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

Week 21 WEIGH IN: Climbing the Mountain All the Way to the Top!

I’m just going to go ahead and start this post by saying that if you’re on your own weight loss journey and you feel discouraged by the lack of progress, I feel you! I see you as you are putting in the work, and the scale… or measuring tape… or tighter fitting clothes… are moving in the opposite direction that you’re wanting. I know how heavy and daunting the process can feel. The plateaus can feel frustrating. The increased water weight, or bloating for various reasons can drive you mad. It’s alright. Let yourself feel all the feelings. I give you permission to throw a pillow across the room in these moments of great discouragement. Your feelings are very real, and they need to be felt and processed. Ignoring your feelings can lead you to seek comfort in the cookie jar, and you know that may be what you want in the moment, but that’s not your ultimate desire.

Choose to be productive in how you respond to your feelings. Remember that these frustrations pass, just as your stalled or dauntingly slow progress will pass. But only if you are very intentional about not turning to the non-strategic foods or habits to comfort your feelings.

“The man on top of the mountain didn’t fall there”

-Vince Lombardi

I heard this quote in a Mark Batterson book, a few weeks ago. It has been on replay in my thoughts ever since, and I’m so dang thankful for that! I love the imagery and the implications. That dude (or She-beast) worked so dang hard to get to the top. While there may have been a few moments where the trail to the top was easy going. it’s most likely, that climber’s heart rate was elevated as he climbed up steep inclines. Think of all the blood, sweat, and tears that were shed as the mountain climber trudged through terrain where there was little or no trail to follow. Perhaps there were spots where she or he could only ascend with the help of a rope and harness to keep from falling off the nearly vertical slope. There could have been rain or snow storms that made the conditions nearly unbearable.

Enduring all these events, it’s human nature for the climber to question her/his ability to progress forward when the terrain seemed excessively grueling. Not withstanding, the hiker didn’t stop. She/he trudged forward, one step, climb or crawl at a time. We know that the goal was achieved, because the quote says so. That mountain climber made it to the top. She/he didn’t give up, or fall to the temptation of defeat. She/he didn’t grant any of the challenges power to stop her/him from reaching her/his goal.

climber, summit, mountain

Here’s another quote that literally was handed to me today:

“Excellence is never an accident. It is always the result of high intention, sincere effort, and intelligent execution; it represents the wise choice of many alternatives- choice, not chance, determines your destiny.”

Aristotle

So what should we do with this pep talk, then? Let’s be intentional. Working through the storms, and steep climbs and keep pushing forward, one step in front of the other. Let’s continue to make the choices which will propel us up the mountain to reach our intended destination. Through continued effort, we will attain excellence.

Envision the incredible view from the top! The lessons and the experiences you’re working through are going to feel so empowering when you’re at the summit!


Now, I’ve gone through this whole process, myself, just today. This morning when I got my bioelectrical impedance results and took my measurements, I sure wasn’t feeling this pep talk… I was frustrated, during my workout at how heavy my legs were feeling. I was frustrated that the measuring tape revealed some expanding, rather than shrinking. Even the bioelectrical impedance readings weren’t aligned with where I thought they should be.

I began over-thinking all of the possible reasons for the heavy legs, bloated belly, etc. Perhaps menstrual cycle? Maybe my body is not pleased with the extra workout I did yesterday? Maybe the ice cream and cookies from Tuesday are still affecting my system? Perhaps my second covid shot from last Friday? What else can I blame? Not enough sleep? Diet soda detoxing? How many of these are actually plausible?

Doesn’t matter.

I’ve had the day to work through my feelings. At first I was thinking about how steep the mountain of my goal felt. But then I shifted focus to continuing on with the baby steps, regardless of the steep incline. Even though my results have been frustrating for three weeks in a row, I’m not turning around to descend back down the mountain. I will continue to climb! I want to reach the top!

Enough of that. Let me show you this week’s results:

End of Week 21 Before and After Pictures:

Week 21 Food Journal:

Since this whole experiment has felt a little extra heavy, today, I’m starting with a food journal entry that was worth celebrating. Here’s my food journal from yesterday, May 26:

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

Bioelectrical Impedance Results:

My total body weight: 132.5 lbs. (Decrease of 1.1 pounds since last week. Total decrease of 10.4 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: 30.0 lbs. (Decrease of 0.4 lbs. since last week. Increase of .9 lbs. since first weigh in. Remember that this includes muscle, organs, and bone minus any fluid)
  • Body fat mass: 21.6 lbs. (This was a 0.4 lb. increase from last week. Total of 13.9 lbs. of fat lost since start date!)
  • Skeletal muscle mass: 62.2 lbs (Decrease of 1.1 lbs since last week. Increase of 2.2 lbs since first weigh in).
  • BMI: 22.7 (Decrease of 0.2 from last week. Total decrease of BMI is 1.8 since start date)
  • Body fat percentage: 16.4% (This increased by 0.6% from last week. Total of 8.4% decrease in body fat percentage since start date.)
  • Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR): 1456 calories (This increased by 36 calories.)
  • Total Daily Energy Expenditure (TDEE): 2257 calories on moderate exercise weeks. 2512 calories on heavy exercise weeks.
  • Calorie target goal for weight loss: 1600 calories (May increase by upwards of 300 on days that I burn over 600 calories)

