As I make my way through Week 9 of the 90 day transformation program, I wanted to pop in here and fill you in on how the second month went.
I traveled two weeks in a row in July, so following those weeks’ meal plans wasn’t possible. Since the travel was by car, I was able to bring at least some of the breakfast and snack items with me, like bread, deli meat, greek yogurt, protein bars, protein shakes, and dried fruit (instead of fresh). Beyond that, I was subject to whatever the hotel or local area had to offer.
That first trip was to Desert Classic. Though I got scolded by my coaches after, this trip was like a working vacation for me, so I freely indulged in appetizers, cocktails and even dessert one night. No surprise that I weighed in with a couple extra pounds at the end of that week. It’s not like I actually gained a bunch of weight though. I dropped it within a couple days of coming home. I think I just retained extra water or something from eating the higher sodium restaurant food and sugary drinks.
The second trip was to the Bay Area for an in-person conference with my business mentors and fellow entrepreneurs. They provided delicious and healthy lunches for our meetings, so I felt like even if I wasn’t sticking exactly to my meal plan, I was staying on track. I did have a couple glasses of wine while I was there, but still weighed in less than the week of Desert Classic and actually slightly less than the week before.
Week 8 was the first full week I was back at home and done with travel. My daily calorie intake was cut down from 1600 to 1500. I didn’t think 100 calories would make that much of a difference, but I definitely felt more hungry and tired all week. I also wondered if my body was finally adapting to the enormous amount of protein I was eating every day.
The end of the week marked the second in-person check-in with the coaches. Compared to the first check-in on Day 1, I’ve lost 8 pounds and 2% body fat. I’ve also lost inches around my waist, hips and thighs. I was surprised I had lost so much weight! When I started, my only goal around weight loss was to shed the few pounds that I lost during Burn and then regained when I had to stop working out because of my knee injuries. I did that after the first 3 weeks of this program, and then apparently kept going.
It just goes to show how much your diet can affect your body. In addition to the calorie intake goal, I was also given a calorie burn goal of 1000 calories per week. I don’t think I’ve hit that goal once so far because of my knees. It’s been a lot of trial and error to figure out what exercises won’t trigger my knees, and the errors would take a couple days at least to recover from. So I was working out maybe one or two days a week, aside from dance. As I upped my dance training, I cut out the trial and error altogether because it wasn’t worth straining my knees if it wasn’t dancing. So the only real, consistent change has been monitoring my calories and changing what I eat. A lot more protein, a lot less fat, and healthier forms of carbs (same ratio as the protein) have led to 8 pounds lost.
Let’s be real here – there is no way I’m counting calories myself when this program is over. But I will have three months’ worth of meal plans to reference, so I won’t need to.
I’ve been thinking about what foods I definitely want to keep around on a regular basis. I’m definitely a fan of the protein bars and protein shakes. A fellow dancer clued me into Kirkland brand protein bars (from Costco) that have the same nutrition facts as Quest bars, but cost almost half as much. The only downside is there aren’t as many flavors, but I’m rarely not in the mood for chocolate chip cookies or brownies, so there probably won’t be a problem there. Starting the week of Desert Classic, my coaches had me try these Premier protein shakes, also from Costco (and apparently Amazon, I’ve discovered just now!). They’re premade drinks, not a powder, so they were super easy to take with me on my trips and have a ridiculous amount of protein in them (30 grams) plus a lot of vitamins and minerals. The chocolate flavor is delicious.
The bars and shakes definitely stay. Easy way to curb my sweet tooth. I’ve also become a fan of egg whites. I appreciate the low calories, high protein, and the fact I don’t need to worry about fat or cholesterol. They can get a little boring, but I have a bunch of varieties of Mrs. Dash in my cupboard now to help with that. I think I’ll also include more berries in my breakfast like they’ve been having me do. It’s fun to have such colorful breakfast plates! As long as I can catch it on sale, I think I’ll also keep the ground turkey around. I’ve had some pretty good dinners that included ground turkey over the past couple months.
This final month of the program is also the final month until Embassy Ball! I originally signed up to help me prepare for Desert Classic, but maybe it was meant to be that I’d miss out on that one because now it feels like a more complete end to one chapter and beginning of another at Embassy. This week, they actually bumped my calorie count back up, to 1700 this time. The goal is to help me build more muscle, which should actually move the scale up a bit too. That’s fine with me because if I lose any more weight, I’m afraid I won’t fit in my dress.
This program has made me a lot more mindful and aware of what I’m putting in my mouth and how much. I’m a serial snacker, so having to look at serving sizes more closely was a rude awakening to how much I was oversnacking.
One thing’s for sure though – I am definitely having a glass of wine after dancing at Embassy Ball!