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Life in Balance: Christy's Journal

Discussion in 'Fitness Journals' started by J_W, Jun 29, 2007.

  1. J_W

    J_W Well-Known Member

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    My Back Story

    My name is Christy, I am 22 years old, 5’8.5” tall and weigh 137.5 lbs, which is almost fifty pounds less than what I weighed one and a half years ago.

    I've been a member of JSF since January 2006. That was when I seriously started getting interested in exercise. Prior to that, in the fall of 2005, I had reached about 185 lbs due to a problem with binge eating after crash dieting down to 142 lbs in 2003. I was miserable and depressed.

    [​IMG]

    After lurking on the forums for a while, learning about nutrition and slowly introducing exercise, I managed to go from 185 to 165 lbs by June 2006. I joined a gym in May of 2006. Over the summer I continued to lift weights and do cardio, but my problem with binge eating remained. I became somewhat discouraged and my workouts were only half-hearted. In October of 2006 I started a new job and wasn't able to eat much during the day. Between October '06 and February '07 I lost about 9 lbs, but I wasn't exercising, so I think some of that must have been lean mass.

    In February of this year I decided to crack down on my diet and training. On February 26, I began hitting the gym six days a week (3 days of lifting following the BFL weight lifting routine, 3 days of cardio). In four months I went from 156 lbs to 137.5 lbs. I don't know about my body fat right now, but various formulas on the 'net put me at around 20-22%.

    [​IMG]

    My Current Goals, Exercise Plan and Diet

    My goal for now is to maintain my current weight and perhaps lose a little more fat off my thighs, butt and lower back while building some muscle. I have no desire to go lower than 134 lbs.

    I am now in the best shape of my life and I plan to take advantage of this. I am planning on doing biking, hiking and swimming for cardio and will, of course, continue to lift weights. I just bought a weight bench and a 53kg barbell set and have set up shop in my parents’ basement. So I am set and ready to go in the exercise department and will get started next week. After 12 weeks of working out 6 days/week I am taking a week to a week and half off to give my body some time to rest. This is good timing on my part since I think I’m coming down with a cold.

    The hard part this summer is going to be diet. I am living with my parents and for parts of the summer there is going to be one meal a day over which I have no control. I don’t view that as a huge problem and plan on using portion control. My mom does not cook unhealthy food per se - for the most part, she uses fresh, unprocessed ingredients, good fats, organic meat etc. It’s just that some of the meals don’t fit into the strict clean diet I have maintained for the past four months.

    However, this is okay with me. One of my goals for my maintenance phase is to move on to a somewhat less strict diet. I want to be able to eat not-so-clean foods in moderation without ruining my progress. But I know that I will need to slowly ease into this new phase of my diet so I don’t go overboard. Therefore, I have set up some rules for myself:

    1. While my parents are home and my mom is cooking dinner, I will eat approximately 1400 kcal in clean foods over the course of the day and have one meal (usually dinner) where I don’t track macros or calories but exercise portion control instead. Like I said, the meals she cooks are not really unclean, so I don’t really consider them cheats. I think they fall into the category of more or less “neutral” foods. They don’t do me any good but they’re not really bad for me either.
    2. I am going to allow for “cheats” - in moderation. I am going to allow for four small cheats a week. Having cookies is okay. Having brownies is okay. Having pizza is okay. However, here’s the caveat: my cheats have to be homemade by me. So if I want a brownie, I have to bake it myself. If I want pizza, I have to make it myself. This way, I have control over what goes into these cheats, there will be no added preservatives, and I need to put in some effort in order to be able to have them. Plus, homemade foods taste 100 times better than the store-bought junk anyway. The only exception to this rule is ice cream and caramel popcorn at the movie theater. Again, the principle of portion control applies to all of these foods, whether homemade or purchased.
    3. I am going to post the foods I’ve consumed in my journal. Full disclosure is required.
    4. I am going to weigh myself every day and post my weight in my journal. Weight fluctuations are to be expected but I want to be able to closely monitor any trends. I am going to take tape measurements once a week and pictures every two weeks on Sunday. This way I will always know where I stand at the moment and what impact my diet and exercise are having.

    I hope that these rules are going to help me ease into a somewhat more relaxed approach to my diet. I also want this journal to hold me accountable for the choices I make in regard to food. This will only work if people actually read my journal, so please feel free to post and comment ;).

