Mike’s Countdown to 195: Week 23

Welcome to Week 23 of me publicly broadcasting my goal of getting down to 195 pounds every Friday until that goal is accomplished.

Quick History Of How I Got Here

2010 – Early 2015
  • Used weight training to lose 80 pounds of fat and maintained a healthy weight around 205-210 pounds based on home/work lifestyle.
  • 2015 goal to lose 15 pounds of fat that would equate to about 195 pounds (if no muscle loss)
  • Challenged myself to get to 195 during 2015 Holiday Seasons (hardest time for me to lose weight)

 

First Six Weeks November – December 2015

 

Post Holiday/Winter Time Blues

 

Most Recent

**SPECIAL NOTE**:
Michael could easily lose 10+ pounds of weight in a week just by going on a unhealthy super low carb diet or dehydrating himself of water.  That’s not what this countdown is about!  This is about fat loss not weight loss!  There is a BIG difference between those two!

Truth be told, Michael doesn’t care how much he weighs. The real stat that matters to him is his waist. That’s the measurement that tells the real story about his health/fat loss. One of Michael’s other goals was to have a consistent 34.5” or smaller waist size. Since waist measurements aren’t as sexy as weight loss, he decided to focus on the scale for these countdown weeks, while looking at the waist as a secondary (but way more accurate) measurement.


WEEK 23: April 15 – 21 2016

April 15th Stats
Scale Weight: 199.8 pounds
Waist: 33.4 inches

Week 23 Main Goals

  • Drop scale weight from 199.8 to 199 pounds
  • Maintain a waist size less than 34 inches
  • Start taking 30-60 minute walks 2-4x a week
  • Start a new weightlifting routine emphasizing strength while losing fat
  • Eat about 1776 calories a day on my off days
    • For my fat loss/muscle maintenance goals that ideally breaks down to:
      • 195 grams Protein
      • 160 grams Carbohydrates
      • 39 grams Fat
    • Eat about 2756 calories a day on my off days
      • For my fat loss/muscle maintenance goals that ideally breaks down to:
        • 240 grams Protein
        • 310 grams Carbohydrates
        • 61 grams Fat

 

Observations & Challenges

Workout

This was the third week of doing a dedicated strength style workout. As each week passes, my body has been adapting. Last week my body got use to the “new workout” soreness and I felt I had a pretty productive lifting week.

This week, I could feel the carb cycling taking its toll during my workout days. The days before I workout, I have a lower amount of carbs & calories. What happens is that on the morning of my workout my energy is slightly on empty due to being depleted of the higher amount of carbs.

When I was doing a bodybuilding based workout, I mainly relied on fruit for my pre and post workout nutrition or I just trained fasted in the early morning.  Given the heavy weight I’m lifting, I need to ensure that I have proper nutrition prior to my workout session.

In case you haven’t been following me, I do intermittent fasting. I basically skip breakfast and don’t’ have my first meal until noon. I typically fast for 16 hours straight before breaking my fast for lunch.

That’s why I’ve been supplementing with Branch Chain Amino Acids (BCAAs). This allows me to stay in the fast but still have nutrition to fuel my workout. I’m not a fan of supplements but for this style of workout, bcaas are needed.

With my body shifting between high and low calories, I’m still adapting. I’m progressing in my lifts but definitely felt “weaker” this week. I’ll be sure to keep a eye on this next week.

Sleeping

I was able to average 7 hours of sleep every day this week. I would prefer to get closer to 8. This was a week in which spring finally arrived so we had the windows opened for most days. That led to high and low temp changes, which affected my sleep. The more sleep I get the better my fat loss will become.

Eating

My wife and I came up with a good meal plan that allowed us to cook all our cravings at home this past week. I had a craving for some indian food, so we just made our own homemade chicken palak. I think we will be making more of that in our future!

I satisfied my sweet tooth by eating frozen mango chunks. If you’ve never tried them, get some! It’s a great way to get that creamy texture of ice cream/sorbet but in a healthy way.

Looking back at my food journal, I forgot about Friday night. I did have a case of “falling asleep on the coach but waking up” at 1 AM. That led me to eating another small serving of jambalaya and some Oreos. The Oreos did cause me to go over my calories for that day.

I made a note to myself that the only reason I ate them was because I was tired. No big deal, I accepted my fault and didn’t desire them for the remainder of the week.

Food Journal

Here are my delicious food stats for the week:

Mike's Diet Journal Entry for April 15 2016 Mike's Diet Journal Entry for April 16 2016 Mike's Diet Journal Entry for April 17 2016 Mike's Diet Journal Entry for April 18 2016 Mike's Diet Journal Entry for April 19 2016 Mike's Diet Journal Entry for April 20 2016 Mike's Diet Journal Entry for April 21 2016

End of Week 23 Stats: April 22nd, 2016

  • Scale Weight: 199.0 lbs (0.8 lbs lost from previous week)
  • Waist: 33.3 inches (0.1 inches lost from previous week)

I’m suprised that the scale read 199 pounds.  The previous night it read 202.3 pounds.  That’s why I will say this time and time again….I don’t trust the scale!  I dislike that I called this series of blog posts “Countdown to 195” because it makes it appear that the scale is the best indicator.  The mirror and my waist measurements are telling me the truth.  The scale only let’s me know when I have excess water in my body from eating carbohydrates are drinking 80+ ounces of water.

My waist has gone down for the past couple of weeks, which let me know I’m making progress.  I know I wasn’t as active as I had been in the previous week.  This was the first week I completely stopped walking up/down my household stairs.  For the previous five weeks, I had been doing a stair walking routine for my cardio.

I planned on replacing those walks with walking outside.  During Week 23, I took 3 walks.  This upcoming week, I will make more of an effort to be active during the day as well.  Cleaning, hourly shadow boxing, break dancing…who knows!  But it’ll be something simple, creative and fun.

Additionally I will slightly reduce my calories.  My non-workout days are already pretty low so I will just reduce my workout calories from 2756 to 2556.

Upcoming Week 24 goals:

  • Drop scale weight from 199 to 198.5 pounds
  • Maintain a waist size less than 34 inches
  • 30-60 minute walks 2-4x a week
  • Increase daily activity (especially during fasting period)
  • Eat about 1776 calories a day on my off days
    • For my fat loss/muscle maintenance goals that ideally breaks down to:
      • 195 grams Protein
      • 160 grams Carbohydrates
      • 39 grams Fat
    • Eat about 2556 calories a day on my off days
      • For my fat loss/muscle maintenance goals that ideally breaks down to:
        • 224 grams Protein
        • 288 grams Carbohydrates
        • 57 grams Fat

23 Weeks Down……4 Pounds to Go ….Waist goal achieved and now must be maintained!

It took two weeks, but I finally got the scale to display a solid 199.  What’s in store for me this upcoming week?  Homemade ice cream?  Protein Shakes?  Birthday cake?  Like life, the temptations and distractions are unpredictable.  But I’ll be here, will you?

Tune in next Friday for Week 24!