I tried 4 Victoria’s Secret diets, and I still don’t look like an angel
Let me just say this right now and get it over with: it’s really hard to follow Victoria’s Secret diets.
Like on a scale from 1 to becoming president, it’s a solid 8.
To be honest, when I first pitched this assignment, I didn’t think it would be. I thought to myself, “I watch what I eat. I’m a size 4. I’ve been on a more or less constant diet for my whole life. How much different could it possibly be to eat like a different Victoria’s Secret model for a month?”
And incredibly, mind-numbingly boring.
Week 1: The Behati Prinsloo Diet
I started off my month of
hell dieting with VS Angel Behati Prinsloo’s diet for a couple reasons.
#1: We’re the same age
#2: She’s married to my dream man
#3: It seemed like the most challenging, so why not get it out of the way first?
This is what Behati Prinsloo eats everyday:
BREAKFAST: 1 6oz package of One Lucky Duck Vanilla Crispies (which consists of buckwheat, vanilla extract, and agave)
LUNCH: 5-oz. grilled chicken breast added to an Organic Avenue kale quinoa salad
SNACK: a handful of raw almonds, pumpkin seeds and goldenberries
DINNER: 6 pieces tuna and salmon sashimi and sushi with brown rice, no soy sauce
Already, I realized I was going to have to make some modifications because:
#1: One Lucky Duck closed all of its stores in NYC
#2: Even if they didn’t, seeing as one package of crispies costs $8.50, buying 7 of them sure as fuck wasn’t going to happen
#3: Likewise, I couldn’t afford to buy sushi or Organic Avenue salads every day
This is what I was going to eat every day:
BREAKFAST: 6-oz. of organic buckwheat groats with two teaspoons of agave
LUNCH: 2 scrambled eggs with half an avocado on a slice of whole wheat toast (which I read Behati ate sometimes here)
SNACK: a handful of almonds
DINNER: 6-oz. of seitan (have I mentioned that I’m a vegetarian already) with 1 cup of raw kale, 1/2 cup of quinoa with olive oil and lemon dressing.
Is your stomach already seizing up just thinking of this caloric nightmare?
Good. It should be.
I also resolved to do yoga twice a week for one hour, because that’s what Behati says she does, and for once, that’s a Victoria’s Secret fitness regime that sounds like something I can definitely handle.
I’m honestly surprised by how satisfying my bowl of buckwheat groats is. Like all hail the power of a little agave and cinnamon to transform something that tastes like health into something I actually want to gobble down while writing about whether or not Drake and Hailey Baldwin are fucking.
After eating lunch, I feel surprisingly full, but but by 5:45 I feel so hungry that I could punch myself for ever agreeing to do this story in the first place. I know I have a handful of almonds alloted to me as a snack, but I’m trying to save that for dessert, so I decide to drink some coconut water to tide me over, which seems like a really great idea until I actually opened my mouth to drink said coconut water and I remembered something crucial: I hate coconut water.
Over the course of the next half hour, I repeatedly tried to force myself to take more than one baby sip at a time, but realized that I would have to be a lot hungrier for that to work.
So I make a deal with myself: I’ll have half of my almonds now and half later. I have literally never been so psyched to eat some almonds. Like, maybe I need to add them to my list of favorite foods, that’s how exciting this moment is for me.
Reminder: I have been dieting for LESS THAN 10 HOURS, people!
By the time 8 p.m. rolls around, I’m not starving yet, but I also realize I’m not going to get any less hungry, so I make my way to the kitchen and proceed to do literally every singe thing I can to procrastinate making a kale salad that I seriously doubt will tide me over for the rest of the night.
Less than an hour later, I sit down to my kale salad, which is bland as fuck because I forgot to buy lemons from the store, but it’s actually okay. Full disclosure, I’m pretty sure I used too much kale, but I was so hungry that I didn’t feel like measuring and whatever because it’s just kale. Surprisingly, I feel full and vaguely content.
But by 11 p.m., this feeling of fullness fades, and I become so hungry and unable to concentrate on the puzzle I’m working on with my boyfriend (lame, I know) that I resolve to go to bed early and try to sleep it off.
Not feeling full after my buckwheat this morning. Have a really bad feeling about what the rest of my day will be like.
Sure enough, by 10 a.m., I’m already hungry and by 10:54 a.m. my stomach is audibly gurgling, which makes me feel like the cutest person in the coffee shop.
By noon, I don’t know what happened, but my hunger has finally subsided. It’s a miracle.
An hour later, I break down and eat lunch and unsurprisingly, I also don’t feel super full after this meal, but getting to eat three different things that taste so delicious and full of flavor feels luxurious in a way I don’t think I’ve properly appreciated before. In a couple of hours, when I’m rolling on the floor with hunger pains, I’ll try and remember my moment of happiness.
