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What are your favorite modifications to plan?

Everyone's body, needs, working hours, preferences are different and I know many of you have made some modifications to original plan from the book. Especially those rebels amongst you. What are some modifications that worked for you and some that did not?

Everybody, please use comments and votes for best answers (a.k.a. thanks) to push those that works best and for most of us to the top.

To kick it off:

My favorite mod is total redo of the cheat day. My workout partner and I made sure that we have holiday style, festive day as small celebration of another week of success. Going places and doing things that are unique with mission to make it memory worthy experience every weekend. It really makes rest of the week easy to get through, fun too!

Now you ...

  • Jcritt32 commented Mar 29th 2011:
    I'll be trying two cheat meals per week instead of one cheat day, but this week will be my first week doing it. I'll let you know if it ends up being a good modification or a bad one.
  • trentonguy commented Apr 8th 2011:
    We do special day too. Interesting restaurants, outdoor activities. I like fun day rather then cheat.
  • 4HourBod commented Apr 8th 2011:
    Might be good feature to add. have people give each other ideas. How to have some fun with those good bodies they have now :)


The Best Answer

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#1. Portion control

[EDIT: What I mean by portion control is to figure out what portions provide you with the right ratio of carbs/fats/protein for your goals, and then stick to those portions, adjusting as your goals change. I personally have trouble with "eat until you're full."]

#2. Accountability. Track everything. Yay Daily Burn.

#3. Omit beans/lentils from last meal of day.

#4. Define the meaning of "two glasses of red wine" as 10 oz.

Something I may try: Cheat day every 10th day instead of 7th.

  • m ami.ane commented May 17th 2011:
    I agree on #1 and #3 definitively :)
  • theoffshorepirate commented Apr 9th 2011:
    Has the omission of beans from the last meal of the day significantly effected your weight loss? I'm curious about this.
  • Agent.Luv commented Apr 9th 2011:
    Could I prove in a court that taking beans out of the last meal makes me lose more weight? No. Here was my reasoning: in the book, Tim mentions that he eats out a lot and often doesn't have legumes at his meals away from home.
  • Agent.Luv commented Apr 9th 2011:
    Also, since my final meal is often as close as 1 hour before bed, I noticed that on nights I ate beans/legumes, my morning weight was higher than if I had had a meal of just protein + veg the night before.
  • Agent.Luv commented Apr 9th 2011:
    Admittedly, the higher morning weight may have more to do with eating close to bedtime than the presence beans/legumes in the meal itself. All that being said, what I posted above is what has produced the best results for me in the structure of my life.

All Answers


Australia flag

(1) I'm not a morning person & I commute, but realise that it's protein first thing in the morning that really kicks off my fat loss, so I have either a full or half a protein shake (a full one has 33g protein) and have just introduced Egg Muffins which are easy to pop in the microwave, and they get eaten basically as I'm waiting for my car pool pick up. In my protein shake, I have a good big spoonful of psyllium husk that helps with any tummy sadness. (biggest modification)

(2) I don't completely obsess over hidden sugars in things. I figure, if Tim eats out once/twice a day, he can't be in the kitchen obsessing over what they're using to make his food with. If something obviously has LOTS of sugar in it, we don't eat it. If something has trace amounts of sugar, we don't freak out over it, but just limit intake.

(3) I keep a protein bar in my purse for emergencies: if I get caught in traffic on the way home and I'm too far out from a meal, I can have a bite & it keeps me going. (2nd biggest modifcation) I don't eat many of these, maybe 2 a week at most.

(4) Cheat day has become Whatever-I've-Missed-Most day, not Eat-Yourself-Sick day. Cheat day inevitably ends up as Sick Day for my partner, as by the end of it he always feels absolutely SICK. I end up eating toast (with vegemite YUM) and maybe a sandwich, I have a latte (or two), and we might have something with rice for dinner. Not so much a sugar fix day, as a carb fix. We don't eat pasta at all however so this doesn't feature, and neither do potatoes. I do try to eat a chocolate bar or something, to make sure I feel pretty BLEAH afterwards so I don't crave it during the week.