Week 21 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): 37 1/4 inches (Up 1/4 inch from last week, Down 5 3/4 inches from first measurement)
  • Butt (measured at widest part): 36 1/2 inches (Same as last week. Down 3 1/8 inches from first measurement.)
  • Right below my muffin top: 33 inches (Up 3/8 inch from last week, and down 2 7/8 inches from first measurement)
  • Waistline (measured across belly button): 32 1/2 inches (Up 1/4 inch from last week, and down 2 3/4 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 1/2 inches (Down 1/8 inch from last week, and down 1 inch from first measurement).

This is What My Workouts Looked Like:

Summary:

Although I’m down 1.1 pounds from last week, it is all water and muscle. I actually increased in fat by almost a half of a pound from last week. I did find that I increased my steady state cardio workouts a bit, this week, but I don’t think it was enough that it would eat away at muscle. But maybe?

The measuring tape results were strange. I increased in size in my hips, right below my muffin top, and at my waistline. But I decreased in my shoulders and biceps. So weird!

I’m just going to go ahead and say it. I’ve come to understand that the In-body bioelectrical impedance machine does have a distinct margin of error. I do not believe that people should be measuring their body composition with this devise weekly, as I am. I do believe that it is reasonable to measure every 4-6 weeks, though.

I’m definitely feeling the burn out from doing so, so often. And I’ll be honest, I have some orthorexia tendencies, so sometimes I feel like I’m feeding the addiction by weighing in every week. Part of my frustrations from today are that I quite frankly want to be at the end of the portion of this journey where I have to watch all the numbers so closely. So that fact that I didn’t lose any fat, and even gained some caused the mountain to feel really steep.

I’m tired. But I’m going to keep going. I’m going to keep doing my best to see all the numbers objectively, and not let the emotions be tied to them.

I’m absolutely determined to reach the top of the mountain, no matter how rough the terrain. I just have to keep up the practice of giving my strategy the respect it deserves.

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


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Food Journal Entries From the Rest of the Week:

Friday, May 21:

Saturday, May 22:

Sunday, May 23:

Monday, May 24:

Tuesday, May 25:

Thursday, May 27 (today):

climbing the mountain climbing the mountain climbing the mountain climbing the mountain climbing the mountain climbing the mountain climbing the mountain climbing the mountain climbing the mountain climbing the mountain

Before and After

Week 20 Weigh In: Every Food Action Has A Consequence

I tell you what, the food has been LEGIT TASTY this WHOLE last week! And I’m not talking about the kind of food that LillieEatsandTells makes which helps in the process of weight loss through macronutrient counting. I’m talking about the stuff that our taste buds can’t get enough of, that we probably eat in too large of quantities, and that make us feel like our rolls are expanding at an undesirable rate!

weight loss

The hubby and I spent the weekend in St. Louis, Missouri, learning how to implement the process of “becoming financially free in 10 years or less” through real-estate. (It was a great educational experience, and we’re really excited to go down that road.) But while we were away…and since we’ve been back… the food choices have been at the opposite end of strategic.

MY GOODNESS!!!

I am having the hardest time being willing to pull myself together! I even picked up Crumbl cookies (and ate more than my fair share) today, even after my weigh in revealed that I’m on a trajectory away from the results that I want. (Perhaps it was an emotional reaction to undesirable results? I know… I know… Counter productive).

Uggh… And even though my exercise has been on point, the saying goes, “you can’t out exercise a ‘bad’ diet”.

You’re welcome for the visual!

So here I am, pondering how I can turn this into a teaching moment for you. As I was growing up, my dad seemed to frequently remind my sisters and I that EVERY ACTION HAS A CONSEQUENCE. (I remember him saying that often, but I guess I don’t remember why. I must have enjoyed all my actions too much and not cared about consequences… until it was time for them to show up… hmmmm, not much has changed with that)!

Actions and Consequences

It’s simple, really. You make the sacrifices of not eating the foods (or quantities of foods) that usually contribute to weight maintenance or gain, and you slowly see the results that you’re working towards. In contrast, if you allow yourself to say “yes” to the non-strategic foods, it’ll become that much harder to maintain the necessary mindsets to see your goals realized. And if you have binge eating tendencies like me, saying yes once can QUICKLY escalate to a “bag it all, I’m eating all of it” ending.

