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 17 Weigh In: When Actions Are Aligned With Goals…

What goals are on your radar? What is something that you want to accomplish? What actions are you taking right now in order to meet those goals?

I don’t know about you, but I have some ideas floating around that I find myself thinking “that would be nice to accomplish, but…” The excuses are so easy to come by! That’s how I was with this whole weight loss thing.. UNTIL I MADE A DECISION TO TAKE ACTION! I’ll tell you, I wasn’t excited about not being able to eat whatever I wanted whenever I wanted. The process of adopting habits of saying “no” seemed impossible. Keeping a food journal, forget about it!

But then there was the other side of me that really felt desperate to not groan at what I was seeing in the mirror. I wanted to stop feeling embarrassed about being the personal trainer who didn’t even look like she was following what she preached. I felt a little bit like a fraud, and often told myself the adage “you can’t trust a skinny baker, so how can you trust…well, me.” I know, I know. I do preach being kind to yourself. And I really do believe in the importance of it.

The decision to take action came first.

And if you read back on my first couple of posts on this blog, you might be able to sense how fearful I was to take action (Post #1, Post #2).

I’ve been thinking, lately, about how awesome momentum towards goal achievement feels. It’s gratifying, enabling, and highly motivating to have measurable progress behind me.

I want the same thing for you. Is weight loss on your radar? Or perhaps building muscle? Maybe it’s making healthier nutrition habits that you’d like to create. Maybe you’re hindered by self doubt, or some other excuse? If this is the case, I want to urge you to simply decide today to make the change.

Sometimes the motivation to meet our goals doesn’t even come until we have started forming the habits that we believe we should be forming. So start with the decision to act. Align your actions with your goals. Then watch as you make progress. Progress is motivating, so work towards progress! You’ve got this! If you want to read more on this, check out this site here

Alright, I’m excited to show you where I am in my progress. I’m 17 weeks into my weight loss adventure. I had about a month there where I had my pre-vacation + vacation+ adapting to real life pause from weight loss. But I’m back on a weight loss trajectory! Here it is…

End of Week 17 Before and After Pictures: Check out that Florida tan!

Week 17 Food Journal:

I’m going to plant yesterday’s food journal screenshots here. I chose to go with yesterday’s, because it was the first day in weeks where I felt like I was finally in a groove of eating within my strategy without having a hankering for some non-strategic food item. Even when the hankering showed up, it didn’t feel like my heart was breaking to say “no”. I killed it with my veggie intake, making one of my veggie smoothies and sipping on it throughout the day. This allowed me to consume most of my daily nutrient needs through food intake, before adding in my multi-vitamin and iron supplements.

Bioelectrical Impedance Results: Week 17

My total body weight: 130.5 lbs. (Decrease of 2 pounds since week 16. Total decrease of 12.4 lbs. since start date).

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

  • Total Body water: 78.9 lbs (Decrease of 0.5 lbs. since last week. Total of 1.1 lbs. increase since start date).
  • Dry lean mass: 29.3 lbs. (Decrease of 0.2 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: 22.3 lbs. (This was a 1.3 lb. decrease from last week. Total of 13.2 lbs. of fat lost since start date!)
  • Skeletal muscle mass: 61.1 lbs (Decrease of 0.3 lbs. from last week. Increase of .8 lbs since first weigh in).
  • BMI: 22.4 (Decrease of 0.3 from last week. Total decrease of BMI is 2.1 since start date)
  • Body fat percentage: 17% (This decreased by .8% from last week. Total of 7.8% decrease in body fat percentage since start date.)
  • Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR): 1431 calories (This decreased by 6 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 17 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 3/8 inches (Same as last week, and down 1 1/2 inches from first measurement)
  • Hips (measured at widest part): 36 7/8 inches (Down 1/8 inch from last week, Down 6 1/8 inches from first measurement)
  • Butt (measured at widest part): 36 inches (Down 1/4 inch from last week. Down 3 5/8 inches from first measurement.)
  • Right below my muffin top: 32 3/8 inches (Down 1/8 inch from last week, and down 2 3/4 inches from first measurement)
  • Waistline (measured across belly button): 32 3/8 inches (Down 1/8 inch from last week, and down 2 7/8 inches from first measurement)
  • Chest (measured at widest part): 36 5/8 inches (Same as last week. Down 11/8 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 (Down 1/4 inch from last week, and down 7/8 inch from first measurement).

This is what my workouts looked like:

My gym opened back up at 5:00 am, and there might not be words sufficient to express how happy I am about this! 5:00 a.m. is my favorite workout time! This being the case, I’ve been able to up my activity level by an extra 45-60 minutes most days! It’s a win-win situation because extra workouts means that I can eat a little extra food and still lose weight!

Summary:

It’s nice to see the weight loss progress under way again. It’s been two weeks since we’ve been home from vacation, and although my actions haven’t been 100% perfect, they’ve been consistent enough to help me make progress. This week I lost a half pound of water weight, and almost a pound and a half of fat. The measuring tape is showing some areas decreasing, as well. It feels really motivating to have the momentum continuing in the trajectory of weight loss. I’m excited to stick to my strategy, and see what next week brings!