    Basically, I am planning to move on to a more moderate approach, a balanced approach to fitness and life. I hope at least some of you find my journal interesting enough to drop in from time to time and offer advice and suggest improvements :).
     
  2. Chameleon

    Chameleon Well-Known Member

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    hey J_W... it sounds like you have a solid plan there ;) good luck, I'll be checking in to see how you're doing :gl:
     
  3. eleonardo

    eleonardo Well-Known Member

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    Hey Christy,
    great transformation there! :)
    I see you're doing a grand job, so keep at it :)

    btw - you're a bit grey in the face ;)
     
  4. J_W

    J_W Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for the words of encouragement, you two. I appreciate it.

    :neener:

    Okay, my food for the day. Today was actually very clean because my mom had a lunch date where she was served a three course meal and decided not to cook dinner, so it was every person for themselves.

    Meal 1:
    1 kiwi
    1 cup apples, chopped
    2 tbsp wheat bran
    24 g oats
    125 g lf cottage cheese (quark)

    Meal 2:
    250 g lf cottage cheese
    1 oz almonds

    Meal 3:
    150 g pollock
    300 g mixed veggies (peas, carrots, cauliflower, string beans)

    Meal 4:
    90 g canned sardines, drained
    1 oz almonds

    Meal 5:
    125 g sockeye salmon
    260 g string beans

    Meal 6:
    250 g lf cottage cheese
    1/2 oz walnuts
    1 tbsp ground flax seeds

    Totals (according to FitDay):
    1806 kcal
    72f
    122c
    172p

    While I am sitting here updating my journal my dad is in the next room munching on chocolate, damn him :rolleyes:. But strangely enough I don't even feel tempted.

    My throat is still sore and my stomach feels a little upset. I'm pretty sure I'll be out of commission over the weekend. I just hope I recover quickly. I was looking forward to some long bike rides which I think I'm going to have to postpone. Oh well.
     
  5. Ectomorphic

    Ectomorphic Active Member

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    You are at about the weight now that I was at when I first started. I must say that it looks much nicer and healthier on you than it did on me. :lol:

    It sounds like a nice plan for your summer maintenance. Especially since you mentioned the homemade stuff, which won't have all those random chemicals they add to everything nowadays.


    And you're right, you are now offically held accountable. We're watching you ;).
     
  6. Black-Dawn

    Black-Dawn Well-Known Member

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    Very impressive change.
    particularly the huge change to your physique
    from "merely" losing 18.5lbs in the last 4 months.
    Proves the importance of losing fat versus "losing weight".

    :tu:.

    Shahar.
     
  7. J_W

    J_W Well-Known Member

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    My thinking exactly. If you can't pronounce it, you probably don't want to eat it :D.

    Exactly. During this four month period I didn't even have a scale. I weighed myself using the scale at the gym once a week. I definitely gained some lean mass, too, so I lost more than 18.5 pounds of fat.

    Weight as of this morning: 139.77 (I'm using a different scale than the one I was using previously, so that might account for the change; I'm going to keep my eye on how this develops)

    Today's eats:

    Meal 1:
    1 cup apple, chopped; 1 kiwi; 125 g lf cottage cheese (quark); 1.5 cups watermelon, chopped; 12 g oats

    Meal 2:
    90 g sardines in oil, drained; 150 g string beans

    Meal 3:
    ~170 g rump steak (fat trimmed off) brushed in extra virgin olive oil; 1 small baked potato (~150 g); 2 tsp yogurt; vast amounts of lettuce topped with chopped tomatoes, carrots, cucumber and spring onions; ~2 tbsp homemade ranch dressing

    Meal 4:
    150 g plaice; 1 tsp extra virgin olive oil; 200 g mixed veggies (broccoli, cauliflower, carrots)

    Meal 5:
    14 g almonds; 20 g walnuts; 1 tbsp ground flax seed; 250 g lf cottage cheese

    The totals for meals 1, 2, 4 and 5 are
    1285 kcal
    50f
    97c
    117p

    I was disappointed with the steak :(. It was a little tough and not very flavorful. I far prefer top round when it comes to beef, but this is what my mom had decided to make. Oh well.

