First Time Marathoner Tackling the V-Diet

Well, here we go. I’m a life-long athlete; my primary sport is long-distance running, but I’ve dabbled in everything from squash to power-lifting (you won’t believe it from these pictures, but I used to squat and deadlift about 300 pounds back in college).

As a result, I’m something of a mutt when it comes to athletics; I’ve been weightlifting for six or seven years, but often jump around in terms of goals and programs. After a long time of cooling my heels and being random with my sports, I’ve gotten back into running, and plan to run my first marathon in New York at the end of this year.

My ultimate goal is to run in the Boston Marathon, which has a strict entrance requirement: you have to be able to run a marathon in three hours and ten minutes, which is about seven minutes and fifteen seconds per mile. My fastest mile ever was five and a half minutes, and my normal pace is eight minutes per mile, so I know I can do it.

But to be blunt, my diet is terrible. I used to be able to eat whatever I wanted and not gain weight due to an extremely fast metabolism. But that metabolism has slowed down considerably, and yet I still have my terrible eating habits. I often skip meals (especially breakfast), I eat haphazardly when I do eat, and I definitely don’t take in nearly enough water.

I’m also often sluggish throughout the day, and my skin looks terrible. I’m extremely pissed off at myself for my lack of discipline when it comes to nutrition, and for getting to the point where I’m a shocking 25% body fat.

So I’m doing this not for vanity or the ladies or anything like that (okay, maybe a little bit for that), but so that I can become a better athlete and faster runner, get my health and body fat back in order, and finally develop strong, permanent eating habits. I need a kick in the ass when it comes to nutrition, and I’m hoping the V-Diet will give it to me. Here goes…

Here are my stats:

Age- 24
Height- 6’1
Weight- 178
BF%: 25.6% (!!!)
Neck- 18 in.
Shoulders- 47 in.
Chest (upper)- 36 in.
Chest (lower)- 29 in.
Waist at navel- 35 in.
Waist (largest)- 36 in.
Hips (at largest)- 35 in.
Upper Arm (L)- 12 in.
Upper Arm ®- 12 in.
Upper Leg (L)- 23 in.
Upper Leg ®- 23 in.
Lower Leg (L)- 14 in.
Lower Leg ®- 14 in.
Ankle (L)- 8 in.
Ankle ®- 8 in.

A pic from the side

Pic from the back

Just had my first ever shake, and yum! I’m not too surprised given how tasty MD is, but I love the crunchiness of the flaxseeds, and the aftertaste is great too. If that’s what they’re going to be like every time, this shouldn’t be too tough! :slight_smile:

3/30/2009: DAY 1

Well, I had a tremendous first day on the V-Diet. I felt great pretty much all day! My energy levels were almost completely level all day, my stomach had no disturbance whatsoever, and I was able to get everything in despite an insanely packed day.

At 5:25 AM I woke up and consumed my first ever HOT-ROX, and man, was that a rush! I’ve handled Spike perfectly fine in the past, but this was at another level. The feel-good quality it gives you is unreal. The best part is that it didn’t make me jittery or dizzy or anything, just pleasantly high on life. What terrific stuff!

At 6:00 AM I made my first shake, a Chocolate shake, and as I posted above, it was really delicious. Superfood definitely didn’t look like I expected it to, but it tasted just fine. I almost always skip breakfast, so having a shake to start the day was perfect. After the diet is over, I will almost certainly continue having a shake for breakfast to guarantee that I get a solid nutritional start to the day and that I have breakfast.

I should also note that I loved chewing on the flaxseeds in the shake; it just felt different and like more work than just drinking a shake. I bet I’ll appreciate it even more as I get deeper into the diet. I also took Flameout.

I then drove to work (I work in the Disabled Students department at Santa Monica College in Los Angeles as a test proctor and in-class note taker), which was kind of interesting on a HOT-ROX buzz. When I got there, I discovered that the co-worker who assists me wasn’t going to be there, and that I’d have to manage by myself. Usually, this would stress me out and make me irritable, but because of the HOT-ROX and breakfast, I took it in stride and went about my long, exhausting day.

Despite being more stressful at work than usual, I was able to get all of my shakes in; I actually brought MD, L-Leucine, Flameout, and Surge to work and just shook them up them while proctoring.

At 9 AM I got a bit hungry, so I munched on two Fiber Choice tablets. I figure since they’re optional that I could fudge this aspect of the diet a tiny bit, and since the RDA on the bottle says two a day, I stuck to that. I’ll probably keep doing that throughout the diet.

