I measured a banana today..and other confessions

*warning, this is long and kind of boring. I’ve been trying to find what’s right for my body and writing it all out helps me process it. Feel free to skip, skim, or come back another day*

The past month I’ve been really focusing on how to eat.  I haven’t fully committed to a plan yet. I’ve dipped my toes in trying to see what resonated with me. You see, I’m not a typical dieter – I’m not really a dieter at all. I’m not overweight and never have been. I’ve been various shades of normal weight. So It’s not like I can “cut out junk food” and lose that pesky 10lbs.  But I’m a dancer, a performer, a perfectionist. I want my body to be the best it can be. And I want to lose 10lbs, but according to most calculators it will take me 6 months to lose 10lbs. Sometimes I feel guilty for concentrating on my looks and my fitness and how to really make my abs pop while leaning out my legs.  I know people are in different places then me, I know there are people losing weight for health and here I am struggling over what plan to choose for…for what? Vanity? But then I try to remind myself that everyone’s journey is their own and people’s desires are different. I’m not bad for wanting keep moving forward, evolving and changing and progressing – why should I stop? I’m just in a different place and I hope no matter where everyone else is at, that they get to keep progressing and evolving and moving forward without feeling guilty or wrong.

So back to me being banana’s.  4 weeks ago I decided it was time to follow a difinitive program again to get into peak audition shape.  I’ve done a few other things before, the most effective being a diet my ex-boyfriend put me on that’s like a figure model diet and whilst doing that I did p-90x. It worked really well, had me eating every 2-4 hours and sucking down shakes.  It worked well until he dumped me and I kept the workout program and sort of kept the diet but ate a LOT MORE. I got super puffy muscular. Still in a healthy weight range but uh, not attractive and I felt blocky and it was harder to move around.

 this is me, puffy but in shape. However I was tired a lot and felt blocky and tight. I tried to take yoga and cried, in class, from the pain of moveing my arms…the photographer actually used photoshop to shave muscle off my shoulders in the other shots to make me more balanced!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

So I backed off and took up running and the Warrior style diet (raw fruit and veg / sunflower seeds during the day and a main meal only at night). then I went clean eating in the style of what the ex had me do (complete with cheat day Sundays!) but I didn’t measure anything and I didn’t eat 6 times a day I just ate a clean meal or snacks when I was hungry, didn’t count calories, didn’t measure servings and had a cheat day on Sunday.  It actually worked really well! I lost small amounts of weight (which is all I can lose), saw my abs really come out.

 Two years after that other picture and I’m still wearing that same top?! I need new sports bras…This was 7kg less then the other picture and it was much easier to move my arms and legs. Need a tan though, and not photoshopped clearly.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

But now, I want more.  I just went to intuitive eating when I was in China and it was great, I didn’t gain any weight, my workouts were fine, my body was fine- although I ate a TON of sugar in the form of dried fruit and dryfruit candy covered in white sugar (so delicious).  Now I’m back and I want to get leaner. I want to see my 6 pack when I’m not flexing. I want to fit in an Australian size 6 no matter the designer. And I also want these things in a lasting way – I want a way to eat and workout in a way I can maintain and manage…forever, healthfully, without “phases”. Like Jackie said, I want to be able to go get my workout done, know how I like to eat and go on with my day. I want to know I can walk into any audition and KILL their strength test and also fit in their costumes. I want to look good in my jeans too.

Checking out the view in China 🙂 Intuitive eating and working out was fabulous, if not a little unstructured…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

So I started by trying out Leangains Intermittent Fasting – I had a really hard time with it. I played with Macros and learned, I’m really  not eating that much protein. I’m feel like I’m starving all the time and then when I eat I feel like I’m all over the place. But I like the idea of it and I’m not ready to give up the ghost completely yet.

30th Birthday / Announcing the engagement to the fam dinner – so fun.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In my attempt to up my protein I started eating a lot of plain natural yogurt or greek yogurt. I really liked it – by itself, mixed with protein powder, mixed with sugar free jelly or oats and bananas…But, I learned that I do infact react to dairy, which sucks because I was LOVING it and I actually felt full. But alas it does not love me and it’s so obvious. I wanted to try reducing my carbs too. I am a blood type 0+ and my dad and many others have mentioned their believe in The Blood Type Diet. Not to mention my mother and my sister thrive on high protein, low carbs to varying degrees. They both have enviably low body fat and seem to eat things they enjoy. My mom has been on the Atkins diet for over a decade. Removing grains for me was great except oats.  With no grains and little access to other proteins I was starving again and no amount of scrambled eggs, protein shakes or sunflower seed butter was squelching my hunger.  I tried to make a more meat/fish/eggs based diet but quickly I found that – it’s just not me. I feel endlessly hungry, bloated, I don’t like eating meat, I had trouble sleeping. SO I’ve added oats AND fruit back into the mix. And instantly I feel better. Banana’s in particular really do wonders for me and as evil as some may think they are, I can eat whole bags of dates without gaining weight. My sugar count gets really high but my weight doesn’t.  It doesn’t make sense to me.  When I let myself have processed sugar whenever I want it – jelly beans, gummy bears and such – I lose definition quickly in my muscles. As soon as I do Sunday Cheat days, the definition seems to come back EVEN if I’m eating dry fruit and oatmeal like it’s my job.