    Tomorrow the weather's supposed to be glorious. I'm going to lie around in garden all day :D. If I feel up to it I might go for a short bike ride but usually the bike paths are overrun by families with small children and nordic walkers on Sunday :rolleyes:.
     
    #7 J_W, Jun 30, 2007
    Last edited: Jun 30, 2007
  8. Roibus

    Roibus Active Member

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    Hi there. I like your plan for the summer. It sounds like a very balanced approach, and its a great way of letting your body rest a bit after the diet too. If you continue to eat well and train I bet you'll also see more improvement, although at a slower rate.

    Good luck :)
     
  9. bballer143

    bballer143 Well-Known Member

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    Hi J_W! :D
    Yay on starting a new journal! You've made a fantastic change and seem to really know what your doing :nod:
    Good luck with your goals! :)
     
  10. J_W

    J_W Well-Known Member

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    Hi Roibus, thanks for posting :). I don't know if it's in my head but I think I look a bit leaner than I did last week even though I haven't dropped weight. Which is a good thing! :D

    Thanks, bballer.

    Sunday, 07/01/07
    Weight: 138.9 lbs

    Meal 1: 4 protein pancakes w/ blueberries; 1 cup watermelon

    Meal 2: 250 g LF cottage cheese; 1/2 oz almonds

    Meal 3: 1 whole trout (285 g) brushed in olive oil with fresh herbs and lime; 100 g mozzarella cheese; 1 tomato; lettuce topped with mixed veggies and a drizzle of balsamic vinegar

    Meal 4: 150 g pollock covered with 1 tsp of flour, fried; 200 g mixed veggies

    Meal 5: protein/nut pudding

    Totals for meals 1, 2, 4, 5:

    Kcal 1138
    F 43g
    C 78g
    P 108g

    As you might notice, I've lowered by clean calories a bit because when eyeballling my "free" meal I realized that it was higher in calories than I thought it would be, even when watching portion size. I'm going to monitor the trend in my weight and see if I keep losing in which case I can up my clean calories a bit. At the moment I'm trying to figure out maintenance calories for myself, so it's all trial and error right now.

    Exercise today was a 45 min bike ride at a 24.6 km/h (15.3 mph) average. I was able to shave ten minutes off my time since the last time I rode that particular route. Yay for me! I'm sure that squats, deadlifts and HIIT had something to do with that. :claphigh:
     
    #10 J_W, Jul 2, 2007
    Last edited: Jul 2, 2007
  11. Jedi

    Jedi Well-Known Member

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    Heh Christy, GREAT transformation, you really do look good in your present prictures :) and i love your journal title and approach now... I hope to be moving soon into more of a balanced/recomp mode... good luck with your summer goals ;)
     
  12. guava

    guava Elite Member
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    Nice progress pics! :claplow:
    Sounds like a fantastic plan. You look fantastic already, and your goals sound good. :tu:


    1. :confused:
      Have you calculated your BMR? I'd expect someone of about 135 pounds to require at least 2000 calories a day, especially if you're that active. Did you mean you're usually intending to eat 1400 calories every day plus the one meal that you don't count? That sounds pretty reasonable to me, so that you guard against fatigue and have that energy available for muscle building. I know lifting is a lot less fun for me when I eat less than 1500 calories. I think I've probably not been eating enough lately, and that's what's been making me sluggish.

      Mmmm trout! :drool:

      Sounds like it's going to be a great summer! :cool:
     
  13. J_W

    J_W Well-Known Member

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    Hey, Jedi, thanks for stopping by :). I need to recheck your journal and see how things are going for you. Are you still having trouble dropping those last few pounds of fat?

    Thanks, guava! Your journal and your posts have been a great inspiration and help over the last two years. I like how you think about fitness and eating and about balancing those things with all the other things going on in your life. Getting to the point where you are is my goal :).

    Exactly. I estimate my total calories at the moment to be around 1700-1800 a day. I'm not really exercising right now since I'm taking a week off so I think that's okay. Once I start exercising again I'll increase calories. Even while on my cut I never went below 1500/day. I need my food :eat:. I'm also tracking my weight closely right now to see if I keep losing, in which case I'll know that my caloric intake is too low.

