Pork Donburi with a chili oil soy sauce
For those interested- in my own training/nutrition I'm working on leaning out. I wanted to share some of what I'm doing to see if it gives any of you a different perspective/ideas on your own nutrition journeys.
Goal-wise, I know I tend to be happiest between 12-15% bodyfat. That's sufficiently lean for me to feel athletic, but also gives me the leeway to enjoy the foods I like. Poundage-wise I'm guessing I'll sit happiest around 190-195#, but I'm not terribly tied to that number.
I started focusing on refining what I was eating on 1/23.
In eating, my focus is on getting as much protein as I can while eating in a caloric deficit. I want to lean out while retaining as much muscle as possible. A big obstacle for me achieving this will be lack of time to cook and lack of time to eat, so both have to be able to happen fairly quickly and easily.
Because that's the main thing that will hold me back, I've laid out what my 'best day' scenario will look like, and also what my 'hits the fan day' looks like.
Hits the Fan Day- Early AM- RX Bar (210 Cal, 12g Pro) AM- Scoop Protein Powder (100 Cal, 30g Pro) Lunch- Hannaford's Wrap (520 Cal, 32g Pro) Afternoon- Scoop Protein Powder (100 Cal, 30g Pro) Dinner- Biggest Hannafords General Tso's Chicken I can find (~800 Cal, 40g Pro)
Total- ~1750 Cal, 144g Pro
That's a little low on protein for my liking, but I know that puts me in a solid deficit, and besides the bar and protein, all is sourced easily by a 10 minute trip to the H. Also, none of it is 'hard' for me to eat. Compliance is super easy for me on this.
My 'best day' version of this is pretty much the same thing, I'm just replacing the Hannaford's pre-made stuff with slow cooked chicken thighs in a variety of sauces over rice. With that, I'm not really measuring quantities at all, but if I find my progress is stalling, I might bust out the kitchen scale. I know I'm in a caloric deficit when I'm mildly hungry, but not so hungry that I get a headache or my energy dips.
This is obviously very veggie and variety-light- I know this works for me though, and I'm supplementing with a multi-vitamin. As I find more time available, I'd like to add more veggies into this mix. 2-3 meals a week I cook with Paloma, and when we do that, we make pretty much whatever we want. With the steep caloric deficit I stay in on other days this balances out, even if we make a deep dish pizza, chicken parm, etc. That's something that's important to me to continue to do, so I'm building it into the foundation of how I eat. I wouldn't at all consider it a 'cheat meal'.
Looking at how this has run for me the past several weeks:
-From 1/23-1/30 my bodyweight increased by 2#, but so did my muscle mass, which resulted in a 0.5% decrease in bodyfat. This was also a week where I was getting into a groove.
-From 1/30-2/6 my bodyweight dropped down while my muscle mass increased a whole bunch at +5#. This is an erroneous reading, I'm not sure if I had an extra-high level of sodium the day before, or even if my feet were super rough or something that day (#barefootlife), but I did not gain 5# of muscle in a week. That being said, the weight number on the scale is measured independent of the bioelectrical impedance reading of the Inbody, and that reflects what I felt like was happening.
-From 2/6-2/13 I had a pretty compliant week. Scale-wise that number stayed steady, and I think that's largely because I had a good amount of jalapeno poppers while watching the Super Bowl, then used the Inbody the following morning. If I weighed in on Tuesday morning, I imagine that number might be lower.
Over the past three weeks that I've been focusing on nutrition my bodyfat percentage has dropped from 22.1-19.6%. This is at a pace that I'm happy with, hasn't made me struggle with eating/compliancy, and I don't think has made me cranky at all (you'll have to ask Kristen for the true evaluation of that though). Somewhat surprisingly to me, my skeletal muscle mass has increased by 3#. I expect this increase to taper off shortly and start to hold at a steadier number.
The takeaway from that flukey week is that no individual datapoint is really that valuable, and that only by looking at the change in things over time can you really get a sense of what's happening.
I'll continue to update, maybe with some notes on my training as well, if this proves interesting and helpful to you all.
Yours in Food + Fitness,