No Coffee, No Sugar, No Sex, No Masturbation, No Vegetables, No Fruit, No Carbs, No Music, No TV, No News, No Media – think you could do it?
MONK MODE and carnivore diets were created for a reason.
The modern world is full of addicts in denial. Vices and distractions from what matters are everywhere. We know many of these things are bad yet we let them take control of us anyway.
Parents talk about getting kids to play outside yet they hand them an iPad 5 minutes later.
People complain about social media addiction yet you’ll still find a zombie horde with eyes glued to their smartphones on a daily basis.
It pays to stay away from negativity yet most people watch the “news” religiously as if it’s somehow useful to one’s life.
If you still think the ‘News’ isn’t complete bullshit you should watch this.
Obesity is on the rise world wide and this is no longer a western issue. China is creeping up on the obesity list. At the time of this writing over 50% of the Cook Island population is obese. Obesity is starting to hit the 3rd world hard.
Most people are a slave to inertia and a slave to their emotions. They know they should change their habits yet they can’t.
Though I am what most people would call “successful” I was part of this group for far too long and i’ll always be at risk of rejoining it (like all of us).
I failed at all my diets for the last 3 to 4 years. I was addicted to social media. Addicted to the news cycle, sugar and coffee.
My dopamine receptors and gut bacteria were in complete control of my body and my brain. I knew this yet I still couldn’t change the trend.
Sugar cravings were insurmountable, I was glued to my phone, and no matter how much I knew it was a waste of time I was on social media during breaks, at home or on the toilet (it’s OK I know you are as well)
It was time to get serious. Time to break free. Time to do something EXTREME.
I couldn’t keep failing at diets and wasting precious young years of my life that are needed to further grow my dreams.
MONK MODE would answer my prayers.
NOTE: I did MONK MODE with a newborn at home. I would feed and change my daughter together with my wife around the routine (sometimes I had to switch things around, babies need you when they need you). Though what I had to do was minimal compared to my wife who was breastfeeding every 3 hours 24/7 around the clock.
While I will not outline the entire MONK MODE program (Buy it and do it yourself).
*I will tell you that for 30 days I didn’t:
1) Consume any sugar
2) Consume any coffee
4) Take any drugs or alcohol
5) Watch any TV, Movies, News or Media whatsoever
6) Listen to Music
7) Logon to any Social Media whatsoever
8) Eat Carbohydrates, Vegetables, Fruit or Anything not on the Carnivore diet
*In addition I will tell you that I:
1) Only ate 1 meal per day
2) Fasted for 23 hours every single day – having never fasted before
3) Ate mostly red meat and stuck to the Carnivore diet
4) Did Yoga daily
5) Meditated daily
6) Drank Water
7) Drank Black Tea
8) Went to bed early and got up before 5am daily without fail
9) Worked on a business project everyday.
I had faith in the program because I’ve been a consistent reader, fan and buyer from Victor Pride at Boldanddetermined.com for years.
The man has balls of steel and isn’t afraid to tell the cold. hard. truth. about anything and this is something extremely rare and worthy of respect in 2019.
The program claims MONK MODE is the solution to getting focus, getting something done and translating discipline into successful outcomes. The core idea is you sacrifice something to gain something else in return. You trade one thing (sacrifice) for another thing (your goal).
I can now report that this is EXACTLY what happened.
One of the central tenants of the website boldanddetermined.com is personal discipline.
The discipline to control ones destiny via diet, exercise, mindset, emotions and any other means necessary at our disposal.
If you open your eyes and look around there is a SERIOUS lack of discipline in modern society.
Discipline is what I needed most – it was the area I was failing in and it demanded my attention.
Anyway enough with the introduction let’s get to the meat of the matter (pun intended).
Here is my journey on MONK MODE:
I prepared by going shopping for some awesome meat and cheese (cheese is Carnivore). You need to ensure you have enough fat (animal fat and butter fat):
I wont tell you how to suck eggs when it comes to buying or cooking meat (because it’s so easy) but I will give you a few pro tips along the way.
Pro tip 1 – buy meat that is vacuum packed or get it vacuum packed (or do it yourself). Meat stored with no air tastes better because it lasts longer. The expiry date is way longer in the future and you dont need to worry about it. This way you can pick and choose the cut or type when you like without having to worry about eating everything in the next few days. It’s not much more expensive and it’s worth it.
It was time to cook my first MONK MODE meal:
Just uploading this picture made me crave some good meat.
At first I ate too much cheese in the search for taste variety and if i’m honest part of me still had doubts about just eating meat.
This was a mistake too much cheese makes digestion and the toilet harder. If you keep the cheese low digestion and the toilet are just fine with the meat. “But but but you need fiber” – No you don’t that’s bullshit.
