Dark leafy greens are a main part of my diet plan

Diet Plan for “Jack Gets Fit” 2019-A Hard Line Program

The diet plan for “Jack Gets Fit” is drastic. It has to be. I need to see dramatic results. So I need a dramatic change in my eating habits.

Eat for the body you want, not the body you have

Dark leafy greens are a main part of my diet plan
Photo by Fancycrave on Unsplash

A hardball diet plan

My 16 week diet plan is a multi-front attack on my eating habits. I want to “shock and awe” my system and disrupt its expectations for sugar, starch, dairy and gluten.

First off, I need to eliminate 5 principle food items from my diet for the next 16 weeks:

  • Practically all sugars, especially processed white sugar
  • Gluten from bread and other grains
  • “White starches” like potatoes, rice, and pasta
  • Fruit (except for lemons)
  • Beans and lentils

I can tell already, this is about 70% of my current diet. I’m a huge sugar addict and a lover of bread and pasta. So getting rid of my regular dietary staples is going to shake things up physically and psychologically.

What I will be eating

I’m going “cold turkey” on those bad foods. And I’m replacing them with 16 weeks of:

  • Bone broth, vegetable stock
  • Fermented vegetables like kimchi
  • Lots of dark green, leafy vegetables such as broccoli, kale, cabbage, and Brussels sprouts.
  • Seaweed (dried and reconstituted in broth)
  • Reduced amounts of animal proteins, including fish and chicken
  • Homemade sauces and dressing with lots of herbs, vinegar, healthy oil, and no sugar

If this is going to work it is going to have to be simple. I’m an impulse eater and without a definite plan I will default to non-diet plan foods. So I am going to lay out a specific menu for each day.

Two weeks of this, two weeks of that

The simplest diet plan I can come up with that I believe I have a change of following is based on having the same food, once a day, everyday, for two weeks at a time

After two weeks on one diet plan, I will switch it up before my body can really stabilize and get used to the change. Then after a couple of weeks it will change again. That is also something to prevent me from getting to “creative” with dishes and sticking to the diet plan as it is written.

The basic diet plan menu looks like this:

Week One and Two

Week Three and Four

Week Five and Six

Week Week Seven and Eight

Week Nine and Ten

Week Eleven and Twelve

Week Thirteen and Fourteen

Week Fifteen and Sixteen

Week Seventeen

Bone broth with kimchi and veg

Cabbage and greens salads

Tuna and Egg

Cabbage and greens salads

Water fast

Bone broth with kimchi and veg

Cabbage and greens salads

Tuna and Egg

Cabbage and greens salad and integration of new diet plan

Yes, there is a two-week period where I will eating only tuna and a boiled egg, and where I will be taking in only water. But these are known ways to lose weight.

Bone broth and kimchi

Launching the "Jack Gets Fit" diet plan with bone broth and kimchi
Bone broth and kimchi

I make my own broth and ferment my own kimchi so I control all the ingredients. The broth is low salt, made from chicken backs, wing joints, roasted carcasses and feet. It is very gelatinous and has a very hearty mouth-feel.

My kimchi is a variation of this recipe.  I do use a little sugar but it gets converted into lactic acid in the fermentation process. I use fish sauce and shrimp paste but I’m going to experiment with using kelp powder for a different taste.

A serving will be approximately 1 1/2 cups of hot broth and 1/2 cup of hot water with 3/4 cup of kimchi and 1/2 cup of either a lean meat or a dark green vegetable. I’ll adjust the herbs and seasoning (including salt) as needed.

Cabbage and greens salads

Hearty salad from the "Jack Gets Fit" diet plan

Photo by Ive Erhard on Unsplash

This is a big salad, probably around 1.5 quarts, of shredded nappa, green and purple cabbage mixed with assorted vegetables including tomatoes and cucumbers, along with dark leafy greens like kale, arugula, sprouts, and broccoli. It may include a scattering of nuts and possible some small amounts of protein such as boiled eggs and grilled chicken.

No bread, no dairy, no fruit, no white starches.

I will dress the salad with about 1/2 cup of homemade salad dressing

This will be an easy prep since I can prepare three days of salads at a time and just have them ready to pull from the fridge, dress and eat.

Tuna and Egg

Tuna and eggs help Hollywood stars lose weight, so I'm adding it to my diet plan

Photo by Vitchakorn Koonyosying on Unsplash

This is kind of the diet that was made famous by Christian Bale and other Hollywood actors who seek to drop a lot of weight in a short amount of time.

It is a super low calorie diet that limits me to around 500 calories a day. I’m going to try it for two weeks to see what results I can get. I’m going to basically alternate consuming a can of tuna one day, and one or two boiled eggs on the next day. I may add a stick of celery here an there to avoid going crazy. But aside from water and unsweetened beverages, that will be it.

