14 Ugly Truths No One Told You About Dieting

14 ugly truths no one tells you about dieting

You are all pumped up ready to go and change your life!  I get it.  I’ve been there! And it’s an amazing feeling!  You think “I’ve got this!  It’s going to be easy! I am READY to change my life this time!”  But there are some of the ugly truths no one has ever told you about dieting.  Flexible dieting even.  It can be downright hard and discouraging at times. But is it worth it?  HECK YES it is!

I want you to be prepared so when the roadblocks come along, you are ready to conquer them!  Anything worth doing in life is not going to be easy and losing (and maintaining) weight is no exception.  Yes, these things might be frustrating and hard but it is SO SO worth it!  I promise!

So here are the 12 ugly truths no one has ever told you about dieting.

1. It is hard

Dieting is hard, plain and simple. You’re going to be tried and tested at every turn. Somedays you’re going to be hungry and grumpy and some days you’re going to feel amazing.  Some days you’ll see huge results and somedays you’ll see none.  It’s not easy and it shouldn’t be.  Think how long it took to put on the weight.  Taking it off is going to be work.

What to do about it: Take it one day at a time or even one meal at a time if you have to.  If you feel like you’re absolutely starving and miserable, your calories are probably too low.  Add in 100 calories and try that for a week.  Yes it will be hard but it shouldn’t be THAT hard.

2. You will be hungry

Whenever you eat below maintenance calories, you will be hungry.  Some days are a lot worse than others.  Some days you may feel so hungry you’ll want to eat your first born and you just have to take it minute by minute and some days you may not feel hungry at all. It will be especially hard the first week or two, especially if you’re used to eating a lot.

What to do about it:  Stay strong.  Like I mentioned above, if you are absolutely starving and have no energy, add in 100 calories for a week and see how you feel.  But realize, your body is adjusting to a whole new way of life and yes, you will be hungry.  Also, find foods with a lot of volume.  Veggies have a ton of volume for little calories.  Also, making sure you’re getting in your protein will help keep you full longer.  Eat protein at every meal.

3. Even with flexible dieting/macro counting, you ARE going to have to give up some of your favorite foods.

I know. I know.  It is called flexible dieting and you’re supposed to be able to “fit in” anything you want, BUT unfortunately sometimes you just can’t. I COULD go to Olive Garden and get a Fettuccine Alfredo and have just a couple of bites but no way in heck am I going to fit it in as an entire meal… especially on cutting calories, it’s just not happening. I am sorry, but it’s true.

What to do about it: Eat your favorite food for your weekly “treat meal” or find a healthy alternative to make at home.  Just make sure if you do eat something super high in fat, carbs and calories as your treat meal, that you get right back on track and you drink a lot of water that day and the next.  It will help SO much.

4. You’re going to have to say no to things

Unfortunately, when you’re on your weight loss journey, you will have times when you have to say no to going out to eat with friends or family, and no to dessert because it doesn’t fit your macros. It might not always be other people you are saying no to. There’ll be times when you have to tell yourself no.  I have had to vocally tell myself no about having a second cookie or reaching my hand in a bag of chips. Do whatever it takes because when you reach your goals, those cookies you said no to, will not even be on your mind.

What to do about it: Make sure your family and friends know that you are trying to lose weight and get healthier.  Look for alternatives at restaurants that you can have that will fit your macros.  Or suggest to them that they come over to your house and you’ll cook for them.  If the person you are having to tell no to is yourself, we’ve all been there.  When you change your life completely, sometimes old habits rear their heads without you even thinking about it.  Make sure you are mindful about your eating and log your food into My Fitness Pal early in the day so you know exactly what you can and can’t have.

5. You might still see the same person in the mirror

When you diet and exercise, you usually lose weight all over at the same time.  Some parts might shrink faster than others but more often you’re losing weight off of your entire body.  So when your waist shrinks, so does your chest and butt.  What that means is, when you look in the mirror, you might still see the same person because your proportions are still the same.  Get it?  Thats why I push taking pictures and measurements so you can SEE the actual difference and not have your mind mess with what you see in the mirror.

What to do about it:  Go by how your clothes fit and also measurements and pictures and yes, even the scale.  The scale isn’t always the best form of measuring progress but it is still helpful at times.

6. You can’t diet forever

At some point, you are going to have to come out of a deficit for a period of time, even if you’re not quite where you want to be yet.  When you diet, your metabolism slows down and your progress begins to stall.  At some point, progress will stop all together.  This is your bodies way of telling you it needs diet break.  This is completely normal.  In order to bring your metabolism back up and start progress moving forward again, you need to go back up to maintenance calories for several weeks to months even.  Our bodies are not meant to be in a calorie deficit for long. They don’t like it.  They want food! You might gain a little weight (water weight)  but when you go back into a cut, you’re body will start responding again.  This is the point I am at right now.  I want to lean out and be in a cut but my body is saying no!

What to do about it:  Come out of a calorie deficit and go to maintenance calories for 10-14 days.  Then drop your calories back down to your cutting calories and see if your body responds.  If it doesn’t you might need a longer diet break.

