"You want me to lift on January 6th?? I was thinking the February comp?!" I gasped
"The plan is to lift early so you can qualify for Nationals without a hitch" My coach said matter of factly
Imagine your Holidays: food, festivities, family, more food, presents, alcohol, a little more food, minimal activity. There must be a reason why people say "Screw it, i'm done until January 1. Everyone else does!!" Your health will take a backseat during the next 5 weeks more than likely. The office brings in sweets at least once in a week, parties are never ending AND happy hours are prevalent. Is this you I'm talking to??
For the last 2 months, I've been focusing on strength training. Granted I have been mixing in some metabolic conditioning, I haven't exactly been moving as much as I usually do. I went from 174 pounds to 181 in 2 months. (yes, I ate a Thanksgiving meal for 3 like I usually do, which probably bloated the number up) The focus has been on stronger shoulders, legs and core work, quite a bit of strongman stuff on top of it.
When I hit the platform on January 6th, I will be weighing in at 169.6 pounds. So look at the sentence right there, weighing in at 169.6 pounds. Losing 11.4 pounds in 36 days when there isn't much to lose on my body to begin with. Add the Holidays which alone adds 3 to 5 pounds when you say the name and it's a recipe for disaster....or is it?? Do you have the discipline to get out of the Holiday season unscathed? This blog is designed to give you sound advice: health and strength training tips. I am going to give you a step by step, day by day break down on how to maintain and LOSE pounds plus maintain healthy habits during the end of November through New Year's period!
Day 1, Friday November 24th.-Start weight 181.2 pounds
Keep in mind this the day after Thanksgiving, I have set macronutrient goals of 2300 calories, the breakdown is this 185 grams of protein, 235 grams of carbs and 70 grams of fat.
I ended today with 2240 cals consumed, 188 grams of protein, 222 grams of carbs and 66 grams of fat. Energy level is very high, sugar consumed has been low. With this in mind, here are some small goals I set for myself
Minimal processed sugars (1 dessert or a bite of a dessert a week)
Alcohol (anywhere from 0-3 drinks throughout the 36 day period)
Staying balanced with my macros, if I'm off just a little bit each day, I won't sweat it. The long term goal is the same but the process will be ever changing as I go.
Vegetables (4 servings minimum), fruits (banana a day, possibly an apple too.) Water intake is at 150 ounces if not more. I rarely track it, if my pee is clear, all is well. Protein is going to make the difference, the amino acids profile will keep me strong and ensure I don't lose very much muscle mass.
Day 2: Saturday November 25th-Weight 180.6
I'm sure I am retaining water, 0 concern whatsoever. 2620 cals consumed. 183 grams of protein, 247 grams of carbs and 104 grams of fat. Mainly from the shredded beef I ate, I had a small handful of mac and cheese plus a sip of wine and 2 very small bites of pie and cheesecake. I also had prosciutto, cheese and a ton of spinach and asparagus at a party that evening. You can easily say no if you have the willpower to do it. On top of a heavy workout day, I sense my weight dropping tomorrow.
Day 3: Sunday November 26th- Weight 176.8
Good bye water weight!! My cals for this day ended at 2270. Fat was still a little elevated at 102 grams, protein was at 158 and carbs sat at 180. Amazingly, energy levels are still high. I also am consuming a cup of coffee a day if not a little more. Ate a nutrient filled dinner of salmon, brussel sprouts with chopped bacon and some brown rice. Still no major cravings to speak of.
Day 4: Monday November 27th- Weight 178.2
Seeing as I didn't workout on Sunday, this was to be expected. Finished my Monday with 187 grams of protein consumed, 214 carbs eaten and 91 grams of fat for a total of 2423 calories consumed. Energy level remains high, even had a few extra cals thanks to some 93% ground turkey consumed with a 1/2 serving of cheese and a low carb wrap high in fiber. Vegetables are remaining at 4-7 servings daily, everything is going perfect.
