I mark my time in segments of what I can eat and when.
Looking at the clock — or my watch — I think: how many carbs have I eaten so far? How many do I have left? What can I eat in the next 15 minutes?
You would think this phase of macro counting would be over. You would think I could just go right back to eating “normally.” You might think I would be in a “bulking” phase now.
You would be wrong.
Apparently after such a steep deficit, it is best to reverse diet. If you are in the macro counting/fitness/bodybuilding world you probably have heard the term before but if you aren’t let me explain
Now, I am not in any way a coach, scientist or nutritionist.
Reverse dieting reminds me of walking back up a ladder while getting out of a pool. Sure you can push yourself up and swing your legs over the ledge, but you might fall back in, you might flop around and drench water over everyone. Walking out in a slow ascent and is also a little more graceful. Slowly, they walk your calories up little by little. My coach explains it’s because our bodies are primed to store fat and this will help..slow that down.
This sounds great, right? Makes perfect sense — on paper.
But imagine you have slowly decreased calories for months. Imagine you have fought with yourself, shunned social events, brought vegan chicken in a baggie in your purse to a restaurant (yes, I did that), added zucchini and riced cauliflower to your oatmeal, and now there is no show on the near horizon.
Flood gates have opened. My body wants food…and it wants fat, sugar and calories.
My coach explains that it doesn’t matter if I am at 1300 or 3000 calories, that won’t fix my hunger.
My subconscious nods and then the devil on my shoulder says, try me.
So I measure my days in segments of when I can eat and how much. My calories are bumped up a little — and that feels better. But for someone who never was a donut person, I want donuts. And chocolate. And peanut butter.
I want chips and salsa and hummus. I want a Beyond Burger and fries on a pretzel bun.
Instead I delight in my new Ninja Creami that I got as a birthday present and look forward to my nightly pints of “ice cream” (protein shake).
I know the people around me are tired of hearing me talk about macros, and I feel a little bad about it, but it’s kind of my world right now. This is the recovery process. I keep focused on the goal.
I’m reading The Obstacle is the Way, and trying to keep my mindset positive: What would an athlete do?
I occasionally add a couple chocolate chips to my snacks, and treat myself to no sugar Starbucks or Bigby’s coffee. I keep adding zucchini to my oatmeal.
And I try to gracefully scale the ladder out of this pool. Okay, maybe I skipped a rung here and there, but I’m still holding onto the rails, anyway.