Weight Fluctuation

Today I listened to a weekly call with the leaders of the Les Mills PUMP accountability group that I am a member of on Facebook.  Very wise advice!  They talked about a couple of things that I wanted to share.

1.  Don't overtrain.  At the moment I am doing a double workout on Friday because I am preparing to become certified in Turbokick.  I am definitely feeling overly sore from it because of the Thursday - Saturday workouts.  I need to scale back on the intensity because I don't want to overtrain or cause additional stress to my body.  It's hard because I am excited and I have a great deal of energy right now.  

2.  Don't weigh yourself daily.  Once a week is even too often, especially for women.  The best thing to do is to weigh yourself once a month and measure yourself at the same time to see if you have lost inches even if you haven't lost any lbs.  I weigh in every Monday to keep myself accountable, but also because I want to be able to adjust my nutrition each week and try new things.  One thing that one of the leaders said was that often the scale can be up even though you believe you have eaten really well, because you may have a small reaction to a certain food.  I think that is what happened with me today.  Having the "veggie" pad thai last night (which I don't believe was vegan, but was probably cooked in a meat broth or lard) has really done me in today.  My stomach has been hurting all day.  So even though I tried to stick with "clean" foods, I couldn't control how it was cooked and therefore my body reacted.  Especially if you eat out, don't weigh yourself the next day!  With the added fats and sodium it is likely that you will be disappointed.

3.  It is impossible to gain muscle really quickly.  As they said, if you actually gain 4 lbs of true muscle in a year that would be phenomenal.  So if the scale is up, it isn't because of gaining muscle, but possibly you are retaining water to help repair the muscle from a workout.  On Friday I did a different weight training workout that I had never done before and it reflected on the scale the next day.  Not because I suddenly had more muscle!  Rather, my body retained the fluid it needed to repair the muscles that I used.  This is why it is better to weigh yourself less frequently.

I would also include from my own experience, if you are adding a green smoothie to your daily food intake, don't discount the number of calories!  I have had people tell me that they are gaining weight now that they have started drinking green smoothies.  I would not recommend adding additional fruit to your day if you are putting 2-3 fruits in your green smoothie.  Also, track your green smoothie calories on Sparkpeople.com or some other place.  They can easily add up to 400-500 calories depending on what you add in.  If you aren't adjusting your caloric intake elsewhere in your day, then it will add weight no matter the nutrients.  Green smoothies include protein, fats and carbs.  I consider my green smoothies part of my daily calories and drink half in the morning and half in the afternoon to help curb my appetite.  I really recommend tracking your food for at least a week so that you get a really good idea of how many calories you are taking in.  If you want to lose weight, you have to have a deficit.  I realized that I wasn't burning the calories I thought I was daily.  Now that I have a way to measure, I am able to adjust based on the day.  

For example, because I haven't felt well today, I spent a great deal of it in bed.  Not a big calorie burner.  But, it is Sunday and that is my rest day, anyway.  So I will probably burn about 1900 calories for the day when all is said and done.  Because of that, I am eating less, but I won't have a 1000 calorie deficit because that would only be 900 calories and it isn't wise to go under 1200 per day.  So I will try to stick to 1200 and still have a deficit.  The point is - adjust your calories each day based on your activity level.  My friend Barbara from Bija Coaching has recommended that you eat based on the activity you will have for the next three hours.  If you know that you are going to be sitting around - eat accordingly.  If you are going on a power walk, eat a bit more.  

Good luck this week with whatever your health goals are!