Saturday, July 6, 2013

IIFYM & IF: Only for the weak?

I have to admit, I'm quite against IIFYM and IF. Not from a scientific stand point. Not even from a practicality stand point this time.

What is IIFYM and IF? IIFYM stands for If It Fits Your Macros. It's a diet/nutrition philosophy that revolves around the idea that you can eat anything you want so long it.... well, fits your macros! Macros are your protein, carbs and fats. Unlike "bro science" where certain foods are off the table because it differentiates sources of carbs based on sugar content, sources of protein based on amino profile and biological value and fats based on saturated or unsaturated. Bro science also entails eating at short intervals unlike IIFYM, as the name suggest, nothing matters except fitting and meeting your macros. Otherwise could be said as: eat whenever you feel like eating. IF stands for Intermittent Fasting. Meaning fast through the day and have an eating window. Anywhere from 2-8 hours usually. Again unlike bro science that requires constant eating with short and regular intervals through the day of the specific foods that are viewed as "clean".

There are tons of people in the fitness industry that use IIFYM or IF, usually both. For some reason it's a lot more common with females. Why do I hate it? Why do I hate people using it? I mean sure, science claims it's perfectly fine if not better right?

Sure enough, using IIFYM and IF is fine. What isn't fine is denial and self-denial that people live in telling themselves they use it because it's proven by science and think it's superior when the truth is something else. That is what I hate. You see, most of these people on IIFYM and IF have a couple of things in common.

Firstly, they want results. They hate the process and they have no passion for fitness. They do not have appreciation for work ethic and discipline. Next, they can't keep it together to do "bro science" diets. So regardless whether or not they genuinely feel that IIFYM and IF are the right way to go, the deciding reason for using it is that it's an easy way out. As I've mentioned so many times: "Every action is measured from the sentiment from which it proceeds.". Which brings me to the last thing they have in common: most of them don't genuinely believe it's superior to bro science dieting. They only think they do because that's how self denial works.

Don't get me wrong, people who use IIFYM and IF because it's an easy way out and not because they have genuine non-biased believe in it means they are weak mentally but that isn't what I hate; I'm fine with that. What I really hate and see a lot are people who do that and live in denial. Either to others or to both self and others. Lying to themselves that they are doing it because it's better when the truth, the sentiment from which they proceeded, was that of being unable to put forth the work needed for bro science dieting.

Now back to the gender. Is it just me or the fact that it comes from mostly females, it make me cringe every time I hear yet another female being on IIFYM and IF and if I ask why, they talk about science or how it's balanced/a way away from "obsession" when they truth is they just simply can't stick to a bro science diet. Then they go on belittling bro science. Call me sexist but it seems that females tend to be weaker mentally and it gets on my nerves seeing how many of them live in denial not realizing the trend.

What irks me more is that these people go about down playing bro science methods. For the very sub-conscious reason of making them feel better about their denial, they will talk about bro science methods being unnecessary, wrong or an obsessive behaviour. It were no different than if I couldn't stand the pressure in school and drop-out, then go on lying to myself that I did it because I think the education system is crap. Followed by further attacking the education system of its flaws on social media to make myself feel better. Regardless of whether the education system is crap, what I demonstrated is the result of me trying to convince myself that I quit school because it's crap not because I couldn't take the pressure; denial. (Don't get the point mixed up with whether or not the education system is actually crap. Likewise, don't get the point mixed up with whether or not IIFYM and IF actually works; that's not the debate here. The important thing is what is truly believed to work and what is  That is what I see happening with IIFYM and IF.

So if you're using either or both, ask yourself. Give it some serious thought. What's the real  reason you do it? Do you really think it's science that convinced you? Do you really think bro science is "an obsessive" thing? Or are just afraid of the discipline it actually takes? Are you just unable to put forth the work needed? Are you just living in a denial? Is this what you want? It may not matter much here but it a decision on a small scale decides how you live your life in every other aspect. Decide to do bro science dieting at least once and prove to yourself you're capable and stop only because you think IIFYM and IF are truly superior methods(bro science dieting being an obsession is bullshit unless you are doing all of these for the wrong purpose in the first place as I've written here before) and you will certainly become a stronger version of yourself. Continue living in denial(with or without realizing it) and it will determine the type of person you are in life and the choices you will make in your life.

