This is me. Mr Ed Uncovered. A regular 30-something guy. A writer, stoner and
layabout highly motivated individual.
For the past month, I’ve been documenting my quest to get fit while eating nothing but Burger King…
Wait…it wasn’t BK, was it?
Lemme try that again.
For the past four weeks, I’ve been documenting my quest to get fit while eating nothing but McDonald’s…
A month ago, I looked like this:
Then I demolished 99 McDonald’s meals including 50 burgers & breakfast rolls and 27 fries & hash browns. McFlurries (in every flavour); shakes (in every flavour) – you name it, I ate every last piece of filth on that menu.
80,000 calories and one month later, I look like this:
30 minutes after Sam Brill took that photo, I tucked into a 1200 calorie Whopper meal. Now I look like this:
BK binges aside, I’m in better shape than I was a month ago. Just to recap:
How did I achieve that while cramming in so much crap?
Simple: I trained like a motherfucker.
I say simple, but make no mistake, it was the toughest month of my life. Still, the sweat and toil was worth it, for the lulz, the learnz and the gainz.
Man loses a third of his body fat by eating nothing but McDonald's for a month (note: not recommended) http://t.co/i80hD8xFNM— Edinburgh News (@edinburghpaper) May 31, 2014
Let’s not get carried away though: while my physique has visibly improved, there’s still hella work to do; my chest, for example, is several sizes the wrong side of slight. At least I’ve got plenty to work on in June, when The McWorkout drops the Mc and I adopt a clean eating regime.
I may have emerged from this challenge looking leaner, but it might not be all good news. During the month, I consumed nearly ten ounces of salt – 160% of my RDA – as well as 124% of my recommended fat and a fuckton of additives.
The Greatest Infographic in the World
How better to illustrate The McWorkout than with a bunch of statistics and sexy icons?
^^ If you didn’t click, the ghost of Ronald McDonald will haunt your dreams so get that shit sorted.
While I’m not about to drop dead in the street, there may be internal damage and deficiencies to repair. What has all that McD’s done to those parts that can’t be revealed under a trifecta of flashlights?
We’ll find out on Wednesday when I get my blood results back. We’ll also find out what The McWorkout’s nutritional expert, Dr Chris Fenn, makes of it all.
Before I reel off my McD’s highs and lows, it’s time for a wee exclusive and a big thank you.
This is a new track off the highly-anticipated Bang Dirty album (For those going “Huh?”, here’s Patrick Bateman’s review of their debut). Give it a blast while you work your way through today’s smorgasbord of tasty treats.
Last Monday I bigged up the mates who helped me survive The McWorkout. They provided the support, but these guys supplied the skillz that turned a daft challenge into a still-daft-but-kinda-captivating one:
Sam Brill: The bearded man who took my after pics is also of the supremely talented variety. Sam made me look like a passable impression of a human being. He’s a genius.
Patrick: The marketing mastermind is full of good ideas and sage advice. Hire him here and look out for more of his work appearing soon on Ed Uncovered.
Werd: Edinburgh’s hardest-working rapper created The McWorkout playlist that kept me motivated in the gym. Enjoy his music here and stream his hip-hop selection below.
Dr Chris Fenn: A beacon of hope in an ocean of fast food, Dr Chris added some much-needed science to The McWorkout, while her emails helped to keep my harebrained schemes on track. Follow her on Twitter for all things healthy and enjoy her final feature that’s coming on Wednesday.
Zambian Astronaut: So global they should call him Mr Worldwide, ZA is one third of Bang Dirty, whose track you should currently be listening to if you’ve a shred of decency. It was his suggestion that I keep all my fast food wrappers as evidence of the challenge.
So blame him for this:
Physically, how did I fare during The McWorkout?
Well, some things didn’t change: my waist and biceps are still the same size as they were a month ago.
Everything else has improved however. Here are my stats for the strength and cardio tests I recorded at the outset:
PB for running 5k: 19:40. Now: 16.49
PB for running 10k: 42:00 Now: 41:37
Max bench press for one: 50kg. Now: 80kg* (*Patrick spotting me this time around probably helped)
Max one-arm bicep curl for 10: 18kg. Now: 24kg
Max # press-ups: 40. Now: 50
Max # overarm pull-ups: 8. Now: 14
Max time I can hold a plank (this sort of plank): 70 secs. Now: 160 secs.
Other notable stats include my body fat dropping by over 4%:
And my weight and BMI dropping slightly:
Putting these figures through my advanced number crunching machine reveals that in the past month, I took this much fat:
And swapped it for 2.7 kilos of lean muscle.
It’s not rocket science, but I’ll explain how my modest gains were achieved in Wednesday’s final McWorkout blog. Right now, I’m more concerned with seeing off those pesky sceptics – you know, the ones who were issuing dire predictions a month ago:
“But you ate healthy stuff too.”
It’s true – I ate McDonald’s salads and wraps during The McWorkout. But I also consumed burgers errday, ate fried food errday and nommed every flavour of every dessert on the menu. I ingested 124% of my RDA fat errday for a month and consumed far too little protein for the weights I was lifting.