7. You will hit a lot of plateaus

Weight loss is not linear.  You may be trucking along wonderfully in your progress and seeing weight loss every week then BAM! Your progress stops completely. Or you may even gain a few pounds. This is completely normal!  Let me tell you something, if you’re relying on the scale only, progress could still be happening that is just not registering in your weight.  You may be putting on muscle or you may be holding extra water weight. Or girls, it could be your hormones.  That is why pictures and measurements are important.  If you see no more progress in pictures and measurements, it might be time for a diet break. (see above)

What to do about it: Make sure you are hitting your macros perfectly.  That includes a bite of this or that throughout the day.  LOG EVERYTHING!  You could be going over calories by several hundred by grazing on food throughout the day that you think is harmless.  Also, make sure you are putting everything you’ve got into your workouts.  If you are tracking perfectly and your exercise is on point, you might just be hitting a plateau.  You can either drop your calories by 50-100 (if you have room to do so. You don’t ever want to drop your calories lower than your BMR) Or up your workouts, move more etc.. Drink more water and make sure you’re getting enough sleep. Also stress can play a big part in weight loss so relax 🙂

8. You will have setbacks

Injuries, illnesses, vacations, plateaus, emotionally trying events, falling off the wagon completely etc..  Setbacks come in a lot of different forms. But they are a part of the journey. Don’t be too hard on yourself if you fall off the wagon here and there or all over the place!  It’s ok!  Just jump back on and try again.  Weight loss is a LONG journey so go easy on yourself. Setbacks happen to everyone, the important thing is knowing how to get over them.

What to do about it:  If you are injured listen to your body and don’t overdo it before you’re ready or you’ll injure yourself even more or prevent your injury from healing. Do some modified workouts.  Hurt knee? Work upper body.  Hurt arm?  Do some lower body and cardio. Same goes with illnesses.  You can still make sure you’re tracking your food perfectly and doing whatever physical activity you can until you’re back to normal but again, don’t push yourself until your better or you could end up worse off.  If you fall off tracking completely, do your best to get back.  Recognize what it is that happened and try not to let it happen again or find a way to push through.  Vacations are awesome and inevitable. I love vacations and live to travel!  But it’s not always easy to stay on track with your eating and workouts while away from home.  You can check out my post here about staying on track while on vacation or if you decide not to worry about tracking while away, make sure you get back on track the second you get back.  My workouts are always a little rough the first few days back from a vacation, but it doesn’t take long for me to feel back to normal.

9.You will still be the same person 

Just because you lose weight, does not mean you will change as a person.  If you are a selfish and awful person, losing weight is not going to change that.  If you are selfless and giving, losing weight is not going to change that.  You might think, “Once I lose this weight, I will be happier” or “When I lose this weight I will be a better mom/dad”  That’s just not so.

What to do about it:  Work on being the best you you can be now no matter what you weigh or what size you are!  Your kids/friends/family will not remember you as being a certain size, they will remember you for how kind, selfless and amazing you are!

10.You may be more tired, emotional and moody than normal

Like I said, dieting is hard and when you cut calories you’re hungry and hungry people can be emotional and moody.  And when you’re not giving your body all of the calories it needs to function, you may feel more tired.  Personally, I don’t get tired during a cut and I don’t really get too emotional or moody either but I know there are some people it really effects.  So just realize, you might be one of those people.  It’s all part of the journey.

What to do about it: Work really hard to find foods with a lot of volume (big amount of food for low calories) so you feel full longer.  Egg Whites are an amazing volume food. Make sure you are getting 7-9 hours of sleep each night and really listen to your body.  If you are feeling exceptionally moody, tired and emotional, your calories may be too low.  I don’t recommend going super low on calories to begin with.  Your body needs time to adjust to this new way of life.

11. There are a lot of mind games that happen when you diet

You will look in the mirror after putting in months and months of hard work and not think anything is happening. (It is)  You’ll eat a big meal then jump on the scale the next morning and be 10lbs heavier and think you’ve sabotaged all of your progress (you haven’t.  It’s water.) You will wonder somedays if this is all worth it. (It is)  You will wonder if you’re doing it right.  If your calories are too high/low.  If you’re working out properly.  You will wonder and wonder and wonder about EVERYTHING some days.

The last few months I have been reverse dieting (adding calories back into my diet slowly) and the mind games have been crazy bad!  When you add in calories, particularly carbs, you retain more water, which makes you feel puffy and some of the definition I was seeing before, has gone away. And then I start to wonder if what I am doing is right and if I should go back to cutting calories, am I gaining weight and all of the things that my mind is telling me that I should do when really I just need to be patient and trust the process.  Because guess what?  My measurements are the same and my clothes fit the same so its all in my head (and on the scale. Yes my weight has gone up)

What to do about it: Relax and trust the process.  You know if you’re really making progress or if you mind is playing tricks on you.  Get a good nights sleep and see how you feel in the morning.  That always helps me.

12. Weight loss is 100% mental

You’re probably thinking I’m crazy and that weight loss is nutrition and exercise but trust me on this one.  The one thing that changed for me this time around, was that my mind was in it 100% and I knew, without a doubt, that I would not fail this time.  If my mind hadn’t been there, I would’ve only lasted 2 weeks like all of the other times I tried to lose weight. And here I am a year and 8 months later going strong.  It is 100% mental.

