carb cycling

WEEK 22 WEIGH IN: Tightening the Strategy to Make it to the Finish Line

It has been on my radar that my efforts weren’t producing results. I have found myself, in the last handful of weeks, having a few too many binge sessions. As I discussed in last week’s post, I was feeling really weighed down by the lack of progress I was making. Even though I’ve been following a lot of the rules, I was way too laxed, giving into impulses to eat foods contrary to my strategy.

That wasn’t working!

I’ve taken the week to contemplate how to push forward. I’m so close, and I’m super tired of dragging this process out. I know that it’s time to tighten my strategy in order to sprint over the finish line!

Since Monday, I’ve changed my eating approach to go into carb cycling. I’m going to spend the next 8 weeks (including this one) with 2-4 days where I consume a ketogenic macronutrient range of 65% fats, 25% protein, and 10% carbohydrates. I’ll alternate those days with one carb up day where my macronutrient approach will be 40% carbohydrates, 35% protein, and 25% fats. I know that this approach will allow me to be aggressive in getting to the body that I want to maintain.

I’m committed. I’m ready to re-embrace my love for all the fats. I’m ready to keep my eye on the prize when all the carbs in the world are calling out to me. I’ve come this far. I know what has to be done, and how to do it! I’m ready to win the day! (Another Mark Batterson reference!)

Moving on. Let’s talk about how things ended on week 22.

End of Week 22 Before and After Pictures:

Week 22 Food Journal:

It hasn’t been a strong food journaling week. Saturday and Sunday, I only logged my food intake the first parts of the day. It’s probably because I wanted to be in denial of all the extra things that were jumping into my mouth. It’s fine…it’s in the past…

Monday, for lunch, the hubs and I went to a Brazilian churasco to celebrate closing on our first rental property. Afterwards, we went to this awesome spot in a local mall where you can get edible cookie dough called Scooped. So good! I didn’t log my food at all that day. But after that Brazilian food binge fest, and cookie dough, I fasted the rest of the day. Since that fast, I’ve been successful in my new carb cycling approach: Tuesday and Wednesday super low carb macro range, and slight carb up today. This next cycle, I’m going to tackle three low carb days. So my next carb up day will be on Monday.

I’m going to drop my food journal entry from today, right here.

The rest of the food journal entries can be found at the bottom of this post.

Bioelectrical Impedance Results:

My total body weight: 129.9 lbs. (Decrease of 2.6 pounds since last week. Total decrease of 13 lbs. since start date).

Breaking my total body weight down into different categories of body composition:

  • Total Body water: 80.9 lbs (Decrease of 1.1 lbs from last week. Total of 2.6 lbs. increase since start date).
  • Dry lean mass: 29.3 lbs. (Decrease of 0.7 lbs. since last week. Increase of 0.2 lbs. since first weigh in. Remember that this includes muscle, organs, and bone minus any fluid)
  • Body fat mass: 21.2 lbs. (This was a 0.4 lb. decrease from last week. Total of 14.3 lbs. of fat lost since start date!)
  • Skeletal muscle mass: 61.3 lbs (Decrease of .9 lbs since last week. Increase of 1.3 lbs since first weigh in).
  • BMI: 22.3 (Decrease of 0.4 from last week. Total decrease of BMI is 2.2 since start date)
  • Body fat percentage: 16.3% (This decreased by 0.1% from last week. Total of 8.5% decrease in body fat percentage since start date.)
  • Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR): 1435 calories (This decreased by 36 calories.)
  • Total Daily Energy Expenditure (TDEE): 2232 calories on moderate exercise weeks. 2484 calories on heavy exercise weeks.
  • Calorie target goal for weight loss: 1500 calories (May increase by upwards of 300 on days that I burn over 600 calories)

Week 22 Measuring Tape Results:

  • Right calf (measured at widest part): 14 1/8 inches (up 1/8 inch last week, and down 2 3/4 inches from first measurement)
  • Right thigh (measured at widest part): 21 1/4 inches (Same as last week, and down 1 3/4 inches from first measurement)
  • Hips (measured at widest part): 36 1/2 inches (Down 3/4 inch from last week, Down 6 1/2 inches from first measurement)
  • Butt (measured at widest part): 36 inches (Down 1/2 inch from last week. Down 3 5/8 inches from first measurement.)
  • Right below my muffin top: 33 inches (Same as last week, and down 2 7/8 inches from first measurement)
  • Waistline (measured across belly button): 32 inches (Down 1/2 inch from last week, and down 3 1/4 inches from first measurement)
  • Chest (measured at widest part): 36 1/2 inches (Same as last week. Down 11/4 inch from first measurement.)
  • Shoulders (measured at widest part): 39 1/2 inches (Down 1/8 inch from last week. Down 1 inch from first measurement)
  • Biceps: (measured at widest part): 10 5/8 inches (Up 1/8 inch from last week, and down 11/8 inch from first measurement).