It's been easier this time around (1st time Dec 2010 6 weeks, 2nd time Jan 2012, ongoing) and I know what works and doesn't, so it's been easier to not obsess.

## Favourite mod has to be the protein shake of a morning: gets my psyllium into my for healthy bowel, and starts me off with a lot of protein without having to cook at sparrow-fart-o-clock. ##


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1. I also have dropped legumes from most of my dinners. I figure that they are there to keep me feeling full, and I don't need that when I'm going to bed soon. 2. I don't worry at all about how much butter, avocado or olive oil I eat -- I know that my fat consumption on this is SOOooooooo much lower than before 4HB that I am not concerned. If butter lets me enjoy all my veggies, lentils and beans even more, I am totally cool with it. I've even made Hollandaise sauce twice during this -- what a treat!! 3. I don't eat beef, pork or poultry, so all my protein comes from eggs, fish, shrimp, or cottage cheese (but one week, I went crazy on the cottage cheese, and it was the first week I gained. I keep it to fewer than 3 meals a week now.) 4. I also have cheddar or mozzarella sometimes as part of my protein. It doesn't seem to bother things, as I am averaging a loss of 1.71 lb per week. Maybe I'd lose even more without it, but I'm very happy with that rate and it feels luxurious to have cheese now and then. 5. On Sundays, I find I'm hungrier (my Anything Day is Saturday), so I start with an early breakfast of 1 Muscle Milk + a scoop of protein powder, water added. After a few hours, I have a second breakfast. 4 meals on Sundays works well for me as I am cooking things for the week ahead.

  • yarnphreak commented Aug 22nd 2011:

    I know what you mean about the cottage cheese. (I got all bloated the next day because of all the sodium so I got some no salt cottage cheese from Safeway and added it to the regular cottage cheese. By itself the no salt cottage cheese is gross but mixed with the regular cottage cheese and it's really quite good with much less sodium.)

  • Gretchen Linden commented Aug 22nd 2011:

    Thx, yarnphreak! I had not thought of that; great idea, thank you. :)

  • Chris Honovi commented Aug 7th 2012:

    Im always worried about eating too much Shrimp. Shrimp have high levels of cholesterol so I try to eat it, but not often!


Germany flag

1) Lower the total amount of Protein /day

Since huge amounts (more than 100 or 120g a Day, which can easily achieved bei eating lentils twice a day in combination with meat or fish) are considered to be not really great for the kidneys in the long run, I'm experimenting a bit:

Breakfast: as Tim recommends it, 30g Protein (without beans, I barely make it through the eggs, if you're used to muesli with fresh fruits, they are disgusting enough ;))

Lunch: Grains with low Insulin-response (see 2)), Vegetables, Beans optional

Dinner: Just Protein and Vegetables, NO Beans

Should some up to a Protein-Intake between 60-90 g/day max, which is pretty much the "perfect" dose.

2) I just discovered, that there are in Fact Grains which provoke a very low Insulin-response (Value identcal to the response caused by lentils), like Sorghum.

Same for Oatmeal, which I might add to Breakfast with some coconut-milk, cinammon and some of the core of 1 Vanillabean. (I'm getting hungry while writing this, can't wait to taste this)




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GREAT question!! I love seeing what is working for other people so that I can try it myself! Ok here are my faves:

- I couldn't stomache the eggs so soon after getting up so I opted for a protein shake (pea protein) with almond milk

- I nixed the nut butters as I could not be trusted lol

- I added 1 cup of berries to my breakfast smoothie with no ill effects

- I cut the beans at dinner time

- I now limit my cheat day to two healthy somewhat carby meals with some sweet treats but still stay away from the breads and pastas and crap (before I was eating complete garbage)

- I cut down the amount of sugary treats on cheat day as cravings would carry over to the next day

This week I may try cutting the sugar out completely on cheat day as I find it is still an issue the next day for cravings. I know this isn't slow carb to the letter but I'm finding it easier to stick to which is more important to me in the long run.

  • Stacey Tite commented Aug 6th 2012:

    This sounds pretty similar to the path I am going down and I also really struggle with sugar cravings after cheat day. I am interested to know how much this style works, how much weight are you losing doing this? Has it improved or decreased?