At 12:10 I had my lunch shake, a Vanilla one, along with another Flameout. The Vanilla wasn’t nearly as good as the chocolate flavor, but still went down very smoothly and was just fine. I felt pretty full and satiated. I should note here that already by this point I had taken in more water than I usually do on any given day. That’s another habit I’m desperately trying to break.

At 2 PM I had my second HOT-ROX of the day. I didn’t really feel the buzz the same way I did from the morning HOT-ROX, but not a big deal. I also felt my first tiny craving for food around this time, and I got a bit sleepy. I usually get sleepy around 1:30 or 2 in the afternoon. The difference was that this went away much more quickly than usual, and I didn’t feel sluggish like usual. Good stuff.

At 3 PM I had my mid-afternoon shake, another Vanilla, with Flameout. One thing I was realizing at this point was that as a runner, I’m used to eating lots of carbs, and this diet is obviously quite protein-centric. It’ll be a transition, but based on how I did today, I think I’ll manage.

I got off work at 4:30, and sped over to the gym to do my first workout. I’m doing the Advanced version; I have over six years of weightlifting experience, and my strength gains from powerlifting have somewhat remained. I’m also a very fit athlete in terms of cardiovascular ability, so I figured it’d be good to start at the top and if it’s too overwhelming, go downwards to the Intermediate level.

My workout went brilliantly. I felt really strong and man, the short rest periods were exhausting! I timed them to the second, and I was huffing and puffing after the first two exercises like crazy! Here are my numbers:

All Heavy, All 20 reps (4-5 rep max), 30 second rest periods

Bent Over Barbell Row (underhand): 135x4, 135x4, 125x4, 135x3, 135x3, 135x2

Overhead Squat: 75x4, 75x4, 75x5, 75x4, 75x3

Dip: 193x5 (BW +15 pounds), 193x4, 193x4, 193x3, 193x2, 193x1, 193x1

Ab-Wheel Rollout: 4 sets of 5 (I’m not sure how to increase the difficulty on this exercise. Wear a weighted vest, maybe?)

Again, I was exhausted at the end of this, and sweating quite a bit. I started the workout at 4:50 and ended at 5:25. I got into the car, shook up some Surge, and slammed it down at 5:30.

I then drove home, and went out to dinner with some good friends from New York City. That’s right, on the first day of my V-Diet, I had to deal with eating out with friends. And not just eating out at a nice restaurant, but also going out for frozen yogurt after the main meal!

I was able to do it; I brought my dinner shake to the restaurant (which I made Strawberry/Vanilla, by the way) and sipped on it throughout the meal, from about 7 to 7:45 PM, along with Flameout midway through the shake. I actually didn’t crave anything except the frozen yogurt at the end, but I held my ground. That was a powerful motivator, actually, being able to survive going out to dinner no problem. It just required willpower and commitment to the diet, and with those two things, I had virtually no problems.

I got home very late (about 9:30), changed clothes, and went on my NEPA walk. I walked for about three and a half miles in fifty minutes or so; I was actually breathing pretty hard during it, which surprised me considering my running background. But I had a non-stop day, and I was walking at a steady clip.

I got back from my walk about 10:25, whipped up my bedtime shake (I got organic almond butter from Whole Foods; soooooo good), downed it at about 10:35 with one last Flameout, cleaned my shakers and my blender, and sat down to write this post.

All in all, a terrific first day. I had a lot of challenges to meet today that I don’t usually have, from the long stressful day at work to the new dietary regimen to having to survive going out to dinner with others while on this diet. But I met them all, and felt pretty great the whole time. If I can make it through a day like this, I know I will succeed!

Good report. Keep us updated!

Sounds like you’re a busy busy man! Great job on Day one, with temptations and schedule surprises and everything :wink: Looking forward to week 1 progression!


Chris, Lisa, thanks so much for the comments! Yeah, I’m not usually as busy as I was yesterday, but I do work all day without much of a break. I’m working on my application for graduate school right now too, so my nights have become somewhat full.