I’m only doing it for two weeks, twice during my 16 week diet plan. I’m sure that will be enough to break any plateau that might have developed without the harmful effects reported by some people who spend much more time on diets like this.

Water Fasting

A two week water fast is the toughest challenge of the "Jack Gets Fit" diet plan

Photo by Ethan Sykes on Unsplash

I’ve got one 2 week period where I’m going for broke and committing to a 14-day water only fast.

If a 500 – 1000 calorie a day diet is a big challenge, than a 0 calorie a day diet for 14 days is the mother of all challenges.

It is possible, and my research indicates I can do it with a minimum of risk. I need to be cautious about the side effects which can include emotional swings, mental fog, and fatigue.

I’m thinking right now I’ll be taking in as much as 1 1/2 gallons of water a day on this part of the diet plan. Some of that will be flavored water such as coffee, tea, and tonics. The rest will be clean, distilled water.

Coming off the diet plan slowly

Come off the diet plan slowly

Photo by Ben Wicks on Unsplash

Officially my diet plan will be finished at the end of 16 weeks. But that won’t be a call to just go back to my reckless and senseless ways of eating.

I’m actually going an additional week eating my cabbage and greens salads while slowly incorporating a broader range of quality foods into a managed, thoughtful way of eating.

Intermittent Fasting

A key component to my diet plan will be intermittent fasting

Photo by Agê Barros on Unsplash

Another key component will be that I am utilizing intermittent fasting, only eating once a day on average (also called the stop-eat-stop method). My version will be a little different because instead of fasting for a 24 hour period once or twice a week, I will be doing it every day for 16 weeks.

For my broth and kimichi days and my cabbage and greens salad weeks I will be likely eating them in the evening. This will free up my days and allow me to focus on the other things that are going to help me lose weight like exercising and meditation.

When it comes time to do my tuna and egg diet plan I can see doing that more in the late afternoon/early evening. I think this will be better because of the psychological factors of eating either a can of tuna or a boiled egg feels more like a lunch thing than a dinner. I will just have to redeploy my evening hours more profitably.

Water fast will just be water all day.

Drink Responsibly

Staying hydrated one of the keys to maintaining a successful diet plan

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Even when I’m not on a water fast, water is going to play a big part of my diet plan. I need to take in around 96 – 128 oz of water every day. On any given day my norm is well under that. As a result I feel constantly under-hydrated.

Water is valuable in helping me abate hunger cravings, so I expect to drink a lot of it. I use it to nourish my cells and flush waste from my body. It is a great carrier for herbal teas and tonics.

Put out the fire

A daily dose of turmeric tonic along with my diet plan will help reduce inflammation

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I’m drinking a tonic made with fresh turmeric, ginger, and lemons every morning in order to act as an anti-inflammatory aid.

I will get the benefits of hydration first thing in the AM, as well as alkaline and anti-inflammatory factors that help with health and weight loss.

Cheat meals

No diet plan is perfect, a few cheat meals should be allowed

Photo by Sander Dalhuisen on Unsplash

I thought long and hard about this. Then I decided that allowing a little sin here and there is preferable to insisting on perfection.

I really don’t believe that I can stick to this diet plan with 100% commitment while still living in the real world. Over the next 16 weeks there will be birthdays, holidays, weekends, inconveniences, and failures of iron will. Therefore, I can expect at some point to fail on my diet plan.

If I allow a certain number of instances where I don’t have to be perfect then I can stay motivated to be more dedicated to my eating strategies.

It’s not a license to binge or abandon the plan. But I’m going to allow 16 cheat meals during this diet plan. I’m providing myself 16 tokens so that I can excuse myself for one meal that gives me a break – physically, emotionally, and mentally – from what I am sure is going to be a grinding routine.

One simple restriction on cheat meals: Only one per day. It can replace a diet program meal or be in addition to it.

Finally, my water fast portion is off-limits for cheat meals. I really want to see if I can, by force of will as much as physical discipline, stick to a water-only program for 14 days.

NOT a “sustainable” diet plan

This diet plan is a drastic program for fast weight loss, it is not a sustainable diet plan

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I’m not under any illusion that any of these are sustainable ways to eat. Eventually I will settle into a regular dietary routine where sensible amounts of diverse foods will be included. But my willpower is not such that I can face a years’-long routine of little losses. I need something short-term with big results that get me motivated by successes.

To be clear: I’m not recommending this diet plan to anyone. If it works for me I’ll be happy but I won’t teach others how to do it. I can’t say for sure it will work or that I will be able to keep it up even for 16 weeks.

It is no way for a person to survive. While I am on this diet I think I can expect crashes, carb flu, mental fatigue, physical weakness and exhaustion.

The battle will be just as much mental. So I will depend on a regular, focused meditation practice to bolster my will power to stick to this plan for 4 short (or excruciatingly long) months.