Alcohol tends to confuse so many people when it comes to IIFYM. How the heck do you log it? When you look-up alcoholic beverages in My Fitness Pal or My Macros+ it will pull-up an entry with calories, but no fat, very few (if any) carbs, and no protein…awesome…we can have virtually unlimited amounts, right? Wrong.
You all know better than to think alcohol washes through our bodies like water. While it would be MUCH easier to reach your goals without drinking, that just isn’t realistic for most people. A big part of IIFYM and what I teach my clients is how to live a normal life while at the same time reaching / maintaining their goal body and most people like to drink from time to time.
There are a few different options when it comes to logging alcohol and fitting it into your day. You have the choice to either log it as carbohydrate, fat, or a mixture of the two. I recommend you take a few minutes and sit down with your food app so you can manually add in the alcohol you typically like to drink. Once you have done that you will already have it available to you to just pull-up and log when making plans for your night out. Yes, I do recommend you PRE-PLAN how many drinks you will be having because we all know that once you start drinking your judgement can go out the window and having a plan ahead of time is a much better way to ensure you successfully stick to your macros.
The macros you have available to you will determine whether you log your drinks as carbs, fats, or a mixture of the two and in order to be ready for that I recommend you manually add all three options for each alcohol you typically drink…that way each time you go out you can easily select drinks and fit them in based upon the macros you have available to you that particular day. For example, if you plan on having a steak that night you probably will not want to log your drink as fats (the steak will be using those), but if you plan on eating fish you will probably have extra room in your fats and can log your alcohol as fats.
Now for the actual calculations:
Your body treats alcohol like fats (9 cals) and carbs (4 cals). To reiterate, when recording alcohol in MFP or My Macros+you have the choice of recording it as fats, carbs, or a mixture of both. Here are some examples:
Red Wine – 5 oz.
5oz. red wine = 129 calories
129 / 4 = 32g carb
129 / 9 = 14g fat
You could decide to record it ½ and ½ as 16g carb and 7g fat
White Wine – 5 oz.
5oz. white wine = 121 calories
121 / 4 = 30g carb
121 / 9 = 13g fat
You could decide to record it ½ and ½ as 15g carb and 6.5g fat
Champagne – 5oz.
5oz. champagne – 98cal
98 / 4 = 24.5g carb
98 / 9 = 11g fat
You could decide to record it ½ and ½ as 12g carb and 5.5g fat
Vodka – 90 proof 1.5 oz.
1 shot = 110 cals
110 / 4 = 28g carb
110 / 9 = 12g fat
You could decide to record it ½ and ½ as 14g carb and 6g fat
Tequila – Petron 1.5 oz.
1 shot = 105 cals
105 / 4 = 26g carb
105 / 9 = 11.7g fat
You could decide to record it ½ and ½ as 13g carb and 5.8g fat
Bud Light – 12 oz.
1 beer = 110 cals
110 / 4 = 28g carb
110 / 9 = 12g fat
You could decide to record it ½ and ½ as 14g carb and 6g fat
Hopefully that helps clear-up the “how” when it comes to logging alcohol. Now that you know the formula you can apply it to all different types of alcoholic drinks. You will quickly figure out your go-tos as there are some drinks that are clearly a lot more macro friendly than others.
I’ll leave you with a link to a macro friendly margarita that the Ledbetter Team has made popular and may become your go-to…click HEREfor that recipe (It’s the second recipe).
I am going to “white girl” it up here with a healthy Pumpkin Spice smoothie/shake recipe. Who doesn’t love a little (or a lot) of pumpkin in the Fall? This recipe also works really well with persimmons or you could use sweet potato or kabocha…you get the idea…it’s versatile.
This recipe could easily serve 2 people, but I’m a little piggy and keep it all to myself. If you want to share it with someone else, just divide the macro counts below by two.
