Less Than 4 Weeks Out! Do I count fiber? Photoshoot, Triggers & Is My Bootay Lean Enough?
I have had some pretty decent lazer focus throughout this prep. At 5 weeks out I struggled with diet as I was having a seriously hard time not taking little bites here and there while making my kids lunch for the next day or making my family dinner that I couldn’t even eat.
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5 weeks out. #bikini division. This has been a really rough week. I am completely wiped from lifting. Cardio isn't bad at all and I look forward to my 30 minutes of steady state or my 12 HIIT intervals but diet has been challenging. 3x this week I have gone over cals. Not in an epic binge sort of way but enough that could hinder my weight loss. Being that my body is so wiped, mentally I am too tired to muster up the will power to keep it together in the kitchen when making dinner for my fam. I am happy with my overall progress thus far, just not my progress this week! :/ Get it together Heather! #igotthis #Icandothis #winnersdon'tquite #fitspo #bikinicontest #bikinicompetitor #gymrat #bodybuilding #strengthtraining #diet #workouts #minnesotamayhem
Otherwise, I am been pretty spot on with macros/cals. I have lost an average of 2 pounds in the last two months. I think my backside needs some serious leaning out which is just depressing working this hard to see minimal changes there BUT, its totally normal for that to be the last place to go AND, I am being told by my diet coach – John Gorman and my strength coach Aaron Sidner at REDLine HP that I am on track and looking good. Just have to tighten up a bit more.
At any rate, scale is atill absolutely making me crazy. I’m hungry and crabby and somewhat sluggish and I want to throw the scale out the window. And the mirror for that matter. But, we are our own worst critic. 🙂
Hit a new low this morning… yay. But I am not holding my breath. I will get a new low and then it’s right back up a pound or two for the next few days. These last 4 weeks are always the hardest. My backside needs tightening up and somehow I feel like I won’t have any time to get it to where it needs to be! Scurred! and not scurred at the same time. I have some darn good people around me- coaches and team mates and if I stick to my plan I will be my best on show day.
These are my body fat caliper readings from 9 weeks out and 4 weeks out:
even though I haven’t lost much weight, my body composition is changing for the better. 🙂 See below 🙂
Lifting and Cardio Week 20, 21 & 22.5
This is the same as weeks 18 and 19.
Medium-Sun: Legs (rep ranges, 6-8) 30 mins SS cardio 130 Hrate
High-Mon: Push (rep ranges, 20-30 reps) 12 HIIT
Medium-Tue: Pull (rep ranges, 10-15) 30 mins SS cardio 130 Hrate
Medium-Wed: Legs (rep ranges, 10-20) 30 mins SS cardio 130 Hrate
High-Thurs Push ( rep ranges, 10-15) 12 HIIT
Med-Fri: Pull (rep ranges, 20-30) 30 mins SS cardio 130 Hrate
Off-Sat: 12 HIIT
I did start doing this though: On the days I DO NOT work glutes, I have to do a glute and ham burnout set at the end of my workout. That would include doing 32 x 135 lb hip thrusters holding for 3 counts at the top of every rep (feel the mother effing burn) and then 40 x 45 lb seated ham curls holding for a count of 7 on the bottom of every single rep…. um….. yeah… feel the burn. No pain no gain suckas!
Before my workout today, I had to do some serious self talk to get my ass up off the bench and start warming up. And then, by the end of my workout while we’re all doing core at REDLine HP, coach has us all lined up doing some evil wheel work.
I was working so hard and was so tired from not sleeping well the night before and being in a calorie deficit that I was near tears I almost cried. It was the strangest thing… I just had to cry from the physical stress. I was tired from 5 hours of sleep the night before, I was exhausted, had low on energy and felt depressed. My weight isn’t coming down and it doesn’t look like the glutes and love handle area are making any Improvement.
Just when you think you can’t make it through, you push, you grunt you scream and it’s over. You crawl, drag, or lower yourself away from the bar. The burn has set in and you feel accomplished because you realize that you are stronger than you thought…everyday…it happens everyday. As if I forgot from then day before.
