Week 1 – Attack Phase
In this report I recap my first week on the Dukan Diet – the Attack Phase. See how I adjust to a sudden and in some ways significant new eating regiment.
Monday, July 18, Day 1
Breakfast – Protein shake and nonfat greek yogurt, coffee
Lunch – grilled chicken breasts
Dinner – 2 salmon fillets and 2 small hamburger patties with mustard
Lots of water throughout the day, more than the 1.5 quarts no doubt
Didn’t collect an exact weight but I know I’ve been hovering around 255. I was running a little and watching my intake and seemed to lose no weight. I was frustrated and decided to give this diet a go.
No strange feelings today. Pretty normal except no bloated feelings after lunch. Carbs create more gas than proteins so that’s a plus.
I’ve read where people go carb crazy, craving for carbs even on the first day. I either missed the memo or have huge stores still readily available. We’ll see how this changes.
Tuesday, July 19, Day 2
Breakfast – Protein shake and nonfat greek yogurt, coffee
Lunch – grilled chicken and 2 smallish hamburger patties, all with mustard for dipping
Hamburgers are not exactly low fat as the diet recommends but my wife is very good about selecting lean meats. So the burgers aren’t top round or sirloin. They are pretty lean. More than anything, they are a nice variety from chicken and really, who feels like their on a diet while eating a hamburger patty?
Dinner – grilled fish and hamburger
Early afternoon, just finished lunch. I’m expecting to enter a sluggish state of ketosis, wherein my body changes from burning carbs for fuel to burning fat. Burning fat is supposed to be less efficient and can cause one to become sluggish. For this reason, the Atkins diet (I’m on the Dukan diet which shares some principles), calls for little exercise. While I’m not complaining, I almost wish I would experience this effect at least a little. Of course, that may still come, but this is not what I expected – so far. No crazy carb cravings and no sluggishness.
Purposefully I’ve decided to stay away from the scale for the first few days. I haven’t decided when I’ll step on it. I’m thinking that I want to follow the diet and gauge how I’m feeling without any external factors or influences. Water purge and retention can mask progress and may lead to discouragement. So, skipping the scale is my approach for avoiding this pitfall. I’d love to see clothes fitting better as a first indicator. We’ll see how long I can hold out.
Still have not picked up the oat bran the diet calls for. I need to do this sooner than later.
Wednesday, July 20, Day 3
Breakfast – running late so just a large protein shake
Lunch – hamburger patties and the fat free Greek yogurt from breakfast that I missed this morning due to running late
Dinner – chicken and hamburger… the chicken was prepared with a vinaigrette marinade from the Dukan book that my wife picked out. Very good and I think we’ll try it on pork chops soon.
This morning while lying in bed I started to doubt the progress I’ve been making. Nothing heavy but those thoughts of self-doubt that can creep in. I knew I had not yet stepped on a scale so I really didn’t have evidence one way or the other so I dismissed the rouge ideas. Heck, I’m not really struggling to stay on the diet. I’m not combating cravings or anything so what’s the fuss, I told myself. But I then started looking for other clues. Hmm, standing in front of the mirror, the gut does look smaller from this angle. And these pants fit a little better than last week, as I easily wedged my thumbs into the waistband.
I’m thinking of a 7 day – 1 full week – attack phase and that’s only phase 1 of this 4 phase diet, so I’m still very early in this thing. I’m not sure how long I’ll stay off the scales. That seems to be a growing mental challenge.
Adding a couple notes after lunch. I’m feeling really good today. I do think I’m feeling better than normal or at least as good as previous ‘good days’. Not yet ready to attribute it to the diet, but there is something about having a regiment and the freedom that comes from operating within boundaries.
Again, only anecdotal since I’m not gracing the scale yet, but I think I’ve dropped some weight, at least enough to feel better even if it’s not an externally noticeable amount.
Thursday, July 21, Day 4
Breakfast – protein shake as I dashed out the door running late again.
Lunch – chicken, hamburger, and yogurt
Dinner – 2 small salmon fillets, pork chop, water
So for clarification, running late 2 days in a row is not related to the diet. That’s a me and my schedule thing. I was up late the night before prepping a status report for work. At midnight I was still waiting on input from a co-worker so I went to bed. This morning I finished the status report and was then running late. So much more than you wanted to know but there it is.