What to do about it: If you don’t feel like your mind is in it 100%, do little things each day to change your habits.  Get a little more sleep.  Eat a serving of veggies instead of potatoes chips.  Go on a walk instead of watch tv.  Your mind will get there, sometimes it just needs a little convincing.  Change your habits and it will change your mind.

13. It will take longer than you think

Have patience. This a marathon not a sprint.  Fad diets DON’T WORK!  If you’re doing it right and in a sustainable way, it’s going to take time.  I have been on this journey for almost 2 years and I am still not where I want to be.  Changes happen and they happen slow.  That’s ok!  It’s more sustainable this way and time is going to pass anyways.

What to do about it: Have patience.  Your body will respond in its own time.  Yes there are some things you can do to help speed up the process.  Make sure you’re hitting your macros 100%, make sure you’re getting in your workouts, drinking enough water and getting enough sleep.  If you’re doing everything in your power, your body will still respond the way it wants. Part of it is genetics and part of it is just the process.

14.Your journey is never over 

So what happens after you’ve lost all the weight you want and you look and feel amazing?  Do you just go back to your old habits of eating whatever you want, whenever you want?  Nope!  If you did that, it would only be a short while before you undid everything you worked so hard for and all that time spent would be for nothing.  You will have to track your food forever friends.  To be honest, I am totally ok with that!  Because I suck at intuitive eating and I know that I feel and look so much better when I do track.

You’re still going to have to watch what you eat for the rest of your life if you want to maintain your weight. Sure you may be able to be a little more flexible and you will be able to add in more calories but you’re still going to have to track those calories.   And be prepared for the fact that maintaining weight is as hard as losing it was.  You may go about your life eating well but being a little more free in your food choices and the weight might slowly start creeping back.  That will mean its time for another cut.  It will be a constant cycle, so prepare yourself for that.

What to do about it: Just like you have to shower and brush your teeth everyday, you have to watch what you eat and exercise every day.  It’s part of life and something you need to come to terms with.

 

I hope this post didn’t discourage you but I did want to shed some light on some of the ugly truths about dieting.  Its not easy, it will take time and you’re never done.  There will be setbacks and hardships but overcoming them will make you a better, stronger person!  Next I am going to post about the great things no one ever tells you about dieting so stay tuned…

You’ve got this!

XOXO 🙂
Amanda

How to Eat Out While Tracking Macros- Zupas

eating out at zupas

This post may contain affiliate links which give me a small commission at no extra cost to you, and helps keep this content free! 

When tracking macros, you don’t have to be afraid to eat out!  You just have to be educated and plan in advance. One of the best things about iifym/flexible dieting, is that you can still enjoy the foods you love and for most people, (myself included) that means eating out!   There are so many macro friendly restaurants you can eat at.  Of course, there are some places where it will be a little bit trickier to find something that works without blowing your whole day, but I truly believe there is something that you can order at pretty much every restaurant and still stay on track. That’s not to say you can’t go out and have a “treat” meal every now and again, but, you do have options if it’s not a treat meal time!

Today we are going to break down the menu of another one of my favorites, Zupas.  I will help you decide what you should and shouldn’t order to help you stay within your macros! The best choice(s) out of each group will be in bold. 

I haven’t eaten at Zupas in quite a while because I have been unsure of what to eat there, so this post is as much for me as it is for you.

 

There is an option at Zupas to do a “Try Two” and get any combination of half salad, half soup or sandwich.  I would advise against doing the try 2 unless you have crazy high macros or you are sharing with someone.  If you are trying to lose weight and are cutting calories, I just can’t see how you can make that work with cutting calories.  Unless it’s your weekly treat meal…don’t do it! 

Entrees-

 

Salads- Be very careful with salads!  They can be so deceiving.  People all the time think “I’m eating healthy so I’ll have a salad” but little do they know, one salad can pack as many calories as a cheeseburger and fries!  And the dressing makes up a lot of those calories. You can always ask for the dressing on the side so you know how much you are adding or bring your own!  I recommend Bolthouse Farms dressing.  It is so good and has incredible macros!

Also, at Zupas you can create your own salad so you could always go for chicken and veggies with dressing on the side or bring your own and you’ll easily be able to keep it in check.

Out of the options below, I would choose the Salinas Valley Chicken Bowl without dressing and bring my own.  The dressing alone can make a 300 calorie and 33g fat difference! That is HUGE!

  • Thai Coconut Tofu Bowl Cal-770, P-24, C-91, F-35
  • Thai Coconut Tofu without dressing Cal-520, P-23, C-71, F-17
  • MexiCali Braised Pork Bowl Cal-840, P-28, C-88, F-44
  • MexiCali Braised Pork Bowl without dressing Cal-530, P-27, C-79, F-12
  • Salinas Valley Chicken Bowl Cal-830, P-30, C-69, F-48
  • Salinas Valley Chicken Bowl without dressing Cal-490, P-30, C-57, F-15

 

When choosing a salad, I would go for something with as high protein and low fat as you can find.  I personally like to keep my fat under 15g for a meal like this because I only have 50g a day to “spend”, and you know I like my treats!  In this case I would definitely bring my own dressing and choose one of the options in bold below 🙂