I personally tested it myself and let me tell you that’s bullshit. You don’t need fiber which is why your body gets rid of it. If you stuff your face with processed foods all day then I can understand why fiber would help you get rid of that but the toilet works great on a carnivore diet; providing you don’t eat too much cheese.
Week 1 was hard. My dopamine receptors wanted their fix. My gut bacteria wanted their sugar and hunger pangs were something I had to get used to.
The good thing was the program is black and white. You can do this but you can’t to that – its simple. There was only one thing I could do and that was stick to the routine. I would work, meditate, do yoga and eat meat.
My wife decided week 1 would be a great time to entertain the family with a smorgasbord of pastries with coffee.
She did offer not to do it but I said “No provide the pastries”.
I wanted to relish in my own discipline. I was on the path and nothing could stop me.
I would have black tea instead. Earl Grey was my poison. At first I didn’t know if it was okay to have milk or not but I wanted to be 100% compliant so I denied it to myself.
Pro tip 2 – I learnt in week 2 that poached egg yolks are a great and delicious way to get good fat. I would discard most of the egg whites and put the soft yolk inside my crispy bacon. It would be like Carnivore Nougat absolutely delicious.
I must have lost three to four kilos in week 1 alone. I didn’t weigh myself until the end of MONK MODE so I don’t have measurements to back it up but you could just tell visually.
In the first week I didn’t go to the gym I didn’t think I could.
I would also find myself stuck in old mental patterns, my brain would use my arm to get my phone out as if I should check social media and then my conscious would override and think “no there is no need to do this there is no social media right now”. Its amazing how many times this happened subconsciously without me thinking until it was time to stop it. This is what I mean by people are prone to inertia. Their habits are self-reinforcing and rarely do they take conscious control back.
I caught myself wondering; what else about my life and habits wasn’t I in control of?
While it was hard, it was rewarding and I got a huge amount done on my business project.
Week 2 was also hard but I was back at Jujitsu training and with much greater mental clarity and focus.
I was also more relaxed – the perfect state for Jujitsu.
I had the tailwind of week 1 so I knew I would manage it easily but there were more hunger pangs and the need for more tea.
The meditation was easy at first because it was for short periods of time. The yoga was also an awesome light exercise to keep my energy levels high to sustain 3 bouts of work throughout the day.
Though I wish I had everything setup perfectly before I began I didn’t. I had what I needed and it was time to start but eventually during week 2 my BBQ arrived and I WAS EXCITED.
I’m not sure if these Weber Q BBQ’s are available in the US but in Australia this is the gold standard of BBQ’s. Steaks, roasts, ribs or anything you can cook in an oven cooks extremely well in this baby and it was time to put her to good use.
Excuse my yard we just finished building the house. There was one rule I consistently didn’t follow in MONK MODE. I understand why the rule is in the program but for me I couldn’t comply and I didn’t see it as an issue.
You are supposed to eat your 1 meal outside. Where I am in Australia it’s winter. It’s cold and windy. The cold and the wind would ruin my meat and make the whole meal cold within a few minutes. While I like rare steak I don’t like cold steak and for me this would ruin the meal. So this is the one rule I broke and I broke it most of the time unless there was a break in the weather.
My stomach would shrink and towards the end of week 2 I would have less and less hunger pangs (or less severe).
I must declare I did end up using a sugar free gum to help me get through.
I also noticed that my skin was looking amazing. My whole body was replacing old cells with new cells and it was showing. My skin was perfect and I had a healthy glow.
Me after week 2:
In week 3 I hit the euphoria stage.
This was a weird time I went from craving sugar and carbs to looking at cake and muffins through the cafe window with no feelings what so ever. Its like my brain didn’t even register them as edible.
Not a single feeling of desire was present I only thought about eating meat (good non-processed meat). The idea of rice was offensive to my stomach – it would be like eating non-food. Fake food. I really can’t describe this feeling my dopamine receptors and the old cravings I had were completely reset back to baseline. Does a new born baby who has never had sugar crave sugar? Of course not. I was back to this kind of state.
This was an amazing realisation and I will always remember it. If I find myself a slave to sugar again I’ll remember this feeling and go back to MONK MODE. It’s all in the mind (literally) and the body has no use for it (except in an ice age or a time of mass starvation).
These are the times it pays to have the sugar craving genes; they are with us for a reason but they are a liability in the modern world of food abundance.
I also chose to incorporate some fish into my diet to change it up. I cooked the best Barramundi (Australian fish) I’ve ever had in my life on the BBQ together with a nice steak.
At this point I realized I was consistently eating lots of protein and good fats with all of the eggs and butter.
I started to wonder if I was in a nutritional state of Ketosis?
Apparently Ketosis had many cognitive benefits – similar to the benefits I was seeking with monk mode.
I decided to do a cheap urine test to check my levels:
After learning that the urine test can be unreliable I didn’t want to go through the whole program without doing a test so I would complete a blood test later for confirmation.
