Happy New Year

Originally published January 1, 2016

As the year comes to a close, this is the time that many of you begin to reflect upon your year, thinking about all of your accomplishments as well as areas of improvement.

As I reflect upon my own year, I realize this year has brought upon many changes in all aspects in my life; some good, some not so much.  Learning how to deal with the changes that occur within your life aids in your personal growth and development.  Have you had changes in your life that have forced you to grow?  I certainly have!

Traditionally on New Year’s Eve, people make New Year Resolutions.  By definition, a resolution is a firm decision to do/not do something.  Unfortunately, many people go year after year and never keep those resolutions.  Rather than making resolutions, it may be more effective to set goals.  By definition, a goal is a desired result or something you are aiming towards.  Therefore, if it is your desire to lose weight, eat healthy, etc., set a goal, not a resolution.  Listed are a few of my goals for 2016:

  1. Be a better me
    1. This is always a goal of mine.  This is something that I work on daily.  Daily, I strive to be a better Christian, a better mom, a better daughter, sister, etc.  The saying, “New Year, New Me” is very cliché, but, daily I’m striving to be a new and better me.  When you constantly remain the same, your situation remains the same as well.
  2. Better business woman
    1. This, and all of my goals could fit under my first goal because it’s all about personal development.  I have several business goals that I would like to achieve.  I am elated to report that I have already began putting them in place.
  3. Fitness, health, and wellness
    1. I’m sure this one doesn’t come as a surprise to you.  My goal with this is to remain consistent with both my workouts and my nutrition.  There are many times that I am not consistent with both of them at the same time.  I know that being consistent with my workouts and nutrition (at the same time) will yield the results that I would like to achieve.

What are your goals for 2016?  I hope everyone has a wonderful New Year!

Miss Sherri

Easy Carb Cycling Meal Plan

Originally posted January 29, 2015

Carb cycling is an eating plan with alternating high-carb and low-carb days.  You can even choose to add in a reward day!  How awesome is that?

High carbohydrate days promotes muscle growth by stimulating an insulin response, which sends nutrients to your muscle cells.  High carb days also replenishes your glycogen stores (fuel for muscles) and makes you feel energized.

Low carb days promote fat loss.  You may notice feeling a little tired on your low carb days.  The body is tricked into burning fat for fuel instead of the sugar the body would typically get from carbohydrates.  It’s just that simple.

There are multiple ways that you can choose to do a carb cycle.  You can choose to alternate your high and low carbs daily, once every two days, even three days depending on the results you are trying to achieve.  Alternately, depending on your training habits and goals, you may decide to have two high carb days to one low carb day.  You may also decide to manipulate your carbs by only consuming them in the morning.  You may have to play around with different carb cycling patterns to see which one works best for your body and your lifestyle.

Below is the easy carb cycling meal plan I followed along with the experiences I had.

Day 1

This morning 1/12/15, I began my carb cycling.  I have chosen to alternate my high and low carb days daily with a possible cheat day on Saturday or Sunday.  This morning I weighed in at 136.5.  I planned out my carbohydrates for the day.  My goal is to stay below 70g.  I normally take in approximately 250g.  Here is what I planned for my low carb day:

Oatmeal-27g

Planters honey roasted peanuts-7g

1/2 grapefruit-13g

blueberries-2g

walnuts-2g

Protein bar-9g

Protein-8g

Total 68g carbs

My first low carb day went well!  I took in more carbs than planned but stayed below 100g.  I took in an additional 10g of carbs.  The extra carbs came from miscellaneous foods such as lettuce, tomatoes, cheese, and sausage.  I use the myfitnesspal application to keep track of my foods.  I didn’t eat my 1/2 grapefruit.  I instead had 1% milk with my protein shake.  I have recently realized that I do not enjoy my protein mixed with water only.  It may be time to search for a new protein.  My energy level was great throughout the day.  I had a short, but effective workout today.  I trained legs.  My workout last 39:01 and I burned 772 calories.  I drank just under a gallon of water throughout the day.  My total calorie count for the day was 1564.

Day 2 (1/13/15)

I weighed in this morning at 133 lbs.  I didn’t plan my carbs for the day.  In general, I tend to stick to eating healthy carbs and don’t typically go over my goal intake.  My total carb count for the day was 154g.  My total calories were 1786.  The carbs that I took in included oatmeal, blueberries, cherry tomatoes, lettuce, mozzarella cheese, walnuts, pineapples, 2 slices whole wheat bread, banana, peanut butter, and a protein bar.  I was able to get in a nice long workout today.  I worked out for about 1 1/2 hours and burned 1848 calories.  I trained back and shoulders.  I also did cardio and abs.

Day 3 (1/13/15)

As you can see, I’m looking a little “fluffier” this morning around my midsection due to the increased carb intake yesterday.  My weight remained consistent at 133 lbs.  I have an unexpected day off from work due to the weather.  Hopefully, I can still stick to the plan.  My plan is pretty much the same as it was Monday, my last low carb day.  Today, I did very well sticking to the eating plan.  I took in 72g of carbs.  However, I couldn’t push myself to get in a workout.  It was a lazy day of eating and sleeping.

Today, I did very well sticking to the eating plan.  I took in 72g of carbs.  However, I couldn’t push myself to get in a workout.  It was a lazy day of eating and sleeping.

Day 4 (1/14/15)

Looking fairly good after my low carb day.  My weight remains the same.  Today I took in 197g of carbs, all healthy carbs except one.  I decided to have a small bag of Cheetos.  Hey, what can I say?  It fit my macros, but that’s a topic of discussion for another day.  I did a callisthenic home workout along with some free weight sets for my arms.  I burned just over 1000 calories.

Day 5

Day 6

My thoughts:

Carb cycling is a great way to lose weight.  It helps you get rid of excess water weight as well as burn off more calories.

Looking at pictures, it seems as though my body peaked and looked its best at day 4.

If you are looking to make subtle changes over time, then the every other day cycle would be the route to take.

If you are looking for more drastic changes, then I would recommend 2-3 low carb days followed by 1 high carb day.

Bottom line, if you are looking to lose weight, carb cycling may be an option for you.

If my plan seems to loose or if you are looking for a more specific weight loss meal plan, you may want to check out this carb cycling book that includes recipe ideas.

If you happen to give it a try, let me know what you think.

day 1
jan 15