I am still doing Ashley Kaltwasser’s (aka AshleyKfit) Glute & Ab Program. At the end of this week I will decide if I will do the same workout one more week or if I will begin my next workout program. I just purchased Jessie Hilgenberg’sMuscle Building e-book (her e-books are $5 off now through Halloween with code NOTRICKSHERE) and am excited to begin her workouts (LOVE her).
I planned on completing an 8 week cut (aka diet) to lean out for my 40th birthday, but I am stopping it at the end of week 7. Below is Day 1 vs. Day 50:
People always ask me how you know when to end a cut (if there isn’t a particular date or show you are working toward) and I always tell them that they will just know. I am glad I have reached the point where I do not need to achieve a certain scale weight to know I have reached my goal…I know by how I look when I see myself in the mirror, how my clothes fit, and how I feel in general. Something just told me that it was time to stop.
This was a 50 day process for me and as you can see I only dropped 9.0lbs, but I feel my physical transformation was somewhat significant.
Last year I completed a cut as well and really like the graphic below because it shows me 1 year apart (top pictures were 10/23/2014 and bottom pictures 10/20/2015) and at the SAME EXACT WEIGHT. My weight in the top pictures was 134.1 and in the bottom I weighed in at 134.2 (crazy how close those weights are).
Again, SAME WEIGHT one year apart and I think I look very different. I actually have a little bit of a booty now in the bottom pictures (hard to see due to lighting) which I worked HARD on through my Reverse Diet last year and I don’t look so “flat.” My core is a different shape for sure. These changes happened slowly, but when you are consistent with your training and your nutrition the changes do happen. Notice I said consistent, not PERFECT all the time. I had mess-ups and vacations mixed in there.
I am excited to begin my 2015 Reverse Diet and hope it is the last one I do. Last year 13-14 weeks into my Reverse Diet I decided to not track very closely and allowed myself to eat as much as I wanted to. I didn’t go crazy, but made the conscious decision to eat more than planned and allowed that to push me into a more significant caloric surplus which I consciously used in the gym to fuel HARD workouts in order to try and build more muscle; specifically my booty which was so flat once I completed my cut last year.
This year I want to approach my Reverse Diet differently and maintain my leanness while working to slowly continue to tweak my shape. I know my body well enough to know that when I Reverse Diet I continue to lean-out (because I increase my calories S-L-O-W-L-Y). If I were to increase my calories at a more rapid rate this go-around I would put on some body fat like I did last year, however my goal with this Reverse Diet is to maintain the body composition I currently have while increasing my metabolic capacity. If I lose weight during this Reverse (I did at the beginning of my last Reverse), I will simply make my next caloric increase more rapid. If I start to put on weight I will hang out at my current calories until my body stabilizes.
I plan on documenting the next 20 weeks of my Reverse Diet for you so you can follow along on the process and see what Reverse Dieting is all about. I have to admit that Reverse Dieting is fun for those of us eaters out there, but I also feel that it is important to let you know that it is NOT EASY. Many people would go so far as to say that Reverse Dieting can be much harder than dieting because your metabolism begins to rev-up and you actually get MORE hungry oftentimes than you were when you were dieting to lose fat.
When I Reverse Dieted before and my metabolism increased it was normal for me to sweat at night and get REALLY hungry by the end of the week right before it was time for my next increase. I find that when you know to expect this it is easier to deal with.
The last time I Reverse Dieted I was not carb-cycling, so I expect that my Friday Refeeds this go around will help me get through that end of the week increase in hunger.
I planned out my 20 week Reverse Diet schedule the same way I do for my clients and if all goes according to plan this will happen:
I am excited to begin this next phase of my fitness journey and even more excited to bring you along with me. Time to change to a new swimsuit for my Reverse Dieting progress pictures …I am guessing you guys are getting a little sick of the last one…imagine how you will feel after 20 weeks of the next one!
Feel free to ask me questions along the way either on the blog or through Instagram (where I am the most active as fitquestmom).
