Lets talk about a little something that I like to call “calorie math.” This is the fun topic where people pretend or believe that they are doing great with their “diet,” (FYI I HATE the word diet, because diets don’t work, you should call it a lifestyle change rather than a diet… but then again, diet is a noun and my current diet is vegetarian and that is also part of my lifestyle.. big circle *sigh* – moral – don’t say “you are on a diet,” make diet and lifestyle interchangeable – example, my current lifestyle/diet does not include meat..) but they are actually consuming WAY more than they thought because they aren’t tracking it! I just called myself out. BAM. I’ve done it for years now. “Waaaa, why am I stuck at this
current size? How come I can’t get rid of my belly? Why do my arms just keep getting BIGGER, rather than trimming with all this weight training and push-ups?!” OH, BECAUSE I WAS EATING ENOUGH FOR 2 GROWN MEN.
Last year at this time, I was doing daily workouts and I was getting BUILT, but then it stopped. I just couldn’t beat my dreaded “plateau.” I was so frustrated about the fact that I was working out SO hard (I was half assing my 30 minute workouts and conveniently “missing” my cardio days) and I was eating well (I was eating well at work, while at home, we would have 2-3 glasses of wine each night and would split a burger, boneless wings and sweet potato fries 2-3 times each week, but we SPLIT it, so its ok?…), so WHY was I stuck? I even went with the whole “I must be stuck at this plateau because I am older” and “I must have way more muscle than I did in college, because that’s the ONLY way I could be 25lbs heavier, right?” WRONG!
So then came the Fall of 2016: I had fallen off the wagon so hard (for a big fat sad reason that most people would justify, as did I for a few months) that I landed in a big pile of horse shit that just wouldn’t come off because it was baked on by the sun.. So fast forward to my decision in November 2016 (the same month I ran my 5th half marathon…), to go on one of those dreaded things called a “diet.”
I had become SO GOOD at convincing myself that my caloric intake was fine that I needed a big slap in the face to remember that whole thing called calorie math. Calories in vs. calories out. How much food do you really need to consume to maintain energy levels? Remember that food is fuel?
So 2.5 weeks of a solid Ultimate Reset (I fell off the wagon with some wine those last few days), and I learned CRAP LOADS about myself. I learned that I don’t care about meat and 1200 calories each day is actually enough food if you do it right. I also learned that less than 1000 calories makes me want to kill someone… but in a lazy way because I wouldn’t have energy to exert because of my limited food. So thus after a few weeks of the Ultimate Reset “diet,” my diet changed (see what I did there?… I went on a “diet,” and learned that I didn’t want meat in my diet and that I didn’t need all that other crap in my diet/lifestyle.. boom.)
Fast forward to 2017 – HELLO MYFITNESSPAL APP! I love you little buddy. You hold me accountable and tell me that I’m doing awesome. You make me realize how much (or little) I need to give me enough energy to run and lift after work.
Today, for example:
- Breakfast – 1/2 cup of oatmeal with maple syrup and flax seeds and cinnamon, a few pieces of cantaloupe around 10am
- Lunch – Walnut and pear salad at a restaurant with co-workers (where I had to explain that, no I don’t want any protein on my salad.. it was an entertaining conversation, my co-workers are cool and picked on me)
- Snack 1.5 hours before my workout – spaghetti squash and spinach with garlic
- WORKOUT: 3 Miles!! And then a killer chest, back and bi’s workout
- Post workout drive home: 1 scoop shakeology, 1/2 scoop whey protein
- Dinner: Bunless blackbean burger with (GASP) katsup and a bag of frozen broccoli
- SNACK! 21 stoned wheat thins and home made guacamole
LESS THAN 1400 CALORIES! And I wasn’t hungry. I have a hunger for abs. And this is how I will get them. 😉
SO the moral of my story will be more evident when I release my 2 week results of following my calorie math… I’m digging my new DIET (Lifestyle), and its here to stay.
DO NOT CONFUSE: If you are following calorie math and you are setting a calorie goal each day, MAKE SURE THAT YOU FOLLOW SOME SORT OF MACRO CALC! (Also tracked at a high level in myfitnesspal app).. Calorie math is not an excuse to eat low-calorie crap. Go the whole food route and you’ll sustain your energy.