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Fitness & Health

21st Apr 2016

The 6 horrible stages of dieting hell we have all been through

We feel your pain...

Ben Kenyon

Food. We bloody love it.

But why the hell does all the bad stuff have to taste so damn good?

Why aren’t we built to crave a salad after a night on the ale? And who the hell made cake so moreish?

Nobody likes to have to go on a diet and give up the sweet amber nectar, greasy burgers and the mouthwatering ambrosia served up at the local takeaway.

Eating chicken breasts and broccoli day in day out is enough to send anyone crazy.

But there comes a time in every man’s life when you have to bite the bullet and have a stab at eating healthy (normally four days before your holiday).

Everyone who has ever given up junk food and alcohol in a desperate bid to get in shape will know about the 6 Stages of Dieting.

If you’re about to start a summer diet, we feel your pain. We really do…

1. ‘The Diet Starts Monday’

This is the classic first stage in the great Circle of Life that is dieting. You’ve been telling yourself  since New Year’s Eve that you’re going to get in shape.

‘I’m really going to do it this time’ you think, as you sit clumsily scratching your arse, swilling down that eighth can of lager in front of Match of the Day.

But then one weekend, in a drunken stupor, you finally have the great dietary epiphany. It hits you like a celestial bolt of lightening from the heavens. ‘Enough’s enough’ you suddenly announce to Big Jim and the lads down the pub, as you slam down your pint defiantly. ‘Diet starts Monday lads’ you boozily proclaim, spraying pork scratchings everywhere as you talk.

Luckily Monday doesn’t start for another 25 hours yet, so you fill your f**king boots with every sugar-filled, calorie-packed, grease-sodden dollop of junk you can cram into your cake hole.

If this is the last chance you’re ever going to get to clean your local takeaway out, you might as well go with a bang and enjoy the sh*t out of it.

‘Yes mate. That’s a side order of deep fried Mars bars with a double decker pizza and bucket of chips.”

MIAMI BEACH, FL - JULY 18: Jeff Baughman bites into his double cheeseburger with a Super Fries and a Super Coke on July 18, 2002 at a McDonalds in Miami Beach, Florida. The health effects of an American diet of super-sized fast foods are becoming apparent as increasing numbers of children and adults are being treated for obesity. Studies seem to point to the fact that many overweight children and adults get a large portion of their calories by consuming too many sodas and sweetened juices and beverages. Sweetened drinks + "super-sized" meals + the convenience of fast food + a decrease in physical activity = a recipe for obesity. (Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

2. The ‘New Me’

You’ve got all the diet books, you’ve binned anything that vaguely looks fattening and you’ve been out and spunked £65 on lentils, brown rice, salad and tuna.

The fancy water bottle comes out and you’ve bought the new trainers and some of those slinky joggers (the ones that leave nothing to the imagination).  For some reason you inexplicably start wearing a sweat band everywhere – even to work.

There’s a ceremonial burning of the pile of takeaway menus in your kitchen, you tearfully delete Speedy’s Pizzas out of your phone book and wipe the McDonald’s app from your iPhone.

You stick some of those stupid motivational pictures up on Facebook – ‘Sweat is just your fat crying’ and ‘No pain, no gain’ – just to let the world know the new Arnie has arrived.

You even got up half an hour early to make a smoothie out of grapes, bulgur wheat, spinach and a load of other green sh*te you can’t pronounce.

You visibly gyp at the sight of it and are constantly on the verge of hurling it into your green tea as you gulp down the cold, lumpy ooze.

But it’s healthy, right? ‘That six pack will be ripping through my shirt in no time’ you think as you slurp down the remnants of that pint of slime masquerading as a smoothie.

Now to find that bloody gym membership you signed up to three years ago.


3 Diet evangelist mode

Two days in and you’re f**king flying. You feel great, you’ve prepped your meals for the next six days and salad never tasted so good.

