It’sss Mooonnddaaaayyyy! You know what that means. It means a lot of things. Hopefully your week is off to a great start! This past weekend was everything I wanted it to be. A lot of rest and a lot of competing! We had our In House – Countdown to Kickoff Competition this past Friday night to get in a little friendly competition and trash talking before college football starts THIS WEEKEND. We grilled out, Josh Pritchett brought some beer for everyone to try, and it was just an all around great time. My team (which wasn’t even my team since I wasn’t originally competing) WON. I was just there to judge and next thing I know, I was deadlifting and ridding the assault bike. Funny how that works. They were a good team. If Jeri Ann is on your team, you’re probably going to win. Am I right? 

On Saturday, a group of us went to Columbia for the Famously Hot Showdown at Carolina CrossFit. I loved being there. CCF is a great gym, and I met some wonderful people. I competed with my bud, Jayson, who moved to Columbia a few months ago. He kept me feeling crunk all day long, and we won. It was hard keeping up with him being he is 10 years younger than me, but I did my best. The best part of the day though was getting to see the taco crawl in action around downtown Columbia after the competition. Oh, and being in bed by 9:30 pm. That was my favorite too. I can’t hang with those young rollers.

I leave next Wednesday for Granite Games, so I’m super pumped about that too. 

Ok, so this post is going to be a little more personal…and a little longer. But if you skip through most of it, just read the end. It can easily be interpreted to be all about FOOD and RESULTS. But if you read a little deeper, you can see that it’s a lot about SELF LOVE too. 

If you know me well enough, you know that I’m not as perfect in my eating habits as my instagram sometimes leads you to believe. I mean, the quality of foods is going to be great almost all of the time. I love veggies and lean protein sources. The more colors, the better. I eat good to feel good. I’m pretty basic, and I for sure don’t get bored with healthy food. But I love eating good (sometimes not healthy food) in some funish social situations, and I’m good with all of that! BUT (stay with me) when it comes to eating ENOUGH (for my lifestyle) and eating at the RIGHT TIMES (as in not going hours without eating, and not eating enough around my workouts)…well.. I’m sometimes struggs. This affects my mood and energy levels, which has made me feel not my best while coaching and in the middle of workouts. 

A little over a month ago, I sought out a girl named Katelyn for some help with my nutrition. I found her blog awhile back through my friend Lindsey. I think she wrote a post about traveling to NYC, and Daniel and I were about to go, so I hit her up! She is a coach with MacrosLab. To be honest, it was actually pretty humbling to ask someone for help me with my nutrition because in my head, I thought it would discredit the help I’ve been able to give others regarding their own nutriton/health journey. But then I realized that this would show that I wasn’t above asking for help myself, and maybe it would set me up to better help others at CFEC. And on top of that, how could I feel ok about telling other people to take steps to better their health when I wasn’t willing to do the same when I knew that I needed it. <—I’m preaching now. 

I’ve come a long way since my high school and college days, and even over the past couple of years. I’ve celebrated that on here, and I’ve always tried to be transparent about food and exercise, and overdoing it from time to time. For me, macronutrient tracking and counting has helped over the past couple of years. For those of you who don’t know, macronutrients are made up of fats, protein, and carbohydrates. You can track these + calories in apps like MyFitnessPal. Its not for everyone! But it has helped me, and I’ve loved helping a few others get started with it.

I knew most of what Katelyn was going to tell me. I knew she was going to adjust my macros. I knew I was going to need to eat more. And as a 30 year old girl (I hate saying the word woman) who lifts heavy weights and has muscles, and usually brings a lot of attention to herself EVERYWHERE she goes, adding bodyweight wasn’t something I wanted to do. BUT I did want to be able to make it through a workout without feeling like I was going to pass out. Despite seeing some of my friends eat MORE food, lean out, and most importantly, FEEL BETTER, I didn’t think it would work for me. I’m hard headed, remember?

But I figured I had nothing to lose, and maybe it was time to finally commit. Maybe it would even help me feel better leading into Granite Games (which is at the end of next week, by the way!)

Katelyn is a rockstar. She was so kind and patient with me, and what I appreciated most was that she didn’t just make me start eating more right away. We’ve worked for over 4 weeks and steadily bumped my carbohydrate grams number up. She also lowered my grams of fat, which unfortunately(just kidding) made me stop eating almond butter by the spoonful. 

