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I wake up with hunger pangs at 3 a.m. during “elimination hours,” and justify eating a small banana. Surely this counts towards my morning fruit intake. Diamond encourages grazing on fruit throughout the morning, often eating up to three bananas.

Breakfast: Really, second breakfast: I peel another banana and prepare a bowl of ripe strawberries, sliced kiwi, and a few red grapes. I can’t stop thinking about mid-morning fruit snack.

Mid-morning snack: At the office, there’s a photoshoot for our November issue, which means catered food is everywhere. I avoid a plate of bagels and scoop some diced melon into a coffee cup. Instantly, I want another cup of fruit, but ELLE’s photographer catches me hovered over the spread. “Just over here binging, huh Julie,” he says, and I shuffle back on set with my melon cup.

Lunch: Catered lunch is sandwiches, which I mentally dissect according to Diamond’s food-pairing rules. Turkey and Swiss on ciabatta is off-limits because meat and cheese don’t go together. Ditto chicken with mozzarella and pesto. I settle for a portobello mushroom, zucchini, and avocado sandwich and peel the cold marinated strips from the bread. Throughout the shoot, I return to the table, gutting a total of four vegetarian sandwiches.

Fit For Life doesn’t call for a mid-afternoon snack, but fruit is allowed three hours after lunch, “if you’re still hungry.” I go for Diet Coke and gum instead, both discouraged on the plan.

Exercise: When I finish work around 9 p.m., I’m well into assimilation and past approved eating hours, but I haven’t exercised yet so it’s time for the gym. I listen to the Miami Vicesoundtrack and jog on the treadmill for 30 minutes and walk for 10 without really breaking a sweat.

Dinner: My easy run makes me extra hungry, but all the restaurants have closed, and I have no choice but to eat a leftover salad from my boyfriend’s refrigerator. It’s made of greens, roasted sweet potatoes, kidney beans, avocado, and cranberries. Do not overeat. Do not overeat. Do not overeat. Halfway in, I’m comfortably full, but I pack forkfuls of lettuce into my mouth until it’s all gone. An hour later I want more food, so I tear off half of a wheat pita (Diamond says whole-wheat bread isn’t so bad) and smear it with hummus. I’m pretty sure this is a match made in “no.”


Not good. Fit For Life‘s fruititarian days give me sugar hangovers, and on other days, I am insatiably hungry. Diamond’s “do not overeat” mantra taunts me Blimpo-style, and nearly every meal on the plan evolves into a binge. With that being said, I can’t argue with the appropriation, assimilation, and elimination schedule. While Fit For Life didn’t help me drop the “intimacy” weight, it has changed the way I see food, at least for now.

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