“Hurr, people have tried stuff like this before.”
Yeah? And was it as engrossing as The McWorkout?
“But your gainz are tiny.”
You ain’t wrong, as I’m the first to admit. Still, what did you expect in just four weeks and on a junk food diet – Spartacus?
“B-but you were thin to start with.”
Yeah, and I worked my ass off to keep those carbs at bay as well as putting on muscle. If I’d tried this hard as a fatty, I’d have lost a heap of weight.
Spoiler: Exercise hurts just as much when you’re skinny.
“The McWorkout was just an excuse to get your kit off without being accused of cam-whoring.”
The 5 Best Things on McDonald’s Menu
- Grilled Chicken & Bacon Salad: The lettuce may be unadventurous, but with some balsamic dressing it passes for a healthy snack. A healthy expensive snack.
- Peri Peri Chicken Snack Wrap: At just £1.49, this was my go-to meal when I was skint
- Chicken Legend: A bit dry but reasonably tasty
- McFlurry: It’s a tub of ice cream and chocolate. Damn right it tastes good.
- Vanilla Shake: Just don’t look at the carbs.
The 5 Worst Things on McDonald’s Menu
- McDonald’s limited edition burgers: extra calories, extra cost, extra salt. Most of the Great Tastes of America series was hinging. Texas BBQ, for example, was “a fiendish combo of damp scrotum, bin juice, spunky sock and soggy Kleenex.” Yes, that good.
- Egg & Cheese Bagel: ‘Nuff said.
- Vegetable Deluxe: It wasn’t horrific – more disappointing. If you’re a vegetarian eating in McDonald’s, your treachery deserves the Deluxe.
- Cheeseburger: Cheaper than earthworms but with less flavour. Even beef jerky and chilli sauce couldn’t redeem this cuckold of a burger.
- Big Mac: McDonald’s flagship burger is a soggy apology for a faint approximation of food.
5 Things I Did Well This Month
- Cardio: I went Full Forest and ran like I was trying to lose the cops, not calories
- Gym: I could have spent more time in the gym, but while I was there, I pushed myself as hard as I could.
- Blogging: Documenting The McWorkout swallowed a lot of hours that could have been spent training, but it was worth it: I’m happy with how the blogs turned out.
- Persistence: I can’t solicit sympathy cos it was all self-inflicted, but there were some tough times. Even at its nadir (running around Prestwick Airport; the Tate breaking down; trying to subsist on shrapnel), I kept my head up.
- Being dad: Despite the hectic schedule, I spent as much time as possible playing with my daughters (and occasionally using their bodyweight for resistance training) whilst minimising their exposure to McDonald’s.
5 Things I Could Have Done Better
- Barcelona: It was only two days without McDonald’s, but the completist in me wishes I could have sourced a Spanish gainz station.
- Home workout: I assembled a bunch of exercise equipment at the start of the month and then scarcely used it.
- Weights: I trained hard in the gym, but a workout partner would have enabled me to bench more and train harder.
- Finances: Don’t embark on a month of McDonald’s without first ensuring that you have funds in place to cover your junk food habit. Thanks to everyone who helped subsidise my filthy experiment.
- Da ‘Erb: I tried my best to blaze less during The McWorkout – and I did blaze less – but I still toked at least 4 days a week.
5 Things I Missed During The McWorkout
- Broccoli: I’ve never lusted after green vegetables in my life, but I missed that bitch. You always want what you can’t have, huh?
- Beer: I drank occasionally during The McWorkout but never to the point of drunkenness.
- Sleep: There just weren’t enough hours in the day. Something had to give and it was pillow time.
- Friends: With the pub and the kitchen effectively no-go zones, I saw precious little of my mates during The McWorkout. 😐
- Female company: Devoting a month to fast food and fitness plays havoc with your love life
>implying I had one to begin with
5 Things I Won’t Miss
- Fat people eating in McDonald’s
- Fat people eating fat in McDonald’s
- Fat fatties eating fat in McDonald’s
- Fat fatties fatting fat in McFat
- Fat fat fat fat fat fat
Build a Burger
Remember the McDonald’s Burger Builder we were abusing in Part X? My mate Elwood has gone to town on it, creating a range of scrummily-named treats for your delectation. I’m going to make one of his abortions at home next week and blog the inevitable taste explosion. The question is, do I plump for The Cleveland Steamer, The Furburger or The Fungal Infection?
Witness the fitness
I’ll leave you with a slideshow of Sam Brill’s shots and then I promise to ease up on the cam whoring. 🙄 I’ll see you back here on Wednesday for the last word on The McWorkout.
In Wednesday’s final McWorkout blog:
What do my blood results say?
What does Dr Chris say?
What does the fox say?
Plus: The best bits from The McWorkout and all the other stuff I promised but never delivered. Probably.
Missed any previous episodes of The McWorkout? Catch up here.
Keep up with Ed Uncovered via Twitter and FB or pop your email address in the subscribe box below for an early peek at new posts – there’s plenty of goodness still to come.