Sunday, June 21, 2015

"How Badly do you want it..." and other points of motivation when living low carb

How badly do you WANT it?

"Is this one step closer to, or one step further from my goal?"

"A goal without a method is useless"

"Once you make the decision, the choice is easy"

These are post it note quotes that are on my desk shelf right in front of my face to remind me... everyday.

They help motivate me to continue on in my journey and aim for my GOAL WEIGHT number.

Once you make the decision, the choice is easy. That is a good one.

I have discussed this many times with a fellow follower. I do not know WHAT it was THIS TIME that actually made my mind up, but I decided, I think, out of desperation, of no longer wanting to be as big as I was, and really miserable with myself.

I was still not at a place where I was willing to accept that "this was it, and the way mid 40's was, and to give up".

I made the decision I was going to eat low carb, the science behind the Adkins and low carb KETOSIS would work for me too, and I just had to keep myself on the plan.

"A goal without a method is useless." This is a direct quote from my Oprah.

It is such a good quote. Do not bother to set a goal if you have no intentions and nothing to back up actually getting yourself there.

"Is this taking one step closer to, or one step further from my goal" I believe this to be from Zig Ziglar, the famous motivational speaker they played every day throughout my Middle School after the pledge of allegiance.

I think about this quote when I am tempted to eat something FAR off plan. I usually take a moment to smell the sweet, sugary cake / cookie / item, truly enjoy the smell, and then pass.

That is a big change from my previous mentality "oh this one bite (insert food / drink here) won't hurt. " or being worried about hurting the hostesses feelings by passing on their dessert.

If you are a low carb-er, and eat a ton of sugar or carbs, you will gain weight back. (FAST)

It comes down to "How badly do you want it?" How badly do I want to get to my next goal...
my actual goal weight?

I really, really, REALLY do, to prove to myself I can, stay accountable to myself and not let myself down, and celebrate that I alone did it. (!)

So... I continue to stay on plan, and eat and enjoy all my low carb options.

(And feel great by the way.)

How are YOU doing with your journey???

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Low Carb vs Paleo... What is the difference?

Low carb, LCHF, Paleo, ... these are all "diets" or ways of eating that are popular discussion and trendy these days.

They also work.

As a society we are consuming POUNDS AND POUNDS of sugar, and sometimes without even realizing it as food manufacturers add it to everything!

Focusing on a Low carb lifestyle eliminates the sugar as you are only allowed 25g net carb a day, so you choose to pick wisely. (1 can of COKE CLASSIC has 39g of carb)

Low Carb is as described though out this blog, maintains a low glycemic index for a blood sugar level and keeping the intake around 25g to lose weight or 50g to maintain weight.

Adkins Diet is the main diet I have followed for close to 2 years.

I tend to focus on fish, chicken, pork and some red meat like steak. I *think* I am being fairly considerate of a lean protein approach. I easily consume 2-4 cups of vegetables, mainly green and leafy like salad broccoli, iced veggies, asparagus or the like.

Adkins had some naysayers throughout the years touting that eating all the eggs and bacon in the bacon grease could not be healthy for you. Common sense would point to you have to agree with this. BUT... the idea of FAT being a "bad" thing is a good note to take. Fat helps satiate you and keep you full longer and it takes longer to burn.

LCHF  LCHF ( Low Carb High Fat) . It is basically Low Carb, adding minimum carb ( even the green and leafy's) without paying any attention to the leanness of the protein intake. It gets the idea through that FAT is not a "bad" thing.

Paleo, is the idea of a caveman approach to eating. It too is low carb, but allows fruit, does NOT allow dairy, or any sugar or sweeteners. I love The Paleo Mom as a reference.

I also love the PRIMAL BLUEPRINT as and example of the long term Paleo approach and manageable lifetime eating style. It shows anything under 100g of carb a day is a "low carb" and weight management / fat burning way of eating.

I was introduced to the Primal Blue Print when I joined a "gym" where you do a heavy lifting weight session, for 20 minutes maxing out the heaviest you can lift, and your reps being timed at 10 count for lift AND 10 count for lower. It was brutal, but over in 20 minutes. GREAT way to kick start a routine with minimum time commitment but big results.

I still lift weights with that strategy in mind. (10 count UP and 10 count resisting back down.)

For both Paleo and Primal Blueprint, think if you were a caveman, you could go out hunting and gathering for fruit, berries, nuts, protein, but not create flour, sugar or the processed stuff.  Paleo also points to walking regulaury, getting sun 10 minutes a day, sprinting for small bouts and lifting heavy objects regularly is part of the Paleo lifestyle. It is very popular with the Cross Fit craze for leaning out athletes and providing muscle growth and fuel.

Whatever Low Carb approach you choose to best fit your lifestyle, you WILL see results!

Keep moving forward, progress over perfection.

Sunday, June 7, 2015

Why I started my blog, Fitchicafitness, and motivation to keep moving forward with Low Carb Living.

I have the best and most diverse group of friends. :)

I literally have friends all over the world as I am associated with an amazing International School that allows me to meet amazing people, explore different cultures, languages, and learn first hand.