    :nod:

    Monday, 07/02/07

    Weight: 138.2 lbs (looks like I've finally gotten rid of the bloat induced by my pizza splurge on Thursday)

    Food:

    Meal 1: 125 g LF quark; 100 g blueberries; 1/3 cup apples, chopped; 1 tbsp oats; 3 tbsp wheat bran; 1 cup watermelon, diced​

    Meal 2: 250 g LF cottage cheese; 1 oz almonds​

    Meal 3: ~6 oz lamb steak brushed in olive oil; 2 small baked potatoes; 4 tsp yogurt; ~200 g string beans w/ ~2 tsp of olive oil​

    Meal 4: 170 g turkey breast; 200 g mixed veggies​

    Meal 5: protein pudding w/ nuts​

    Totals for meals 1, 2, 4, 5:
    1242 kcal
    F 46g
    C 82g
    P 130g

    The weather was lousy, so I didn't do anything all day. I did go and look for a store that sells egg whites in a carton and wild salmon steaks in bulk and I was successful :claphigh:. The only thing I'm not so sure about is the fact that the egg whites have a bunch of stuff added to them, like guar gum and citric acid. Presumably, this doesn't affect the macronutrient profile but I'm not sure what to make of it :confused:. I prefer to eat foods with as little added to them as possible, so I'm going to have think about buying this stuff. The advantage is that it would be a heck of a lot cheaper then buying whole eggs and pitching most of the yolks.
     
    #13 J_W, Jul 3, 2007
    Last edited: Jul 3, 2007
  14. KittyKat

    KittyKat Active Member

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    Hi Christy - congratulations on your achievement!!! :claphigh: the change in those four months is really remarkable and you look fantastic! it's great to see what can be achieved with some discipline and resolve and this is exactly what I need to from time to time to keep my motivation up!

    great idea to force you to make your own treats. luckily you live with your parents though - my problem with making pizza or baking stuff is that the leftovers won't be eaten by anyone else but me... :whistle:
     
  15. J_W

    J_W Well-Known Member

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    Hi KittyKat! Thanks for dropping in. I've always found transformation pictures to be extremely motivating, which is why I wanted to post mine. Even though I was really nervous about it :D.

    My dad is a junk-a-holic. He inhales chocolate and cookies like there's no tomorrow and keeps the weight off by biking. Even so, I think I'll be better off making single servings of whatever I'm craving. It adds an additional challenge and there's no danger of binging on leftovers.

    Today was great in terms of exercise and okay in terms of nutrition. I had my first cheat this week: apple crisp. It wasn't horrible in terms of calories, though. In fact, I'd consider it one of the more healthy cheats out there.

    Tuesday, 07/03/07
    Weight: 139.99 lbs :eek: (okay, so I forgot to weigh myself until after breakfast, so I'm not surprised)

    Food:
    Meal 1: 1/2 cup apple; 1 cup watermelon; 3 tbsp oats; 2 tbsp wheat bran; 125 g LF quark

    Meal 2: 250 g LF cottage cheese; 1 oz almonds

    Meal 3: 125 g ovenbaked salmon; 2 cups steamed broccoli; lettuce topped with mixed veggies; 1 tbsp homemade ranch dressing; 2 tsp blue cheese :rolleyes:

    Meal 4: apple crisp topped with pecans :drool:(okay, so it's not a meal, but what the heck)

    Meal 5: 2 homemade whole wheat buns (I even ground the flour myself!); 67 g cold lamb steak; mustard

    Meal 6: protein pudding w/ nuts

    Approximate totals for meals 1, 2, 3, 5, 6:
    1754 kcal
    F 66g
    C 171g
    P 133g

    The carbs really helped my energy levels. I was feeling a little lethargic up until then.

    Now, the fun part: exercise!

    I biked 34 km (21 miles) in 1 hr 45 mins. Here's the elevation chart for the route:

    [​IMG]

    I forgot my camera or I would've taken pictures. Oh, well. Next time.
     
    #15 J_W, Jul 4, 2007
    Last edited: Jul 4, 2007
  16. eleonardo

    eleonardo Well-Known Member

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    How do you make these?