When I started, right after vacation, I was barely tracking and measuring my food. I hadn’t seriously done it since The Open, which ended back in March. When I did track, my number of grams of carbs was like 201, or something like that. My protein was right at 150 grams. My fat was at like 72 grams, or somewhere around there. If you break down the ratios and calories/gram, the percentage of where I was at was like a “zone diet” percentage: 40% carbs, 30% protein, 30% fat.

 Everyone is different! Those numbers are personal, and they were numbers I thought I needed to be at to balance my lifestyle of working out twice a day (usually) and being on my feet coaching multiple hours a day. I still believe in a low carbohydrate lifestyle for everyone, and when I say that, I mean..lay off the carb dense/ calorie dense crap foods, and instead, eat REAL food – good quality food like all the veggies you can get, with some lean protein sources, a little fruit, a little high quality starch to support your lifestyle and your workouts. Oh, and cut out the sugar and alcohol. 

With my lifestyle, I needed to eat more than where I was at, and my body let me know that it was going to keep steadily shutting down if I didn’t make a change. I felt like my hormones were all out of whack too.

Each week, Kaelyn bumped my grams of carbs up just a little, and four weeks later, I am now happily at: 

304 grams of Carbs/day

145 grams of Protein/day

55 grams of Fat/day. 

When I first saw the number 304, and that I would be there by the end of the four weeks, I was like “Oh shoot. Here we go!” But now that I’ve been at that number for over a week, I feel like I could even eat more! Thankfully, Katelyn has helped me watch my sugar as well, SO…. these extra carbs don’t come from doughnuts, or cookies, or french fries (well, except for a few times 🙂 95% of the time, these came from rice, sweet potatoes, and oatmeal. Those three are my love language. I had to add some more of that kind of stuff, on top of all the veggies I eat everyday. 

On top of that, my hip started hurting a little bit soon after I got back from vacation(these things happen from time to time). I decided to not push through the pain, modify my workouts (but still keep the intensity high and keep working out) and keep eating like Katelyn said to do. I didn’t back off of food because I wasn’t able to workout like I wanted to for a couple of weeks (which is something I used to do in the past). My hip is feeling a lot better now from some rest (and probably more food) and I’ve been back to lifting heavy for almost two weeks now!

And the results from doing this for the past 4 weeks….

My body fat (which was already a low 10.5%) DECREASED to 8.9%. I LOST right under 5 lbs. I did the body scan at Complete Nutrition (right across from the mall, in Anderson). The InBody is a great way to track overall bodyweight, body fat, lean muscle mass, water weight, etc. etc. etc. Before you flip out, I’m aware that 8.9% may not be ideal long term, and so we’re going to keep playing with numbers and get me where I need to be. It hasn’t had a major effect on my strength, as I’ve still been lifting at the same numbers as I was prior (even with taking a little break from most lifting for several weeks). I ran a 5K this morning at the fastest time I ever have (even when I used to run a lot a long time ago). I’m still pushing myself in workouts, and most importantly, I’m able to keep the intensity high without feeling like my legs are going numb from not being fueled up.

Anyway, I tell you all of this not to sound obsessive. The only reason I’m throwing my results out there is to show you that eating more (of whole natural foods), not depriving yourself, asking for help :), trusting the process, and most of all, BEING KIND TO YOURSELF by LISTENING TO YOUR GOD GIVEN BODY works. I truly feel like this turned on something for me, or at least woke my 30 year old body up. I am eating all the time now. I am eating more food before and after my workouts, and I’ve been able to keep the intensity high in the gym. I really just needed someone to hold my hand, hold me accountable, and tell me exactly what to do. 

And with that, I want to be clear that over the past four weeks, I still went out with Daniel and my friends. I still ate tacos. I still ate some ice cream (maybe just not as much.. bummer!) I still ate a burger and some sides at the gym cookout the other night. I was still able to track all of that the best I could, which reassured me that I can do this long term. It wasn’t just a 4 week thing to see what happened, and then be like, “ok that was cool. I’ll go back to not tracking again.”

So, here is your last reminder (of this post) to be kind to yourself. Accept that you don’t know all the answers. Maybe someone out there can help you too! You know, I’m always here to do my best! I feel like I’m just getting started with this, and I can’t wait to continue to see how eating MORE helps my body to be as lean, yet strong, as it can be!

Katelyn is pretty busy. She has a toddler and a baby on the way, so I’m not sure how much time or room she has for new clients. But it wouldn’t hurt to hit her up for availability or check out Macros Lab. You can see what services they provide. Here is Katelyn’s instagram page too. 

Thanks for listening. I hope this post helps someone who loves to workout and be competitive as much as I do! More really can be better. Listen to your body. Don’t deprive yourself, and be willing to try something new!