By 2:30, I can’t even help it, I need to eat half my almonds now or I will explode.
Scratch that, I need all the almonds.
By 5:36 PM, the hunger is really starting to get to me. I’ve already eaten all my almonds for the day and it’s way too early to eat dinner.
On top of that I feel sad knowing that I’ll be spending tonight alone because my roommates are at work, my friends are too far away, and my boyfriend already made plans to hang out with his friends.
All I have to look forward to is a trip to the grocery store to buy a lemon so my kale salad doesn’t suck tonight.
I wonder to myself if this is how Behati feels sometimes, when Adam is at work filming for The Voice or away on tour, and all of her model friends are either halfway around the world on a shoot or equally too exhausted to move.
What a drag to have to go through this feeling every day,.
And then, because I literally couldn’t think of anything else to do, I took a selfie which ended up getting more likes than anything I’d posted in months.
My salad tastes so much better, but it still tastes like a plain salad.
I’m feeling exhausted and famished so again, I just decide to call it a night early.
I could write a love poem to groats, because that’s how hard I’ve fallen for them.
Around noon my stomach starts to grumble, and I am not upset at how much more manageable my hunger is today, although to be completely honest, I haven’t moved more than 15 feet since waking up, so my lack of activity may or may not have something to do with that.
An hour later, I eat my lunch faster than anything I’ve eaten in a long time, but I feel full, so whatever.
Feel surprisingly great after yoga, but mostly just because I had something else to think about for an hour besides how hungry I was.
Sadly, after eating my groats this morning, I did not feel full, and instead saw stars in front of my eyes whenever I stood up for longer than a few seconds. This is probably not a great sign.
Feeling faint. Feeling weak. Feeling hot. Feeling like I want to die right here on the subway. I even cheated and had a piece of bread before lunch and I still feel like this.
On the bright side, one of my friends just told me I look really great.
For some strange reason, I’m just not that hungry tonight, so I skip the toast part of my scrambled eggs and avocado meal, which works out seeing as I was a fatty and already had a piece of toast today.
Around 11 PM, I eat my handful of almonds, not so much because I’m hungry, but because I really would have killed for it a few hours earlier when I was so hungry I was actually welcoming death.
Three hours later I eat all my almonds. It’s early. Whatever. Shit happens.
Feeling exhausted, but also incredibly skinny.
I accidentally took a nap for three hours, which is one way to avoid feeling sad about how little I get to eat.
Legit cannot even finish my salad today because it tastes so boring. I resolve to myself to never eat another raw kale salad with olive oil and lemon for as long as I live.
I barely thought about my hunger all day. My meals were satisfying and I could stretch out the length between them without a problem.
And then dinner happened.
My boyfriend and I went out to sushi, and it was so sad. Seeing everybody with food in front of them, salivating over THE SALAD my boyfriend got to eat before his sushi EVEN GOT TO THE TABLE.
And then, having to watch him be so full HE COULDN’T EVEN EAT HIS LAST 4 ROLES, which was 3/4 of what I’d had as a meal.
Needless to say I was hungry the rest of the night and needed to eat an extra half fistful of almonds just to not lose it.
Again, food wasn’t really an issue today. Surprisingly, my body has gotten used to eating small amounts of delicious food. I think it’s also helped that I’ve abandoned the raw kale salads, which were always the roughest part of the diet for me.
And I will say, I look great. A week obviously isn’t long enough to get a completely flat stomach, but I can see how this diet + exercise is effective while only occasionally being the worst.
Here’s what I looked like before I started dieting:
And here’s what I looked like after eating like Behati for a week?
SEE THE SUBTLE DIFFERENCE?
WEEK 2: The Vita Sidorkina Diet
Again, I decided to do this diet next for a few reasons:
#1: It let me eat more
#2: It let me eat yogurt for breakfast, which is one of my favorite foods IN THE WORLD
#3: It let me utilize most of the groceries I still had leftover from week one
Vita hasn’t been quite as explicit about her diet as Behati was, but thanks to Instagram I was able to piece something today that seemed comparatively decadent.
This is what Vita Sidorkina eats every day:
BREAKFAST: 1 cup of yogurt (or oatmeal) with mixed berries and nuts
LUNCH: avocado toast with 2 hardboiled eggs
SNACK: fruits and nuts
DINNER: zucchini pasta if she’s being good, literally anything else if she’s being bad
Okay okay, so I forgot to actually go to the grocery store last night so I ended up having a cup of groats for breakfast, and 5 pieces of leftover sushi for lunch, which wasn’t an attempt to cut calories, that’s just literally all I had in my fridge.