Day 5 Tuesday November 28th- Weight 174.8
Is this scale broken?? I have decided today to start consuming about 2500 calories from here on out. Literally halfway to my goal weight in 5 days and I still have 31 to go!! This doesn't mean add desserts folks, it means eating more of the good stuff, sleeping 7-9 hours daily and staying hydrated. Workouts continue to go well, I'm managing 8 to 12,000 steps per day (this is the most underrated aspect of the process. You have to MOVE in order to lose weight folks) I added some calories today and finished with 224 grams of protein, 248 grams of carbs and 87 of fat for a total of 2671 calories consumed. I did have halo top ice cream tonight, granted a pint runs about 320 cals only!
Day 6: Wednesday November 29th-Weight 176.2 pounds
Weight was up but I'm not stressing. I had a VERY high volume workout day today, felt great and ate well until dinner. Still eating a high amount of vegetables and inspite of an Arepa and Chipotle bowl for dinner, I consumed 2257 cals for the day. 160 grams of protein, 233 grams of carbs and 75 fats. Not craving desserts at the moment and feeling phenomenal. sugar consumption is remaining very low.
These 1st 6 days went very well, it will be a steady progression downwards for me. Here are some tips for you to remember this holiday season when you want to binge continuously until December 31st.
Consume more protein: Eating protein stimulates an increase in protein synthesis and suppresses protein breakdown for several hours so you end up with more lean tissue. Based on the availability of Amino Acids, the body is constantly fluctuating in muscle gains and losses. Anytime you replenish your body by consuming protein, it promotes muscle development.You carry more lean muscle mass by consuming high quality protein. The higher intake of BCAA'S (Branch Chain Amino Acids), you produce greater lean mass and reduced insulin sensitivity. Branch Chain Amino Acid content is a great metric of protein quality. Lean meats generally carry essential amino acids that are a PLUS for your health. Foods rich in BCAA'S are Chicken, Salmon, grass-fed beef, eggs and whey protein. If you are a vegetarian, try Vegan protein powders, edamame, Organic Tofu and protein bars out for higher sources. You'll thank me later.
Have 2-3 meals a week that satisfy your cravings: I understand it's the Holiday's, enjoy time with your family and the food that comes with it. You have about 15-24 meals a week to consume, make 2 or 3 of them ones that satisfy your cravings. Have Ice cream once, have 2 beers or wine once and eat pizza once during the week. The rest of the time, be good!! As for Christmas, enjoy the day and throw your planning out the window if you want to. Get back on track the other 6 days out of the week 🙂
Keep liquid calories consumed to 100 cals per week: drink water most of the time. Enjoy your beer, wine or alcohol in a small dose. Binge and you're in trouble; go back to my last blog for proof of that.
- Exercise 5 days a week. Obviously I can't eat like this and transform my body without working my butt off!!
- Making exercise a priority for 91 days! I know, here come the excuses,
- "I have a family and they eat standard American nutrient less food." or "I don't have the time in my day to do this!" For the next 3 months, I think you can make meals for yourself if your husband or wife are indifferent and unsupportive of your decision. (They sure shouldn't be, they should join in with you)
- "How much television do you watch?" During your shows, use resistance bands for training or walk in place. You could also record your shows and watch them later, skipping the ads; use that time to exercise. Other common excuses
- I'm too tired!!Working out actually gives you more energy. I've found this out the hard way since I came home from The Granite Games in September. Your body makes feel-good hormones (endorphin's), and you're getting the circulation going. It may help to work out in the morning before your day gets away from you as well. Not a morning person? No problem. Do it whenever you feel best, I have recently been working out in the middle or at the end of the day.
- I have children and don't get a break! Take the kids with you! While they're playing, you can walk around the playground or jump rope nearby.(unless you live in Minnesota, then take them to an indoor club) Do what you can in the limited amount of time you have!
Listen, no one is perfect. We're all human, life gets away from us from time to time. Especially during the season of Shopping, Christmas cookies, bailey's and coffee, online spending binges and parties to boot. Don't let your health take a back seat during this time. I'm here to show you that you CAN lose weight in the season of packing pounds on. Here's the blueprint, it's up to you to execute.
My name is Jesse Velasquez from Minneapolis, Minnesota. I empower and inspire other's with vision and education to reach their optimal fitness potential. Follow me on Twitter @dajvshow, Snapchat @JCV24 or Instagram @ jcvwellness.