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Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Back to Basics

How many of you just SQUEEd because I have a new blog post?!

One of you?

Okay. Jen, this is for you!

Life got crazy in September.  This was the second-to-last time I blogged and the explanation can be found here.  I appreciate the patience.  I'm not sure what to write about any more.  I blogged because people wanted to know how I got fit.  However, recently, people keep asking me about my blog.  So, here's a treat for you.

To summarize in advance: Yes, I've maintained. (boom) Yes, I've gained. (whoops)  Yes, it's constant work.

I have been trying to maintain the weight that I reached in May 2012.  That number was 142.  Without going into the muscle vs. fat, how much does the scale matter debate, at 142, I was lean (enough) to wear a Size 4/Small without even trying anything on. I was comfortable in everything I wore. I felt toned.  I was perfectly happy with the bod.  Looking back, I can see that the last week of September was a turning point for me.  I developed some bad habits.

Me before I stuffed my face every day for 3 months.

Let me explain a little bit.

I lost the weight in May.  I spent all summer maintaining a "clean" lifestyle while having decadent meals on vacation, a cookie now and then, etc.  I also played with working out 3-4 times a week instead of 6.  I wanted to test the waters and see how relaxed I could be with the nutrition and/or fitness before my body started to change in any way.  Because really, who eats clean ALL THE TIME and works out SIX DAYS A WEEK?!?!  I mean, not me..... hopefully.  I love to work out, but I don't want it to be a chore.  Well, I ran my half marathon on October 6. And then I took a break from running.  I wanted to prance around the gym for about 30  minutes 3-4 times per week.  Some weeks it was 2-3 times per week. I wasn't necessarily burned out. I was just going through a lazy streak. I would come home really hungry sometimes. I would eat like 3 dinners.  Plus some grazing.  Granted, these were all "clean" dinners.  For example, a burrito followed by a Larabar followed by toast with Nuttzo and bananas.  I would graze and add on to my heart's desire.  Well, the pounds slowly crept onto the scale.  My skinny jeans became too snug for comfort.  I hit about 146 for a while.  (No biggie, right?)  The week after Christmas I hit 149.4.  AAAAAAAAAAANNNNNNNNNNNNDDDDDDDDDDDDDD we're putting the cookie DoWn.  Isn't it funny how everything is all fun and games until you see a certain number? I've always been like that. I think it's normal not to stress about every little pound, but at some point, the gains are significant.

I knew what I was doing.  I was testing it.  I'll be damned if I have to "start over" ever again.  I also knew that I was eating things that were borderline legit. For example, I'd eat crackers with flax seeds and Nuttzo. I lost track of portions (Nuttzo) and my snacks included some processing (crackers).  I needed to get back to the basics.  I would also have 5 meals in mind, but I was grazing too much.  As Jen said in May, "Maintenance is going to look a lot like dieting."  Again, that's so true.  It took a lot of work to get to 149.  I thoroughly relaxed about food for a solid 3 months.  I enjoyed a Thanksgiving and a Christmas.  I truly feel like this is a part of the life change process.  I needed to see how far I could go without consequences.  Now I know.

So, on Dec. 29 I cleaned it up.
1. Body Fat
My goal is to get back to the 142 range.  Clothes need to fit better.
2. Work Out Schedule
I need to work out at the 5AM shift or the 3:30PM (right after work) time slot.  I got so lazy that I would come home, eat a lot of food, take a nap, and then head to the gym around 8-8:30.  I don't like that pattern.  It messed with my sleep and my appetite.
3. Nutrition
I need to get back to clean food. Like squeaky clean. And less bread.  Anyway, I want to basically not worry about recipes and I want to mostly eat meals and snacks that are basic.  Meat, veg, carb. Protein, carb. etc.  So, I plan to always have the following foods. I know how to make simple meals & combinations with all of these:
nut butter (Jen, stop giggling.)
sweet potatoes
brown rice

Seriously. That's it.

Here is a picture of the body in August.  This is maintenance mode done RIGHT.  I love it.

For the record, I've been back to business for 3 days and I'm already seeing 146 on my scale.  Hopefully I can get down to 142 in a couple of weeks so that I can relax a little bit more (but not as much as I did the first time).


  1. I didn't squee out loud, but my heart jumped and I yelled hooray in my head. :)

  2. Me too. And I have an eerily similar post in the works. Funny how quickly those pounds can add back up...