I am still doing Ashley Kaltwasser’s (aka AshleyKfit) Glute & Ab Program. Each week I work on either upping the sets, reps, or weights. I make it a point to always challenge myself…I try to never have an easy workout.
I also stepped out of my comfort zone (yes, I get shy) and went to a local gym for a hiit type class called Conditioning with Kandace, who is the VP of Marketing for Bodybuilding.com. She was out of town for her boyfriend’s power-lifting meet (he won!), so I will get to meet her and take the class from her next week. In Kandace’s absence the class was run by three Bodybuilding.com ladies who did a great job.
I had a lot of fun meeting other fit-minded people and it made me push myself to the point where my calves are still on FIRE ( the class was on Saturday morning). I love working out at home, but also plan on incorporating some more group classes into my routine for a nice change of pace and added challenge.
Overall it was a good week. I felt pretty “skinny” a lot of the week (I actually got down to 134 on Wednesday) and considered ending my cut early. I ultimately decided to give it at least one more week and re-evaluate where I stand next weekend. There is a chance my 8 Weeks to 40 cut becomes a 7 week cut. If I decide I am happy with where I am at the end of this week then I will head straight into my Reverse Diet (which I will also document).
Below is an ab progress pic from this morning upon waking. I don’t know that I expect a lot of weight loss this week, but I do expect that my body will become a lot more lean.
Feel free to contact me with any questions about the cutting/leaning-out/dieting process or nutrition in general.
I teamed-up withNuts.comin an attempt to make Halloween less scary for your waistline. Nuts.com has been working hard on their Healthy Snack Pageand I am happy to help spread the word.
Of course when you think of Nuts.com you think of nuts. One of the world’s best flavor combos in my opinion is PB and C. Who doesn’t love peanut butter and chocolate (other than my very own daughter…what???).
I set off on a quest to make a healthier peanut butter cup / peanut butter fudge and the results taste amazing if I do say so myself. My son offered to eat all of them (such a kind boy). What’s even more awesome is how quickly these come together.
It’s up to you whether or not you add chocolate. These cups / fudge taste great either way.
If using the chocolate, place 4 grams of chocolate into each of the 10 candy molds (I used THIS one). Microwave in 15 second increments to melt (you have to be REALLY careful not to burn the chocolate in the microwave). Once sufficiently melted, spread the chocolate and place the mold into the freezer.
In a double boiler melt the cacao butter, chocolate, and peanut butter powder stirring constantly with a whisk.
Once melted, remove the molds from the freezer and divide the peanut butter mixture evenly between the 10 candy molds.
Place the candies in the fridge to set-up. Store uneaten candies (if there are any) in the fridge or freezer.
Per Candy (Chocolate & PB) – 82 cal / 2.7C / 3P / 6.8F
Per Candy (Just PB Mixture) – 75 cal / 1.8C / 2.8P / 6.3F
This is my go-to waffle recipe. It has taken me a while to perfect, but I know it’s good when the rest of my family actually likes them and tries to steal bites when I make one for myself. Let’s face it, I like a lot of foods that the general public probably wouldn’t be into…this is a recipe the general public will be into.
I like this recipe as either a HUGE Belgian waffle or pancakes. The only difference between making these into waffles or pancakes will be the batter consistency (aka how much water you add). Waffle batter tends to be thicker and pancake batter thinner (it is basically personal preference).
I like to eat the whole recipe myself, but you can easily split it in half or eat as much as your macros allow. I also like to top my waffle with strawberries, but again that is personal preference.
If you don’t want to use syrup you can add a little stevia to the batter.
Preheat your waffle maker or a pan on medium heat if making pancakes.
Place the pancake mix, coconut flour, and fufu flour into a mixing bowl. Add the egg whites and a little water to start (2-3Tbs). Mix.
The coconut flour will absorb a lot of water, so add water a little at a time until it reaches the right consistency. It seems like the amount of water I use is different every time, so play around with it. You can also add some more egg whites if you have more protein macros to use-up. I have used as little as 4Tbs and as much as 8Tbs with great results.
