Wednesday, October 22, 2014

How I lost weight by working out less and eating more

When I first started working out, I had no idea what I was doing. I figured out on my own after a few months that cardio helped me really start dropping the pounds. I was given a treadmill and I had started walking on that daily. I learned that I should work out with weights a few days a week. I thought Monday, Wednesday, Friday sounded like a good idea. After a few months I started running for a few seconds at a time. Then I would increase my running time. Before long, I was running for the whole time instead of walking. Then, I worked on going farther each time I ran. When I would reach a new goal, I would try to surpass it. While that is good, it started some warped thinking in my mind. I couldn’t do less than the day before. If I ran 7 miles yesterday, I can’t run less today. Yes, I ran long distances EVERY day.

When I first started working out, I didn’t change my diet at all. Over time, I started thinking “could I make a healthier choice?” If the answer was yes, then I did. I looked for lower calorie options. The same thought process applied to my diet though too. If I ate XXX amount of calories yesterday, I couldn’t eat more today. Everything I read in “women’s magazines” stated that I should be eating 1200 calories a day. I was petrified to go over. I was convinced that I would wake up one day and have gained all my weight back over night.

After about 2 years of doing this completely on my own, my days consisted of working out and planning what I was going to eat today, tomorrow. I continued on, but my body was starting to just give out on me. I couldn’t do what I did before.  I saw the informercial for Body Beast. I ordered it, and was excited when it came. Then I realized, I wanted to follow this program to a T. I read through the nutrition guide. I had always heard that “you can’t lose weight and gain muscle at the same time.” That never made sense to me. I had done it. Doesn’t everyone who is trying to lose weight, combine cardio and weights? I had gotten a little “fluffy”, and I couldn’t understand why. I couldn’t understand. I was working out so hard and focusing on what I was eating- why was I GAINING weight?

When I read Sagi Kalev’s nutrition guide, I finally understood what that meant. According to that guide, I was supposed to eat 1000 calories more per day than I had been. Yes, you read that right. 1000. I took a deep breath and decided to JUST DO IT. Also, no cardio. Unless it was on my Body Beast calendar-no cardio. My body loved it. I looked forward to my workouts again.

Within two weeks, I was slimmer and I felt better. My body was finally getting what it needed. Your muscles NEED those calories to grow. They need REST in order to get stronger. I had been working out 3-4 hours a day (divided up, morning and evening). I am finishing up Beast phase (which is the 3rd and last month) and while I have added in some turbofire- I don’t workout for more than 1 hour- 1 hour 15 minutes. I feel strong, and slimmer without so much “fluff.”

We have to remember that working out and eating healthy is a great thing. However, more isn’t always better. We also need to remember that we might not be able to do it on our own. Sometimes we need help and guidance. I wish that I had had some earlier on in my fitness journey. It would have saved me from a lot of mistakes, and would have been nice to know that I wasn’t alone.