If you don’t know much about ketosis and want more information Thomas DeLauer (celebrity trainer and health author) explains what it is.
What is the optimal Ketosis range?
Everyone responds to ketosis differently but I’ll leave you with the video from Thomas to explain.
Here is my proper blood reading for Ketosis:
As Thomas just explained, I am in the optimal range for cognitive benefits. No wonder I got so much work done on MONK MODE.
I also started experimenting with different meats (pork ribs, lamb shanks, roast lamb), cooking styles and combinations.
Some photos of my meals and the cooked meats are here:
Pork ribs with salt and pepper slow roasted for 35 to 40 minutes in the Weber BBQ were AMAZING.
I also decided to incorporate some pure butter milk into the last 3 days of meals. It felt good and it was delicious.
My stomach consistently shrank over the 30 days and some days my meals would be quiet small.
I was okay with this as the work was getting done, the weight was dropping off and I was feeling damn amazing.
So what did I struggle with?
The program requires you to do different variations of meditation everyday. At first I was okay with this but your meditation time increases each week. By weeks 3 and 4 I was struggling with this. I started to have some non-compliance and I recorded the instances.
Above all, this is what I struggled with most. After most instances I felt better having done them but I didn’t look forward to any meditation over 15 minutes in length.
The second thing I struggled with was Coffee.
DAMN I WANTED A COFFEE SO BAD.
It wasn’t so much the caffeine as my dopamine receptors had been successfully reset but it was the taste and the mild Nootropic effects I was missing. A long black in the morning always helped my brain and I missed this.
Because I loved the benefits of MONK MODE so much I will do it again in the future from time to time when I want laser focus to achieve certain goals. However I will do my own version and the one thing I will change is I will allow myself 1 black coffee each day in the morning for the purpose of getting work done and helping the brain.
I’m not a coffee addict, I regularly cycle off of it voluntarily but the fact is it helps work. When work is number 1 so are the things that aid it.
I would also limit meditation to 15 minutes max and change the type to do more visualisation of the goal I am achieving. Though MONK MODE is about resetting and I completely understand why the meditation is the way it is.
In case you have completed MONK MODE or you will complete it soon or you intend to do it and you are curious, here are the items I meditated over (you’ll know what i’m talking about):
I only got to 5 items, some were complex some were simple but I could only comfortably get to 5 (especially with the bout of non-compliance).
Over the whole program I lost at least 7kg but probably more like 8 or 9kg.
I did this in 30 days only which probably isn’t a good thing but damn I felt great. My jaw was chiseled again and my BMI was reset for a solid beginning to a new gym program.
I told friends about what I was doing, how my progress was going and how I felt.
Everyone had doubts I could or would do it.
People were skeptical I’d stick to a Carnivore diet, let alone 1 meal per day.
There is no better way to springboard your self confidence than showing yourself and others you have great self-discipline. If you cant control yourself you cant begin to control aspects of the world around you.
Influence over the external starts with influence over the internal.
When it became clear I would get through the 30 days I would get comments or messages like this:
“Your a stronger man than me”
“Wow that’s crazy I could never do that”
I would sometimes get a black tea from the local coffee shop.
I told the barista what I’d been doing for the past 28 days and why I did it.
His answer surprised me in a good way:
“If you can do that, then you can do anything”
I thought to myself, Yes, Yes now I can do anything.
Before monk mode I didn’t feel this way.
MONK MODE gave me my discipline back. It reset everything for me exactly how I hoped and better.
I had successfully completed bodybuilding diets and training in the past (just not for years) but there was no such thing as a “cheat meal” on MONK MODE.
My plan was to get into a phase of bodybuilding and dieting afterwards.
Compared to the strict nature of MONK MODE this would now be CHILD’S PLAY.
All I wanted was a coffee and I could stay on MONK MODE forever; the idea of sticking to a bodybuilding diet compared to this was laughable to me. AFTER MONK MODE IT WILL BE DAMN EASY.
I would still celebrate on day 31 when my 30 days was finished and I did.
My first reward:
I also went out for a nice Pizza with some dessert. The pizza was nice but strangely the chocolate dessert didn’t register with me. I’d had the same chocolate before it was one of my favorites but it didn’t taste good, in fact it tasted disgusting I didn’t even enjoy it.
I put this down to the change in my gut bacteria and the fact I had been in ketosis up until this point. The next day I tired the same chocolate and also a different variety. All of it still tasted like crap.
What was going on?
I used to love this stuff and now my body thinks it taste like total crap.
It wasn’t until 4 days after finishing MONK MODE that my body finally enjoyed sugar or chocolate again. This was mind blowing for me.
My reward receptors had been reset so much chocolate was now no longer enjoyable to me.
How many people are completely controlled by false dopamine signals that are only based on habits (and bad habits)?
I’ll never forget it.
Thank you MONK MODE.
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