I am TRACKING MACROS again.... here's why!Jan 16, 2021
It's been since 2016 that I have tracked my nutritional intake.
After I competed at the IFBB North Americans in 2016 I slowly tucked my tracking app away and I have never looked back.
In Contest Prep I was a soldier and on point every day.
But I had a specific goal and an end game so the hunger cues, the preoccupation with food, and the perfectionism of tracking to a T was imperative to my goal of stepping on stage.
When post contest would come and I was aiming to continue tracking I felt completely overwhelmed and like a failure every day.
The hunger signals were too high.
The food obsession was insane.
No matter HOW PERFECT I wanted to be I COULD NOT keep up!
So, after a few contest preps tracking macros I learnt to put the app away post show, intuitively listen to my body, and bring it back when it was time to chase a physique goal again.
When I was READY to track it came with ease and I did not associate negativity with tracking, but whenever I was post show I found myself fighting the app.
So here I am five years later pulling out the app!
... and I want to explain why.
Reason #1: To understand my client’s habits, behaviours, and obstacles better!
I am in the process of writing a FLEXIBLE DIETING E COURSE for this website and in order to feel connected to the art of Flexible Dieting I know that I need to reconnect with tracking.
This way I can have realistic input into the content I am delivering.
From aspects on how to properly execute a Flexible Dieting plan to the habits, behaviours, and obstacles that come up with following a nutrition plan based on a flexible approach.
It's important that I can relate.
Without tracking for over five years I am somewhat removed from the process and it's important that I walk my talk in the course.
This E course will be available early Spring! So, stay tuned....
Reason #2: My Protein Intake SUCKS.
When I began writing the course and opened up MyFitnessPal again to play around with the app I spent some time one evening inputting my own nutritional intake.
I was shocked to find out that I was barely hitting 65 grams of protein per day!
I knew it was lower than my bodybuilding days where it could range from 140-200 grams but I didn't realize it was that low...
But that was when a light bulb went off and I called myself out on my own s*** because while I'm not unhappy with my body and I did a photoshoot late fall that I am incredibly proud of I have noticed that it has been harder and harder for me regain my muscle mass since my surgeries in 2019 and my recovery is SLOW.
Along with lower protein my caloric intake was also VERY low which explained a lot about how I was feeling during my workouts, post workout, and beyond.
Reason #3: I am finally ready to regain my muscle and train hard again!
In 2019 I had two back to back surgeries after 4-5 months of a huge shift to my activity levels due to pain and immobility.
One was a hysterectomy and the other was a trauma surgery two weeks later due to an arterial bleed which caused internal clotting, bleeding, and complete rupture of my vaginal vault.
I nearly died from massive blood loss, hypovolemic shock, and it's a miracle I am alive today writing this.
After my trauma I was excited to get back to my old self but my body would not have it.
Extreme blood loss meant extremely depleted iron stores and rounds of iron injections just to get me into 'the low end of the range'.
I still have the bruising to show for it!
Hormone shifts from losing one ovary during my trauma surgery and the pre-surgery exponential estrogen levels that came from my pelvic veins being congested.
Along with the prolonged stress pre-hysterectomy and post-surgery recovery that shifted my stress hormone patterns.
All of that takes time to balance out and there was nothing I could do to speed up that process.
After my surgeries I was skin and bones.
I remember stepping on the scale and being close to my contest weight because I was so depleted from being in the hospital.
Then like a boomerang it slung forward a month post op and I found myself six pounds or more heavier (hey, even a metabolism expert is not immune to the biology of weight control, stress, and metabolic function!).
Since then I have never been able to get back to where I was before my health declined at the end of 2018.
I have stayed off the scale for the most part since I am honouring the trauma my body has gone through but over the past year or so I have not been taking care of my body the way I know how.
I have drank more wine than I used to.
Evidently, I am not eating enough protein.
I am consuming more chocolate and treats mindlessly.
Sometimes I go days where I barely eat or it's noon and I realize its time for a meal.
In other words, I am not taking care of myself as well as I can and the protein equation was like a light bulb moment!
Yes! I should honour my body and what it went through!
Yes! I should feel good about the fact that I can eat without fear or punishment!
Yes! I called myself out on my bullshit because the reality is I have not been feeling mentally or physically as optimal as I could be due to my own behaviours, mindset, and attitudes towards following a plan!
Finally, I stepped onto my snow board a couple of weeks ago and my cardio totally SUCKED!
I realized that the excuse of my "recovery" needed to be called out and it was time to start taking care of me so that I can feel optimal again.
Truthfully, I have been rallying with severe PTSD since my trauma and I did the right thing by removing perfectionism, the scale, and food tracking from my life because I needed to honour where I was at and accept what was happening to my body at a cellular level.
But, it's nearly two years later and the biggest obstacle now is myself.
I probably won't track for long, maybe a couple months to get my habits into a better place and to ensure I'm consuming enough food every day but I am back on track for good reasons.
So, there you have it!
After five years I have pulled out my tracking app and set my macro goals.
It's not because I am unhappy with my body, far from it!
But I am calling myself out on my habits and mindset towards self care.
In another blog I will tell you how it is going, what I set them to, and how my physical well-being is or is not improving!
Stay tuned... xo J