This is What My Workouts Looked Like:

Summary:

I dropped two and a half pounds this week. That lost weight was a combination of water, dry lean mass, muscle, and 0.4 lbs of fat- which is all we really care about. The measuring tape results showed a marked decrease in my hips, butt, and waistline.

It feels good to be a few days into my tightened strategy. The more days I go, the more confident I am becoming in my ability to stick to the strategy. And it’s with consistency in our efforts that we realize our end goals!

That’s it for today. Talk to you soon.


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Food Journal Entries From the Rest of the Week:

Friday, May 28

Saturday, May 29

Sunday, May 30

Monday, May 31

Tuesday, June 1

Wednesday, June 2 (Yesterday)

carb cycling carb cycling carb cycling carb cycling

Before and after

Week 19 Weigh in: Developing Mental Toughness

Mothers day weekend has come and gone. My husband, Adam, didn’t know this but I have been suppressing a serious craving for French toast. I was ecstatic to find that he surprised me with that very breakfast on Mother’s Day morning! It was in that meal that I decided to gift myself with a day off from keeping a food journal. I assure you that my food intake was far from strategic, that day!

At church, they gave all the women a lovely buffet of Crumbl cookies and fruit. Then Adam came through, again, with a killer Steak dinner. And he did all the dishes, and changed all the diapers that day too!

It’s taken quite a bit of psychological effort to come to this mental place where I can allow myself days like those (every now and then) without allowing an ounce of guilt into the day.

In fact, In the early summer of 2019 I was meeting with a therapist for help in overcoming my struggles with binge eating. I expressed anxieties to him about how I was going on an upcoming cruise and I was terrified of my own inabilities to be in control of my eating when faced with the cruise ship buffets, and all you can eat everything. I remember being really bothered with him when he told me that a cruise is a time of celebration. It’s okay to have moments in life where we allow ourselves to enjoy the food when the opportunity is presented.

Of coarse, in that moment, I didn’t feel like I was being given the counsel and direction that I thought I should have been given. I thought how absurd it was that he was telling someone with a binge eating disorder that it was okay to go hog wild. (I know, that wasn’t his intention). Side note: If you ever find yourself needing to be told that “yes, you can be in control of your food choices. Yes, you can say no to your kryptonite foods,” Please, reach out to me! I’d absolutely love to help you make that strong voice in your head louder than the voice that’s telling you to give in!

Now that I do feel about 87% in control of my binge eating, I can see his logic. I can allow myself to have the less strategic food items and occasions which call for celebratory eating, and I can remove the negative emotions from the equation. Even if the non-strategic foods are eaten at times when I wasn’t planning to allow for that.

Now my focus is to eat strategically 85% of the time, and then 15% of the time can be moments when I have the pizza, cookies, etc. Of coarse, this is a goal that I have yet to master. You’ll see how far I am from accomplishing that if you look closely at the food journal entries, below. But that’s okay! We reach our goals through consistent effort, and effort is something I can commit to!

Alright, enough of that! Let’s talk about week 19 results!

End of Week 19 Before and After Pictures:

Week 19 Food Journal:

This week had a few days with pizza, crumbl cookies, French toast, chocolate banana bread, more pizza, and even more crumbl cookies, etc. I can’t decide if I should feel sheepish about all that, or be totally stoked that I was able to enjoy the food and still stay within a calorie deficit which allowed for another week of weight loss. I’m going to go with the latter because I really want you to see that you, too, can lose the weight while eating more than just chicken and veggies. (A calorie deficit means that your body is burning more calories than you’re taking in- whether through your basal metabolic rate, or addition calorie burn through exercise).

