IIFYM vs BRO Prep: Realization!!

In 2014 this little 99 cent treat almost killed me.

This post from 2014 popped up on my timeline a few days ago. I remember this little treat was going to be
the first thing I had when I stepped off stage from NANBF Southern Naturals. During this prep I was on a very scary
diet from my coach which caused me a lot of health issues. You can read about that here.

This prep was very strict with extremely low fat. In fact, it was so low my doctor demanded I get off the diet.
It had no variety or allowance for food exchanges. During the entire prep, I would lay awake at night and
pin desserts on a secret Pinterest board. I have over 300 desserts on that board! It was all I could think about.

There is a sector of the body building community that will say.. “If you aren’t suffering, you aren’t doing it right.”
I felt that way because my coach said that there was zero room for a food like this in my prep.

Listen, I’m fully coachable and a great client. I did what I was told with all my coaches and in retrospect I really learned
a lot about prep, coaching, and food.

Post show:
In 2013 my prep was so bro and so strict that I stepped off stage and ate an entire pound of Birthday Cake Fudge in the car ride to the restaurant . Rob stopped at the gas station and got me a Coke Zero and a Diet Mountain Dew. I had not had a soda for months. I binged out and gained weight so fast!! UGH!! I was miserable and so angry with myself.
Macros on Coke Zero are
Calories: 0
P: 0

This should have been totally fine on prep!! I was allowed Crystal light but not Coke Zero. *eyeroll

After the 2014 show I stepped off stage and devoured this treat and many many others. It didn’t stop there. I just kept going. I did not reverse diet. I just binged and binged and then in total frustration, began my show diet again as a knee jerk reaction to gain control. I had an enormous amount of self abuse and felt like a total failure that I was in show shape then gained weight fast. Post show traditions was to totally binge it out! Binge/restrict became common with me again.

What I learned and understand:
I can reflect on this little treat that invaded my brain so hard that I couldn’t stop thinking of it.
Here are the macros on that little wedding cake square.
Calories 140
P: 1
C: 17

That’s it. That’s what kept me up at night. I’m so upset right now.. I could have made that fit into my plan and had mental relief that would have saved me if I had been allowed flexibility. Is it my coaches fault? Am I blaming them?
Yes and no. I signed up with a coach and trusted them. I committed to their plan and completed the project as they required. It was the wrong choice for me. Do I blame them? Yes.. for coaching without genuine nutrition knowledge!!

How to choose a coach

I problem solved this because in 2015 I did my own prep and used IIFYM. Things like this were not an issue any longer.

Coaching gains

When I coach athletes and lifestyle, we do not restrict foods like this. We have a percentage of our day that *could* be discretionary food if they like. That little treat is discretionary and it could fit easily into a plan. Maybe not super close to show day but a portion of it could.

In 2015, even in the end of prep, I would still make half a peanut butter cup fit. I never gave up coffee creamer. I never give that up in my prep. I measure it accurately and make it fit. I have won several trophies as have my clients having had things like this on prep. It’s not true that you won’t ‘look right’ or that you must starve and suffer to win. It’s not true!! IT IS NOT TRUE.

Origins of IIFYM: Bro science Vs: Real Science

In my own preps that I did IIFYM, I didn’t feel deprived nor did I feel like I needed to binge it out. I was very calm through out that prep. IIFYM was the right prep choice! I made my program work for my body! I teach my athletes and clients to do this!! We feel empowered!!

Healthy? What was up?
Another thing that I wanted to mention about my program and the huge amount of mental focus on fatty deserts was clearly a signal from my body that I needed better nutrition. I was craving fat in my diet. I most likely needed a refeed as well. When a client talks to me about these sorts of things in our check ins, we have information. This is NOT a failure. Our bodies are talking to us.

What does this mean for us as humans/athletes?
Being on very restrictive plans will have repercussions.
It’s very hard to be consistent.
White knuckling is not living and not a solution!
Whatever is restricted, it’s often what we crave the most!
Limiting nutrition is unhealthy!
Restrict/binge is very damaging to our bodies.

The good news is
Flexible dieting gives us the ability to find peace in our food, even in show prep, or lifestyle!
We can make good decisions based on our life and health. We can feel empowered in our choices.
We can feel comfy in our choices and make action plans to reach our goals without feeling down on ourselves.
No more white knuckling.
We can listen to our body and do better for ourselves.

Much love and good luck on your show!!
If you need a coach, please visit my site
or for competition coaching

Salem hasn’t got any special skills regarding macros but he wants you to be happy.

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