  • Asian Citrus Chicken
    • Half Cal-390   P-14, C-31, F-23
    • Full Cal-530   P-21, C-39, F-31
  • Asian Citrus Chicken without dressing
    • Half Cal-220   P-13  , C-18  , F-11
    • Full Cal-270   P-20  , C-19  , F-13
  • BBQ Chicken
    • Half Cal-400 P-19, C-33, F-23
    • Full Cal-540  P-11, C-38, F-31
  • BBQ Chicken without dressing
    • Half Cal-250  P-11, C-30, F-8
    • Full Cal-310  P-18, C-34, F-10
  • California Protein Cobb with Fresh Herb Vinaigrette
    • Half Cal-480   P-19, C-16, F-39
    • Full Cal-720   P-33, C-22, F-56
  • California Protein Cobb with Ranch Dressing
    • Half Cal-410 P-19, C-11, F-31
    • Full Cal-610   P-33, C-13, F-45
  • California Protein Cobb without dressing
    • Half Cal-260  P-19, C-8, F-17
    • Full Cal-380  P-32, C-9, F-23
  • Chipotle Glazed Chicken
    • Half Cal-480   P-16, C-38, F-29
    • Full Cal-620   P-23, C-45, F-38
  • Chipotle Glazed Chicken without dressing
    • Half Cal-330   P-15, C-36, F-15
    • Full Cal-400   P-22, C-41, F-17
  • Chipotle Glazed Pork
    • Half Cal-560   P-24, C-40, F-33
    • Full Cal-780   P-40, C-48, F-46
  • Chipotle Glazed Pork without dressing
    • Half Cal-410   P-25 , C-38, F-19
    • Full Cal-560   P-39, C-44, F-25
  • Garden Chicken Chop with Fresh Herb Vinaigrette
    • Half Cal-450   P-17, C-24, F-32
    • Full Cal-660   P-28, C-29, F-48
  • Garden Chicken Chop with Ranch dressing
    • Half Cal-380   P-18, C-18, F-25
    • Full Cal-550   P-29, C-20, F-37
  • Garden Chicken Chop without dressing
    • Half Cal-230   P-17, C-16, F-10
    • Full Cal-320   P-28, C-16, F-15
  • Kale and Quinoa
    • Half Cal-480   P-11, C-49, F-27
    • Full Cal-710   P-15, C-77, F-39
  • Kale and Quinoa without dressing
    • Half Cal-260   P-11, C-40, F-5
    • Full Cal-380   P-15, C-65, F-6
  • Mangoberry
    • Half Cal-240   P-3, C-28, F-13
    • Full Cal-330   P-3, C-39, F-18
  • Mangoberry without dressing
    • Half Cal-100   P-2, C-17, F-2.5
    • Full Cal-120   P-2, C-22, F-2.5
  • Maui Tropical Chicken
    • Half Cal-530   P-11, C-34, F-37
    • Full Cal-710   P18, C-43, F-50
  • Maui Tropical Chicken without dressing
    • Half Cal-280   P-11, C-25, F-15
    • Full Cal-350   P-18, C-29, F-17
  • Nuts about Berries
    • Half Cal-310   P-2, C-28, F-21
    • Full Cal-450  P-3, C-42, F-30
  • Nuts about Berries without dressing
    • Half Cal-90   P-2, C-14, F-3
    • Full Cal-120   P-3, C-22, F-3
  • Strawberry Harvest Chicken
    • Half Cal-390   P-11, C-34, F-24
    • Full Cal-530   P-19, C-42, F-32
  • Strawberry Harvest Chicken Without Dressing
    • Half Cal-210   P-11, C-18, F-11
    • Full Cal-260   P-18, C-19, F-12

 

Soups- I LOVE soup, especially in the fall and winter!  But I was absolutely SHOCKED at the macros on these soups! Some of them have 700-800 calories for a full size!  And almost double the fat grams of my ENTIRE DAY!  Like I said, absolutely shocked!  Lucky for me, my favorite soup is one of the better ones on macros (Chicken Enchilada Chili).  But still none of them are very high in protein at all.  Your very best bet for overall macros is going to be the Yucatan Chicken Tortilla, which is actually pretty good.  But avoid most of these at all costs especially if your fat macros are around 40-60g per day.  You don’t want to use up an entire day (or 2 days in some cases) of fat grams on a single meal.

  • Tomato Basil
    • Half Cal-280   P-2, C-18, F-23
    • Full Cal-560   P-4, C-37, F-47
  • Garden Chowder
    • Half Cal-370   P-3, C-12, F-36
    • Full Cal-740   P-6, C-24, F-73
  • New England Clam Chowder
    • Half Cal-370   P-4, C-12, F-35
    • Full Cal-730   P-7, C-24, F-70
  • Yucatan Chicken Tortilla
    • Half Cal-110   P-11, C-8, F-4
    • Full Cal-220   P-21, C-16, F-8
  • Mushroom Bisque
    • Half Cal-250  P-2, C-10, F-23
    • Full Cal-500   P-4, C-20, F-46
  • Roasted Veggie and Quinoa
    • Half Cal-80   P-4, C-11, F-2.5
    • Full Cal-160   P-8, C-21, F-5
  • Chicken Enchilada Chili
    • Half Cal-180  P-7, C-11 , F-12
    • Full Cal-360   P-13, C-22, F-24
  • Lobster Bisque
    • Half Cal-350   P-3, C-10, F-35
    • Full Cal-700   P-5, C-21, F-69
  • Wisconsin Cauliflower
    • Half Cal-430   P-6, C-6, F-43
    • Full Cal-860   P-12, C-12, F-86
  • Roasted Red Pepper and Lobster
    • Half Cal-290   P-3, C-10, F-27
    • Full Cal-580   P-6, C-20, F-54