True that in weeks like the one I’ve had, it may require you to up your exercise so that you still stay in the deficit. But not always. Just like how some weeks you may find that you exercise very little, but your calorie consumption through food also stays lower than the calories you burn. (Anyway, I’m getting off topic).

I’m going to drop Saturday’s food journal here. That was the day that my food intake came in the highest, and furthest out of a weight loss calorie range.

Bioelectrical Impedance Results:

My total body weight: 128.8 lbs. (Decrease of 1.1 pounds since last week. Total decrease of 14.1 lbs. since start date).

Breaking my total body weight down into different categories of body composition:

  • Total Body water: 79.4 lbs (Increase of 0.5 lbs from last week. Total of 1.1 lbs. increase since start date).
  • Dry lean mass: 29.6 lbs. (Increase of 0.2 lbs. since last week. Increase of 0.5 lbs. since first weigh in. Remember that this includes muscle, organs, and bone minus any fluid)
  • Body fat mass: 19.8 lbs. (This was a 1.8 lb. decrease from last week. Total of 15.7 lbs. of fat lost since start date!)
  • Skeletal muscle mass: 61.1 lbs (Increase of 0.3 lbs since last week. Increase of 1.1 lbs since first weigh in).
  • BMI: 22.1 (Decrease of 0.2 from last week. Total decrease of BMI is 2.4 since start date)
  • Body fat percentage: 15.4% (This decreased by 1.3% from last week. Total of 9.4% decrease in body fat percentage since start date.)
  • Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR): 1437 calories (This increased by 7 calories.)
  • Total Daily Energy Expenditure (TDEE): 2225 calories
  • Calorie target goal for weight loss: 1600 calories (May increase by upwards of 300 on days that I burn over 600 calories)

Week 19 Measuring Tape Results:

  • Right calf (measured at widest part): 14 1/4 inches (Same as last week, and down 2 1/2 inches from first measurement)
  • Right thigh (measured at widest part): 21 1/4 inches (Same as last week, and down 1 3/4 inches from first measurement)
  • Hips (measured at widest part): 36 1/2 inches (Down 1/4 inch from last week, Down 6 1/2 inches from first measurement)
  • Butt (measured at widest part): 36 inches (Same as last week. Down 3 5/8 inches from first measurement.)
  • Right below my muffin top: 32 3/4 inches (Down 1/8 inch from last week, and down 2 7/8 inches from first measurement)
  • Waistline (measured across belly button): 32 inches (Down 3/8 inch from last week, and down 3 3/8 inches from first measurement)
  • Chest (measured at widest part): 36 1/2 inches (Same as last week. Down 11/4 inch from first measurement.)
  • Shoulders (measured at widest part): 39 5/8 inches (Same as last week. Down 7/8 inch from first measurement)
  • Biceps: (measured at widest part): 10 5/8 inches (Same as last week, and down 7/8 inch from first measurement).

This is What My Workouts Looked Like:

Summary:

I actually believe that the bioelectrical impedance results were a bit off this week. Another one of those weeks where the machine was manifesting its margin of error. I have a hard time believing that I’ve lost 1.8 pounds of fat, and gained .3 pounds of muscle in one week. I do believe that my total body weight locked in accurately though. So for today, that is an acceptable enough indication of progress. Well, that and the fact that I’m now needing to buy a smaller set of clothes, as most of my other clothes are fitting too loose (I’ve found some fun workout clothes shops that are comparable to Target prices, but with LuLulemon quality. Check out my instagram @thelast15pounds in the coming days, and I’ll show you where to find some great workout clothes!)

That’s it for today! Talk to you soon!


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Food Journal Entries From the Rest of the Week:

Friday, May 7

Sunday, May 9

Mothers day! I didn’t log a single food item! But the day was filled with French toast covered in fruit, powdered sugar and syrup. Also, Crumbl cookies, Steak, rice, corn on the cob, and Sister Schubert’s rolls!

Monday, May 10

Tuesday, May 11

Wednesday, May 12 (yesterday)

Thursday, May 13 (today)


Looking for an additional read? Check out this blog with tips on developing mental toughness

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Developing Mental Toughness Developing Mental Toughness Developing Mental Toughness Developing Mental Toughness Developing Mental Toughness Developing Mental Toughness

Keto Friendly Taco

Meal Plan: Taco’s, Cheeseburger’s and Chocolate Muffins! Oh My!