When you see those muscles you built in the mirror, the long term fight , the love for pushing your body, your mind -to really find out what you are made of….that’s why we do it. That is why I love the challenge of a competition. The daily competition with my team mates, the daily competition against myself and the shows done every 1-3 years.
Every. Damn. Day. Strength. Push. LOVE.
Macros are set at about 175 g protein daily, 47 fat and then carbs cycle. High, medium and low days are specified on the workout schedule above.
Low (off day): 85 carbs (Sat)
Medium day: 110 carbs (Tue, Wed, Fri, Sun)
High day: 140 carbs (Mon, Thur)
All foods are tasting like SO GOOD!! Plain ol steamed green beans are like candy! Add broccoli to that list. Things start tasting really sweet, even chicken. (See other #fitchickproblems in this article: You Know You are in Prep When...)
I am definitely feeling more sluggish. I am walking a bit slower and I am not so ready to pop up and run around with my kids. Less than 4 weeks to my first show (MN Mayhem in Duluth) and 7 to my second show (Northern States Natural Classic in Elk River).
For the entirety of my prep I have been counting all carbs no matter if they were fiber or sugar alchols or straight up sugar. When I get hungry, I start rationalizing these rules of mine… I sit here thinking maybe I could fit in some more of “X” if I count net carbs instead or I can eat this because it has sugar alcohols and won’t affect my blood sugar and so on….
Most of my carbs are coming from veggies like cauliflower, broccoli, beets, sweet potatoes, green beans along with trace carbs from turkey jerky, ketchup, Bolthouse farm yogurt dressings and Redhead Chipotle Sauce. I need to get the most bang for my buck with these foods because a pop tart will burn through my carbs a bit too quickly. Then the quest bars are sitting there all tasty calling my name and I sit here and try and justify whether or not I should count all the carbs/fiber like I do with everything else…. it does say there are only 4 net carbs. Can I make the exception cuz I am hungry!!! So of course I look up soluble pre-biotic corn fiber (the ingredient in quest bars) and if it counts for calories or not and all that confusing jazz.
Side note: I did come across a 2013 law suit against quest bars for claiming too low of calories on the nutrition label and not as much fiber as they claimed…. yada yada, lose faith in this company etc etc…. but I still like quest bars because they taste GREAT and are gluten and dairy free, and for the possible unreliable reporting on nutrition labels even though it seems they have ameliorated the issue, I will still count all fiber and carbs in my carb count just in case. I have a lot of leaning out to do in the next 4 weeks and I can’t be switching up my diet because I am hungry.
Anyhoo, back to my “does fiber count” search which only confirmed what I already know about fiber and this is what I have concluded so far. There are two major types of fiber- soluble and insoluble.
Insoluble fiber does not dissolve in water and bypasses the small intestine. It is not fermented or broken down by gut bacteria in the colon but it does hold water to help you soften stool and keep you regular.
Soluble fiber also bypasses the small intestine but is partially broken down and used to feed your gut bacteria.
Both types are essential but I still can’t find a good definitive answer on whether or not you should count soluble fiber for sure when in a serious calorie deficit. It makes sense not to but I need to be consistent at this point and stick to my shit.
Sugar alcohols are low cal sweeteners like erythritol, maltitol and xylitol. Not to be confused with artificial sweeteners like sucralose and ace K which don’t count for any calories and are not digested.
Sugar alcohols are partially digested and I do count them all as well. They can be found in sugar free gum, supplements, Truvia etc. For this reason, I started putting out 3 pieces of gum on the counter instead of leaving out the packs. Otherwise, I will burn through 40 pieces a day… srsly. When I leave the whole pack out it sets me up to keep chewing more pieces which adds to my calories.
