Originally Posted by Thinfor5Minutes
I got an audio cassette of the Body for Life book, and the author DOES advocate having a "free" day where you eat anything you want. Apparently nothing is off limits. I remember thinking to myself when I heard that that I would lose all of the benefits I had gained in the previous week if I had a day like that, plus it would be harder to get back on the wagon the next day. It's better just to stick to plan every day, IMHO.
I followed the Body for Life program many years ago in college and lost 40 pounds. The key is that while you have a free day each week, the other 6 days you follow a very structured eating plan with limited food options. (Your basic bodybuilder diet with lean protein sources, complex carbs, portions based on your fist size.) There is also an exercise component, which helps you build muscle.
In the end I think the people who are really successful at BFL do not go wild on their free day. If you read the newest book by some of the people who won the contest they tend to have one free meal versus the whole day. Even then many of them pick healthy options like fish, turkey burgers, or pizza with veggies.
I think about doing BFL again, but I have a hard time sticking to such a limited food list. Currently I am trying calorie counting, and try to stick to an average of 1700/day. I do try to calorie cycle, so that I eat a few more calories on Saturday and a few less on Sunday to balance it out. I decided I would rather eat a bit more and lose weight slowly. I don't think I would stick to any program if I tried to eat less than 1400 calories.