I started the Zone Diet a little over a week ago, after a few days of a mini-elimination diet. Previously, I ate fairly healthy, but I decided to do the Zone to add structure to my diet/workout plan. I'm training for some upcoming races (a 10k and a 4 mile adventure race in 2 months) and I'll soon be switching to some more intense half-marathon/sprint-triathlon training. I hoped that the Zone would help me take in the proper nutrients while training.
So far, however, I feel like I've been gaining fat. I have been working out and running 3-4 days/week for a few months now, and my workouts aren't light. Even so, I started out with 12 zone blocks (I am about 5'10" and 135lbs), and if I need to adjust my intake down the road, I'll do it. However, I have been gaining a little bit of weight (like 5lbs in a week, which is abnormal for me)...which could be from muscle, I realize, but it doesn't feel/look like muscle gain. I'm not trying to lose weight, I'm trying to tone and maintain.
Prior to starting the Zone, I kept track of caloric intake and kept an eye on nutrient intake. About a week before starting the Zone, I began tracking my calorie, fat, carb, and protein intake. I think my problem is that the Zone diet has me taking in more fat than I typically eat... not based on 12 blocks of 1.5g, but I am taking in more based on the adding up of small amounts of fat in protein and carb blocks. Has anybody else noticed this problem? For example, the zone snack bars I eat before my workouts contain like 4 blocks of fat! In my mind, that can't be good.
Any tips or similar stories would be helpful. I like the structure of the Zone, but with as hard as I work out and try to be healthy, I am not looking to gain fat!