In the results below, you’ll see that I’m teaching you exactly how to gain weight! But I really want to turn this around so that I can show you just how quickly body composition improves when the body is properly nurtured with nothing but power foods from whole sources, in a macronutrient and calorie range it can thrive on. Not only that, I’ve invited some inflammation into my body with the excess sugars, diet sodas, and processed foods. I can feel it in the headaches, sluggishness, and bloat/gassiness (TMI?).

Here I am, making a commitment to show you how weight loss is achieved. I’m not embracing any extreme diets. I’m going to commit to eating within the calorie deficit that I have seen success in, and yet not starved in. I’m also committing to the macronutrient range that I have felt really good in (high protein, moderate fat, low carb). Mark my words… next week’s results are going to be awesome because my actions are going to reap the consequences that are conducive with my weight loss goals!

Alright, confessions/lesson/pep talk/commitment time is over. Here are the results from this week’s weigh in.

End of Week 20 Before and After Pictures:

Week 20 Food Journal:

I will fully own the fact that my food journaling was inadequate this last week. I started each day keeping a record of my food consumption. I think, more than anything, I just didn’t want to know. So I gave up part way through the day. If any of my food journal entries, at the bottom of the page seem unnaturally low on food. You can probably safely assume that food consumption was well into a weight gain range on those days. It is what it is. It’s happened, and we’re moving on with our life… Best foot forward, here on out!

Here’s the food journal entry from last Friday, May 14th.

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

Bioelectrical Impedance Results:

My total body weight: 133.6 lbs. (Increase of 4.8 pounds since last week. Total decrease of 9.3 lbs. since start date).

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

  • Total Body water: 82 lbs (Increase of 2.6 lbs from last week. Total of 3.7 lbs. increase since start date).
  • Dry lean mass: 30.4 lbs. (Increase of 0.8 lbs. since last week. Increase of 1.3 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 1.4 lb. increase from last week. Total of 14.3 lbs. of fat lost since start date!)
  • Skeletal muscle mass: 63.3 lbs (Increase of 2.2 lbs since last week. Increase of 3.3 lbs since first weigh in).
  • BMI: 22.9 (Increase of .8 from last week. Total decrease of BMI is 1.6 since start date)
  • Body fat percentage: 15.8% (This increased by .4% from last week. Total of 9% decrease in body fat percentage since start date.)
  • Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR): 1437 calories (This increased by 36 calories.)
  • Total Daily Energy Expenditure (TDEE): 2283 calories on moderate exercise weeks. 2541 calories on heavy exercise weeks.
  • Calorie target goal for weight loss: 1600 calories (May increase by upwards of 300 on days that I burn over 600 calories)

Week 20 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): 37 inches (Up 1/2 inch from last week, Down 6 inches from first measurement)
  • Butt (measured at widest part): 36 1/2 inches (Up 1/2 inch from last week. Down 3 1/8 inches from first measurement.)
  • Right below my muffin top: 32 5/8 inches (Up 1/8 inch from last week, and down 2 3/4 inches from first measurement)
  • Waistline (measured across belly button): 32 1/4 inches (Up 1/4 inch from last week, and down 3 1/8 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:

The bioelectrical impedance displayed a significant increase in total body weight (+4.8 lbs), water weight (+2.6 lbs), body fat mass (+1.4 lbs), and muscle mass (+2.2 lbs). I’m confident that the In-body machine’s margin of error is on it’s higher end, simply in the amount of muscle it is saying that I’ve gained since last week. I’m not surprised by the increase in water weight or fat. The measuring tape revealed a slight expansion in my hips, booty, muffin top, and belly button line.

This last week there were the wrong kind of consequences. I’m feeling more and more excited about embracing the actions which will lead to all of the right kind of consequences- weight loss, decreasing inflammation, more energy, and overall feeling good.

Talk to you soon!


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Food Journal Entries From the Rest of the Week:

Saturday, May 15

Sunday, May 16

Monday, May 17

Tuesday, May 18

Wednesday, May 19 (Yesterday)

Thursday, May 20 (Today)

Diet Actions and Consequences Diet Actions and Consequences Diet Actions and Consequences Diet Actions and Consequences Diet Actions and Consequences Diet Actions and Consequences

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)


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

Fit Mom

Week 18 Weigh In: The Secret to Your Fit Mom Bod (Hint: It’s Not Perfection)!

They say that losing the last 15 pounds is the hardest. It’s not that the body doesn’t know what to do, or how to lose weight. The difficulty lies in the mental toughness and patience required to eat and exercise in a consistent strategy. STRATEGY being the operative word. I’m asked, somewhat frequently, what the best diet is for weight loss. The answer is that it’s the one you can stick to… consistently. Take note that I didn’t say “perfectly”. That’s the first step to your fit mom body.