For some reason you have an overwhelming urge to tell the world you’re on a diet. Everyone has to know that you’re eating clean.

You tell people on the bus, drop it into conversation at every chance at work and ram it home to the poor bloke working the checkout at Asda, as you stock up on goji berries – anyone who’ll listen, basically.

You silently urge Stuart to offer you a biscuit on your lunch break – just so you can turn it down because you’re ‘getting lean’. You become a diet martyr whenever the Jaffa Cakes are being passed around, bravely resisting the temptation to deck the whole pack.

You start giving out tips you’ve read in a book, like you’ve all of a sudden become some wizened nutritional guru. You’ve barely been at it 48 hours.

You go off on a Gillian McKeith-like rant at everything, pontificating about the ills of sugar, the evil of carbs and your new found knowledge that ‘fat is good’ (although you can’t remember which f**king one).

You trawl out some diet platitudes – ‘nothing tastes as good as rippling abs feel’. In fact you swear you saw an ab when you were posing in front of the mirror before, although it might have been a rib or a stray organ protruding.

You’re not even missing your morning McDonald’s.

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4. You hit the wall

It’s Day 4 of the diet and you’re f**king flagging. Starving yourself on 1,000 calories a day doesn’t seem like a great idea any more – and if you have to eat another piece of broccoli with boiled rice you’ll stab someone with a sharpened carrot.

You’re a man on the edge – and your workmates can sense it. They grin like jackals as they wave KitKats under your nose.

They purposefully nip to the chippy at lunch with a sarcastic “Sure you don’t want the usual, mate?”

That healthy glow has subsided into a pallid grey because your bloody sugars are on the floor and all you can think about is ploughing into an all-you-can-eat Chinese buffet.

But you limp on, forcing turgid chicken breasts down your gullet as you whisper to yourself ‘Gotta….keep…going….Ibiza in three months’.

Everywhere you go you see delicious, sugary food and your beleaguered brain is crying out for just a tiny little nibble.

You can’t even switch on the f**king telly without seeing one of those semi-pornographic M&S food adverts.

Sean Solomon pizza hungry dude

Via Giphy

5. Just one little treat won’t hurt

Somehow you made it through the night without ringing 118 and demanding the number of the nearest curry house.

You swerved all the photos of muffins, brownies and cookies that everyone is plastering all over Facebook these days. And your other half gave you a good shoeing when she caught you trying to drink marmalade from the jar.

But you’re really wrestling with the diet demons deep down now. You’re rattling like junkie coming off the smack.

Sweating, shivering and clammy, your body pines for something sugary – something covered in chocolate, chocked full of E numbers and dripping with delicious and exotic-sounding additives. Anything!

You’d eat a f**king brick if it slathered in caramel and dipped in nuts. How do these freaks in the magazines do it? ‘Nothing tastes as good as skinny feels?’ Wrong, mate! F**king Nutella!

‘Just a couple of teaspoons of it wouldn’t hurt, would it?’ you think. ‘Just one little biscuit and I’ll be back on the salads tomorrow’ you convince yourself. And then…

food the simpsons pizza homer simpson hungry

Via Giphy

6. Total diet meltdown

It was just one Hob Nob! How the hell did it end up like this? It’s 3am and you’ve turned every cupboard in the house upside down, you’re sat in your pants by the freezer gently sobbing over an empty tub of ice cream sloshing full of Haagen Daas, guilt and self loathing.

It was all a blur. But the moment that sweet, sweet sugar passed your lips you went berserk.

Once you’d nailed all the biscuits, you started on the jams and then you crowbarred open the treat drawer that you had nailed shut and polished off every last bit of chocolate in there – even those grim fake Penguins your Mrs bought from the pound shop.

‘F**k it, diet’s out the window now. Might as well carry on.’ you say as as you make a banana, honey and sugar sandwich and douse it in squirty cream and chocolate sauce.

Diet starts on Monday.

simpsons eating homer simpson hungry cartoons & comics

Via Giphy