This week’s meal plan is quite possibly my favorite meal plan from this whole journey, thus far! I have been so excited for every single meal, and none of them can be categorized as “meh”! I don’t want to give too much away, but we’re talking all your favorites with this week’s meal plan: If you’re on your weight loss journey but have missed cheeseburgers, this week’s meal plan is sure to satisfy that craving! Also guilt free tacos which are completely waistline friendly. You even get a sweet morning treat in the form of a chocolate muffin! You’ll be starting your day with a crustless quiche, which is loaded with flavor!

Are you ready to fall in love with a tortilla?!

While this weeks tacos come with a delicious recipe to make your own high fiber, keto friendly tortilla… it also comes with a lot of work. I would compare it a bit to the process of making homemade bread. If you love some quality time in the kitchen putting the mixer, rolling pin, and griddle to use, then this recipe is right up your alley. That said, if you are like me and you would rather leave the tortilla making to someone else, there is a product that I have absolutely fallen in love with: The 1 carb wholegrain tortilla from Mr. Tortilla. I’m hoping to get a discount code to pass along your way. I’ll be sure to update this, if I can nail that down! I literally dream about adding these to as many meals as possible because they are so delicious.

The 1 carb tortillas are everything you’ve ever dreamed of in the perfect tortilla while on your weight loss journey. Not only are they full of flavor and mega low in carbs (3 grams total carbs/1 gram net carb), they’re also only 15 calories, which means that you could eat 4 of their tortillas to just one of the tortillas in this meal plan. I’m 1000% not offended if you opt to buy the Mr Tortillas instead of making them with the recipe provided! I promise they’re not paying me to say any of this. I just love them enough to pass the scoop on to all my besties who decided to pop in to read this meal plan blog post! The only downfall is having to wait for shipping!

Enough talk… Who’s Hungry?

Meal plan, Keto Friendly Tortilla, Keto Friendly Taco

All of the meals are intended to feed one person for 6 days. A couple of the recipes will provide a few extra servings for you to either share with a loved one or freeze for a later use.

Grocery items that might be easier to find online:

Nutritional info for this week’s meal plan:

Here’s the nutrition info if you make your own tortillas from the recipe provided:

Here’s the nutrition info if you decided to buy the tortillas online from Mr. Tortilla.

That’s it for today! Happy feasting!


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Keto Friendly Taco Keto Friendly Taco Keto Friendly Taco Keto Friendly Taco

Week 9 Weigh in: Milestone Week! 10 Pounds Lost!

There’s something so satisfying about adhering to a strategy which leads you to an end goal! With every passing day of following the weight loss rules, and not caving to the unplanned food temptations, my confidence in my abilities continues to strengthen. I’m happy to say that this was one of those weeks that my focus on the necessary tasks was greater than my focus on the distractions. Trust me, the distractions were still there. I successfully refrained from eating the pizza, cookies, cupcakes, ice cream, and soda, that the rest of my crew enjoyed for my oldest child’s 13th birthday! But the resounding “No!” in my head was loud enough to help me keep my sights set on the actions (or inactions) that I really wanted to be taking. And, despite my injury from last week I was able to work in some additional exercises into my fitness plan!

I’m happy with the baby steps that I took, this week, and the progress that I achieved from those baby steps! I was able to push myself past the self-inflicted plateau from the last two weeks!

Let’s get right to these results, shall we?

End of Week 9 Before and After Pictures:

(Maybe I should have brushed my hair and fixed my pony tail after my workout, this morning. Oh well. What you see is what you get!)

Week 9 Food Journal:

I’m happy to say that I stayed within a strategic calorie and macronutrient range, this week. My carbohydrate intake, each day, fell anywhere between 90 grams and 110 grams. So on the high end of my goal range, but still close enough that I’m totally ok with it. I practiced and succeeded at saying “no” to all of the sneaky little food temptations. It feels good to have a week behind me where I followed my plan as intended!

Here’s my food journal from last Friday. Just remember that I don’t always log my food in the order it was consumed. But the foods and quantities are accurate.

The remaining food journal entries can be found at the bottom of this post.

Week 9 Bioelectrical Impedance Results:

Do you remember back in week 4 when I seriously questioned the accuracy of my Inbody assessments results? I believe the same thing happened in last week’s assessment, where I got to experience the machine’s 4% margin of error. In the results, below, I’m going to go ahead and give you a comparison of both last week, and the week before (just as I did in Week 5’s results post).

