Day 7: Back in the Saddle

Today, I decided to bounce back from cheating the night before. I woke up and went to my workout of choice (orange theory!!!) and tried to burn through as much of those glycogen stores as possible. I’ll probably do a post about my favorite workouts here tomorrow. I kept it keto– string cheese, some pecans, a little avocado. I honestly felt great! I didn’t feel bloated or sick– I honestly felt really good.

My friend and I went out to eat and settled on chipotle. Even though my favorite thing in the world is their cilantro-lime rice, I passed in favor of creating a salad (sans dressing) with steak, cheese, mild salsa, and corn salsa (didn’t realize this mistake until later). Sadly, they were out of guacamole. Honestly, I thought it was really delicious and shockingly compliant, except for the corn, which I didn’t realize was not keto friendly until I was done with my bowl.

However, later in the night, I did go out again. I stuck to gin and tonics which are my absolute favorite drinks, even though I know the tonic water is pretty carb heavy (which was shocking for me to find out). At least I didn’t have beer, even though I love it. I am trying to cut beer out at least until march in the hopes of flattening my stomach a bit more.

Honestly, today was the first day I saw real changes to my body, which was crazy for me. I mostly saw it in my waist, where my hourglass shape was looking a whole lot more defined. I’m not weighing myself until the 4 week and 8 week marks, so I’ll update then. But for the day after a cheat day, I was in much better shape than expected.

I also was so proud of myself for not falling completely off track. I was really tempted to, but I decided that me and my health are worth more. Here’s to sticking strong and overcoming setbacks.

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Day 6: Cheating

Well, I’ve been gone for a few days. I decided I’m going to retroactively write my posts from the past couple of days since this blog is about accountability. I’m a little bummed I couldn’t even finish out a whole week, but I’m trying not to beat myself up over it.

Today started out with the best of intentions. I ate all my meal prep, was working through the brain fog.

And then I got a text from one of my best friends asking to come visit and hang out this weekend. Obviously I said yes, since a diet should never come before friendship/real life experiences, but I immediately started stressing. Because the phrase “all you can eat sushi” was being thrown around. A little tidbit about me, but sushi is my absolute favorite food, of all time. I love it so much and it makes me so happy. However, I didn’t want to undo my past five days of progress getting through the keto flu.

And then I found a blog post. I can’t for the life of me find it again even though I have searched and searched and searched. Basically, it talked about not punishing yourself for cheating, and that you can’t “fail” on a diet. In the past, when I’ve messed up diets, I usually end up just going fully off the rails and dropping the whole thing because I feel like I “failed” and can’t recover. But this post made me feel like you can bounce back, and you can’t let one mistake derail your journey.

I debated for a long time about whether I wanted to share this or just delete my account. But honestly, after seeing some of you engage with my posts, I decided that I did want to maintain accountability and transparency in my journey.

So I ate sushi. I ate a lot of sushi. And it was so great.

Day 4: Cravings!

Immediately after finishing my blog post last night, I was hit by an intense multitude of cravings. I wanted sushi and enchiladas and pancakes and rice– I hope my carvings don’t stay this strong the whole time! I held out though and didn’t succumb to any of it. I know it sounds kind of wimpy to be talking about “staying strong” on day 3, but I’ve read that the first week can definitely be the hardest so I’m allowing myself this luxury.

Today is the first day I experienced some kind of satiety though. I ate my breakfast around 7 and then didn’t get hungry again until 2pm! I’ve never gone 7 hours comfortably without eating. I hope the rest of keto is like that. I did fall apart a little when I got home and was definitely a little heavy handed on the snacking– it was all compliant (cheese, olives, prosciutto), but I was definitely snacking out of boredom as opposed to actually being hungry. That’s definitely something I’ve always struggled with and something I’m hoping to overcome with time.

I am also so intensely sick of my meal prepped salad. It’s definitely gotten a little gross and I am not thrilled about eating it for two more days. I think I honestly do so much better with hot meals– my bran somehow codes them as more filling– so I’ll probably be sticking with that during the cold winter months. Next week I really want to make a chia seed pudding, some beef bulgogi bowls, and either some chicken thighs in mushroom sauce or a nice salmon burger in a lettuce wrap. I’m also hoping to try to making keto biscuits and gravy! What do you think I should make? I’ll try to start posting photos of what I’m eating– this weeks meals have been less than glamorous but maybe I’ll do a weekend breakfast shot.

I’m also definitely facing a couple of challenges in the next few days! We have catered lunch tomorrow at work, I have a friend visiting this weekend, and then I’m traveling for work next week! Lots of picking off menus and not sticking with meal prep. My plan is to just stick with salads and a fatty dressing, like maybe a balsamic. I’m mostly worried about the sugar content of some of the dressings you could get at restaurants. Any tips would be so appreciated.

Until next time!

