'm finding Zone's really hard to force myself to be disciplined when all I have to look forward to is cicken breasts and broccoli.

2. No time- my day starts at 7, and usually ends at midnight or later...I just don't have a lot of time to weigh/measure like I did at the beginning of the semester

3. I'm night eating...I will literally wake up in my kitchen to find myself wrist-deep in a jar of peanut butter, a la winnie the pooh. My sweet tooth is particularly bad now...I actually found myself eating brown sugar out of a bag last night

So....any advice on how to get back on track? Suggestions/criticisms/ridicule welcome....
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Old 03-13-2008, 10:11 PM   #2
Rayne Gray
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Re: Fell off the Zone wagon...need advice

Hey Bro,

This is tough, don't be too hard on your self just pick up where you left off. Maybe you can get yourself some zone friendly snacks like balance bars for example?

I am a snacker as well and I have to always remind myself that "food is a drug" and I aint gonna be no glucose crack head!

Your friend in the the fight to stay in the zone

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Old 03-13-2008, 10:41 PM   #3
Alex Rosch
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Re: Fell off the Zone wagon...need advice

First off...Pooh eats honey...
I say just try to eat the proportions that Zone prescribes (9g carb, 7 protien and 3g fat (that's including the 1.5g that is in 'lean' protien).
Don't be so's not all or nothing. Just take a more relaxed approach that includes the principles of more or less desirable, not 'good' and 'bad'...
So what you had a slice of bread...put down some fat and protien to zone the 'less-desirable' stuff...usually carbs in my case. Just make the good choices when you can, and make the best-choice when you can't make a 'good' one.
All that hunger is insulin in disguise. Try to control it with low glycemic load carbs (veggies, some fruit). Make sure you're getting the right amount of fat and fibre as those two are the control rods for absorbtion.
Some say hunger means upping the protien...but just make sure that you're as close as possible to the 3:4 pro:carb and you're not ketotic.
Avoid liquid meals as they tend to absorb quickly with large surface area...but bad food is better than no food.
Stay with it!
Insert criticisms/ridicule here.
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Old 03-14-2008, 05:02 AM   #4
Sean McMaster
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Re: Fell off the Zone wagon...need advice

Actually, he eats "hunny."

But yeah, what Alex said is right on, I think. It's not like walking a tightrope, where if you slip and fall you have to start all over. It's more like walking down a path - if you wander off to one side or the other, it's not the end of the world. As long as you are heading in the right general direction, just make some adjustments and you'll find yourself back on track in no time.
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Old 03-14-2008, 05:59 AM   #5
Gina Drysol
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Re: Fell off the Zone wagon...need advice

I am in the same boat right now. Personal stuff has got in the way of good diet and I've been trying to get back in the zone for a week now. The hunger was very intense at first, worse than when I started zoning.

I am basically trying to make it from breakfast to dinner every day, one day at a time.

You don't have to eat only chicken and broccoli. I eat steak, canned and fresh fish, eggs, shrimp, whatever and some other people can give you some other alternatives.

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Old 03-14-2008, 07:31 AM   #6
Laura Kurth
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Re: Fell off the Zone wagon...need advice

of course you don't have to just eat chicken and broccoli! You can cook almost any meal to zone proportions : it may not be 100% favorable and that is ok too. Its better than eating a bag of brown sugar!

Try making a big pot of chili and seperating into containers and freezing,then take them with you each day. You can make many meals like this, stews, casseroles, stir fry meals.... utilise seasonings, oils and vinegars to add flavor to your food.
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Old 03-14-2008, 08:03 AM   #7
Jay Cohen
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Re: Fell off the Zone wagon...need advice


Since youíre familiar with Zone proportions and the concept of clean eating and how the macro nutrients effects your performance, I suggest you switch over to a Paleo eating pattern using appx Zone proportions. You might also consider some IF for the periods that itís to hectic to eat.

The ONE thing you will have to do is prepare food ahead of time, which I suggest you do on the weekends.

