The Dolce Diet: Does it Actually Work?

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Mike Dolce is the UFC Fit coach, and a nutritionist to some very high level combat sport athletes.However, it wasn’t long ago that at UFC 171, two of Mike Docle’s fighters had trouble making weight; one of them being the welterweight champion Johnny Hendricks. Dolce initially caught some flak after the weigh-ins for the two fighters who struggled. To be perfectly fair though, two struggles out of hundreds, if not thousands, of successes, is still pretty good.

So, not too long ago, I myself decided to give some of Dolce’s ideas a shot. I went to his website and purchased The Dolce Diet: 3 Weeks to Shredded. It cost me $40 at the time. This is the book containing the plan he supposedly followed to lose 42.8 pounds in three weeks. Was I skeptical? Honestly, yes. Losing that much weight that quickly ought to destroy whatever muscle mass a person has on them. So I really didn’t know what to expect. When it arrived in the mail, it look like this:

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More of a pamphlet, really.

The book itself is very basic. In fact, much of it is unrelated to his weight cut at all. However, I didn’t let that deter me. I decided to go to the store and get everything that I needed to start the next day. Due to the nature of copyright laws, I’ll play it safe and not explain what each meal plan consisted of, but I can tell you this: if you try it out, you will hate poultry and spinach by the end of it.

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What a breakfast might look like.

The way the plan is laid out, you start with a very specific meal plan, and as time goes one, you start cutting things out of it. The macros are good, and there is plenty of nutritional value in what he’s asking you to eat. That said, using the Harrison-Benedict Equation, and being a big fat guy, I would need around 3,422 calories per day to maintain my weight. The first meal plan laid out in the book only provides 2,482 calories. It’s a pretty large deficit. I gave it a go just the same.

Within the first week, I had dropped 8 pounds. I decided to stick with the first initial plan, instead of further modifying it as Dolce did. The short version of events is that I lost a grand total of around 25 pounds in three weeks. My energy levels were high, I never felt weak, or even hungry, really.

Shortly after, I had a training partner who needed to cut weight for a Jiu-Jitsu competition. We looked at the Dolce Diet for him. He weighed just over 180 and needed to get himself below 160. He didn’t want to cut any water weight (as Dolce suggests for the last few pounds), so we had to do it all with his food. He had just under a month to get there. His cardio was already high, and he was very active, so we didn’t see upping his cardio making any huge difference. It all came down to what he ate. He made it there easily. He was tired of spinach, but he made it and ended up dominating his division.

If you are looking for a meal plan to cut weight quickly without losing your strength and energy, I would highly recommend the 3 Weeks to Shredded book. I use it even still as an assistant wrestling coach at the high school level. Those who follow it always make weight and always feel better than those who try to run or sweat it all off the day before.

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