Day 3: Keto Flu?

Wow! I can honestly say I never expected anyone to see this blog, let alone comment or follow! Thank you so much to everyone who engaged with my previous posts– i SO appreciate it and would love to hear more of your tips, advice, and thoughts!

Today has been full of ups and downs. Sadly, I had to work from home today due to a nasty cold, so I’m not sure if the general fatigue/fuzziness I’ve been feeling over the past two days and today were from keto flu or this cold! Although I will say I had one of the worst headaches I’ve had in a WHILE today, but again, unclear of the source. On the plus side, maybe this will make the actual keto flu more tolerable because I’m just not noticing it?

I’ve also had some major cravings kick in! I’ve been intensely thinking about chocolate cake, cookie dough, brownies– which is crazy because I have never had a sweet tooth! Typically if i need something sweet, I’ll go for dark dark chocolate. But now I’m craving all of these sugary treats! I’m guessing that could be do to the sugar withdrawal, and hopefully it goes away soon. I also have been craving fast food– something else I never eat! I’ve heard the cravings can get pretty bad, but I’m committed to this and I definitely can’t cheat three days in! (Although I did have a small square of 80% dark chocolate– no added sugar and only 2g carbs though!).

I also decided to switch up my meals a little bit today. I realized I get bored of the same food easily, so I’m going to have to switch up my meal prep this weekend to make sure I have enough variety. I had the salad for lunch today, and had the chicken and green beans for dinner. I also added in some mashed cauliflower which was actually incredible. The brand is “Veggie Made” and it’s their roasted garlic cauliflower mash– definitely recommend! 3g net carbs. I also had a much tinier piece of chicken, so I wrapped it in a slice of provolone and prosciutto to keep those macros up. I’m honestly shocked by how much I can eat– especially of foods I previously thought of were “off-limits”– and still not hit my calorie limit! That’s something I’ve always struggled with in the past, so I’m honestly shocked about that part.

I’ve also been experiencing hunger differently. I was pretty hungry soon after breakfast– which is weird because I had the same breakfast as the last two days and was perfectly content then. I’m wondering if it’s because I skipped my morning coffee and caffeine is an appetite suppressant. I had a string cheese snack around 11:20, then lunch at 2, and then I was legitimately just not hungry at all until 7. Did i finally experience the satiety everyone has been talking about? From salad?

Also, does anyone have apps they like to track macros with? I’ve been religiously using my fitness pal for years, but I realized this morning that their macros only count total carbs, not net, so my macros always look more “off” than I would like them to be. I’ve only been over by 1 or 2 g, but I’d love a more accurate count since it’s definitely overestimating.

Until tomorrow!

Day 2: Pork Rinds

Well, two days so far on keto. I can’t lie and say I’ve felt a massive difference, but I’ll drop my meal plan for the next 6 days and talk about the initial shift. First off, it’s really jarring to think “fat is bad” your whole life and then suddenly have to shift that. Cheese and bacon, foods I had always thought were “bad”, suddenly are not off-limits anymore. It’s been crazy. At first I was wondering if I was going to struggle to hit my fat limit, but so far that hasn’t proved to be an issue. I am sticking to 20g of carbs, which is really the important thing here!

Here’s my meal plan for the next 6 days:

Breakfast: 2 eggs, 2 strips of bacon, half an avocado. Also coffee with my absolute favorite non-dairy creamer, Ripple (2g net carbs per 2 tbsp). I’ve been surprised by how much i LOVE this breakfast. I definitely stay full for a good 4-4.5 hours, and it just tastes to good! In the past I’ve always been an avocado toast or overnight oats girl, but this honestly is just as quick to prepare and makes me feel a lot better. I cooked all my bacon on Sunday (just threw it in the oven for 15 min at 400) and just reheat it quickly in my egg pan. Speaking of eggs, I’m an over-medium girl. I know some people can’t stand the jammy yolk, but I can’t get enough of it! I just throw these in a pan with the slightest bit of olive oil, cover it, and let it go until the yolks look somewhat set. Amazing! I also wouldn’t be able to function in the mornings at work without my coffee, and ripple is such a clean tasting, pea based creamer. Definitely worth the extra carbs. I have been looking at keto MCT based creamers recently for the increased fullness and focus, but I’m on the fence. Let me know in the comments (if anyone is actually reading this) what your favorite keto creamer is (non dairy only please!!)

Lunch: Chicken thigh and green beans. I know, I know, probably not enough fat. I roasted both of these in olive oil, so I counted at least a tbsp between the two. If you haven’t already guessed, my favorite way to cook is to just throw things in the oven and wait until they brown. Pretty foolproof and I think it adds so much flavor to veggies. I like this lunch, but it’s kind of blah. I work in an office where most of us eat lunch at our desks, so it’s always challenging to pick something that isn’t going to smell weird. I’m just really self-conscious of what I’m eating for lunch, so I’m trying to keep it as benign as possible. Although, I have not been feeling very full after lunch, so I will definitely need to switch things up for next week. I’m thinking about experimenting with some mashed cauliflower– my macros this week won’t allow it, but maybe next week will be more forgiving.