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I have been doing Intermittent fasting on non-workout days. I only eat one good sized slow carb meal between 8 and 10 pm. When I workout I have a post-workout shake and then another protein shake an hour later. I also only stay strict Monday thru Friday and take the weekend off for my reset. I've been doing this for 2 months and have lost between 1-3 pounds every week. My waist has also gone down 4 inches in that time. =)

  • resapieces commented Feb 13th 2012:

    on mornings when i have trouble facing eggs i cut up a couple (2) of strawberries and eat them along side the omlette. it seems cleansing to my pallette and compliments the flavors of the omlette nicely. i also feel like it makes the food sit better in my stomach for some reason.

  • Nicole Pape commented Aug 7th 2012:

    Being strict only from monday to friday was something I was thinking about for maintaining my weight once I´ve reached my goals. What are you having on weekends? Are you going wild or are you just having "normal" things to eat?


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I read another book called metabolism miracle which had many similarities to the SCD plan listed in 4HB

While I recommend the book because of the great explanations of how the body works (more in depth than 4HB and the cookbook in the back) the main theme relates to net carbs. Basically, the author suggests that you need to focus on net carbs which are carbs - minus (hence why legumes are ok in 4HB)

4HB is definitely easier to follow, TF simplified the rules but the problem was he doesn't give us an end game, rather suggests we eat like this for the rest of our lives. I am not into that. She on the other hand discusses how to reintroduce carbs slowly.

Also, once you check out the net carbs concept, you can introduce all sorts of things like low carb tortillas, bread, etc.... low carb tortillas are w/o a doubt my favorite mod :)

  • Brenda 7 commented Mar 22nd 2013:

    My neighbor adds sugar free strawberry jello to almond milk, and she loves it!


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1. Beer. I review beers, bars and breweries on a blog OAS well as YouTube. I drink beer almost every day and some weekends I drink the equivalent of a six pack of beer. Doesn't seem to hurt my results.

2. Nuts. If I am hungry but I don't have time for dinner I grab a can of nuts which usually lasts me about two days.

3. Dairy. I have started to drink milk on occasion as I have added cheese back in to my diet.

4. Not worrying as much. At first I was dead strict with diet which meant I would have the same routine every morning which lead I be groggy or tired at work. Now I know that if eat something bad or miss breakfast I can easily make up for it the next meal.

5. Coffee. Didn't drink coffee before but know I drink it every morning.

6. Exercise. I lift weights and run a few miles 2-3 time a week.

This routine seems to keep me at a weight I am comfortable which and lets me be stress free about the way I eat.


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I have a whey protein shake in the morning, and I've tried it with water only or Lactose free whole milk only, and I lose the same amount of weight regardless of which I use.

I also add a raw egg to my protein shake to up the protein amount.

I also view this as a lifestyle plan instead of a diet, so when I'm at home I eat slow carb, and when I'm eating out, there is a holiday with traditional food or whatever, I partake freely, using PAGG, cinnamon and Tim's other methods that help blunt insulemic response. Consequently, I don't stay on a 6 day on and then a cheat day off, I just let the natural interruptions of life be my "cheat" days. I'm still losing weight at a nice rate.


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I would say that adding in a 24 fast before my cheat day, and one fast mid week has definitely been the best modification for me. I had hit a plateau stalled at 18% bf, down from over 30 though, but now I am at 16 with this mod for a month. Definitely worth a try.,


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I was having terrible stomach pains from the beans, I nixed them and now only have lentils 1-2 meals per day, I also can eat refried beans if mixed into broth like a sauce.

I have a bit of half and half in my morning coffee.

If I have a sweets craving, I eat a small amount of teriyaki beef jerky. Or, a spoon of plain natural almond butter.

If I crave chips with my lunch, I have a handful of corn nuts.

I mix cottage cheese in my protein shake.

I never miss a cheat day, that's the only reason I can sustain this lifestyle!

My workouts have changed to more weights-based rather than cardio-based, also less times per week (2-3 vs 6).

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