A few weeks back, I wrote a blog on HOW to find out how many calories you need to lose weight. If you need a refresher, you can check it out HERE <== How Many Calories Do You Need to Lose Weight? NOW, let’s talk about tracking.
I wanted to do something different with this one and NOT just write out the information but instead share with you MY tracking.
You see, I went through a process of adding on some size to my frame this past winter (I got up to about 217, which is BIG for me), buuuuuuuut I will admit that I got a little sloppy and added more fat than I wanted; so I decided about 6 weeks ago it was time to start leaning out.
I’ve leaned out before, and I usually break this up into phases, with phase one just focusing on removing the processed food and adding in more real food with the goal of eating 4 whole food meals a day.
With that, I lost about 12lbs, mainly in the forms of waste, water, junk, and got down to 205 in six weeks.
Now I’m in the process of tracking to figure out how many calories my body needs to continue to lose while maintaining my performance with my workouts.
Here are the results of 14 days of tracking:
Day 1: Weight 205
Day 14: Weight 203
My calories ranged from 1600 – 3600 (that 3600 was my best guess of a cheat meal that I have once a week); thus, I averaged 2600 cals per day, give or take.
That means 2600 cal average with an average drop of 1lb a week.
Also, during this time, according to MyZone, I worked out an average of 63min for 5xweek.
Ok, so NOT a bad starting point!
(I want to stress here STARTING POINT, this can and will change)
At this point, according to the numbers, if I continue to workout 5xweek for one hour AND keep my weekly average at about 2600 cals, I will continue to lose 1lb a week.
Now before I tell you what I’m going to do, I want to share with you some observations that I had when reviewing these numbers:
- -My calories are all over the place! LOL, Seriously 1600-3500!? While this isn’t bad, this will create radical water shifts, which will mess with my weight. Some days I saw the scale go up to 207, and other days 201.
- -I need to focus on being more consistent with my calories; this will give me more accurate numbers on my weigh-in days. PLUS, I have found the body loves routine.
- -Don’t do your final measurements the day after a hard workout. After a harder, heavier workout when my body was sore, inflammation levels were at their highest, and thus, I would hold onto more water, which would increase my weight. So to get to the most accurate measurement, I’d recommend NOT checking your weight the day AFTER a hard workout.
- -I actually hit a weight of 201 the day AFTER a high carb meal (3100 cals and 320g of carbs), nothing that I’m going to respond on making changes to with my eating to but interesting non the less.
- -On the day I ate the least amount of calories (my 1600 -2200 days) my weight was on the higher end of the spectrum the following day. I think this is partly because my body was undernourished (not eating enough of the good stuff). Thus, inflammation (water retention, or my body’s response to a hard workout) levels were higher due to the lack of nutrients (protein, carbs, fats) that my body needed to recover from the workouts.
So What Am I Going To Do?
Right now, my goal is to continue to lean out more (I’d like to see another 10lbs of fat come off), I’m in no rush, BUT of course, I want to test the waters a bit more 😉
What I’m going to do now is keep my cals the same BUT increase my workouts to 75min 5xweek, instead of 60min. This extra 15min may not sound like much, but with you multiple that by 5, it’s equivalent to an extra workout each week.
Adding 15min to a workout is easy and manageable for me.
Plus, I like food and don’t want to eat less, LOL!
Lastly, I’m going to work on keeping my calories more consistent each day and see if I can’t get my days closer to 2600 daily, even on my cheat meal days.
I’ll do another measurement on Friday (which is usually when I measure myself), and we’ll see how my body responds, and I’ll make adjustments from there.
Side note: Tracking is not something that you have to do forever, no. But if you’re not sure where you need to be at, OR you need to become in tune with where you should be at, then tracking your food for a period of time will give you answers. I anticipate tracking for about 12 weeks total; then, after that, I’ll track about every other day or only a few days a week to keep me on track.
Why I’m Sharing This
Using my body and my goals, I want to share with you how our process here at RTC works, and how after a period of time (weeks), you’ll learn so much more about your body and what YOUR body needs.
With this process, you’ll get answers; you’ll see a clear path on what you need to do, and when you have those answers, you have that clear path; things feel simpler.
And when things get feel simpler, results start to become more consistent. 🙂
With more consistent results, you’ll become even more motivated, and things just take off. You’ll find that eventually that life changes, and you find a new ‘normal.
I’ll share with you all next week what happened with my changes. 🙂
Travis Merritt, BS, CPT, (and other letters behind the name) is the Owner of Rowlett Transformation Center in Rowlett, TX.
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