Think.

8 comments:

  1. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  2. Hi,

    Happened to stumble upon your blog while randomly surfing. Before I begin I'd just like to say that I mean no offense to you in any way and I'm not here to start a fight. I'm here to voice my opinion, open it up for discussion and hopefully in turn we both learn something new from this. If you are however, offended by my post then I apologize in advance and you can just remove this if you deem it to be necessary.

    I'd like to start by saying that I don't agree with what you posted in this article. Yes, I am an avid fan of IIFYM and IF but not for the reasons you pointed out.

    For one from my inference you lack a clear understanding of how IIFYM works. You failed to point out the importance of fiber which precedes all other nutrients in terms of priority. With that said, to hit that prerequisite amount of fiber one would have to consume largely (80% upwards) 'clean' food as 'bro science' would define it to be. It is due to this same fiber requirement that most of my meals are made up of whole, unprocessed food for it would be next to impossible to hit my numbers with KFC and McDonald's all day. What IIFYM does is allow that one or two slips of what bro scientists would define as 'bad' food in on a daily basis, without compromising whatever goals I'm working towards.

    Back to your point on why people use IIFYM. I don't see it as an 'easier' way or delusional way to avoid obsession over food intake. Au contraire, I would say that IIFYM is on par with if not EVEN MORE obsessive than the average bro science diet. While you obsess over meal timings, I obsess over my grams of nutrient intake. I frustrate when it comes to finding food to fit the numbers. I spend time, effort and energy calculating and working out the math to make sure I eat what is right and what is enough. I weigh and measure my food to get an accurate understanding of how much I'm putting into my body. From my perspective, that doesn't seem so much easier than simply eating chicken breast and broccoli 6 times a day.

    Elliot Hulse said "Every action is measured from the sentiment of which it precedes". Likewise, I go through so much scrutinizing and details when it comes to my food because I want to know exact quantities of what I am putting into my body to get whatever results I may be achieving. Again, I fail to see how this makes things any bit easier than a bro diet.

    I use IIFYM for the fact that it is sustainable. I don't believe one method is superior to another. To me, science and bro science can go fly a kite. If it works, it works. If both methods work then I don't require some endless debacle on which method is superior because they're both going to get me results. But at the end of the day I believe in consistency. If a person is more likely to stay on a bro science diet, then yes, I would encourage him to do that over IIFYM. But for the most part, for most people including myself, IIFYM is something that is more sustainable in the long run. Something that I see myself doing months and years down the road. Not something that I will follow for a while then decide to screw everything up a week later. So my argument here is sustainability. I believe one should follow what he can be consistent with.

    I have friends on both ends of the spectrum, with some finding it easier to stick to a bro diet so they don't have to frustrate over counting macros and fitting food and whatnot, while others find it easier to stick to brown rice and tilapia instead. So one is not superior to the other. It's just what you can stay on that matters.

    Again I emphasize that I'm not here to start a fight. You are obviously more experienced than me in this area, and thus I took the effort to type all this out. Reason being I want to learn more, so I'd like to hear what you have to say with regards to this. I look forward to your reply.

    Cheers.

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    1. WJ, first I'll like to say I am not offended one bit! In fact I love hearing different perspectives and points of views. Hard to find people who are interested in speaking about such things and of those who are, in such topics, hard to find people who won't be offended while discussing. And I'm really glad to have someone I don't even know type out such a long post with regards to mine.

      You'll be surprised to know but I agree with everything you said. I'm all in for what works best for you. It's music to my ears when someone agrees with that.