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Food Journal Entries From the Rest of the Week:

Friday, April 23

Saturday, April 24

Sunday, April 25

Monday, April 26

Tuesday, April 27

weight loss goals weight loss goals weight loss goals weight loss goals

Week 16 Weigh in: After the Vacation

It has been three weeks since I wrote up one of these weigh in posts! Although this hasn’t been a dedicated time for weight loss, I have placed healthy decisions as a priority. We were so blessed to spend 9 full days in Naples, Florida. I went on my vacation with an intention not to allow myself to gain weight (You can find my pre-vacation goals for weight maintenance here). By day six of the trip, I decided I wanted to stop feeling the pressure of making all of the calorie and protein numbers align. I wanted to give myself a break from the pressures of writing down every little morsel of food. Some of the remaining days, I recorded partial food intake logs. And some of the remaining days I fully embraced the “forget this, I’m going to live my life to the fullest” attitude. In this moment, living life to the fullest looked like Wagyu beef burgers, coconut flan, excess amounts of chocolate covered key lime pie, stomach aches and no judge-y food journal entries to try make me feel guilty!


Since exercise is my favorite, I fully embraced the opportunity to go running on the beach and HIIT (High intensity interval training) workouts by the pool in the backyard of the house we rented (I even posted some workouts on Instagram: @thelast15pounds). Maintaining my exercise routines throughout the whole adventure aided in me feeling even more okay about allowing the few days of enjoying the local fare (and not just ordering salads).

Coming home has been a less than an easy transition…

Towards the end of our trip, four out of the five of our family picked up a nasty head cold (Don’t worry, we got covid tests to make sure before heading back into our regular public places, i.e. school, church, work, gym). Upon returning home, I spent a few days resting to recover. That meant not going in for my week 15 weigh-in until last Saturday morning. I also did not exercise between Wednesday of last week and this last Sunday. I began “re-entry” into my workout routine, and regular daily tasks on Monday. But, I’m happy to say that my nutrition has been back in strategic mode since we returned. Still with a few more carbs than intended, but those haven’t hindered any progress in coming back from vacation weight gain.

Enough chit chat. Let’s get to the weekly results.


End of Week 16 Before and After Pictures:

Week 16 Food Journal:

I can’t help thinking that looking at three weeks of food journal entries is really not worth your time. So, I’m going to show you the snapshot of the average seven day nutrition intake, calories, and macronutrient ranges that I ate in over the last three weeks. It won’t show specific foods that I ate. Just the general nutrients consumed.

The days that I decided against food journaling will either show up as calories/nutrients/macros that are significantly lower than a normal day. Or there will be a blank space. It’s safe to assume that those days included large amounts of calories, sugars, and deliciousness!

Week of April 2-April 8:

Week of April 9-April 15:

This past week: April 16-April 22

Bioelectrical Impedance Results: Week 16

I’m going to compare my pre-vacation (week 13 results) and today’s results (not the results that were collected Saturday after my vacation. I will show a picture of the three separate scans, below. So you’ll be able to see what 4 days of clean eating and exercise can do to improve the post vacation body.)

My total body weight: 132.5 lbs. (Increase of 1.1 pounds since week 13. Total decrease of 10.4 lbs. since start date).

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

  • Total Body water: 79.4 lbs (Decrease of 0.4 lbs. since week 13. Total of 1.1 lbs. increase since start date).
  • Dry lean mass: 29.5 lbs. (Decrease of 0.3 lbs. since week 13. Increase of 0.4 lbs. since first weigh in. Remember that this includes muscle, organs, and bone minus any fluid)
  • Body fat mass: 23.6 lbs. (This was a 1.8 lb. increase from week 13. Total of 11.9 lbs. of fat lost since start date!)
  • Skeletal muscle mass: 61.1 lbs (Decrease of 0.2 lbs. from week 13. Increase of 1.1 lbs since first weigh in).
  • BMI: 22.7 (Increase of 0.2 from week 13. Total decrease of BMI is 1.8 since start date)
  • Body fat percentage: 17.8% (This increased by 1.2% from week 13. Total of 7% decrease in body fat percentage since start date.)
  • Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR): 1437 calories (This decreased by 7 calories.)
  • Total Daily Energy Expenditure (TDEE): 2230 calories
  • Calorie target goal for weight loss: 1600 calories

For more info on Bioelectrical Impedance, check out this link here.

Comparison of Bioelectrical impedance readings before and after the vacation:

Week 13 Measuring tape results:

  • Right calf (measured at widest part): 14 1/4 inches (Same as week 13, and down 2 1/2 inches from first measurement)
  • Right thigh (measured at widest part): 21 3/8 inches (Down 1/8 inch week 13, and down 1 1/2 inches from first measurement)
  • Hips (measured at widest part): 37 inches (Same as week 13, Down 6 inches from first measurement)
  • Butt (measured at widest part): 36 1/4 inches (Same as week 13. Down 3 1/8 inches from first measurement.)
  • Right below my muffin top: 33 1/4 inches (Down 1/8 inch from week 13, and down 2 5/8 inches from first measurement)
  • Waistline (measured across belly button): 32 1/2 inches (Up 1/2 inch from week 13, and down 2 3/4 inches from first measurement)
  • Chest (measured at widest part): 36 5/8 inches (Same as week 13. Down 11/8 inch from first measurement.)
  • Shoulders (measured at widest part): 39 5/8 inches (Same as week 13 week. Down 7/8 inch from first measurement)
  • Biceps: (measured at widest part): 10 7/8 inches (Same as week 13, and down 5/8 inch from first measurement).

This is what my workouts looked like:

Summary:

The most notable change in my body composition from before my vacation is an almost 2 pound increase in body fat. I’m not in the least surprised by that. I know those two pounds will be shed fairly quickly as I proceed with my nutrition strategy. All in all, I’m content with how my nutrition, exercise, and weight maintenance played out over the last three weeks. Sure, I gained a little bit of weight and fat. But I don’t regret anything. I really enjoyed the eating experiences that I had on my vacation. I wouldn’t go back and change a thing! (Except for maybe getting to the street taco restaurant one more time before leaving Florida!)

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


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