Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Advocare 10-Day Cleanse: it’s all about the food

I weighed in this morning for my 90-Day Challenge (which is over next weekend, holy crap!) and was pleasantly surprised when I stepped on the scale. I am on Day 9 of the 10-Day Cleanse  I talked about last week and saw the tangible results of cutting out dairy, sugar, and all the fatty delicious things from my diet.

Tuesday April 29…

WEIGHT: 164.7 (down 2.8 lbs in 7 days)
PBF: 24.4% (down 2.6% of fat in 7 days)
BMI: 26.6 (down 0.4 in 7 days)

And lo and behold, my exercise routine these last weeks has been EXACTLY the same as it was before the cleanse. The only logical conclusion, the one that depresses me, is that if I cut out crappy food, I lose fat. Damn.

I guess you really can’t out-train a bad diet.

The thing I’m the most stoked about is losing almost 3% body fat on the cleanse, and I can DEFINITELY tell the difference. I feel leaner, tighter, and flatter in places I’m usually all lumps and bumps and cottage cheese. I also feel really good overall in terms of energy and happiness. Maybe everybody has a point when they say, “cut the crap.”
How I wish I felt about Advocare and clean eating

As great as it is to see results in terms of my body composition, it also depresses me a little to think that I might have to eat like this all the time to lose or maintain weight. Because realistically, I’m not that far off from my “goal weight” (I hate that phrase, it makes me sound like such a phony). When I started the 90-Day Challenge, the “goals” the random trainer gave me were these: weight of 157.1 (losing 21.8 lbs) and body fat percentage of 22% (losing 10%). I only really care about my body fat percentage, and at 24% today, I’m feeling pretty good about my body composition and my overall body image.

But really... #frenemies

So does this mean that I have to eat like I’m on the Advocare 10-Day Cleanse forever?! Dear lord, I hope not. This is not a sustainable lifestyle for me. I need to eat cheese. I just have to. I also need to be able to eat pizza. Also chocolate. I’m scared that if I incorporate these back into my diet, I will be right back where I started, but I am going to try and see how it goes by incorporating small amounts of cheese back in. Chipotle is just not the same without cheese and guac.

At this point, I am thinking I will try to keep eating pretty close to the cleanse way until after I officially “weigh-out” for my 90-Day Challenge, since sistah needs some dolla dolla bills. Also known as I really want to win some money at Lifetime and I can live without Dairy Queen until May 9 (maybe...)

I sometimes get frustrated at how slow the process of losing fat is. I mean, I feel like I have been consciously trying to lower my PBF for 3 months, which is longer than I ever worked on a term paper in college, and I should be just about done now. But I'm not! And the worst part? Once I see numbers I like, I have to keep working hard to get them to stay that way! Terrible, right?!

This is where the “lifestyle” part comes in, I think. As great as it is for me to be goal-oriented and challenge-motivated, I tend to go all in and then all out once the challenge is over. Like with the marathon: I didn’t run for four months afterwards, and basically had to start at square one again in February to start training for my half. I do that with every race—go hardcore until the big day and then resume bad habits as soon as I meet my goal. I’m great “in-training” and then fall off the wagon as soon as I get what I want. Why can’t I maintain a high level of performance?

This is a mindset I need to work on changing with myself, both professionally and personally.

One thing that I think will help me reprogram my brain regarding slacking after meeting a goal is always setting new goals and having something on the horizon. For instance, after the 90-Day Challenge is over, I have less than one month until my half marathon. After my half marathon, I have 5 weeks to prepare for the Tough Mudder, which will mean shifting my workouts significantly (from lots o’ running and a little lifting to lots ‘o lifting and sprints to a little bit of running).

But even having new goals on the horizon doesn’t really seem sustainable to me. I need to figure out ways to stay motivated with no challenge in sight. I can't afford to keep shelling out for races every other month to keep motivated. I need to figure out how to find that whole "internal motivation" thing people keep blogging about.

How do you stay motivated? What keeps you going, especially when you’re not training for something? Any advice would be much appreciated :)