      I think however, you've slightly misunderstood my post. The fact that you brought up any specific details that is related to either IIFYM, IF, Bro Science suggest I've been misunderstood. Which isn't you fault because a lot of my friends who have read this have misunderstood this as well. Be it because of my poor ability to communicate effectively or that my perspective is really difficult to see/comprehend.

      (comment too long gotta split into 2)

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    2. (continue)
      I would like to be clear that I did not mention a couple of things you seem to have interpreted.

      Firstly, I am not here to discuss which method is better. So any discussion about which works, the science, the practicality, or anything of that nature is irrelevant.

      Secondly, I did not mention which method is superior(perhaps the title let you to interpret otherwise)

      Thirdly, I did not mention that IIFYM is easier. I mentioned people do it(relax, read fourthly) because they THINK it's easier. The key word is "think". That said, it doesn't matter if it is easier or not. The sentiment from which this person has proceeded was based on what he/she thought to be true, not what actually is true. Hope you get this one, it's really crucial and everyone misses it. I should have emphasized it more.

      Fourthly, I did not explicitly say nor imply that everyone who uses IIFYM and IF is under this denial or did it because they thought it was easier. There are people who genuinely think it's better for them and that is the sentiment from which they based their decision and actions on.

      Fifthly(just for fun!), Elliot Hulse didn't exactly said that. Well, he did, but he was quoting Ralph Waldo Emerson. :) Glad to know you watch him too, the man is just awesome.

      LASTLY(finally..), I did not mention what others to be doing as wrong in any sense of that word. Which is why I said I'm steering this into a whole different perspective. We need to leave this "bodybuilding & fitness" world and step out onto neutral ground. The point I am making in this post has nothing to do with bodybuilding or fitness. If you take your perspective, which is a perspective that I used to have and still understand, respect and sometimes still employ that you do what works for you. If it means you'll stick to it, do it. Whatever will yield you the best end result(physically) at the end of it all, factoring in both scientific theory and practicality issues. Yet all I am doing(you should be familiar with this if you watch EH) is offering a completely different perspective. I'm looking at a bigger picture here. Sure, that will yield you the best results physically. However, the sentiment from which you proceeded(aka choosing one method over the other based on fear or laziness) will transcend into your character. Hence my title with the given question mark. Weak in terms of character. Question mark because I'm not saying it applies to all who use it, so I'm avoiding making a statement while keeping it interesting. So if one were to let fear or laziness dictate the course of action to be different(or even the same!) from what the individual BELIEVES is the better method here, one is very much likely to have this characteristic in all other aspects of life. To which this is weak character to me, but never wrong. There is no wrong to such a thing. Just better or worse. End of the day, my message is bring to light the perspective of how something like this can affect who you are. Or since you're familiar with EH, his philosophy to which I am a big advocate, how this determines whether you are becoming a stronger version of yourself or not.

      Hope you see my point. To know if you have seen it, just ask yourself if you feel it disagrees with you points; because it doesn't. I agree to all you have said even before you have said it because I do understand IIFYM and IF quite comprehensively(I know the common misconceptions people have), and I lived by your theories/opinions even before I started this blog! So I can't possibly be disagreeing with you lol!

      Cheers buddy!

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  3. Hey man,

    Thanks for taking the time out to reply. Yeah, I kinda realized I credited the wrong person for the quote after I posted that comment but there wasn't an edit button. I've seen you around in school, but that's besides the point.

    After reading your reply I guess I did misinterpret what was in the original post so I apologize for that. And yeah, at the end of the day while we might all take different approaches we're all after pretty much the same goal so it's really nice to see someone who isn't so persistent on one point of view but instead is open to different perspectives. I really respect that. Heck, it's difficult to find someone willing to sit down and talk about all these different methodologies in the first place. I'll be dropping by this blog every now and then if you don't mind, because I really like the insights you provide.

    Cheers

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    1. My sentiments exactly to just about all you've mentioned. The reason I created this blog in the first place. Say hi if you see me around! And hope I don't get taken aback wondering who you are lol!

      Cheers buddy!

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