Here goes…

My total body weight: 133.8 lbs (Decrease of 2.5 pounds since last week, but decrease of 0.9 lbs if we are comparing this week to week seven. I don’t doubt that my total body weight was right, last week. But I don’t think that the different aspects of my body composition were right. I’ve had a total decrease of 9.1 lb. since start date).

Breaking my total body weight down into different categories of body composition:

  • Total Body water: 79.1 lbs (Decrease of 3.6 lbs since last week, but increase of 0.6 lbs compared to week seven. Total of 0.8 lbs. increase since start date).
  • Dry lean mass: 29.3 lbs. (Decrease of 1.4 lbs. since last week, but increase of 0.4 lbs. compared to week seven. Increase of 0.2 lbs. since first weigh in. Remember that this includes muscle, organs, and bone minus any fluid)
  • Body fat mass: 25.4 lbs. (This was a 2.5 lb. increase from last week, and 1.9 lb. decrease compared to week seven. Total of 10.1 lbs. of fat lost since start date!)
  • Skeletal muscle mass: 60.8 lbs (Decrease of 2.9 lbs. from last week, and increase of 0.6 lbs. of muscle compared to week seven. Total of a 0.8 lb increase in muscle since start date).
  • BMI: 23 (Decrease of 0.4 from last week, and decrease of .1 compared to week seven. Total decrease of BMI is 1.8 since start date)
  • Body fat percentage: 18.9% (This increased by 2.1% from last week, and decreased by 1.4% compared to week seven. Total of 5.9% decrease in body fat percentage since start date.)
  • Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR): 1433 calories (This decreased by 47 calories.)
  • Total Daily Energy Expenditure (TDEE): 2099 calories (Because my exercise capacity still isn’t all the way up to what it was before my back injury, my maintenance calories are decreased by a couple hundred.)
  • Calorie target range for weight loss: 1560 calories (I’m keeping this target range the same)

Week 9 Measuring Tape Results:

  • Right calf (measured at widest part): 14 1/4 inches (Decreased 1/4 inch from last week, and down 2 1/2 inch from first measurement)
  • Right thigh (measured at widest part): 21 7/8 inches (Down 1/8 inch from last week, and down 11/8 inch from first measurement)
  • Hips (measured at widest part): 38 1/4 inches (Down 1/4 inch from last week, Down 4 3/4 inches from first measurement)
  • Butt (measured at widest part): 37 1/4 inches (Down 1/8 since last week. Down 2 1/8 inch from first measurement.)
  • Right below my muffin top: 34 1/8 inches (Down 1/4 inch from last week, and down 1 3/4 inch from first measurement)
  • Waistline (measured across belly button): 33 1/8 inches (Down 3/8 from last week, and down 2 1/8 inch from first measurement)
  • Chest (measured at widest part): 36 3/4 inches (Down 1/8 since last week. Down 1 inch from first measurement.)
  • Shoulders (measured at widest part): 40 inches (Same as last week. Down 1/2 inch from first measurement)
  • Biceps: (measured at widest part): 11 1/4 inches (Same as last week, and down 1/4 inch from first measurement).

This is what my workouts looked like:

My back was feeling good enough by Tuesday of this week, so that’s when I began reintroducing exercises more than just walking. I’m so thankful for the quick recovery!

Summary:

Although my total body weight has decreased by 9.1 pounds from the beginning of this journey, I have put on close to 1 lb of muscle. I care less about the total body weight decrease than I do about the body fat mass decrease. After all, the ultimate goal is to shed fat and not weight! This is why we get to celebrate the 10 pounds lost milestone today!

This week feels like a win! We see success in our goals when we push past the distractions and the set backs! I’m feeling really optimistic about my abilities to stick to the plan. I’m even kind of excited to go a few weeks without an indulgence meal, because I know that I’m also erasing the battle (wanting to keep eating the non-strategic foods at un-planned times) that comes after the indulgence meal is over.

Can’t wait to see the progress that this next week brings!

Talk to you soon!


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Food journal from the rest of the week:

Saturday, February 27:

Sunday, February 28:

Monday, March 1:

Tuesday, March 2:

Wednesday, March 3

Thursday, March 4 (today):

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