 

Grilled Panini and Gourmet Sandwiches- For the sandwiches I am only putting in macros for wheat bread and realize that if you do your sandwich on white, you’re going to be about 50 calories higher with it adding 2 grams to fat, 1 to protein and about 7 carbs.

Personally, these sandwiches all have more calories than I am willing to use up in a single meal but if you must have one, share with a friend or go for one of the bold ones below. They aren’t great on macros but they’re the best out of the list.

  • Honey Cilantro Carnitas  Cal-750, P-29, C-63, F-43
  • BBQ Pulled Pork   Cal-610, P-23, C-63, F-30
  • Italian Club  Cal-600, P-24, C-51, F-31
  • California Turkey  Cal-580, P-24, C-51, F-31
  • Vegetarian  Cal-490, P-14, C-50, F-26
  • Turkey Bacon Avocado  Cal-580, P-25, C-51, F-29
  • Pesto Chicken  Cal-670, P-26, C-46, F-40
  • Ultimate Grilled Cheese  Cal-610, P-16, C-44, F-39
  • Cuban Grilled Pork  Cal-660, P-32, C-54, F-34
  • Honey Bacon Club  Cal-590, P-22, C-53, F-30
  • Crab Avocado Melt  Cal-660, P-21, C-55, F-39
  • Turkey Spinach Artichoke  Cal-670, P-24, C-48, F-40

Sandwich add-ons-  Be super careful with add-ons! They can really add in calories fast if you’re not careful.

  • Applewood Smoked Bacon  Cal-40, P-3, C-0, F-3
  • Avocado Cal-60, P-1, C-3, F-6

 

Soup Mix-Ins- This is one place you can really add in calories if you’re not careful.  Each item on it’s own doesn’t appear to have a lot of calories but add in multiple and it can add up to be hundreds of calories.

  • Cheddar Cheese  Cal-50, P-3, C-0, F-4.5
  • Applewood Smoked Bacon  Cal-40, P-3, C-0, F-3
  • Focaccia Croutons  Cal-45, P-1, C7-, F-1.5
  • Goat Cheese  Cal-35, P-2, C-1, F-3
  •  Avocado  Cal-45, P-0, C-2, F-4.5
  • Onion Crisps  Cal-60, P-0, C-5, F-4.5
  • Orzo Pasta  Cal-25, P-1, C-5, F-.5
  • Shaved Parmesan Cheese  Cal-40, P-4, C-0, F-2
  • Sour Cream  Cal-40, P-0, C-1, F-4
  • Tortilla Strips  Cal-90, P-1, C-10, F-4.5
  • Wonton Strips  Cal-70, P-1, C-7, F-4

 

Extras- These two come with every meal so you can choose to eat them or not.  Personally I would eat the strawberry and ditch the bread.  Also if you do eat the bread and add butter to it, don’t forget to track the butter.  The bread and butter alone will be at least 230 calories so be aware of that.  To me, that’s not worth it 🙂

  • French Baguette  Cal-130, P-4, C-26, F-0
  • Belgian Chocolate Dipped Strawberry  Cal-45, P-1, C-7, F-2

Kids Menu

Don’t be afraid to order off the kids menu if you’re feeling like something a little lighter.  It will save you quite a bit of calories.

  • 2 Chicken Stripes  Cal-200, P-13, C-10, F-12
  • Fruit Cup  Cal-80, P-0, C-19, F-0
  • Grilled Cheese Sandwich on Ancient Grain  Cal-410, P-16, C-41, F-19
  • Grilled Cheese Sandwich on Italian Ciabatta  Cal-470, P-17, C-49, F-21
  •  Kids Soup
    • Chicken Enchilada Chili  Cal-140, P-5, C-8, F-9
    • Garden Chowder  Cal-280, P-2, C-9, F-27
    • Lobster Bisque  Cal-260, P-2, C-8, F-26
    • New England Clam Chowder  Cal-280, P-3, C-9, F-26
    • Roasted Red Pepper and Lobster  Cal-220, P-2, C-7, F-20
    • Roasted Veggie and Quinoa  Cal-50, P-2, C-6, F-1.5
    • Tomato Basil  Cal-210, P-2, C-14, F-18
    • Wild Mushroom Bisque  Cal-190, P-2, C-8, F-17
    • Wisconsin Cauliflower  Cal-320, P-5, C-5, F-32
    • Yucatan Chicken Tortilla  Cal-70, P-6, C-5, F-2.5

 

Dessert 

I would be careful in the dessert area! And if you must have dessert from Zupas, share with someone.  The chocolate dipped strawberry is awesome!  Runner up is the Chocolate Dipped Chocolate Chip Cookie (which sounds amazing!)

