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by with John Berardi & Martin Rooney

The Longest Breakfast of My Life


I stare at the clock and shake my head.

Then I look back at my plate of food. This is my breakfast:

Breakfast Pudding


It’s my first official meal of this experiment and I’m only halfway done. It’s taken me 20 minutes to get this far.

20 minutes is a long-ass time to eat breakfast.

My new breakfast.

(Follow along by downloading Nate’s nutrition plan.)

Of course, I knew before I started this experiment the food would be a challenge. But I only thought about the amount of food and fitting it all in my stomach. I never considered how long it’d take me to actually eat it.

The first two pieces of toast went down easily, thanks to the jam. Yesterday at the grocery store I splurged on five-dollar jars of peach pomegranate and strawberry brandied apricot preserves, and I’m glad I did. I had no idea something as simple as jelly had reached top culinary levels.

Anyway, just 20 minutes ago, I was excited. Giddy, even. I snapped a photo of my breakfast with my iPhone and sent it to some friends.

But now. Now the giddiness has stopped. Now I’m just a man who’s in the middle of a shit mission. I probably look depressed.

I look at my girlfriend, Richelle, who just finished her breakfast of two scrambled eggs, a small side of bacon, and some fresh fruit.

She’s frowning at me, so I look down and frown at my plate.

I still have half a bowl of Breakfast Pudding and two pieces of toast to get through.

Are you sure you want to do this? she asks.

Yep, I say. It’ll be good.

I don’t want to admit I underestimated how hard this would be.

She gets up and starts washing dishes, so I soldier through the rest of my breakfast, force-feeding myself in silence.

18 minutes later, I’m finished, bringing my total breakfast time to 38 minutes of chewing and complaining.

I raise my arms triumphantly over my head, but Richelle has already finished the dishes, packed her lunch, and gone to work.

I’m alone in my victory.

I slide out of my chair and start walking across the room to my office when I’m suddenly overcome with the urge to vomit. It’s not a “sick to the stomach” feeling, the usual rumble that accompanies the flu. It’s a feeling that I’m packed to the brim, like there’s no room left in my stomach.

I walk over to my desk and sit down to work. Maybe writing will take my mind off my stomach. But it’s so distended I feel like an Ethiopian baby on one of those Save The Children commercials. I sit a good 12 inches back from my desk to accommodate it.

I look at the clock.

It’s only 9:00 AM and I’ve eaten more for breakfast than some people eat in an entire day. Hell, I’ve eaten more for breakfast than some people in less-developed countries eat in an entire week.

That makes me feel extra bad.

And I still have two more meals to get through before the day is over.

What the hell have I gotten myself into?

Other highlights for Day 1

  • Doing jumping jacks during my warm-up and trying not to throw up.
  • Struggling through an impossibly long two-hour lunch and an equally ridiculous one-hour dinner.
  • Weighing myself before bed and being amazed I’d jumped up ten pounds in one day, from 168 to 178. Maybe I’ll just gain 20 pounds in two days and be done with it.

Knowledge Bomb!

Why don’t you count calories?

The easy answer is because I’m lazy. The thought of looking at the Nutritional Facts of everything I eat — or, worse, Googling the amount of calories in a medium-sized sweet potato — makes me shudder. No way I’m doing that.

But the real answer is I don’t need to count calories.

Gaining weight (or losing weight) is all about energy balance. As long as I eat more calories than I burn, then I’m gonna gain weight. And my new weight-gain eating plan is definitely way more than I’ve been eating. So all should be good. But even if it’s not, and I’m not gaining weight after the first few days, then I’ll just eat more.

In fact, in our S2B coaching program, the very first habit our clients follow is “Drink 3 Super Shakes.” Most guys will end up adding 5 pounds or more in the first month by doing that one thing. Why? Because they’re eating more than they’re used to eating.

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