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Eat to Grow: Fat Attack

Rotund Rebound. How to avoid regaining flab.

I bet this has happened to you at least once. You got into great shape for something specific’a photo session, a bodybuilding contest or just to look buff at the annual company picnic. Then, once the event had passed, you went off the clean-food wagon and started putting the junk away like it was gonna be outlawed next week. Though it might take you six months to go from roly-poly to ripped, you can easily put all the fat back on and more in just a couple weeks of bingeing. Afterward, you feel terrible about yourself. It’s no help when friends and family start asking, ‘Are you putting on weight?’ Don’t let that happen to you. The following are some tips for avoiding the rebound flab.

Don’t buy any junk. Quite simply, if there is no junk in your house, you won’t eat any junk’at least not when you’re home. If you can’t do your own grocery shopping without snapping up some ice cream and cookies along with the chicken breasts and broccoli, make a list of just the good foods and have someone else make your supermarket runs for you.

Junk once a day, max. Okay, we’re all human, and very few of us (certainly not me) can live our entire lives eating only the right foods. If you must have a little treat, make it once a day, and in a reasonable quantity. After lunch, for instance, you could have two chocolate chip cookies or maybe a small dish of ice cream. As long as you don’t go crazy and eat the whole bag of cookies or the entire pint of Ben and Jerry’s, the damage to your waistline should be minimal. If you have a sweet tooth, snack on low-glycemic fruits like apples and strawberries or get some sugar-free pudding. Diet soda can go a long way toward taming a raging need for sugar, as can sugar-free yogurt and hard candies. Even many low-carb protein bars these days are just as scrumptious as a Hershey’s or Snickers bar, with none of the sugar.

Keep up the cardio. Don’t go from an hour of cardio a day to zero. A certain amount of cardio is needed for cardiovascular health and to keep your metabolism chugging along. You don’t need to keep up the same duration and intensity as you did when preparing for your event, but maintain a respectable amount so that your body keeps burning fat.

‘Ron Harris

Editor’s note: Check out Ron Harris’s Web site at

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