Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Caffeine Sucks, The Scale Sucks, and I'm Weird

Decided to toss out another update since it's been a while.

Caffeine Sucks

So here is an update on how I have been doing without caffeine...BLAHHHHHHHH...OK it's not that bad but man it was a rough first week. I went from drinking 18 oz of french pressed coffee to drinking 1 coffee mug of green tea. The first few days I switched to a blend of decaf and regular coffee and then switched to just green tea. I haven't really had issues with energy during my workouts. I take A B12 or vitamins (orange triad) on those days and seem to do just fine. I don't have any energy throughout the day but it has gotten better. I did go without the green tea one day and it was awful, I felt like I was a zombie. I do seem to have sustainable energy, but nothing great thus far, but the main thing is I haven't been sleeping better like I thought I would. I did for a few nights but the same waking up in the middle of the night business is still happening. I hope that gets better.

The Scale Sucks

Well my wife did a good thing. She hid the scale from me last week, and she and I agreed that I would weigh first thing in the mornings on Wednesdays. Well I did this morning and....Didn't lose a friggin pound. I was very distraught and wondered what the heck I could be doing wrong. I had her check my measurements and then I saw what happened. I lost an inch on my chest and stomach again. Yes a full inch, so I am almost back to the size I was before my Christmas massacre of calories. The kicker is I haven't lost weight? So what has been happening? Well I been hitting the gym HARD, especially on leg days. I had her check those measurements and BAM. 1 inch gained in my legs and hips. I can definitely tell that some muscles are starting to come out and that I look a bit better, but my legs are growing and they will always be the first to grow. I'm happy with that progress. As long as I am building muscle, the fat will fall off right after, but that doesn't necessarily translate to weight loss.


My wife was talking to someone about going to a party. She was asked if she was on that weird diet that I was on. She politely stated that eating real food is hardly weird. She was told that because it had so many restrictions, that it was weird and she stood by her comments. This kind of bothered me at first, but to be honest this is how the world views people who want to be in shape and healthy. It's weird to get up and go to the gym 4 days a week. It's weird to be able to push 850 LBs with your legs. It's weird to eat unprocessed food and watch your calories. If it was easy, everyone would have great physiques and no one would have diabetes or health issues. Folks, don't pay attention to the masses. Everything that you do is going to be weird to people. It takes hard work and dedication to make your fitness goals. It also takes sacrifice. It may be weird to your friend that you don't go out on Fridays and eat like crap and drink all night, but you know what? Saturday morning when you're running and got through a work out. You've accomplished something. You're one step closer to your goals and physique while they're sleeping until noon recovering. If that's weird, then I am all for it. I'd rather be weird and healthy, than "normal" and out of shape.

Friday, January 18, 2013

Calories in vs Calories out + Update

Back again for another blog post here. Today I was just thinking how hard all of this can be, and for anyone starting out, but in the end it'll be all worth it. Right now I cook most of my meals, log everything, write about it, research and help other people as much as I can. It can be a daunting task and even tedious in some cases. However this week I saw the weight that I had put on during Christmas start to come off and it gave me a sense of accomplishment and renewed my motivation. Just remember stick to it and you will reap your gains.

A person recently asked me on facebook "Hey how much do i need to do at the gym to lose 10 lb's" My response was to not worry about what you burn rather what you eat. It's easy to think that if we go run for hours or ride a bike that the weight falls right off. I used to think this as well. I'd work out for an hour, do 30 mins of cardio and feel great, only to follow that by going to eat some crazy fast food meal. Lets look at something here:

Estimate calories burned during a 1 hour (yes 1 full hour) of cardio at the speed of 5 without stopping is 600 calories.

A big mac value meal, not even super sized is 1000-1100 calories. So even if you ran/jogged for a full hour you would still be in a caloric surplus! (I know there are other caloric losses after the exercise, this is for simplicities sake) This doesn't even take into account that your meal you just consumed has 200 grams of carbs and only 30 grams of protein. This will leave you hungry in a few hours.

What is all boils down to is calories in vs calories out. This is something I had to learn, and yes Paleo helped me lose weight due to the caloric deficit but it was those foods that helped me feel full and satisfied. A lot of the chemicals and by products in processed food clog up your body's sensors in thinking that it isn't full. Real food does not do this. That is why I stick with paleo(ish) foods. So next time you think about jumping into a gym and doing all of that work, make sure you know what you're eating and that it doesn't sabotage all of your hard work!

Now my hypocritical ass will give an update of how I am doing. It took two weeks for me to start shedding weight. My body either had to get used to me eating normal again or maybe it was the increased carb intake then what I was used to, but it's finally coming out. My two week weight is back down to 254.2. I started out at 261. I could not believe I put on 15 pounds over the holidays, but I can't dwell on the past and just need to focus on the future. My measurements are all the same as they were when I finished the challenge, except my arms are getting slightly bigger (woot!). There are two things that I have decided on and i'll share those in their own paragraphs.

First I am tapering down my caffeine in take and may even cut it out completely (for a while). I have had sleeping problems like no other, and I super caffeine sensitive. SO I have put two and two together and gotten that I may need to cut down or even cut out the caffeine to get to where I want to be. I have already started halfing my caffeine intake  from 18 oz of coffee a morning to 9. This already is giving me slight headaches and withdrawal symptoms. Tomorrow I will do even less coffee and by sunday, I am only going to be doing green tea. Wish me luck on this one.

 Once I hit my normal weight of 240-245, I am going to start an intermittent fasting protocol. I am going to follow this website's guidelines: Basically the premise of it goes against everything anyone was ever told ever in the fitness world but it has some incredible data. My ultimate goal is to be 220-230 and hopefully this will catapult me into that by my 30th birthday.  

As for the Ocean Avenue stuff, I am completely out of the smoothie protein. This stuff was absolutely fantastic. It tasted so good. THe only thing is 1 serving is 13 grams, so I was having to use 2-3 scoops post workout of even for a snack. I still take the empower but I do not see any result or noticeable results from it. I do not take the empower or focus any longer as they were giving me weird headaches. I do have the berry protein and it is good but a little too tart for me. My wife loves it though. All in all the products are very good and if you would like to try them I can put you into contact with the right people for samples!

Monday, January 7, 2013

Weekly Update

This was a good week. I went to the gym 4 times and have been getting off of my ass more. I changed my workout splits and don't know why I didn't do this previously. My new splits look like this:

Day 1 : Chest & Shoulders

Day 2: Back  & Traps

Day 3: Legs (Quads & Hams)

Day 4: Calves/Bi's/Tri's/Sprints

This helped me get through a full arm workout for the first time in a while. When I was done with the major muscles, my tri's or bi's would be so worn out that I could barely get through anything, and not get sore at all.

This week of eating hasn't gone exactly that great. There was a lot of things that happened that I ended up saying eff it and eating more calories than I was supposed to. I think this was a result of me trying to lower calories too much. I had planned on doing 2200 cals per day for the week and this is just not feasible. Although I make good choices when eating out, I over ate because I was so hungry at the end. This goes back to the low carb thing, but I am not going to go into that right now. On Fridays, my wife and I have date night. This week we ended up going to a local bar/pub type of place. I ate some chicken nuggets that aren't breaded, but wrapped in bacon and fried, then dipped in buffalo sauce. I am sure the 6 wings I ate were in the 750-1000 calorie range, which would've been fine but I ate chips & queso and some french fries. This wouldn't have been a big deal had I not gone over calories the next two days. Ohwell live and learn. I decided this week that I am going to weigh and track everything, but I am also going to listen to myself. If I am starving at the end of the day I need to eat regardless of calories. Being hungry is what causes me and others to fail at any diet change and this was no exception. I have been eating things like rice, beans and oatmeal which are generally not recommended with a paleo style approach. I am going to cut those things out this week and see how I fair in terms of dieting.

The Ocean Avenue products have been pretty good to me. I have been on a smoothie kick and the WheyBeyond smoothie protein mix is far superior to regular protein. It doesn't cause any bloating and it tastes 10x better than just a regular vanilla protein.

I have however decided to discontinue use of the Focus and Invigorate. These things gave me random headaches and the trade off wasn't much energy. Right now, I only have one large cup of coffee in the morning and that is it. I do have several packages left of the Focus energy supplement and if anyone wants to try it, I can send a couple to you to try it out.

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

New Year Resolution + Ocean Avenue Update

Hey everyone, yes I know I have been slacking on this blog thing and I don't really have a good excuse except the holidays attacked me and gave me the "I don't feel like it's". The holidays also gave me the "I don't need to eat clean" attitude as well haha. Well I managed to gain around 10 pounds, which some is no doubt water weight but my gut blew up a bit. That is perfectly fine. I enjoyed myself, I had a great time with family and friends and it's good to take a break from weighing, measuring and logging everything that I put into my gullet.

It is time to get back to work now, and like millions of people out there I do have some resolutions or goals that I have set for myself and i'd like to share them with you.

1) Blog more! Yes, I am horrible at following this thing sometime. I'll get to where I'll post sometimes twice a day, but then get into that mode where I won't post anything. Some of that is due to me slacking off on diet and exercise, some of it is just purely being busy.

2) Be consistent! Doing what I just did is not recommended. It is SUPER hard to go back to eating clean after eating whatever the FFFF I wanted to eat for 2 weeks. Plus the yo-yo in weight is probably not healthy. I need to learn that a cheat meal is ok, and not to go overboard.

3)GOAL WEIGHT = 230! Sometimes I feel like I won't ever make it there, but I don't give myself the chance due to wanting to cheat. It's tough for someone like myself who is a foodie, but when I follow something to a T, I make incredible strides, but this goes back to #2...cheat meals, not cheat weeks.

4) More Cardio! I tend to follow the weight training is king camp. However, I tend to neglect cardio. Even a little cadio goes a long way. Especially in the winter months. I love to walk and take my daughter on walks, but since it's too cold for her and it gets dark almost right after I get off of work, I need to step it up and do more cardio at the gym. Although I hate it and don't have the attention span to do more than 15-20 mins in one sitting, doing that will help a ton .

The plan that I have to implement these things is simple. I am going to follow a IIFYM (flexible dieting) plan with strict paleo undertones. (sounds like a wine!) I will be getting my carbs in, but MOSTLY from fruit and veggies. I am going to lay off the rice, corn tortillas and everything else I was eating because it fit into my macros. Although while my 3 week trial of that lead me to not gain any weight, I just didn't feel as well as I did when I was eating a strict paleo diet. I will from time to time incorporate those foods as I enjoy them, but they will not be everyday occurrences.

There ya have it. I have the knowledge, I just need to use will power to follow what I know to reach goals. Plain and simple.

As for the Ocean Avenue update, I did continue to take some of the products whilst on my 2 week vacation from dieting and have a few updates on the products. Toward the end, however, I decided to stop taking all of it and to restart once I am back at it which is today.

WheySmart: This is the tub that I have received that is the smoothie mix. I haven't used much of this because it makes my oatmea too thick and sweet. I did buy some frozen fruits yesterday (only 12g per cup!) and  will make a fruit smoothie with it, as a snack, post workout or to satisfy any sugar cravings that I have.

WheyBeyond: This is the packets of protein that taste like berries. I have tried this a variety of ways and still have not figured out the way I like it best. It does not mix well as I have stated previously, so I end up taking it with water and end up getting chunks at the bottom of tart and sweet protein. It tastes very good , but don't know that I'd use it regularly. One thing I can report, is if I take it on an empty stomach where I need a snack, I tend to feel like it gives me energy. I'll experiment with that soon.

Empower: I did not see any difference in the way I felt from taking it for a couple of weeks and stopping. I will re-add that in today and see if it helps with anything. My thought is this is most focused toward people who have systemic inflammation and are metabolically deranged. If you are a healthy individual who has their Omega 3 to Omega 6 ratio pretty much spot on, you will probably not need this product. I will give my final thoughts on it when I run out though.

Invigorate: This is my favorite of the bunch. It's a green tea extract with other things and supposed to promote weight loss. I do like it because it gives me non jittery energy and seems to help me sleep better when I take it. The only thing was, that I could not balance it and the focus energy packets and I ended up with weird headaches. This could also have been due to what I was eating, so thats why I stopped taking it. As I clean my diet up, I will see how this effects me.

Focus: These are the energy packets that look like a larger pixie stick. These are my least favorite as they do not give me an energy boost like I would imagine an energy shot would, and did not last as long as I'd hoped. Also I had some weird headaches after taking this. I willl give it another shot as I clean up my diet and see if it was indeed this giving me headaches or just the influx in crappy food. I can report that after a week of not taking this, I feel fine when it comes to the headaches, so we will see.

So there you have it, I will update you guys on weight and workout plans etc, in the next few days (I hope) and get back to the grind. Hope everyone had a Happy New Year and as always if you have any questions, I can do my best to answer them or point you in the right direction.