  • Chocolate Dipped Macadamia Nut Cookie  Cal-240, P-3, C-32, F-12
  • Chocolate Dipped Chocolate Chip Cookie  Cal-220, P-3, C-32, F-10
  • Chocolage Dipped Strawberry  Cal-45, P-1, C-7, F-2
  • Caramel Rockslide Brownie  Cal-550, P-5, C-56, F-35
  • Chocolate Hazelnut Creme Brûlée  Cal-410, P-2, C-34, F-33
  • Chocolate Mousse Cake Cal-630, P-5, C-57, F-44
  • Creme Brûlée Cheesecake  Cal-350, P-5, C-28, F-24
  • Million Dollar Bar  Cal-590, P-8, C-56, F-38
  • Mixed Berry Creme Brûlée  Cal-390, P-2, C-27, F-33
  • Rocky Road Brownie  Cal-500, P-6, C-60, F-28
  • Salted Caramel Creme Brûlée  Cal-420, P-22, C-31, F-34

 

Drinks

I don’t drink caffeine and I think it’s a waste to use your calories on pop so I would say the winner of this round WATER!!  Always water! Second would be anything diet.  I am also not showing the breakdown of these, just the calorie range.

  • Fruit Punch Cal 270-390
  • Dr. Pepper Cal 260-280
  • Sprite Cal 250-360
  • Coke Cal 260-380
  • Root Beer  Cal 280-410
  • Minute Maid Light Lemonade Cal 5-8
  • Powerade Cal 140-200
  • Diet Coke Cal-0, P-0, C0, F-0
  • Honest Green Tea 16.9oz Cal 70
  • Sweet Tea 18.5oz Cal 190
  • Vitamin Water XXX Cal 130-410
  • Vitamin Water Zero Cal 0
  • Water- Cal-0, P-0, C0, F-0

Chips

The meals here are big enough that you shouldn’t need chips but if you really want chips, definitely go with Baked Lays.

  • Lays Classic  Cal-160, P-2, C-15, F-10
  • Lays Oven Baked Original  Cal-140, P-2, C-25, F-4
  • Miss Vickie’s Sea Salt and Vinegar  Cal-210, P-2, C-23, F-12
  • Miss Vickie’s Smokehouse BBQ  Cal-210, P-2, C-23, F-12

I was actually quite shocked as I started going through this list. When you think of a soup, salad and sandwich shop, you think healthy.  That is not the case with most of the items on this menu, so be educated about what you are going to order before you go to Zupas or  it is very easy to blow more than half of your calories and all of your fat grams for the day on one meal!  It is possible to eat healthy at any restaurant if you go in educated and that is why I am here!

A Few of my Favorite Things-Gym Edition

My Favorite things- gym edition

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Here is a list of a few of my favorite things that I use at the gym that I absolutely cannot live without!

Before Workout-

  • Quest Bars-I grab one of these on my way out of the door and they are perfect to eat on the way to the gym AND give me plenty of energy for my workout!
  • L-Carnintine- This is a great amino acid that helps boost metabolism.  I take 2 before my workout every day.  If you prefer liquid, I have tried this kind before and liked it too!  You can take it with food or on an empty stomach if you prefer to train fasted.

Gym Gear

  • Apple Watch-I love my apple watch and can’t live without it!  I know the calories are not 100% accurate, but it helps me set a goal and stick to a certain calorie burn during my workouts or I’ll make a goal to workout for a specific amount of time.  It really helps me to stay on track and try to do better than I did yesterday.
  • Senso Bluetooth Headphones-My family bought me bluetooth headphones for mothers day and I love them!  I don’t have to worry about an arm band or some other way to carry my phone and it also makes it easier if I want to take a video of myself doing a particular exercise to check my form. The sound is great and they don’t cost an arm and a leg.  I highly recommend these!
  • Iphone 6-I love my iPhone and it’s a must have to pair with your apple watch! I have the 64gb that is the best decision I ever made.  I take a lot of pictures and videos and have not even come close to filling up the space on my phone.
  • Adidas Bag-I just have this simple drawstring bag to take my stuff with me to the gym.  I don’t take a lot with me (headphones, water, keys and phone) so this is the perfect size for me.

 

Workout Clothes

  • Tesla Workout Leggings-I have raved about these before!  Click here to read my review. These are hands down, some of the best workout pants I have found and so reasonable priced!
  • Workout Tanks-  I love these tank tops I found on Amazon.  They are light weight, reasonably priced and cute!
  • Under Armour Shoes- These are the shoes I wear. They are super comfortable and versatile for whatever workout I am doing.  I have bad feet and have a hard time finding shoes that feel good. These have never once hurt my feet and I have ran, biked, walked and done the elliptical and stair stepper in them.
  • Converse- Converse are great for leg day!  They have a flat sole which you really need for squatting and deadlifting.

Apps

    • Spotify Music-I have the premium version of Spotify and it’s about $15 for my entire family to use.  To me it’s well worth it because we were easily spending more than that on music on iTunes.  And you can make playlists and it’s super easy.
    • Strong Workout App-I’ve mentioned this app in previous posts.  I love this app because I can track my workouts and it helps me see what I did last time and how I can improve either volume or weight at the gym.

