Recently, I completed the Ironman NC 2016 (Oct 2016). The race would have been a full 140.6, but was cut short by 56 miles due to flooding in the area. A race image can be seen nearby (185lbs). Next to it, you can see me 4 months later, nearly 30lbs less body fat (155lbs).

Before Image After Image

Since 2010, I have been doing triathlons from sprint distances up until Ironman NC 2016 for the longest distance to date. Along the way, I expected that I would be not only healthier, but look healthier. Sadly, this did not evidence true. Year after year, my training left me hovering between 180-185lbs with rare exceptions. I felt like I carried a winter coat everywhere I went.

As I completed the Ironman NC, I found myself getting injured during the run – typical of all my long distance runs. This was disheartening, since it meant I was going to run/walk and finish after dark. As an added bonus, I get more hunger and more time to ponder what I have been doing wrong.

Post race, I decided I had enough of simply increasing my threshold for distance, but press my pace – aggressively. Settling on a 3 hour marathon pace as my long term goal, I knew this could not be done by simply improving all my bad habits. I needed to get serious about ditching any detractors. This is when I asked the question.

“How is what I eat accelerating achievement of my goals?”

It was that simple. Once I realized that many of my biggest body fat issues were not fixable by out working the other side of the equation (exercise), the fat literally melted off. Within 8 weeks, I had lost 25 lbs.

I cut out:

  • Added sugar
  • Added sugar alternatives
  • Preservatives
  • Most processed carbs (bread/pasta)
  • Oversized meat portions
  • Meals > 500 cals
  • Most GMO/non-organic foods

The simple version of my diet is now:

  • When waking up
    • Unflavored, grass fed whey protein concentrate or isolate mixed with water, or half serving with other half Orgain chocolate protein powder
  • Post workout
    • repeat shake/water mix
  • Lunch
    • 500 or so cals of organic brown rice, organic black beans, chicken breast, and vegetable
  • Second lunch 3 hrs later
    • repeat lunch
  • Dinner
    • repeat lunch
  • Snacks
    • When hungry, eat a small handful of nuts, or eat a single piece of fruit
    • Sometimes at night, eat unflavored greek yogurt with some sliced fruit, a few raisins, sliced almonds, or similar toppings.
  • Water
    • Drink lots
  • Before bed
    • repeat shake/water mix

My workouts

  • 1-2hrs / day of endurance or strength or mixed training 5 days/week
  • 4hrs long set 1 day a week

Some might say that with my level of exercise, it should be a no brainer to lose weight. To those people, I say, I tried that for years, without any real results. Maybe younger people can get away with that, but at 38 this year, I don’t think I will be pulling that off.

If you find these insights useful, leave a comment.

May you achieve your goals – every last one! :)