    If it works for you, then by all means, stick to it :tucool:
    I'm currently doing that approach, too. I feel it greatly alleviates cravings of any kind. But, it's different for everyone :)
     
  17. J_W

    J_W Well-Known Member

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    I take 125 grams of quark (you can use any kind of cottage cheese with a creamy consistency) and 3 tbsp of some kind of flour (this could be whole wheat flour or ground oats, whatever you like). I also add 1/4 tsp of baking powder. First, I mix the quark, the flour and the baking powder. I also add a little water because my quark isn't creamy enough for my purposes, but you would have to experiment. Then I beat the egg whites until they form semi-stiff peaks and carefully stir the egg whites into the rest of the mixture. Then I spoon the batter into a non-stick frying pan which I've wiped down with a little bit of butter (it hardly adds calories but does help with flavor) and then add whatever toppings I like (blueberries, apples, bananas, nuts, etc).

    Here's a picture:

    [​IMG]

    Wednesday, July 4, 2007

    Weight: 138.67 lbs

    Food:

    Meal 1: 1 cup apple; 1 kiwi; 3 tbsp oats; 2 tbsp wheat bran; 125 g LF quark

    Meal 2: 67 g lamb steak; 200 g mixed veggies

    Meal 3: 250 g LF cottage cheese; 1 oz almonds

    Meal 4
    : 90 g sardines in oil, drained; 150 g mixed veggies

    Meal 5: 5 medium-sized spareribs in barbecue sauce (homemade); ~1 cup of homemade coleslaw; 1/2 large ear of corn on the cob with a little bit of butter (I'm not even going to pretend this meal is healthy, so I'm counting it as my second cheat for this week)

    I also had sugarfree jell-o with watermelon, which I didn't count since it hardly adds calories.

    Approximate totals for meals 1, 2, 3, 4:
    986 kcal
    F 26g
    C 92g
    P 96g

    Obviously, the calorie count is really low but meal number 5 more than made up for that :rolleyes:.
     
    #17 J_W, Jul 5, 2007
    Last edited: Jul 5, 2007
  18. Buttersweet

    Buttersweet Active Member

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    HI J_W,
    Judging by the pics, you and I are currently at about the same point, and I hope you won't mind if I drop by often to see how your progress is coming along, since I find your journal very motivating. I also have a similar views upon diet, at least when it comes to its strictness. I think I'll be trying out your pancakes in the afternoon:eat:, please share more of your recipes, this looks really tasty:drool:
    :gl:
     
  19. Buttersweet

    Buttersweet Active Member

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    Oh btw, Christy, how come you're setting up a private 'exercise department' instead of going to the gym? And when you start, please post your exercise plan too, and the amount of weight you're actually lifting. I think it would be nice to compare, since we're now both subscribed:) But the point of this: I was doing lifting at home for 3 months with some pretty small dumbbells (the heaviest had 4kg ~ 9 pounds?) before moving to the gym. And when my friend who's only been doing boxing as long as I have didn't manage to lift the 20kg (44 pounds?) bar on the bench, it's not like I thought: yeah, I can and she can't. But I was happy to see that all that lifting at home, as easy as it was, did give some results. And she was happy to know that if she starts by doing what I was doing with the dumbbells, she will eventually get to lift the bar:) And it's funny, both her and I are beginners:)
    cya
     
  20. J_W

    J_W Well-Known Member

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    Because I'm a college student and I'm only home for the summer and vacations. It's easier and cheaper for me to have the basic equipment at home and go to the gym when I'm at school.

    Will do. I still need to set up a proper program. I think I'm going to do a upper/lower split four days a week.

    Yesterday was horrible. Actually, I don't want to talk about it but I said this journal was going to be about full disclosure. I went into full blown carb binge mode. I don't know what set it off but suspect it's the lack of exercise lately. I won't even list what I ate because it was so much, but there were cookies, ice cream, peanut butter and lots and lots of other simple carbs. I actually felt ill in the end :o. I haven't had a binge like that for a long long time so it's kind of depressing, but I promised myself that if this were to happen I would pick myself up, dust myself off and get right back on the horse. I won't dwell on it, won't feel guilty. It happens. I'll put it behind me.

    I'm going to put all those carbs to good use today and do a full body workout since I haven't got my new routine set up yet.

    Oh, my weight yesterday morning was 138.89 lbs. I don't even want to know what it is today, but I'll weigh myself anyway.
     
    #20 J_W, Jul 6, 2007
    Last edited: Jul 6, 2007

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