Dinner was actually a treat seeing as I’ve never had a hardboiled egg before (I know, what’s wrong with me?), and then I had my handful of almonds for desert.
I’m sorry, but today was going so well until I made the mistake of agreeing to meet my boyfriend for a drink when he got off at work.
But seriously, how am I supposed to say no to checking out the brand new tiki bar that just opened around the corner from his apartment?
Before I knew it, one drink had turned into two and then two drinks turned into me stuffing a bahn mi veggie hot dog down my face.
I woke up feeling really bad about last night (LOL, how my values have shifted), and so after a sensible breakfast of oatmeal, agave and blueberries, I decided to hit the gym for some cario. Only then I remembered that I was out of fresh contacts, and the idea of running with my glasses on makes me upset.
So then I thought about doing yoga, but realized I’d be much happier if I sat in bed and just watched Daria for the next 30 minutes.
For lunch I had a cup of yogurt with blueberries, chia seeds, pumpkin seeds, walnuts and agave, but then for dinner I stopped by a local vegetarian restaurant and had a steaming bowl full of tofu, broccoli, carrots and some form of chili. It was delicious, unquestionably healthy, but I still probably ate more than I should have even though I stopped as soon as I felt full.
You guys, I was so good today. I had oatmeal for breakfast, yogurt for lunch, and a bowl of soup for dinner that couldn’t have been more than 250 calories. I also did a very abs-centric yoga workout for 45 minutes which was so intense that I cried TWICE.
For breakfast I had yogurt, and then for lunch I had avocado toast minus eggs (because I ran out and didn’t have time to go across the street), so to compensate for the 160 calories I didn’t consume (an egg is about 80 calories, did you know that?) I went and got two tacos with my friend.
I’m pretty sure everything more or less evened out, but IDK.
Zucchini pasta is your friend, guys. It really, truly is. I had one bowl and literally still felt full after I split a spliff with my roommate.
Miracles, they really do exist.
And honestly, after six days, I was ready to give this one a rest.
Here’s what I looked like after two weeks of dieting:
SEE HOW SKINNY I’M GETTING, GUYS?
WEEK 3: The Nutritionist Diet
Okay, so this feels kind of like cheating, but I wanted to see if it would feel that different to follow the diet that a nutritionist who works with Victoria’s Secret models suggested. It also just seemed like a lot of food and after two weeks of (mostly) lean meals, I was ready for a change.
Here’s what I was allowed to eat this week:
BREAKFAST: 1 cup of egg whites, 1/3 cup oats, 1/2 banana
SECOND BREAKFAST: 1 cup nonfat Greek yogurt and a cup of berries
LUNCH: protein source, plus as many vegetables as you want PLUS one apple/peach/pear
DINNER: same, minus the fruit
DESERT: 1/2 cup nonfat cottage cheese with 1 tbsp of cocoa power
Also, if I wanted a drink, I was totally allowed to have one! It had to be tequila with soda water, but still! What luxury!
Although to be honest, not so sound like a bitch or anything, but this diet was way just too much for me. Too much food, too many specific eating intervals, and even though I bought the cottage cheese, the idea of eating cottage cheese and cocoa power makes me want to vomit.
I did not follow this diet perfectly ONCE, and I can definitely tell the difference between a diet that’s coming straight from a nutritionist, and a diet that’s coming from a model who works with a nutritionist, if that makes any amount of sense.
Here’s how this week went.
I woke up, had my cup of egg whites (which TBH are really annoying to scrub off my non-stick pan, and I really don’t care they’re less calories because they also taste like NOTHING and are NOT WORTH IT), and 1/3 cup oats, but I didn’t have the banana, and I made no attempt to even buy one for the duration of this diet.
Not that I have anything against bananas, it just didn’t happen.
Then for lunch, I had what I should have had for second breakfast.
Then for dinner, I had what I should have had for lunch, and somewhere along the way, I had a rice cake, and it was delicious and immediately became my new favorite food.
This is more or less what happened ever day, so I’ll spare you the repetition and only report what was different.
More of the same, only for lunch I had leftover Chinese food from my cheat day, only without the rice.
Today, I had a slice of pizza for dinner. I don’t remember why, but I do remember that it was delicious and I didn’t even feel bad because after banging my now-protruding hipbone against my door for the third time in a row, I was feeling so skinny that I thought, what the hell?
Today I was good all the way until my boyfriend offered to split a cookie with him.
I have no regrets.
My diet is boring. I have become boring. All I do is talk about food and for fun, I like to go to the grocery store and look at how delicious all the perfectly-packaged food is.
