The cut meant that I had to focus a lot on food. I used My Fitness Pal every day to track my macros, making sure I was hitting the numbers of Protein, Carbs and Fat's that my brother had set out for me. At times I got frustrated, you know I love my food, and having to think about every little thing I put in my mouth could sometimes make me a tad emotional. However, I did find that more often than not, I enjoyed being accountable for the foods I was putting in my body. I liked knowing the nutritional value and content of what I was eating.
Over the holidays and for about two months after, I took a break from macro counting and have to say, at first, I felt relaxed and loved eating what I wanted and when I wanted. I was still pushing myself at the gym and 80% of my meals remained pretty clean, but I wasn't thinking about food all the time. However, after just a few weeks, I started finding that not thinking about food was causing me to feel sluggish, bloated and no longer quite as confident as before. I didn't mind that I wasn't as lean as I was at Christmas, in that I disliked how I looked, but more so that I felt uncomfortable.
Again, the uncomfortable feeling wasn't all about the way I looked. It was more that I felt I wasn't looking after my body. I was back to having days were I would go hours without eating, (I often do this when I'm writing and just get distracted, before Christmas I had to make a conscious effort to pause and get food) where I would eat chocolate for a snack and where I'd get to the end of the day wondering if a vegetable passed my lips. So, in the past few weeks I picked up my phone and began tracking my macro's again. My number's aren't crazy low, in order to get really lean and they are not crazy high for me to bulk up, I am currently in between and liking how I feel again. It's a healthy balance to where I have lots of energy to lift heavy, but also keep myself comfortably trim, for me to be happy.
Today I wanted to share a few little tips on creating that healthy, happy balance and staying on track.
Track macro's or create a daily/weekly menu for yourself to where you know what you are eating and the nutritional content you are consuming. Whatever works for you, just be conscious of the foods you are putting into your body.
Get yourself a cute water bottle and make sure your drinking enough water and are staying hydrated. I don't know if it's just me, but I'm pretty sure I drink more water when I have a pretty bottle to carry round! :p
Stock up on healthier options of treats that you like. I love to keep dark chocolate in the house. I will have the odd bar of Cadburys but I'm trying to program my brain to see dark chocolate as a treat. It's not that I want to cut out mini eggs forever, but sometimes I feel that if something really isn't good for you and there are tasty healthier options out there, then why put the bad stuff in your body just for a 'treat'? I also have things like apple rice cakes for when I'm craving crisps.
Listen to your body. There are some foods our bodies can be intolerant to, make sure you note how you feel when you eat these foods. When I was being lazy, and still trying to be half healthy, I would make sweet potato's for my husband for dinner and eat them too, knowing full well they make me feel bloated. What works for others might not work for you. Yes, people rave about sweet potato's and how healthy they are, but that doesn't mean I should eat them. Pay attention to what works for you to avoid feeling negative and frumpy.
Remember, remember, remember, you are building a healthy lifestyle, not a diet. Workout because you love your body and eat healthy/healthier because it helps fuel your body and mind and sets you up for a more active, happy day. Don't limit yourself or cut out foods you love, (you know I'm never ever going to say no to my Italian treats) but learn to have them in moderation or after a really awesome workout.
How do you stay on track consistently? I'd love to know what works for you?
Have an awesome day!