Voila, The New Eating Plan Is Here

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As promised, I’m going to be posting a few more details about what I do on a day to day basis. One of the reasons I started the blog and my FB page is because I’m just an average person who has never been fit. Research is now showing that people in my class of skinny fat have just as much risk of developing health problems as those who are clinically overweight and obese. When I first had my body fat checked about a year ago, I was 33% body fat even though I was in my weight range. That was a scary statistic.

I looked around at Before and After pictures and some of them are amazing, but many of them are from former athletes and in shape people who let themselves go. If you’ve ever been in shape, it is so much easier to get back into it. I was frustrated because I’ve never been buff despite being relatively thin. I wanted to show others that an average person who is squishy really can become buff even after 4 decades of non-buffness. So if I can do it, you may already have a leg up on me and can do it too. My pictures that I post will always be real and un-retouched even if they are slightly frightening. I promise to always give an honest answer to questions or posts, or I’ll say I don’t know if I don’t.

You can feel free to email or post any questions that you have, and I’ll do my best to answer them. Please keep in mind that I’m not an expert and can’t replace your intuition and doctors for your personal situation. I can however respond based on my own experience and I’ve almost always got an opinion. Since starting this program of healthiness a couple months ago, I’ve been eating approximately 1370 calories per day and have a goal of burning 670 calories 6 days of the week. The schedule is slightly flexible in that if I burn less calories on one or two days, I can skip the rest day and make up the calories in an extra workout.

The calorie deficit above worked for the first couple months but I’ve suddenly hit a plateau and my fat percentage did not drop this last week. My trainer has been keeping track of my eating and how I’ve been feeling, and lately I’ve been dragging a bit and am always cold. He indicated that those are signs that I need to bump my calories up just a little to jump start my metabolism and get out of this plateau. Today was the first day of the new calorie plan. I am now alloted 1490 calories per day and I only have to burn 600 calories 5 days of the week. I’m not off to a great start today with the calorie burn since I’m so full that it was all I could do to walk the dog after dinner! Ugh. Here is what I ate today and Fit Day tells me it came to 1444 calories so I was a little short of goal.

  • Breakfast – 5 egg whites, 1/2 c oatmeal, 1 tbsp PB
  • Snack – Protein Shake, 4 oz blueberries
  • Lunch – 6.5 oz tuna, 5 oz green beans, 6 oz butternut squash
  • Snack – 1/2 protein bar, 4 oz apple
  • Dinner – 4 oz chicken, 5 oz romaine, 6 oz sweet potato
  • Snack – 3 oz sliced turkey

Let me tell you, phew, that’s a ton of food to shovel down. For those of you wondering, I use a food scale and weigh everything where you see measurements in ounces. I use regular measuring cups where you see cup measurements. The food scale definitely helps a lot since I found that I was way off when I started and don’t trust just eyeballing things unless there is no other choice.

Yes, I’m sure you’re sitting there thinking you don’t have the time to do all that. It really isn’t that hard at all and once you do it a couple days, you fly through it. I just line up my plastic containers and get all the food out. Weigh, weigh, weigh, package, package, package and I’m done. I also pack my daughter’s lunch at the same time but I don’t weigh her food. In the morning we just grab and go. I supplement with a couple cups of coffee (black) too before I hit the door.

I lift weights with my trainer three days per week. One day shoulders and back, one day arms and chest, and one day legs. I’ll post more on that later in the week since it probably needs a post of its own to do it justice. I do cardio completely on my own at home. Right now I am doing TurboFire for my main cardio program. This is a kickboxing based, high intensity interval training program that you do at home on DVD. I’m a huge fan of workout DVDs since I am extremely not coordinated. If I can trip over it I will, even if the object is my own feet or is invisible. I’d much rather make a fool of myself in front of the dogs and kid than in a gym class full of people.

I started off well and good, burning a ton of calories during my 45 – 55 minutes of TurboFire. One workout with a dog walk and I was at daily goal. One bad side effect of improved health (yes, there is one) is a more efficient calorie burn. So where before I was buring 600 calories in 55 minutes of TurboFire and 140 calories in a mile of walking, I now burn 400 tops for the DVD and 60 during the walk. That’s a huge difference. To keep boredom at bay, I’ve been supplementing with swimming, the Wii, and rollerblading with the kid.

Sometimes all it takes is a different form of exercise that you aren’t used to and your exertion goes up. Plus when it’s something fun like playing with the kid, I don’t think of it as exercise really but it counts. I track my calorie burn with my heart rate monitor and I believe it is pretty accurate. I really do feel more energized and sleep better when I do something every day. It still surprises me because I used to just come home and sit in front of the TV. Now I have tons of energy on most days. They say it takes 6 weeks to make or break a habit. I think this helps prove that theory.

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