Also, I’m returning to weight lifting/athletics in general after a ridiculous injury. I got an infected thumb that was so bad that when I ran, the increased circulation would make the thumb swell and become unbearably painful; I had to stop all of my training and eventually get the stupid thing lanced, and then it was about a month before it completely healed. It’s been better for a little while now, so my cardio is fine, but it’s been a while since I’ve been able to grip heavy weights, hence my relatively low numbers. I also got quite tired after my workout last night, since it’s been so long since I’ve lifted weights. But my form was good (muscle memory and all that) and I feel perfectly fine today.

In terms of updates, I’ll be updating every day, and with as much detail as possible. Chris, you’re absolutely right; having those ugly pictures up there and updating every night definitely makes me feel much more accountable for my actions on this diet!

3/31/09: DAY 2

Today was much rougher than yesterday in terms of cravings and just general good feelings. This, though, almost certainly had to do with the fact that because of getting to sleep very late last night, I only got about four hours of solid sleep, which is not good at all considering it was also a weight-lifting day yesterday. However, the cravings I had today actually led to an interesting mental breakthrough.

I had my HOT-ROX capsule at 5:30 this morning. I’m going to be upping the dosage to the regular two capsules at a time starting tomorrow; my body is handling them just fine, and I could use the energy boost from some extra stimulants, not to mention the body fat loss.

I had my breakfast shake at 6:30, which was a strawberry and which was quite refreshing first thing in the morning. In fact, I liked it so much that I took the strawberry Metabolic Drive to work today. I of course also had Flameout.

When I got to work, I found out that the co-worker who had bailed out yesterday was actually going to be out ALL WEEK, which is concerning. We may be getting a new co-worker soon, that’s all I’ll say. But on top of him not showing up today, the OTHER co-worker that usually comes in today and Thursday, and who I’ve worked with for almost a year now and is very dependable, was AWOL today as well. Thankfully, it was a much less hectic day today than yesterday, but still. Things are weird at work right now.

I chewed on two Fiber Choice tablets at 9:30, and they actually picked me up a little bit; my energy levels had been feeling low for a couple of hours.

At 12:30, I had my lunch shake, another strawberry, and Flameout. This lunch shake was the first time so far that I actually started to savor the shake, as in not just down it or drink it slowly to cater to a long meal with others, but just sip it and enjoy the texture and the taste. It also filled me up.

At 2:30, I had my second HOT-ROX of the day. I actually took this while taking notes in a class, and my energy levels shot up quickly. Again, I’m amazed at how unjittery I feel when taking HOT-ROX.

At 3:30, class got out, and I ran to my car, made my mid-afternoon shake, another strawberry with Flameout, and drank that at about 3:40. It was then off to another class, and I was feeling good.

I got off work at 4:45 today, drove home, and for the first time in about 36 hours, got to just relax and do nothing. Such a nice feeling. I had my dinner shake at 6:30, this time a vanilla shake with Flameout. One thing that was strange was that right when I got home, I started to have solid food cravings. They weren’t overwhelming, but they were more intense than when I went out to dinner last night! I guess it’s just that I associate home and dinner time with solid food.

I went for my NEPA walk at 8:30, and for some reason at that late hour, lots of households were cooking dinner around my neighborhood, and the smells got a bit intense. The one that almost made me snap a little was garlic shrimp, which is one of my absolute favorite foods. I have a weakness for creamy foods, so the image of garlic shrimp with maybe an alfredo sauce started to enter my mind.

But then, I had a minor breakthrough. I started to realize that there was no way that a creamy, fat-filled dish would make me feel any better or healthier than I do right now. In fact, there’s no way it would do anything other than give me momentary pleasure and not contribute to my goals as an athlete. Sure, I can still cheat with my favorite dishes every once in a while when I’m done with the V-Diet, but I’m starting to become conscious of healthy food and why I’d prefer to eat it over just mindless eating of tasty but bad foods. Excellent!

I walked a little over three and a half miles in fifty minutes, and got home pretty winded and sat down to write this. When I’m done here, I’ll blend up my delicious chocolate almond butter shake, and crash into bed.

An interesting day today. Parts were good, parts were bad. I’m most pleased with my mental response to the cravings I started to have at night today. Until tomorrow…


HAH well I totally hear you on the smelling other people’s cooking as you take your walk. I too walk in the dinner time hour usually. But the other night, I went a little too far ‘south of the ghetto’ and came across a house that had a peculiar…deadbodyish smell. Totally smashed my desire for food that I’d been smelling all down the road. So next time, just sniff for dead bodies! Although, I dont see why you’d really need to, seeing as how you hacked it out in your mind without that jarring rude awakening type of smell.

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