Today feels like most of the previous days. Still not stepping on the scale thought I almost did this morning. I don’t feel much lighter than yesterday but I did nearly pull in a new hole in my belt. I probably could have done it but it might have been uncomfortable for the full day.
I’m starting to wonder about the hamburger I’m eating nearly every day now. It is so easy to prep and season but even the lean varieties have more calories than the chicken.
Speaking of chicken, my wife had a grilled chicken salad last night and it looked like the best thing to ever grace a plate. I was actually surprised by my reaction but was satisfied in knowing that I’d be able to enjoy that in phase 2 which will likely start for me early next week.
One more thing I’ll add based on my experiences thus far. Your body produces much more waste with carbs than with protein. I didn’t see that one coming.
Friday, July 22, Day 5
Breakfast – Protein shake, coffee
Lunch – salmon patty, ½ pork chop, yogurt
Dinner – 4 egg omelet – 2 whole eggs, 2 egg whites – with ground turkey, and milk
Pulled a shirt out of the closet that I had to take out of the rotation a couple months ago because it was getting tight… or I was getting bigger, and it fit really well. I’ll have to find others to bring back into circulation.
Found some new really low carb yogurts at Target tonight. I look forward to adding those to the mix. The Dukan diet is all about proteins and no/low carbs but it does allow nonfat yogurts which is good for me. But the Greek yogurts I’ve been eating have 9 grams of carbs and this new option has only 3. This is big, because to my knowledge, that’s the only carbs I’ve been eating… aside from whatever is in my nonfat milk.
Mixed it up this evening with the omelet – really just egg with turkey, no peppers, onions, or cheese – and that was really a treat. I look forward to another couple of these over the weekend and really look forward to adding peppers, tomatoes, onions, and a little cheese next week.
So let me tell you, I’m day 5 on this thing and I’m often forgetting that I’m on a diet. I don’t mean forgetting to suggest that I’m reverting to my previous eating habits, but forgetting in that I don’t feel deprived at all. I’m making conscience decisions relative to what I eat and don’t eat but I don’t feel short changed in that process. This has really surprised me. I’ve read about carb cravings and ketosis-based lethargy and I’m just not seeing it. It’s kinda neat. I’m feeling better, feeling lighter, experiencing my clothes fitting better and for what appears to be very little effort. That’s cool.
Saturday, July 23, Day 6
Breakfast – Big protein omelet similar to the one last night just a little larger – I used more egg whites; protein shake, and small coffee. I feel as ‘stuffed’ as I have after any meal on this regiment but not bloated which unfortunately was previously more common.
Lunch – Yogurt
Dinner – Grilled turkey burgers, yogurt
I think the turkey burgers may be a good alternative to hamburgers in that they are lower fat. I add hot sauce and black pepper to the ground meat to add flavor. The yogurts are a Dannon product. The container is a little smaller but the carbs are 3 grams and the total calories are 45. The taste is a little off – like diet coke to regular, but it fits the bill well enough.
Sunday, July 24, Day 7
Brunch – Omelet and protein shake, coffee
Snack – yogurt – I also mixed in a little protein powder for kicks
Dinner – 2 hamburger patties
I can really tell that I’m eating less food. I’m spending less time putting food in my pie hole and less bites when I do. Yet I feel sated and rarely do I feel hungry. According to Dukan, protein takes longer to breakdown in your stomach so it hangs out longer which sustains the feeling of fullness. I’m also avoiding the blood sugar spikes that carbs inspire. I think this also allows the stomach and blood to gradually recognize hunger rather than wildly swing back and forth. That’s not science as much as my experience this week.
I think I’ll end the protein only Attack Phase today. Not that I feel a need to but it will allow me to add variety into the mix which will be nice. Phase 2 alternates Protein only and Protein plus veggie days. Dukan is restrictive as to which veggies he allows during Phase 2 but it’ll be enough to mix it up.
The Dukan Diet: 2 Steps to Lose the Weight, 2 Steps to Keep It Off Forever
Devised by Dr. Pierre Dukan, a French medical doctor who has spent his career helping people to lose weight, the Dukan Diet rejects counting calories and promises permanent weight loss while allowing adherents to eat as much as they like.