This week I started that same clean diet the ex put me on but without the time restrictions. Eat clean when you’re hungry, eyeball amounts…..BUT I’ve found while I think I lost a little weight this week and it feels like a step in the right direction, it’s still a little all over the map. I am studying macros and shit and I can’t figure out how many calories, carbs, fats or protein I’m “supposed” to eat to maximise my energy, body, results.  So I end up starting with an idea (1200 calories, <100 carbs <60fat at least 100gms protein) but I’m hungry or tired or have  no idea how to get that much protein without going over calories and I ended up with really high fat grams when I was trying to cut out fruit and oats.  I upped my calorie range to 1400 – but it seems at the end of the day I’m still hungry. i’ve been tracking to see. Lately I eat between 1400 and 1600 calories a day – most of those calories at night. When I finally admitted that I needed more carbs I found myself eating fresh and dry fruit everyday and that brings my cals/carbs right up – but funny enough, my protein went up too. Have I always known what was best for me? How is it so different from almost all fitness reccommendations? How do I improve my body and my energy? And I’ve been reading about other peoples macros – some talk about losing more weight when they upped their calories to numbers I never dreamed of – 2700, 3200! Why should I feel bad that I’ve been up around 1600? But there’s some part of me that does. My pants aren’t tighter, my measurements are going up (they’re slightly going down actually even with higher calories and weighted squats and deadlifts!)

It’s time to measure, everything. If I  want some really exacting look to my body I have to measure and be exacting with my nutrition. Out came the measuring cups today. and then when I had to log my banana in MFP there were 4 size options. I’ve just been guessing but that’s not good enough anymore. I whipped out my tape measure.  A small banana it was at 6inches meaning sometimes I do overestimate my calories (and when it comes to dry fruit and oatmeal I think i underestimate).

I looked up bikini competitor diets and workouts. That is most close to what I am aiming for (with possibly just a little more muscular definition – I want a six pack).  I read Sophie Guidolin’s clean eating diet regime (5 clean meals a day-the usual) for inspiration. So going into this next week my measuring cup is going with me everywhere – I want to know exactly what I’m doing. I am my own science experiment and I’ll be damned if I don’t find out what works.

This week will be clean eating, in the style of what I was doing before but with some new rules – measure everything – but don’t judge. I know what to eat, I know what is clean good optimal foods – eggs, whole fresh fruit and vegetables, raw pumpkin/sunflower seeds, black coffee, tofu, beans, tuna in water, oats, protein powder, dry plain fruit (no sugar or glace).  I know to stay away from dairy (except Dan bought a HUGE thing of whey protein powder so until I use that up I won’t be getting a dairy free one. It’s all good though). I need to drink more water even though it’s cold. I need to continue my workout program with trust and energy. I need to take pictures to compare to – even though I think I’m too cold 🙂 I know I need to make diet tweaks but I’m not sure where yet. And I still can’t shake the idea of IF and the uselessness of 5 meals a day – though I’ve used the eat every 2-4 hours protocol with success in the past. But I want to live and look photoready year round, working hard, even when I have kids, am on vacation. I want a whole photo/audition ready lifestyle and there’s something about 5 meals that doesn’t feel neccessary to me, though it is undoubtably a great place to at least start. The best part about this is that my best friend is on board with me. We just started doing “this” together this past week and it’s made me more focused and feels more purposeful. We’re both on an online diet/fitness diary and we have access to each others diary – eeek accountability! It’s so fun though! We talk about ideas and what we did and help each other brainstorm (me: how the hell do I get more protein?!! Melanie help ME!) I’m so excited. It helps me feel more connected and closer to my female soul mate. It helps ease some of the loneliness (I’m a little lonely)

 Melanie and I AEONS ago!! Back when I couldn’t imagine being 30 🙂 or apparently washing my hair often enough…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

One step at a time.  This week should reveal some big gains for me 🙂

 

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About Coco

Dancer, performer, cosmetologist and now first time mum. I spent my life traveling the world as a performer. Now, the next chapter is unfolding...

Posted on August 11, 2012, in Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 7 Comments.

  1. sometimes comparing eats between people makes my head spin!! oh that crazy metabolism issue 😛

  2. I tried the Blood Type Diet (I’m A+) and it helped a lot, especially with bringing up my energy levels. I wasn’t as tired or bloated if I stick with the foods that are beneficial, and noticed how eating the “avoid” foods can wreak havoc on my system! Good luck with your eating/exercise program, you look beautiful and fit already but I understand how we all feel there is room for improvement (though I don’t see it in you!) 🙂

    • Thanks! Actually, I’ve heard a LOT of good stuff about the Blood Type Diet. A few of my friends have gotten great results and really feel like they’re eating their perfect foods. And I was reading Slow Burn by Stu Mittleman the super long distance runner and coach and he totally encourages the Blood Type Diet!

      • One thing I don’t agree with in regards to that diet is that my blood type is supposed to stick with slower-paced exercises, like yoga, which I don’t really like! But everything else seems spot on, I hope you get a chance to read into the Blood Type Diet. 🙂

  3. you’re not slow paced!!! Nothing wrong with that. I have looked into and tentatively dipped my toes in before but never fully committed….

  4. Hello, I see you have read Sophie Guidolin’s Clean Eating Guide. I am thinking about buying it. Do you think it’s worth it or is it the typical things you can find on the internet? I can’t find any helpful reviews about it.

    • honestly it depends on where you’re starting from. It’s really easy to read and well laid out! but I’m not a beginner and I pretty much could have written it myself. But it’s a GREAT start and her looks couldn’t sell it any better. It’d be easy to print out pages and build your diet and shopping list around it.

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