Losing the last fifteen pounds requires time, good nutrition, sufficient protein and veggies, some carbs and fats (but in controlled amounts and timing), calorie deficits, exercise (HIIT circuits are highly efficient for fat loss and muscle growth), and patience. I am now on week 18, 4 and a half months, into my weight loss journey. I still estimate another month or two of weight loss effort before I reach the point that I want to maintain.

Could I have done it faster? Sure, had I not gone on vacation, allowed myself the occasional trips to Cava and Crumbl, or stole bites of Progeny #3’s PB& J sandwiches or fishy crackers. But living life and enjoying it is important to me, and I’ve been able to show through my journey that you can still live life and lose weight at the same time. You just have to keep working at it. That’s all. None of this, “I’ll start over on Monday”. You have moments where you enjoy the tastier food, and then you ensure that 80% of the rest of the time your actions are aligned with your goals. That’s where success lies!

Alright… moving on. Here are the results of my 18th’s week of this weight loss journey.

End of Week 18 Before and After Pictures:

Week 18 Food Journal:

You know, I didn’t feel like my food intake was stellar this week. There have been plenty of moments where “taboo” food items made their way into my mouth without me making any effort to stop them. (Because that’s how this works, right? We are victims because all the foods taste so good, and we have no agency as to what actually ends up being consumed by us!?!? Wrong!).

Actually, here’s a fun confession… about 68% off the less strategic/non “power foods” that show up on my food journals tend to not get logged until a day or two after I eat them. Call it human nature, my naturally defiant tendencies. But sometimes I just wanna eat the non-nutritious stuff and not have to tell the world about it. Of coarse, I always remember that I ate it. And after I take some time to make peace with the fact that I promised to be transparent about all of my food choices while on this weight loss/blogging journey it’ll go down in myfitnesspal. Written in stone…

Anyway… I made it work with both the healthy stuff and the non-strategic (yet tasty) stuff. I’ve focused on plenty of proteins, veggies, fiber, exercise, and calorie consumption that came in just short enough to still be in a calorie deficit. But also, goldfish crackers, sugar cereal, apple pie, animal cookies, homemade wheat bread with butter and honey, etc.

I guess, if anything, I want you to learn that there are certain principles to implement when it comes to weight loss (i.e. calorie deficit, eating mostly nutritious foods, eat your body weight (or goal weight) in grams of protein and 6-8 servings of veggies, don’t have “cheat days”, don’t “start over on Monday”, stay consistent with your nutrition approach, keep a food journal, or learn to eat intuitively, etc.).

But, perfection isn’t necessary. Extreme dieting isn’t necessary. Obsessive behavior isn’t necessary. Being as consistent as possible with those weight loss principles is an absolute must. That means no cheat weekends. But an indulgence meal or sugary treat here and there is perfectly acceptable!

Anyway, here is yesterday’s food journal entry (Thursday, May 7). Entries from the rest of the week can be found at the bottom of this page.

Bioelectrical Impedance Results:

My total body weight: 129.9 lbs. (Decrease of .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: 78.9 lbs (Same as last week. Total of 1.1 lbs. increase since start date).
  • Dry lean mass: 29.4 lbs. (Increase of 0.1 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: 21.6 lbs. (This was a .7 lb. decrease from last week. Total of 13.9 lbs. of fat lost since start date!)
  • Skeletal muscle mass: 60.8 lbs (Same as last week. Increase of .8 lbs since first weigh in).
  • BMI: 22.3 (Decrease of 0.1 from last week. Total decrease of BMI is 2.9 since start date)
  • Body fat percentage: 16.7% (This decreased by .3% from last week. Total of 8.1% decrease in body fat percentage since start date.)
  • Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR): 1430 calories (This decreased by 1 calorie.)
  • 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 18 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 (Down 1/8 inch from last week, and down 1 3/4 inches from first measurement)
  • Hips (measured at widest part): 36 3/4 inches (Down 1/8 inch from last week, Down 6 1/4 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 7/8 inches (Down 1/4 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 3 inches from first measurement)
  • Chest (measured at widest part): 36 1/2 inches (Dow 1/8 inch from 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’m still inching towards my end goal. Really more like 1/8 of an inch”ing”. But that’s normal! I dropped just over a half pound of fat, this week. The measuring tape showed a decrease by either 1/8 or 1/4 inch in my thighs, hips, stomach and chest. Slow and steady. These last 5 or so pounds are sure to take their time, so 1/2 pound per week is worth celebrating. (Even 1/8 of a pound is worth celebrating when it’s moving in the right direction.)

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


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Food Journal Entries From the Rest of the Week:

Thursday, April 29:

Friday, April 30:

Saturday, May 1 (Indulgence meal in the evening was not recorded):

Sunday, May 2 (I fasted this day, low food consumption was a bit lower):

Monday, May 3:

Tuesday, May 4: