Back On The Macro Accountability Train

Since my trip to the Bahamas last fall, I have “loosely” counted macros, with most of the calculations being done by myself. I wanted to save money and was growing frustrated with the plateau I had hit, so I just kind of said “meh, I need some freedom.” More like freedom from having to check in with my coach weekly, not freedom from tracking my meals, because I had no issue doing that. I just wanted a bit of a break.

I actually took a break from working with my coach before, and I think like anything that you stick to, sometimes you just need to take a step back for a recharge. I have friends who also work with macro coaches, and they too took breaks every now and then before signing up for another installment of months.

I had been toying with the idea of working with Ashley again for probably a solid month, before I decided that it was time. I emailed her about a week before the 4th of July, and after a quick catch-up, I immediately signed up for 3 months. It was one of those moments where I knew it was the absolute right choice.

I wasn’t feeling my best, and I knew from prior experience that if I did what Ashley told me to do, which is follow the macros as close as possible, that I would see the results and make the progress that I wanted. I had lost 17 lbs with her previously, so it now relied on my motivation and diligence to see losses like that, this time around.

The first week was a bit rough. I hate listening to people and doing what they say, mostly because I love food and eating. The second week was a lot easier, and now that I’m on to week 3, I feel a heck of a lot better than when I sent Ashley that email several weeks back.

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The first week was hard simply because I was eating less. Obviously when I didn’t have a coach to report to, I could go over my macros without fear of letting her down. It’s just funny, well not really, because by overeating, I would be letting myself down. Once I knew I was paying for her service, I became hungry with motivation. Motivation to hit my numbers. Motivation to watch my performance in the gym get better. Motivation to watch my body slowly change.

And while this is only the beginning, I’m feeling incredibly happier, more fit, and determined. Putting my jeans on yesterday morning before catching my flight to Dallas, they fit better than they did last Thursday. It’s crazy what several days can do, and that makes me motivated to keep the momentum going.

I plan on working with Ashley for more than just the 3 months that I paid for – I simply just chose her 3-month plan because it’s less expensive than paying monthly, and it’s less of a hit on my savings account than paying for 6 months upfront. Since I find macros fascinating and love following the journey of others who 1) count macros, 2) work with a macro coach, and 3) are on a fitness journey, I definitely plan on making this a weekly blog topic.

As I plan to cover this topic each week, I’d love for you to let me know if there are certain things you’d like me to touch upon. Would you like to see some of my favorite meals or snacks from that week, progress that I made from the prior week, struggles, thoughts, tangents about macros? Let me know and I’ll make sure to include those!

I just want to end this post by saying that counting macros is not for everyone, just as eating Paleo, or being vegan, isn’t for everyone. You have to find what works best for your body, and once you find what that is, stick to it! Don’t let the opinions of others keep you from trying to become your healthiest self. It’s your life, and we only have one life, so live it how you want.

I will be back tomorrow for another post regarding macros, and then back again on Friday!

Please leave a comment below on what you’d like me to discuss in my macro posts going forward!

Progress Pic & Banana Nut Protein Muffins

Only a few more hours separate me from my 4 day vacation on Cape Code with the crew!

This will be a mish-mash post of randomness and a recipe.

First thing, I just got a new Facebook icon added to the right hand side of the blog, so if you aren’t already a fan of Running on PB on Facebook, you should be! I’ll post some ridiculous pictures of this week’s vacation on it while I’m away from the blog!

I’ve always bought 2 lb tubs of protein, but since I’m going through it so quickly, I splurged and went for a 5 lber.

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Good lord it’s ginormous! The plus side to buying the tub that’s larger than life is that it was cheaper to buy in bulk. The downside is that with 71 servings, I’ll have to have this sucker hanging around the kitchen for 2 months.

Another realization to never judge your progress by the scale. If you’ve been a reader for the past month, then you know that I’ve been working with a health coach in reaching my goals.

Yesterday marked the 1 month mark, which meant it was progress picture day. The first week I lost 3.4 lb, but the next 2 weeks I gained because of my period. Shit happens. I might have also eaten too much chocolate. I’m being honest here.  This past week I lost what I had gained, and with the balance of my losses and gains, I ended my first month losing 3 lb.

Might not seem like a lot, and I typically wouldn’t post a progress picture, maybe because I’m human and am self-conscious, but here is what 1 month and a 3 lb loss looks like. My stomach is more cut and defined, and I cannot wait to see what even more discipline and hard work gets me during month 2.

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I don’t want to make you transition from looking at my body to looking at yummy food, so I’ll show you my man crush of the day.

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I really want a pug. I really want Gerard Butler. Let’s hope I get at least one soon.

Now to share this delicious recipe that I got from Anna, the freakin’ genius behind the blog Protein Pow. If you haven’t visited her blog yet, please do. She creates recipes with all sorts of protein powders. Breads, pancakes, fluffs, desserts. Everything!

I  came across her recipe for banana nut protein bread, and immediately needed to make it. I mean, look at the ingredients (plus 3 undocumented egg whites):

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I pretty much kept to the recipe, but I measured out 1/2 cup finely diced walnuts instead of just a handful, and I also made them into muffins since they’d be easily transportable this weekend. Ahhhh the life of a macro girl.

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Those dark spots are the walnuts, have no fear. 🙂 If you have 2 aging bananers, go make this now!

Anywho, I hope you all have a great 4th of July and extra long weekend if you’re taking Friday off. I have a post lined up for the 4th, and I will try to pop in sometime Friday or Saturday, but my priorities are with my friends who are coming in from San Diego, NJ, Boston, CT, and Harrisburg. Reunion, yay!

What do you have planned for the 4th of July and weekend?!

WIAW: First Day As a Grit Girl

I feel like this edition of Jenn’s What I Ate Wednesday Tuesday is a little special for you and me.

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Yesterday was my first day on my new meal plan, courtesy of my coach, Ashley Leahy. In order to give a little glimpse into the meals that Ashley has structured for me, here’s a look at every single thing I ate yesterday.

I started my morning at the gym at 6 am, where I ran 4 miles on a Japanese speaking treadmill.

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I’m not even sure how I got it to Japanese. I must have still been sleeping when I got on the treadmill! 😉

After my workouts, Ashley is very persistent that I have a protein shake that includes 1 scoop of protein mixed with a dextrose source. I have to measure out the specific macros to fit the numbers she specifically gave me.

I never knew about this dextrose source thing, so I grilled her about it, and she recommended I use my vanilla protein powder with orange Tang. She promised me it’d taste just like a creamsicle.

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Holy crap. This was a legit creamsicle shake, and I am in love. Allie saw my Tang on the counter Monday night and she was shocked and was so confused. So was I when I saw it on my meal plan, but if my coach says Tang, then Tang I go.

An hour to an hour and a half later, I’m to have my post-training meal, which is 4 oz chicken or turkey, with 8 grams (of carbs) of green veggies and 1/3 cup brown rice or 3 oz sweet potato. (Ps. my Meal #1 is oatmeal with pb and egg whites, and I asked if I should have the specific post-training meal as my breakfast, and she said I could eat either since they both have a good carb/protein mix.)

Phew! Did you even understand that? Sorry if you had to break that down like a math equation.  So at 8:15 am, I had my “post-training” meal as breakfast.

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I think I like this meal for breakfast because it is so filling. It kept me satisfied until 11:30, which is when I snacked on Meal #2, which was an apple and almonds. String cheese is also scheduled with this meal, but I wasn’t hungry for it, so I had it later in the afternoon. I could have had a banana instead of the apple but the apple actually fit my macros better.

I literally schedule it all out on my Spark People account, and then play around with the foods in the morning to figure out if adjustments need to be made.

I’m allowed to have endless amounts of sugar-free jello in between meals, so I had a small cup before heading home to make lunch.

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If you’d like to see more insane and crazy-eyed faces, please friend me on SnapChat (alewis19). I don’t take too many serious faces on there. So please, friend me and let’s snap while we’re supposed to be working. (Please don’t judge that 2 nails are missing polish. Also, don’t ask.)

Breakfast for lunch it was! I had 1/2 cup of oats, sprinkled with cinnamon and 1 egg white, with a side of 3 egg whites. Topped the ol’ oats with 1 tbsp of pb and this bad boy kept me overly stuffed.

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I decided to take a detour back to my office, and went for an extended walk around the mills.

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I needed that walk after that lunch! Boy did that fill me up until dinner time.

Last night we had our first June event for Blog & Tweet NH, and since I had to be there for 6, I had to quickly eat dinner after getting home at 5:15.

I went for 4 oz of chicken, with an english muffin smeared with 2 tbsp of peanut butter.

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(My dinner was also supposed to include 8 g’s of carbs of green veggies, but yesterday morning I actually ate 8 oz instead of 8 grams, so it actually equaled my daily total so I skipped it at this meal.)

So good, soooo good! I love that Ashley made sure to allow me my peanut butter in my meals. When she asked about foods I liked, I told her I had an addiction and wanted to keep it in my meals, but in a healthy amount. Ask and you shall receive. 🙂

The Blog & Tweet NH event was held at Muse Paintbar, which was so much fun, but I became ravenous halfway through the event and was ready to eat my arm off. I got home after 9:30, and still had macros to use up, so I enjoyed a Chobani yogurt and 2 string cheeses (since I didn’t eat the one earlier in the day).

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I also devoured half a tub of jello.

And that right there was my eating for Tuesday… and that was hitting all of my macros either dead on, or above/below by 2 grams!