Post Workout

  • Ninja- This little machine is AMAZING!  I blend up my premier protein and PB Fit with some ice and it tastes like a Reeses Peanut Butter Cup Smoothie.  And it takes 2 seconds!
  • Blender Bottle- If I’m feeling lazy or am in a rush, I will use a blender bottle for my post-workout protein shake instead of the Ninja and it’s great for on the go!
  • Premier Protein-My favorite protein shake!  I buy the premixed ones.  I have heard the powder isn’t very good.  I don’t recommend buying this or the Pb Fit on Amazon though.  It is SO much cheaper at Sams Club or Costco 🙂
  • Pb Fit-I mix this with my chocolate Premier Protein shake everyday and it is AMAZING!!
  • Glutamine-After the gym I mix glutamine, creatine and bcaa’s in a blender bottle and drink it.  Glutamine is great for recovery and for helping you to not feel as sore after your workout.
  • Creatine-Creatine is used for increasing muscles size and strength and helps boost performance in the gym.
  • BPI Sports Best BCAA’s- BCAA stands for branch chain amino acid.  BCAA’s are made up of 3 essential amino acids, leucine, isoleucine and valine.  Our bodies don’t make these amino acids so you have to get them through food.  Technically if you are eating enough protein you don’t need bcaas and there is a lot of debate out there about whether they’re necessary or not. .  I do, however still take them because I feel like I have more energy when I do, I recover better and I really like the taste so it helps me to drink more water.
  • Digestive Enzymes  & PB8 Probiotics- I take these on a regular if not daily basis.  They really help keep my stomach feeling good and help with digestion.  Whenever we go on vacation or my eating schedule is just off, my stomach just gets in knots and it’s very uncomfortable for a few days.  I took both digestive enzymes and the probiotics last time we went out of town and didn’t have an issue at all even though we were eating so crappy!

These are my must haves that I use every single day!  I would love to know if you have anything you can’t live without in the gym!

Recipe-Low Calorie, Delicious, French Toast

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A few things you may not know about me are 1- If a recipe isn’t easy, I won’t make it.  2- I refuse to sacrifice taste just to hit my macros.  3- You won’t find me making weird recipes like protein pancakes, 1 carb waffles etc.. 4- I eat normal food that I can buy from the grocery store that is simple. (see 1 &2) 5- I am such a convenience person so I really won’t go out of my way to spend a lot of time on food.

My true hope and desire for this blog is to show you that you can be successful and lose weight while eating normal foods you can buy from the store. You don’t have to make nasty protein pancakes, protein bread or healthy mug cake that tastes like crap.  If that was the case, I would’ve failed a long time ago. Like I said, I am a convenience person and I like my meals to be simple and quick and still taste delicious.  I have tried all of the protein pancakes, bread and healthy mug cake etc… and they were all disgusting to me and I ended up just wasting a bunch of food and money.  So anytime I post a recipe on here, it will fall within my 3 requirements…convenient, easy and delicious.

I have been craving French Toast lately and came up with this version that tastes exactly like normal French Toast.  It is low calorie and completely satisfying!  Each Serving has only 85 calories including syrup and whipped cream!  You seriously can’t beat that! And even my kids like it!

Recipe-

  • 66g-Egg Whites
  • 1 1/4 tsp Vanilla
  • 1 1/4 TBSP Milk
  • Sprinkle of Cinnamon
  • 2 Slices of Sara Lee 45 Calorie Bread
  • 2 TBSP Sugar Free Syrup
  • 2 TBSP Light Whipped Cream
  • Any toppings you want- Strawberries, Blueberries, Chocolate Chips etc.. (These calories are not accounted for in the calorie count so make sure to add these in separately)

Low Calorie French Toast Recipe Low Calorie French Toast Recipe Low Calorie French Toast Recipe

Low Calorie French Toast Recipe Low Calorie French Toast Recipe Low Calorie French Toast Recipe Low Calorie French Toast Recipe

  1. Spray skillet with cooking spray and begin heating.
  2. Mix together egg whites, milk, cinnamon and vanilla
  3. Set bread in egg mixture until it is covered then flip and do the same on the other side.  Don’t let it soak too long.
  4. Place on skillet and let cook for a few minutes.  Once I put it on the skillet, I like to sprinkle a little more cinnamon on top.
  5. Flip to other side and sprinkle with a little more cinnamon.  Let cook until desired crispiness.
  6. Take off skillet and top with spray butter, whipped cream, syrup and toppings.
  7. ENJOY!

Low Calorie French Toast Recipe  Low Calorie French Toast Recipe

Low Calorie French Toast Recipe  Low Calorie French Toast Recipe

Don’t forget to add it all into My Fitness Pal!  I like add in foods I eat often as a recipe, so that the next time I make it I don’t have to enter each ingredient separately again.

