A Fighter's Weight Loss Diet

 

My favorite sport next to college football is mixed martial arts - specifically, the Ultimate Fighting Championship.

For the last three weeks, the UFC has aired specials called UFC Primetime leading up to the Welterweight Championship matchup between current champ Georges St. Pierre and Dan Hardy.  It gives a behind the scenes look at each of their training camps and showing how they prepare for their fights.

Tonight, in the final installment, it briefly touched on Georges St. Pierre’s nutrition regimen.  His personal chef says that as he’s cutting weight, he has “absolutely zero carbohydrates, zero sugar, and zero dairy“.  It showed her preparing a salmon steak, asparagus in lemon and olive oil, and some kind of salad.  (By “zero carbohydrate”, I take it to mean “zero grains”, since all fruits and vegetables contain carbohydrates.  This is often a misnomer for which even professionals are guilty - calling zero grain diets, “zero carb”.)

This is so eye-opening.

When we wanna lose weight, why not look to those who maintain a precise bodyweight and musculature just to earn a living?  Fighters and bodybuilders, for example.

Two-thirds of Americans are overweight.  Most have no idea how to change the scales.

On the other end of the spectrum are fighters and bodybuilders who compete in precise weight classes.  The welterweights this weekend are fighting at 170 pounds.  They can’t show up and say, “Ah!  I couldn’t drop those last 5 pounds, so I’m coming in a little heavier than expected.”  More importantly, it would be suicide to show up at the right weight, but to have lost muscle in the process.  (This is what so many people risk when they crash diet.  They drop weight, but not fat.  The weight is usually muscle.)

How is it that millions of people are baffled by weight loss, and others can manipulate their weights at will, down to the pound?

Motivation is something for another article.  But for this one, it’s insightful to know that the best in the world in the UFC Welterweight division sticks to a grain-free diet to drop fat and maintain muscle.   By any other name, you might call that a fighter’s version of the Phase One Diet.

(By the way - My wife watched tonight’s episode, and she said, “Wow, watching GSP train and eat makes me wanna stick to the plan.  You may wanna show some pics of this guy if you’re gonna write an article about it.  He’s solid!”  On that note, one more pic, which will hopefully be what we all see at the end of Saturday’s fight.)

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