Schmed's Dessert Diet
Official Rules and FAQ

A typical dessert
An alternate definition of happiness

Q: Why worry about dessert at all?

A: My dessert craving is nothing to be taken lightly. It wasn't much of a problem when I was a starving student, but once I graduated and started making money I found I was eating dessert every night, often pigging out quite shamelessly.

Q: How do you define "dessert?"

A: This is by far the most controversial point. I wanted to keep things as simple as possible and avoid counting grams of sugar, polyunsaturated fat, etc. I therefore decided to concentrate on the "concept" rather than the "content" of the food in question. I ask not whether something is good for me, but rather "is it dessert?"

By my definition, strawberries consumed after a meal are dessert, and therefore illegal. On the other hand, a milk shake is a drink, not a dessert. Again, I didn't want to tally the ingredients of an energy blend to decide whether it was health food or junk food.

Cookies and candy are considered dessert, though arguably they fall outside the strict definition above. PowerBars, though they contain similar ingredients, are considered energy sources, especially when eaten during heavy exercise.

Q: What about RPBFs?

A: All members of the Vulgarian Ramblers Mountaineering Club are required to consume gourmet delicacies (Rowdy Peak Bagging Foods) once the summit has been reached. Chocolate bars may be eaten as part of this celebratory ritual, and they don't count as dessert.

Q: When is dessert legal?

A: I get to eat dessert only once each week, on either Friday or Saturday night (but not both), and then only if I've completed my five workouts for that week.

Q: You have to work out in order to earn your dessert?

A: Yes, I need to get in at least five 30 minute workouts in order to earn my dessert for that week. An hour workout counts for that day and the following one, but an hour workout on Monday, an hour workout on Tuesday, and a 30 minute workout on Wednesday only counts as three workouts. These rules guarantee me at least 150 total minutes of exercise on at least 3 workout days, spread across a time period spanning at least 5 days, thus avoiding the "weekend warrior syndrome". Most days I just jump on my mountain bike and then climb one of several beautiful trails near my home.

Q: Can workouts be saved or borrowed across week boundaries?

A: No, workouts cannot be saved or borrowed. The first workout must start on or after Sunday morning, and the fifth one must be complete before dessert begins.

Q: Is it OK to skip dessert on the weekend so that you can have it on a following weekday?

A: No, dessert nights cannot be saved or borrowed. If I forget to have dessert one week (an extremely rare event), then that dessert is gone forever. I've only broken the diet once since inception (c.1988), and that was to eat my wedding cake on a Sunday. There's a lot of guilt associated with this transgression that I'm still trying to work through.

Q: Do you have to start eating before 12:00am on Sunday morning?

A: No. I still consider it Saturday night until I crash.

Q: Can you have multiple desserts on the same night?

A: Yes, but they must all be consumed at one sitting. Spectators are sometimes shocked by how much dessert I can put away, but that just underscores how important my dessert diet really is to my health.

Q: Are you interested in any suggestions to improve this diet of yours?

A: After 18 years of having to explain this bizzare diet to friends and family, you can safely assume that I've already received your suggestion from someone else. In fact, this web page was designed to reduce, rather than increase, the amount of abuse I receive on the subject. I encourage you to develop your own dessert diet and hope that it works as well for you as this one does for me.

Back to Schmed

Click here to give me feedback on my dessert diet.

©2001-2006, Chris Schneider. All Rights Reserved World Wide.

Last updated 19 June 2006