Taking on another Nutrition “Challenge”

A year has gone by since my last challenge. I took on the Velocity Diet last year for 28 pain staking days. For those of you that don’t recall it you can go back to my blog and see the experience. After reviewing my experience I was way too diplomatic. To recap the Velocity diet: Drink 5-6 shakes a day and eat One meal per week for 4 weeks. When people ask me about the experience without a hesitation I say it sucked and you couldn’t pay me to it again. I was hungry for an entire month. I woke up hungry and went to bed hungry. I lost 12 pounds, didn’t lose any strength, but my bodyfat percentage didn’t either.  In the past year I have recommended the Velocity Diet ZERO times. Not once did I think it was appropriate for my clients or friends.

Many of you know me as a pot stirrer.  I always find things to talk about and my sarcasm usually wins a following or pushes people away. I have been seeing a huge influx of nutritional products hitting the market and gaining popularity big time over the past year. Each of them of course are multi-level marketing based which usually highly annoys the hell out of me. I am approached non stop by people I don’t know trying to get me on their nutritional product team. With numerous friends on Facebook, I see all the products promoted. Advocare, Isagenix, Herbalife, Juice Plus, and Visalus.  Truth be told I could probably pick apart every single one of these supplements just as I could point out many benefits of each. In all honesty just about any supplement isn’t perfect. The supplement industry isn’t regulated and it really is like the wild west out there. Lately  I have seen lots of buzz on Facebook about a supplement called ViSalus. Of course my first reaction is to really pick it apart (which I will), but there is something about ViSalus that intrigues me. The biggest thing is that the company really promotes a 9o day challenge. That is really all you hear about… The challenge.  Challenges get people excited and this company does a great job of promoting it. In reality though anyone can promote a challenge and it doesn’t mean that it is good for you. If you all know me, I really don’t care about getting skinny, I care about managing body fat while still seeing increases in strength.  There are lots of ways to get skinny or lose weight. As Dan John says… tie yourself to a tree for 3 days and don’t eat you will lose some weight. So why am I wanting to try Visalus? Well with all the buzz I want to see what it is all about because I constantly have clients asking me about this nutritional product. If I am going to tell a client to try something I usually have gone through it myself. If I try this product and my lifts and performance go down or I am miserable on it then I stay as far away as possible and make sure to let people know to stay the hell away. Hence the reason I have never once told someone to try the Velocity Diet after going through 28 days of hell. The difference between this and the Velocity-Diet is that you actually eat real food with it. Visalus is two shakes per day, 2 real food snacks and one real food meal. This should be a walk in the park.

So here is  all of my thoughts on ViSalus even before I try the challenge.

First off this is a MLM(multi-level marketing) Company and I usually stay clear of these types of products. For no other reason except for the fact it is hard for me to really relate to the business model. Second the product has soy and if you know me you know I am not a huge fan of soy. So I did some research on the product and they back the soy by saying that the Isoflavones which can possibly increase estrogen have been removed and that the soy they use is not GMO(genetically modified). This doesn’t however change the fact that this stuff is pretty processed, but in todays world what isn’t highly processed.  Another thing that really has me a bit stand offish is the too good to be true part of the challenge.  Another thing that I have to say is ANY nutritional plan that does not include a strength (real strength) biased training program isn’t complete and will never show long term results. I see way too many people doing challenges that are doing aerobics only and that is a recipe to make a weak and skinny fat person. Also, I get turned off by people that just jump into investing in nutrition and not into understanding how to exercise. These are usually the people that will have to stay on “diets” their entire life and go through the gain/lose fat cycle forever because they never learn how to eat real food consistently and exercise.  They will go from Jenny Craig to Weight Watchers, to The Cabbage Diet and say nothing ever worked long term. I think the purpose of anything like this needs to encourage people to eventually eat real food as well, and not just live off of shakes and help them learn to build a healthy exercise habit.

OK but why a shake diet at all, why not just food.

In a perfect world I wish people would just eat clean all the time. I preach it daily with every new client. I have lists of what to eat and what not to eat. I spend time going over diet journals with clients time after time. I stress the importance of non processed foods, lean meats, vegetables, and limiting grains. Of course I have clients that just listen and life is good for all parties involved. On the other hand if just telling people to eat clean worked everyone would be losing the weight and getting in shape.  I do firmly believe that making life long changes with food should be the first step. I do think there is a place for certain forms of meal replacements and use for assistance to manage calories in V.S. Calories out.  As simple as losing weight should be many people just need an extra push.  If someone can get the kickstart they need by drinking a couple shakes a day and not getting gastric bypass surgery (just another way to limit calories) or having to go on Medical weight loss, then it isn’t the worst idea. People are busy and sometimes getting people to prepare the foods needed just isn’t going to happen no matter how much it is needed. Limiting choices many times is the key to success. My biggest thing with taking this on is I want to see how I feel on it, and how my strength and stamina is affected. If I take on this challenge and my strength suffers  or I am losing energy, then I will stop.  I will never recommend anyone I know to try something that I haven’t tried myself. I am not committing to promote anything nor will I trash this till I try it…… I will keep you posted…

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