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So, there you have it. All 20 rules. So simple right? All you have to remember is 20 simple, easy rules. Wait, what was rule #9 again? Uhh...wait he said that I can eat sweet potatoes right? I think so...but there was something about not having them at...lunch? Dinner? For the first month?
THIS IS NOT SIMPLE.
THIS IS NOT NON-NEGOTIABLE.
Look, there is some decent advice in this book. Eat vegetables, sleep well, protein is important, yeah, that's all well and good. But what I found most amusing about this book is that he never mentioned the only ACTUAL non-negotiable rule for weight loss:
You must eat fewer calories than you expend.
He gave it lip service, and actually he does have ridiculous calorie ranges for men and women that I'll go over in a second. But none of the non-negotiable rules are actually non-negotiable. I think that's really the take-away from this.
These are some ideas to use for your own weight-loss journey at best. At worst they're unnecessary, misinformed, neurosis-inducing pointless diet advice. The only reason that there are 20 rules is to give it a little 'Harper' flair and make it seem like he has something unique to say. He doesn't. This book is 99% bullshit.
Bonus Section - Part II Introduction
So, the 20 rules actually are only about 1/3rd of the contents of the book. The rest is fluff with recipes and menu plans and other junk I'm not going to cover. However, the first 3 pages of Part II are rather silly, so I thought I'd get into it a little bit.
"...you'll know what to do when you find yourself in this pickle: Janie's serving tacos and rice for dinner tonight, but it's not your splurge night. You'll remind yourself...[don't go to Janie's]. Rule 4!"
Yes, this sounds like a recipe for a wonderful and fulfilling life - ignore social invitations because they don't fit into your pointlessly-rigid diet! What fun!
"...when you're about to try to convince yourself...you should just eat breakfast when you get to work...you'll remember Rule 14. And you'll not only eat something nutritious before you leave, you'll also set the alarm a little earlier for tomorrow."
Oh really? Will you? Just like magic huh? Or will you more than likely NOT eat breakfast because you're not prepared, then feel guilty about it all day for no reason at all, and then decide that this weight loss thing just isn't for you?
"For now, you've got to eat like I do."
Ugh. This is EXACTLY the line to look out for when trying to determine if someone is full of shit or not. If someone is trying to convince you that you MUST eat like they do or else you will not succeed with <insert goal here>, then it's probably time to look elsewhere for advice. There is no one-size-fits-all diet.
"Guys need to keep their daily calories around 2,000. Women have to aim for 1,200."
Aaghasdfouhsadfa. 1,200 calories a day are you fucking joking?
Please, stop listening to Bob Harper.