Nutrition facts for entire recipe (without toppings)

Calories- 169

  • C-32
  • F-2
  • P-12

Let me know what you think in the comments section! 🙂

Benefits of Drinking Water

Benefits of drinking water

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Did you know that your body is made up of 60% water? And your brain is made up of 65% water! We NEED water for our body to function properly and to think clearly.  And unfortunately, this is one of the biggest areas people overlook.  When people think of health and weight loss, they generally just think about diet and exercise, but drinking enough water is equally important.  You need to be 100% on your diet, 100% on your exercise and 100% on your water intake for optimal results.  Will you see results with diet and exercise alone?  Sure, but you’ll have success more quickly if you are drinking enough water and there are SO MANY benefits to drinking water besides losing weight.

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10 Tips For Sticking to Your Diet While on Vacation

10 tips for sticking to your diet while on vacation

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We decided about about 2 weeks ago that we wanted to go on a vacation soon. We love planning spur of the moment vacations and this time is no exception. We are leaving this Sunday for San Diego for 5 days and I can’t wait!  I absolutely LOVE to travel!

However, sometimes it’s tricky to stay on track while traveling.  You don’t have your own kitchen and food and you’re forced to eat out almost every meal.  There are several options you can follow while traveling, you just need to figure out what will work best for you!

  • You can track your macros perfectly (or at least the best you can)
  • Loosely track but be ok with the fact that you may go over a little bit
  • Be mindful of what you’re eating and make good choices but don’t track at all
  • Have a free for all and eat whatever you want.

There is no wrong way however, if you follow the free for all, you might have a harder time getting back on track after the vacation is over and the possibility of gaining weight is pretty high. I am going with the third option of being mindful and making good choices but not really tracking what I eat.  I will still try to get in a lot of protein and drink lots of water.  I want to enjoy my vacation since they don’t come around often enough, but I also don’t want to feel like complete crap the entire time.

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How to Keep Flexible Dieting Flexible

Keep Flexible Dieting Flexible

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I firmly believe if a diet isn’t sustainable you won’t stick to it.  How long can you really go with no carbs or no sugar?  I know I didn’t last long on either of those.  A week….Maybe??  Then I felt so miserable, I gave in and ate everything in my house.

If you are too uptight about your diet, you won’t be able to stick with it no matter how good of a diet it is and believe it or not, that INCLUDES counting macros!  There is a time and place to be super strict on your diet.  For me, I was super duper strict for the first 9-10 months.  I had a cheat meal once a week and I had non-tracking days on holidays only but other than that, I was 100%.  And I needed that at first.  It really worked for me while I was first starting and learning. But now that I know everything I do about flexible dieting and my body, I know I can be a little more lenient.  I am not seeing results as fast, but it’s also more sustainable for me and my lifestyle.  I am still very good at hitting my macros but if we are at a bbq or a business dinner, or something unplanned comes up,  I don’t freak out. I live life in that moment and get right back on track the second that moment is over.  I don’t let myself stay off track for long and that is the key.  You can have times where you don’t count or days where you are feeling extra hungry and want to eat everything, but you better get right back on track the next meal or day.  There is no starting on Monday and binging through the weekend.  That’s when things start to get bad.  Allow yourself a little leniency from time to time and the other times, stick with the diet.  I stay on track the best I can 90% of the time so I can allow myself some room to live the other 10%.

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Leg Day Workout for Killer Legs!

gym leg day workout

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I love this leg routine!  I usually stick with the same routine for about 6 weeks before changing it up.  The reason I do that is so that I can see the strength gains and progress I am making.  If I’m changing up my routine in the gym every time, I am never going to know if I’m getting stronger or making any progress with my lifts.  I also make sure I track every workout with the Strong workout tracker app and it really pushes me to go a little bit heavier or do another rep or two more than last time.

The great thing about working out with weights is you can go as heavy or light as you want.  If you’re brand new to the gym, start doing what you can do as far as the weight goes, track your workout and work on building your strength over time.  Don’t go in and try to lift heavy at first or you’re more likely to get an injury.  Go and do what you reasonably can and get your form down before increasing the weight. Form is so so important!  Don’t rush.  You want your lifts to be slow and controlled. This will also help you to prevent injury.

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How to Eat Out While Tracking Macros-Chick-Fil-A

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When tracking macros, you don’t have to be afraid to eat out!  You just have to be educated and plan in advance. One of the best things about iifym/flexible dieting, is that you can still enjoy the foods you love and for most people, (myself included) that means eating out!   There are so many macro friendly restaurants you can eat at.  Of course, there are some places where it will be a little bit trickier to find something that works without blowing your whole day, but I truly believe there is something that you can order at pretty much every restaurant and still stay on track. That’s not to say you can’t go out and have a “treat” meal every now and again, but, you do have options if it’s not a treat meal time!

Today we are going to take a look at the menu of one of my favorites, Chick-Fil-A.  I will help you decide what you should and shouldn’t order to help you stay within your macros! The best choice out of each group will be in bold. 

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My Summer Food and Activity Accountability

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Today is the last day of school for my girls!  I cannot believe it.  It is cliche but so true, that life really does fly by!  My kids are going to be in 6th and 10th grade next year.  I am going to have a high schooler!  You must be thinking I don’t look old enough to have a high schooler right?  Well I’m not 😉 haha!

Now that summer is here, life is about to get crazy!   I thought it would be a great idea for me to let you guys know how I plan to stay on track with my eating and activities this summer and have a little bit of accountability for myself as well. It always helps to write down your plans/goals and to have people that you’re accountable to.

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