Friday, July 20, 2007

Is a Strict Diet Worthwhile?

I've been thinking a lot about diet these past days. Mostly, I've been wondering if my fitness level would go up if I was on a diet I actually attempted to control what I eat. I currently assume that I can put pretty much anything into my mouth given the amount I'm working out. I know this is a bad assumption, but I do it anyway 'cause I like to eat! Currently, I'm an ovo-lacto vegetarian, which seems pretty good for me. I eat the occasional fish/seafood, and am considering throwing in other meats every so often for the protein.

My biggest concern is probably the way I eat after I get back from a long run--my body seems to be telling me to eat sugar, and I comply. My energy level is quickly up after an ice cream sandwich or two, and every so often a popsicle. What would be a more healthy option to get the energy levels up quickly and sustainably?

Is anyone very strict with what they eat? If so, when you got on the diet was there a noticeable change in energy level?

Also, wondering what everyone else is training for. I'm doing the Chicago Marathon at the beginning of October.


Sam said...

Steve, I've noticed quite a bit of difference when I eat better and actually eat "real" foods. This (for me) means cutting out many processed goods, and eating mainly fruits, vegetables and lean meats. I still eat bread, rice, and pasta. I've also found that cutting down on cheese (but certainly not out, are you crazy?) helps a lot. The significant difference I now notice is when I don't eat well how badly I feel and how low my energy level is. Just make sure you're not starving yourself. Probably not something I need to tell a Cullum, because I think we all share an instinctual love of eating like horses.

Gordo Byrn has a great article on nutrition.

I'd like to hear other peoples' opinions on this too.

I've found that discipline in my eating makes "rewards" or "treats" that much more enjoyable. I'm training for the Miami 1/2 ironman and a couple sprint and oly distance tri's along the way.

Kyle Cullum said...

i wish i was as motivated as you guys, i only train to get better in bed.

Bill said...

I am not strict, meaning I don't focus on a specific food or stay away from a specific food. But I tend to eat pretty healthy anyway.

For me, that thought of that ice cream sandwich does nothing for me. If it did, I'd make sure to not have any readily available in the house.

I do have my vices. A good beer, a good bourbon and dark, dark chocolate. But you must indulge those desires from time to time, otherwise you might binge, and that's bad thing.

Sam said...

Dang Bill, were you actually posting that comment @ 4:56 am, or is this thing just set on Pacific Time? If so, kudos to you sir.

I'm currently enjoying a lunch of tilapia and green beans.