Spray coconut oil onto the waffle maker or pan.
Cook as you would any regular waffle or pancake.
Here is the macro breakdown for the recipe as written:
It was a good week for me. I feel like I am in the groove now and there aren’t as many hunger issues. One thing that may have helped was my switching to a new workout program. I think I have been over-training for the last few months and my body may have needed a little rest.
I decided to purchase Ashley Kaltwasser’s Glute & Ab Program and I have been really happy with the workouts. In no way is this a plug for the program because I have absolutely nothing to do with it…I purchased it, they did not send me it.
When I first downloaded the program I was concerned that it would not be hard enough because there were less exercises than I am used to doing, but like I said, I have been pleasantly surprised. Work smarter, not harder right?!?!?!
That being said, there were MORE ab exercises than I have been doing and man was I sore last week. There is a reason why her abs are so flipping amazing! I feel like my abs have leaned out quite a bit in the last week. This point in a cut is always fun because it seems like you see more results daily.
My hammies were also really sore and that is an are of my legs that is notoriously difficult for me to build (yay…sore there is good news)!
I am entering week 6 now which means I have just under 3 weeks left until my 40th b-day and I am more motivated than ever. Posting these updates has been a big help in keeping me accountable.
I know the world of IIFYM (if it fits your macros) aka Flexible Dieting can be information overload for someone who is just starting out. It was for me, and I have been working in nutrition for years. There is no getting around the steep learning curve, but I thought I’d try and write a few posts detailing the “hows” ofIIFYM.
I want to tackle how to track your macros in My Fitness Pal (MFP) and my first post in this series will detail how to set your particular macros in MFP so you can more accurately track them. How you do this will differ depending upon which level of MFP you have; the free version or Premium ($49.99/year). I personally have Premium because I wanted the ease of use, the extra features, and because it is an app I am in multiple times a day.
In an attempt to give my clients more options when it comes to tracking I did recently download My Macros+ (it’s only $2.99) and plan on posting tutorials for that app as well in the future.
FREE VERSION OF MyFitnessPal
The image (above left) is of the MFP homescreen. At the bottom you will see where I arrowed in red to the “MORE” area. Click on that and it will take you to the “More” screen (above right). Once in the More screen click on the “Goals” section.
Once in the “Goals” section click on the “Calories & Macronutrient Goals” area which will take you to the “Calories & Macros” screen (above right). You will see that MFP provides you with a “Default Goal” based on the questions it asked you when you first logged in.
When you work with me (Click HEREto learn more) I provide you with prescribed macros. If you would like to attempt to set your own macros you can go to sites like BodyBuilding.com for their Macro Calculator.
Once you have your macros you will need to amend the calories (above left). Click on the calories (1) and a number screen will pop-up. (2)Delete the “Default Goal” calories and (3)enter in the calories you should be eating. This is literally the ONLY time you should ever worry about calories because from here on out all you need to do is hit those daily carb, protein, and fat macros regardless of whether that puts you OVER or UNDER your calorie goal…it does not matter…MACROS, MACROS, MACROS.
Once you have entered the appropriate calories hit the “check mark” to save them. Now click on either “Carbohydrates 203 g”, “Protein 81 g”, or “Fat 54 g” and the screen below leftwill pop-up.
Scroll through the “Carbs” percentages until it is NEAR what your prescribed carbs should be. Remember, this is not Premium, so you can’t get exact on the grams. Do that for “Protein” and “Fat” as well and remember that the “% Total” (bottom right of the screen) must equal 100%.
In this example, my client has prescribed macros of 1620 calories 140C/130P/60F. This means that our “Close Enough” ended-up being 1623 calories 142C/122P/63F. Does that mean my client will eat the “Close Enough” macros??? NO. She will just have to remember what the macros that I gave her are…this is the downfall of the Free MFP service, but you all are more than smart enough to remember your macros.