Remember last post I could have eaten a bear… well, that is more tolerable now because I expect it all day. The funny thing is, I would rather expect to be hungry all day rather than be hungry only parts of the day when I am not ready for it. It’s a mental dilemma. I can deal with being super hungry all day because I expect it and can focus on ignoring it. It’s the, “I am not super hungry but if it does creep up on me it took me by surprise” and I am less likely to be able to stick to my diet. Hunger takes over and your first thought is FOOD as opposed to “be hungry from the start so you can focus on that” and go into the kitchen with a determined mind.
Did you get all that? What ev, I know I am not the only one on the planet that feels this way…. I think?
Of course the summer festivities don’t stop because I am in prep. We traveled all summer and planning ahead was essential.
The past weekend was labor day weekend and we went up to our friends cabin. I prepped the same stuff I prepped the previous cabin weekend as well as my trip to MO for the Physique Summit.
I made up:
100 gram portions of steam broccoli, cauliflower and green beans
5 ounce portions of cod and turkey breast
Mustard and Redhead Chipotle Sauce
Zevia, La Croix fizzy water and Crystal Light
Epic and Quest Bars
Those with families in prep deserve a damn trophy
Having a family, making dinner for them and making food for my kids lunches can be down right torture. The entire time I am making food I have to think, I am not going to pop a bite, I am not going to put that in my mouth. I am not going to… over and over and over again. It is SO hard not taking random bites, especially when your body is craving food.
The ultimate challenge, try making my Oaty Bites recipe without eating half the bowl. It’s one of my weaknesses along with real, all butter and sugar chocolate buttercream. OMG. Anyhoo, making these oaty bites is a huge challenge. My kids love them, they are easy to tote around and have a good amount of fat and carbs to keep everyone satiated.
Triggers: I swear each prep there’s a new trigger. This prep if I’m focused I swear I don’t feel hungry but the second I walk into the kitchen and start making food, all I want to do is pop a bite of something and then it sends me on a downhill slide to eat a bunch more or keep popping more bites.
My fav ways to spice up foods:
After having discovered BlueApron.com, I now search all my recipes on that site. Why, because they are simple, whole food ingredients with easy to make dinners that turn out down right gourmet and amazing!!! Anyhoo, I couldn’t find any pics of my amazing and gorgeous blue apron dinners because I was too busy eating but this was my latest favorite:
Cucumbers are also in season and I have been obsessed with cucumber vinegar salads:
I rediscovered jicama. I had to make a crockpot pork roast that included jicama and I thought, meh, I’ll get it and put it in the crock pot- I am not eating this meal anyway. After I tried some raw jicama, man, I forgot how much I liked it. It’s crisp, crunchy and like a cross between a water chestnut and a potato. I have baked them into fries but I mostly eat it raw dipped in Redhead Chipotle sauce or mustard mixed with ranch seasoning!
Right when I get up on an empty stomach:
OR (because I can only handle so many stimulants,I have been using samples of fat burners I got at the physique summit. Of those, I can’t tell you which worked better but I can tell you they all made me drink more water so some metabolic reactions were stimulated and hopefully if was fatty acid oxidation!!
Honestly, I need to really dig into all these ingredients and look at studies to see if these ingredients are really effective for fat burning. From what I have researched, many aren’t that effective in targeting fat burning or most supplements are not in the correct dosages. Stay tuned. I will have to get back to you on that one!
SuppRest by Natty Nutrition (LOVE this supp– this balances my hormones like crazy good)
Multi vitamin (every other day)
Bitter melon extract
Sauna (if I have time)
400 mg Magnesium Glycinate (highly absorbable form)
Apple cider vinegar before dinner
CBD Oil – help relax and bring down cortisol levels for recovery and a restful sleep
We got a new bottle of fish oil and it is really good… I mean, it doesn’t taste like fish oil as it shouldn’t. And, my kids like it!
GF2 Crew Photoshoot Sneak Peak
A couple weeks ago my client Angela (@angela_nguyenzel) did and took part in a photo shoot of my clients and myself. The pics turned out fabulous! Stay tuned for the final products on my website 😀
I found some sweet earrings to go with my suit and bracelets. I went to Claires at the Mall of America. super affordabel and lightweight. My kind of ear rings!