This year got off to a great start with my resolutions for 2016! I started the year strong. I never included losing weight in my resolutions or on my vision board that I created, but of course it was always part of the plan. I didn’t want to start out centered on the weight. I wanted to get into the routines of exercising, being mindful and present, with the hopes that weight loss would follow. However, by the end of January, I realized that I needed to change my eating habits if I truly wanted to lose weight. I started this low carb life on February 2, 2016. It was basically a late-night pizza-scarfing moment that I realized the exercising alone wasn’t going to get me back to my pre-babies body. I wanted and needed a change.
How did I decide on the low carb diet?
Because I am still a breastfeeding mom, I knew that low calorie diets were out right from the start. Breastfeeding mothers need calories to keep up their supply, and also their energy. Breastfeeding makes you hungry, and it’s one time in your life that you can’t ignore that.
I knew I needed something that would allow me to consume enough calories to maintain my supply and my energy. I attempted the low carb diet for a very short time in September 2015, but I found myself dizzy, anxious, and very uncomfortable. It turns out it was just my body adjusting to nutritional ketosis, which basically means getting used to not eating carbs. I am glad I came back to this to try it again. I did some research, and stumbled on some great articles that helped me make my decision:
- Atkins Research Article – Research comparing low carb to low fat diets
- Atkins 40 Overview – This low carb plan is different, because it is safe for nursing mothers, because you keep your carbohydrates around 30-40 grams per day.
- Low Carb Diets and Breastfeeding – Pay careful attention to the tips for moms who want to try the low carb diet.
What’s my plan?
I knew I had to have a great plan if this was going to work. Here are some key parts of my plan:
- Drink Lots of Water – I average about 60-90 ounces of water a day! This water bottle helps me stay on track, because I know if I drink 2-3 of these, I’m good for the day!
- It’s a Lifestyle Change – I think so often we are all looking for the quick fix when it comes to weight loss. Me too! But I realize that to do this right, and to do this the healthy way, I need to view this as a lifestyle change, rather than a quick diet. Yes, I’m changing my diet, but I’m also changing my lifestyle.
- Work Out Regularly – Yes, losing weight is my goal, but feeling healthy and fit is super important to me too. My goal is to have only one day a week without a workout.
- No Cheats (YET) – This directly relates to #2. This is a lifestyle change, so I don’t want to get in the habit of eating things that aren’t a part of my plan. I am also too far away from my ultimate goal to start having cheat meals. However, there are things that I will eat again once I hit certain goals. I still believe in moderation, but I know right now this is important.
How am I doing? Month 1 Update
- My face is already thinning out! It’s a non-scale victory, but one that I am cherishing by rewarding myself with a smile every time I look in the mirror. For the longest time, I didn’t like looking at my face in mirrors or in pictures, but I finally am starting to feel comfortable again.
- My waist is already getting smaller! Another non-scale victory, but a big one. I didn’t take any measurements this month, so this is only based on visuals and the way clothes fit.
- I lost 3 pounds! You’ll see below that this is a frustration too, but I’m also working out more, so I’m building muscle as well. I know that some of the non-scale victories are just as important as the scale victories.
- My energy is at an all-time high! The fact that carbs suck the energy out of you has proven true. I have so much more energy. I have been more energetic when playing with my kids – dance parties included! I am excited to work out (yoga is my choice workout, which you can read about here).
- I didn’t have any cheats! I almost had one, which was a total accident. My mom took my daughters and me out to lunch a couple weeks ago. I was so busy thinking about what the kids needed and what I was going to order that would be on my eating plan that I ordered an Angry Orchard Hard Cider. As soon as I got the drink, I took a sip and then immediately realized, “Oh shit! This has lots of CARBS!!” I looked it up on my phone right away, and found that it had between 26-30 g. I knew right away I couldn’t drink it, so I politely found the server, apologized for my “mommy brain” and asked her for a Michelob Ultra instead (2.6 g). Crisis averted, lol!
- The Scale! The scale can be your best friend, if you like the numbers you see, or it can be your worst enemy. This month I felt that the scale was my enemy. In hindsight, I realize that I weigh myself entirely too much. My weight fluctuates throughout the day, especially being a breastfeeding mom. And I truly thought that I would lose more than 3 pounds the first month.
- Night time snacking – I have always been a big snacker, especially between the hours of 8-10pm. I think it’s because it’s the first chance in the day I truly get to sit down and relax. I love having something to munch on during this peaceful time, when no one is interrupting me or asking to share my snack. I know that sounds horrible to some, but most mommies can understand this! Although my snacking has changed, because I have not had any cheat snacks, I still feel like I could cut out some of the snacks at night. I was eating carrots and hummus as a snack, but realizing I was overdoing the portions (still staying in my daily limits though).
- While I did yoga workouts almost everyday this month, I wanted to get on the treadmill more. I only did about 5 miles total this month, because I was using all my free time for yoga. It’s not a bad thing, but I’m going to add more cardio in next month.
The Goals for Next Month
- Only weigh myself once a week (Fridays). This is going to be hard for me, but I think it will take away some frustrations.
- Take waist measurements once a week on weigh-in day (Fridays).
- Wine on Weekends Only – While wine and other low carb alcoholic beverages can be a part of the low carb life, your body will not burn fat while burning alcohol. More info on this here.
- No cheats.
- Lose 4-5 pounds.
Thanks for taking the time to read about my first month of low carb living. For daily meal ideas and inspiration, follow my low carb Instagram. You can follow my Low Carb Details Pinterest board too, where I am constantly pinning new foods and other low carb info.