PREMIUM VERSION OF MyFitnessPal
For the Premium version of MFP, to set your macros go to the Homescreen, click the “More” button on the bottom right (left screen above) and then click on the “Premium” button (top right screen above).
Once you are in the “Premium” screen (left screen above) click on the “Premium Features” tab and it will bring you to the “Premium Features” page (right screen above). Once there click on the “Macronutrients by Gram” tab.
This will bring you to the “Calories & Macros” page. Set your calories as described above in the FREE MFP Tutorial. Then, click on (1)“Carbohydrates 32%” tab which will pop-up the image in the above right screen. (2) Make sure to click the “Grams” button so you are able to set your macros in specific grams. Once you have clicked the grams button (3)scroll through each macro and set your particular macros exactly as they were prescribed. Remember to (4) click the check mark to save your macros.
Premium MFP has another neat feature which is great if you are carb-cycling. Carb cycling means that your macros are different on different days usually in relation to the level of training you will be doing that day. For example, my highest carb day is on my heaviest leg day (weight lifting). The “Different Goals by Day” feature above allows me to pre-set those macros for those days that are different than my normal days and I do not have to remember to switch them in MFP on those days because they automatically pop-up (nice run-on sentence, huh?).
To set the macros for those days that do not fit your default days, click the “Add Daily Goal” button (above right screen).
And that my friends is how you set your daily macro goals in My Fitness Pal.
My next tutorial will detail how I go about planning my macros for the day food-wise and how I am able to hit them usually dead-on or within 2 grams either way.
I am keeping them the same macros as last week….Why mess with something if it is working???
Confession time…I broke and used the rest of the Coffeemate in my fridge. I couldn’t waste it, right? So how do I explain the fact that I bought more? By telling you that I am human.
I have been chewing gum crazy for years (like more than a pack a day) and gave it up a few weeks before I began my 8 Weeks to 40 plan and I have managed to NOT chew ANY gum since then which I consider a victory! I have also managed to stay away from frozen yogurt for the last 4 weeks and if you look through my Instagram feed you will see plainly that it was a weekly habit and one that was overflowing with candy toppings. I have decided that I can give myself some grace and break my Coffeemate habit at a later date.
I did experience some hunger again this week, however that is to be expected and will be rectified soon when I begin my Reverse Diet in a few weeks. I was also a little sluggish on some days, but that seemed to coincide with the days when we had grey Fall weather (that ALWAYS gets me). I’m a girl of the sun…I don’t care if it is cold as long as the sun is out.
As I mentioned above I am planning on keeping the same macros this week. Oftentimes people have this odd itch to switch-up their macros and speed-up the weight loss. I want to preserve my muscle and keep any fat loss nice and slow so I do not dip in to that muscle I have been working so hard to build.
I’m half way through my planned cut and excited to see what the next 4 weeks bring.
Corina Nielsen is just plain amazing. Do I know her personally? No…we have never met, we have never spoken, but I do know how much she has inspired me and those in the fitness community…Another “mom” trying to live her best/healthiest life and one who has been so REAL throughout her journey. She tells it like it is.
Corina went from the picture of health to fighting for her health in a matter of weeks. She went from working out for 1.5-2 hours a day and managing the life of a busy working mom, to just hoping for the chance of a somewhat normal life. Corina has been diagnosed with an extremely rare cyst condition on her spine called a TARLOV CYST.
Her only hope for that somewhat normal life now is treatment from a doctor out of her Kaiser network. Corina’s husband is in law enforcement and I have a special place in my heart for that because I grew-up with the most amazing father who is also a police officer.
The surgery that will provide Corina and her family with the best chance of a normal life is $50,000-$60,000. Surely this #fitfam community and all those who have been inspired by Corina can band together and help them give Corina the help she needs and deserves.
I put my money where my mouth is and have donated the first $100. Please donate what you can. To read more about Corina’s current struggle click HERE.
"The diet that helps to reduce weight in the short run needs to be the same diet that creates and maintains health in the long run."
~T. Colin Campbell
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