An email from the middle of my 3 week fast fat loss experiment…
It’s now two weeks since I started my 3 week Body blitz.
I’m not enjoying it!
I wanted to do it for a few reasons –
1. To remind myself again what it’s like to be restrictive and count calories, so I can use that experience to help others
2. To prove to myself how well certain fat loss methods I use can work
3. To quickly get back to the physique I feel best at after a recent period of relaxed eating and some over indulgence
I have seen some good results – currently 5lbs down and noticeable changes in the comparison photos I took yesterday. So it is working.
But it’s not fun.
Aiming to lose weight in such a short period of time means restricting calories enough to be a little bit hungry at times, and counting them very accurately.
Just like everyone else, I don’t like being hungry.
And I don’t like accurately counting calories. It’s time consuming, and at times a complete pain in the backside.
To get the most from this short phase I’m tracking my macronutrients too, which means aiming for certain amounts of protein, carbohydrate and fat.
The My Fitness Pal app is the tool I’m using to do this, and it is brilliant for that purpose, with a massive database containing the nutrition stats of almost any food you can find.
For some people this app is great and they can use it every day without much problem. For others, that level of accuracy just isn’t necessary and it instead become a cause of added stress.
Yesterday I actually found myself feeling slightly stressed because I wanted to eat some avocado, but couldn’t fit it in to my fat allowance for the day.
This sort of thing is what I don’t want people to have to experience unnecessarily!
The only time this level of tracking and restriction is required is if you’re going for a very lean physique, or you need to lose weight in a very short space of time.
This is why I always advocate losing weight at a gradual pace.
Focusing on changing habits.
Eating real foods.
Drinking more water.
Getting enough sleep.
Nurturing the body with quality nutrition.
Exercising regularly (and lifting weights for strength, health, toning and fat loss benefits)
Being mindful of portion sizes.
Learning what foods contain protein, carbs and fat, and how to get a balance of each over the course of the day.
Learning which foods are high calorie options to be wary of, and which are low calorie choices to look out for.
These last two points are where My Fitness Pal can come in very handy for some people as a tool to learn about different foods and what they contain.
A reasonable level of knowledge about food, and the calories and macronutrients common foods contain, is something everyone should have. You should know what you’re putting in your body. If more people did, they’d realise how shockingly high in calories and low in nutrition some of their food choices are. And there would be a lot less people struggling to lose weight.
Once you have a good level of knowledge about all that stuff (and this can just come from reading/googling/looking at packets etc), using the key basic habits should be enough to get you to where you want to be.
I am definitely finding this blitz useful for making me think before I eat more than I actually need, and have saved myself a lot of calories from this, hence the weight loss.
And the whole time I haven’t dropped below 1750 calories (yet I’m still moaning about feeling restricted :)) so it shows it’s really not necessary (or healthy) to drop to a super low level. I’d very rarely advise anyone to drop below 1400 calories. Your body needs nutrition!