I make an effort to really follow my diet today.
I have breakfast when I’m supposed to (minus the banana, but whatever), and then a few hours later I have yogurt and blueberries.
For lunch, I have a kale salad with avocado and then for dinner, I make zucchini pasta with veggie sausage.
It’s really delicious, but honestly, I can’t say that this diet was super successful for me seeing as I never followed it once and don’t see how any normal person with a life could.
This is what I looked like after three weeks of dieting:
LOOK, IT ALMOST LOOKS LIKE I HAVE ABS EVEN THOUGH I’M NOT WORKING OUT AT ALL!
Week 4: The Alessandra Ambrosio Diet
We’ve disparaged this diet before for being way too easy to be effective, but over the course of my dieting, I’d come to an interesting conclusion about Victoria’s Secret diets that I really wanted to test.
I think that the reason why almost every Victoria’s Secret model will say they eat things like pizza and grilled cheese and cupcakes on a regular basis is because they’re working out so much that it just doesn’t fucking matter.
So, even though I wouldn’t be working out remotely as hard, I decided to work out every day for an hour.
Here’s what Alessandra Ambrosio eats every day:
BREAKFAST: eggs, and sometimes croissants or toast
DINNER: no sugar/carbs, unless she really wants pasta and then fuck it
DESSERT: one to two cupcakes a week because YOLO
So, today I took the whole loosey goosey diet approach very literally.
It just so happened to be my two-year anniversary of dating my boyfriend (I know, it’s gross), and so I kind of ate whatever I wanted.
For breakfast, I had a cup of groats, for lunch I had the leftover Chinese food from my cheat day (again with no rice), and then for dinner I ate all the food.
I had pasta, I had cake, I had lots of alcohol, and I felt great about it.
Literally, I forgot to write down anything down for today, so let’s just assume that I ate three square meals and a snack, okay?
After my sensible breakfast of eggs, I was feeling very hungry and very tempted by the mouth-watering croissants and bagels I saw people eating all around me. Still, I stayed strong and didn’t eat again until lunch, when I made myself a sensible salad of kale, onion, green pepper, half an avocado, and just a smidgen of cheese.
Even though I know how incredibly low carb the whole thing was, the cheese makes me feel fat. Like, literally I felt like a tub o’ lard. How Kim Kardashian does it as a mystery.
Then after my workout, I was starving but 15 minutes late to meet my boyfriend in the city, so I grabbed another smidgen of cheese and a tiny slice of the banana bread my roommate had just made.
Just before midnight I had a GIGANTIC doughy wrap which was delicious and worth every calorie, although I felt incredibly guilty while I was walking back to the subway.
I was so good today, you guys. You don’t even want to hear about it.
Again, I was so good today, or at least I was until 11 p.m. rolled around and I just had to have one cookies and cream Hershey’s Kiss.
I know, I’m so disgusting. You don’t even have to shame me.
Today just so happened to be the Pride parade in NYC, so let’s just say that I “accidentally” got wasted and stoned and then proceeded to eat all of the food, okay?
But it’s okay because two different people commented on how skinny I looked, and one of them was a stranger.
I was way too hungover to remember to bring eggs over to my boyfriend’s apartment, so I got a relatively healthy breakfast box at the coffee shop around the corner. There was some kale, a soft-boiled egg, a little cheese, and 80% more grits than I felt good about consuming.
I did not feel great about this choice.
By the time the afternoon rolled around, I was still feeling out of it, so instead of making a slad, I had two rice cakes with cheese instead. It felt filling, but then 30 minutes later I stress ate a bag of almonds, so you tell me how good of a decision it was.
Even though I had a perfectly respectable dinner of zucchini pasta WITHOUT veggie sausage, I still feel very fat and bloated, which is a joke seeing as literally all of my clothes feel loose right now.
This is what I looked like after 4 weeks of dating:
Following a steady program of Victoria’s Secret diets is hard, but it is doable.
And yes, you will lose weight. Even when you start to slip up.
And yes, you will feel more confident when you wear a crop top in public, and you may even convince yourself that you don’t need to suck in your stomach anymore, but I’m sorry to report that you won’t look at yourself in the mirror every morning and think, damn, I look like a model.
You’ll still see all of the tiny flaws that are invisible to any eye besides yours, and after a big meal of vegetables, you may even find yourself thinking, “what a bloated cow I’ve become.”
But the next morning none of that will matter because you’ll finally be able to eat anything you want, and why spend a second crying over your weight when you could be eating a bagel with tofu cream cheese and avocado?
Life is too short to walk around wishing you looked like a 5’9” beauty queen who spends all day at the gym anyway.
So fucking chill out and eat a sandwich already.