I track my calories and Macroís via Fitday. <1600 lose weight, 1600-1700 maintenance, 1700 > gain weight. Fats 50-60%, Protein 25-30%, Carbs 10-15%

Simple works for me.

People drive them selves nuts over measuring and weighing, and while I do measure my protein and enter my foods into Fitday (so I might be nuts too), the point is, itís real easy.

I always eat protein, a lot of fat, very little carbs, works for me, day in, day out.
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Old 03-14-2008, 08:21 AM   #8
Brett Andrus
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Re: Fell off the Zone wagon...need advice

Also in this boat. I "fell off the Zone wagon" a couple of weeks ago and then Eva knocked me on my a$$, by showing me how weak I (my immune system especially) had gotten. That's alright. I'm cycling right back into zone eating as though it were planned all along In fact, I think it may be easier to schedule yourself a cheat day/weekend/holiday now & then. Just make sure you're in the zone when your performance matters most. You don't always have to set PRs, as long as you're improvong (overall).

A couple things have helped:

1) I like peanut butter too, so I bought some apples and some no sugar added (no fake cancer either) pb.

2) I keep yogurt and Polaner all-fruit spread (a teaspoon makes plain yogurt into fruit on the bottom), macadamias and almonds, a big jug of lactose-free milk, and some cheese sticks close at hand at all times (even at work). I know that I've always been lazy about food, so I'm not about to cook myself a zone meal after dinner and before bed. I'm much more likely to grab the first thing handy for eats.

These may not all be perfectly zone foods, but at least I don't feel guilty/tired/hungry after having some. If anyone has better suggestions, lay 'em out! This is the best I can manage on a low budget with time constraints and a wife who loves white rice Having these foods on hand is cheaper than the vending machines/McFatty's alternatives to quick/lazy .
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Old 03-14-2008, 09:37 AM   #9
Leslie Powell
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Re: Fell off the Zone wagon...need advice

A couple ideas that are helping me:

I get up at 4:30am for work. Make steel-cut oatmeal the night before in a thermos (if you're adding frozen blueberries, which I do, boil them along with the water, pour on top of the dry oatmeal, cover and shake. It's ready-to-eat the next morning). Just add protein and fat (aka almonds) and it's done. Microwaved turkey bacon and a couple of pre-made hard boiled eggs spring to mind.

Bela-Olhao skinless/boneless sardines in olive oil are also sold by Trader Joe's under the TJ label. Cheap, very mild (no sardiney smell), portable, less gross to people who find sardines gross. Keep them around as an emergency on-the-go protein source. They're almost interchangable w/canned tuna. I can't think of anything that matches them as far as price/portability/palatability/pre-measured all in one. Even includes the olive oil, so just add carbs.

Sandwiches aren't illegal...just not ideal. E.g. a turkey BLT w/mayo is a viable option for lunch once in a while.

As noted before, chili is easy to make ahead of time and doesn't seem like dieting at all.

Again, not ideal, but those ZonePerfect bars are awfully good and not too expensive. Once in a while won't kill you, and will help the sweet tooth.

Low fat cottage cheese mixed w/sliced fruit, a little maple syrup and some nuts is surprisingly yummy and still makes the cut. I try to go for that as an emergency late-night snack.

If you screw up, just get your next meal right.

If all else fails, see the ice cream thread elsewhere in this section.
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Old 03-14-2008, 11:34 AM   #10
Erin Davidson
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Re: Fell off the Zone wagon...need advice

I'm with Jay Cohen on this one. Stop counting and first just eat the right things. If eating the right things is already hard enough I'd honestly lay off worrying about proportions for a while. Give yourself a'll see results if you're eating paleo anyway.

As for the brown sugar...believe me, I get crazy cravings like that too...but that's not the best way to get your sugar fix and I'm sure you already know that. Prepare ahead. Have frozen berries/fruit around until you can get back on your feet and tighten up proportions. You can't beat the vitamins and fiber in that kind of a binge...

Also...Check out IF if you can't prepare ahead?

Think lean and enjoy the feeling of eating well, not just eating.
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