On low carb days bananas taunt me. No really! They sit together in a pretty little bunch smelling all good just screaming EAT ME! EAT ME! Other than that smoothie banana for the day I don’t give in though. I’m stronger than that!
Since we’re speaking on food let’s stay here for a little while and I’ll share with you some of my thoughts on various eating habits. My first rule of thumb is to ALWAYS REMEMBER you are an individual. There is no person like in you in exact physical make-up. You have to keep that at the forefront when working your plan for eating for LIFE. My second rule is pay attention to how you naturally eat/prefer to eat i.e. do you prefer small frequent meals (a grazer) or do you prefer larger meals etc. Next, what foods do you love/hate and how do they make you feel. I really believe that over the years that the convenience of processed foods and fast foods have taken a huge toll on our minds and bodies therefore it is essential that we take a close look at the state of our meals…WHAT EXACTLY ARE YOU PUTTING IN YOUR BODY???
My story…became a vegetarian cold turkey in 1996, began eating chicken again in late ’97.Mid ’98 saw me vegetarian again gradually becoming vegan by 2000. The time between 2000-2005 saw me moving from a vegan diet to a raw vegan diet and then back to vegetarian. Learning more about weight lifting and finding an increasing need for less soy based protein I added back in eggs and dairy. After the birth of my second daughter I found myself vegan once again for the 2.5years that I nursed. I then added back in dairy and maintained a good balance during my first two serious rounds of following the New Rules of Lifting program.
It was last year as I got closer and closer to my goal and was so wrapped up in making sure I ate enough that I realized on cardio only days I just wasn’t hungry. I was then that I began carb cycling. NOTE: Most people that are strictly looking to lose weight and get in better shape will NEVER need to really worry about cycling their carbs. Me on the other hand, I got big dreams and so I have 4 high carb days and 3 low carb days to help me reach my goals.
I typically eat 3 times a day(maybe 4) and I space my meals at least 4hours apart. Again, this is my style of eating. I like to sit and relax with my meal and my meals take time so I eat less often. That works best for me. I added chicken and turkey back into my diet last year but I mostly eat fish, eggs and beans for my protein. I do eat yogurt and cottage cheese on a regular but limit most other dairy. If I do cheese, it’s 2% and milk is 1%.
One of the main reasons I am currently practicing carb cycling is because my goal is really changing the composition of my body. Last year when I was on lower calories during my recomp I got great results but I realized later that I was smaller than I wanted and I’ve realized recently that I can weigh more and still look good. So this time around my calories are higher to achieve muscle gain but the carb cycling is in place to help lose fat or at the very least not gain any. So far so good! The other reason I carb cycle is for the discipline and the balance. It helps me to stay focused on my goals, fitness and otherwise.
Now though you might not need to carb cycle you should have an idea of what your diet numbers are. Some people are eating more than they need to but most of you are probably eating LESS than what your body needs. Either situation can make progress NULL & VOID so here’s a break down. Plug in your numbers, track your calories for a week and see how well you were doing. Then track your calories(keep a food journal ) for another 21days to keep YOURSELF accountable.
THIS FORMULA IS FOR WOMEN:
BMR=655.1 + (9.563 x kg) +(1.850 x cm)- (4.676 x age)
kg= your weight in pounds divided by 2.2
cm= your height in inches x 2.54
After you get your BMR multiply that by the physical activity(PA) that fits your lifestyle:
Sedentary: little or no exercise BMR x 1.2
Lightly active: light exercise or sports 1-3days wk BMR x 1.375
Moderately active: moderate exercise or sports 3-5days week BMR x 1.55
Very active: intense exercise or sports 6-7days wk BMR x 1.725
Extra Active: very intense daily exercise, sports & physical job or twice daily training BMR x 1.9
Now if you are trying to lose weight subtract 300 from the number you ended up with. (BMR x PA) – 300
If you are strictly trying to build, multiply that number by 20% and add it to your total i.e. let’s say you had a BMR of 1450 PA 1.55
For weight loss (1450 x 1.55) – 300= 2247.5 – 300 = 1947.5
For muscle gain (1450 x 1.55) x .20 = 2247.5 x .20 =449.5 Total calorie intake 2247+449.5 =2697
A note for muscle gain: YOU HAVE GOT TO BE PUTTING IN THE WORK!
Any questions or comments please share!