Snack: I’ve been packing snacks since I typically work out after work (any other orange theory fans?) and I will S T R U G G L E if I go from 12:30 to 8:30 without eating. I’ve been doing a mix of olives, mozzarella string cheese, and pecans (the lowest carb of all the nuts). Honestly, I’ve been loving it. It feels like I have an afternoon cheeseboard. I also didn’t feel any type of energy lag during my Monday night workout, so that’s a good sign.

Today, I also decided to try the infamous pork rinds before buying a giant container off amazon. To be honest, I don’t know how I feel about them? I think the smell is pretty off putting, but I do like the texture. In terms of taste– the jury is still out. I put a little bit of salsa on mine and honestly I couldn’t taste anything except salsa. I think I’ll be holding off on the big jar for now, but I could definitely see myself reaching for these if I’m craving chips.

Dinner: Big mac salad. I know, I know, it sounds weird, but it’s actually pretty great. I tend to have a love hate relationship with salads, but I’m actually loving this one. And that’s coming from someone who’s never actually had a big mac! I’ve been using this recipe: https://www.wholesomeyum.com/recipes/big-mac-salad-cheeseburger-salad-low-carb-gluten-free/ with just a couple of modifications. Namely, I didn’t have paprika and didn’t want to find it, so I added the tiniest dash of ketchup instead. I also used iceberg lettuce because strangely enough I like it better than romaine. The dressing to salad ratio on this one is HEALTHY. Definitely a ton of dressing in comparison. I am not a big mayo fan, but I will say this reminds me of a burger sauce. I also didn’t blend it because I’m a fan of pickle chunks. I’ve also been drinking a cup of bone broth to keep the keto flu at bay. However, I’ve been feeling hungry a couple of hours afterwards. I don’t want to eat again, but I’m not totally sure what to do about it. Any advice is always appreciated!

The Journey Begins

If you keep going, you won’t regret it. If you give up, you will.

Thanks for joining me!

I’m just a girl trying to make a change. I decided to go the blog route in the hopes of increasing my accountability, and maybe soliciting advice or comments from whoever happens to stumble on this. I’ve decided to keep myself anonymous, just because I have a job and I don’t necessarily want my coworkers reading about my weight loss journey. Here are the basics: I’m in my early 20s, I’m overweight, and I’m unhappy about it. And now I want to change that.

I’ve struggled with my weight and weight loss my whole life. I’ve been an emotional eater for as long as I can remember, and I can’t really remember a time where I felt totally comfortable in my own skin. I’ve always had a tall and curvy body type, but now we’ve passed from curvy to simply overweight. I’ve been going through a bit of a rough patch emotionally– transitioning from college to a full time job and suddenly seeing this vast openness when I look ahead, instead of a clearly defined path. I’ve also been struggling with feeling lonely in a new city, but also really needing and enjoying solitude after work or spending time with friends. All of this has coalesced into generally feeling pretty bad and neglecting my health and my body.

I was on track before the holidays in terms of diet and exercise, however an overuse injury in my ankle has sidelined running for me, which I think was really, really helping. I know 70% of weight loss happens in the kitchen, and I think I had been ignoring that simply by seeing results from increased workouts. Now that my workouts have lessened in intensity, I really need to focus on and reshape my diet. I’ve always been a yo-yo dieter, sticking to something strictly for a week or so, then falling off the wagon for much, much longer. Coupled with turning 21 and discovering that some beer does taste good, my poor diet is definitely reflected in my mid-section. I’m embarrassed to admit it, but this is the first time in my life i’ve ever been out of “onederland” and that desperately needs to change.

So, to summarize so far:

  1. I’m doing this because I need to change and this is the worst my body has been. Ever.
  2. I’m making this blog to hold me accountable and prevent the yo-yoing
  3. I’m going to be as transparent as possible about this process and how I feel during it

So, why keto? There is a sort of temporal urgency to this. I’m going on a tropical vacation in mid march and I want to feel comfortable in a bathing suit. And frankly, Keto is the fastest diet out there. I also try to stick to a low-fodmap diet, which surprisingly coincides well with keto (lots of healthy fats, no sugars, etc.). I’m also hoping it keeps me feeling full. I’ve always struggled with not interpreting hunger signals properly (or ignoring them all together) so I’m hoping that I can try to decrease how much I’m eating without risking getting hangry. I’ll be meal prepping every weekend and trying my best when I’m traveling for work or have to eat out for other reasons. I’m also logging all of my food into my fitness pal in order to try to track everything more efficiently.

Well, here goes nothing. Wish me luck.