As I ended up rooted in my own midwest hometown, I still have friends that I grew up with since pre school too!

It really is the best of both worlds.

My friends are geniuses in their own right and on many different levels and I get to l have some of their brilliance rub off on me and learn from them.

One of which is a writer, blogger and expert in International Adoption. Recently, she asked me "Why are you writing your blog? What is the purpose?

It set me back a little as I needed to define it for myself!

1) I was, and still am, being asked regularly "What have you been doing?" to accomplish my weight loss.

As I am a constant list maker, I had all my notes, stats, food diaries, weigh-ins and such, so I thought I could easily write them all down and be able to better "share" my experience. I could help others on this journey, create a community, and that made me happy.

2) Also, as a Journalism / PR major, I really enjoy writing the posts and it challenges me to improve my voice, have a purpose in the article, and break down the how, what, when and where of Low Carb living, and tell a story.

3) I grew up with an IBM'er system's engineer dad so we had a PC and my mom had an Apple 2E+ in our home in the early 80's. I have always enjoyed "geeking out"with technology and this gives me motivation and a reason to expand my knowledge hands on regarding the behind the scenes of blogging, linking to social media, and expanding my reach with online promotion and PR.

4) In Gretchen Rubins book I refer to a lot, The Happiness Project, she insisted early in the introduction to "THINK BIG".

My nature is to think big, and then talk myself right out of how that is a little too big, will never happen, and to "get real". This time, after reading the book on the beach, twice, I decided to go for it and see what happened. Worst case, I would create a personal chronicle for my own reflection that no one else would read.

But guess what? As of today, I have had close to 1000 readers since March 23, 2015. So I got to check that off on my Happiness Project things to do list. ;)

My mom is even a subscribed reader. (Hi MOM!)

Mom was motivated to join the journey and go low carb! She went out and found a cool book at the bookstore that highlights all the different options of Low Carb diets with good analysis on the specific differences, and then how to put your own plan together. It has a nice low glycemic index food reference, and a low carb cookbook all in one! ( I'll add the title and link here)

5) Maintenance of weight loss is the biggest challenge yet. According to WOMEN"S HEALTH, " By some estimates, more that 80 percent of people who have lost weight will regain all of it, or more, after two years."

EEEEEEEeeeeek! I have wanted this TOOOOoooo LOOooong and worked TOOOOOooo hard these last 2 years to gain the weight back.

I think the best and most honest answer to "What is the purpose of this blog", is to be really OUT THERE, Absolute and Authentic, Truthful and Open to what I am doing, acknowledging and celebrating how far I've come, and how I am still on the journey with Low Carb Living. Ultimately, blogging will help me with maintaining my weight loss.

Maybe, I can motivate others and make even more new friends along the way.


Friday, June 5, 2015

What is a "net carb" and how to read nutrition labels to stay Low Carb

Net carbs...

WHa- What !?

How do you count your carbohydrate consumption and remain at 25 net carbs or below to be "In the Pink" and stay in ketosis - a fat burning state?

Read on.

This is an example of a nutrition label found on most food items.

You can also use your phone with many apps available like the Fitbit app, or Lose it! app. They can help you keep a food diary and really KNOW your number. (Otherwise your carb count really does add up and you will eat more than you realize!)

For the item above,  you can have 1/2 cup, and there are 26 carbs. 


This food label example just happens to be cotton candy. This is NOT on your low carb diet! LOL

Now, look at the label below. This is for raw broccoli.

You get 1 cup of broccoli  (serving size) for  6.04 g carb. That is great, but it gets even better! 
Subtract -2.37g fiber (and if there was insoluble fiber listed, you can subtract that too!)

So take 6.04g carbohydrate- 2.37g fiber = 3.67g total NET CARB toward your 25 g for the day.


Have 2 cups of broccoli, steamed, with butter, and garlic and enjoy! 

Thursday, June 4, 2015

Staying "In the Pink" and other basic Ketosis information and how to burn the fat off your body through Low Carb Living.

It is the best feeling when you are starting out on this program.

"Yahoo ! Im in the PINK!"

Usually within the first 24 - 48 hours of dropping the carb to <25 g net carb.

What does that mean?

If you purchased the Ketosis strips, each time you urinate, you use these strips to detect if ketones are being eliminated from your body.

(Go my tabs /page with Books, Links, Keto strips and more info to auto link to to get yours!)

If ketones are detected in the elimination, the test strips will show a light (trace) to dark pink. That is additional confirmation you are keeping your carb intake low and therefore burning body fat! Even if the scale is not budging and even more reason to take your measurements NOW! You will see changes!


Let's break this down into easy to understand science terms.

Your body is a machine. You fuel it with food and water.

If you can manage your fuel to be high efficiency fuel by consuming good lean protein, nuts, and green leafy veggies (complex carbohydrates), you will get the best mileage out of your machine.

When doing basic daily tasks, burning the calories it takes to get up in the AM and move throughout your day, if your carbs are kept at a minimum, your "machine" turns to the stored fat stored in your body for fuel.

I know!

If you gas up with cereal (simple carbohydrates/ sugar), skim milk (sugar), a latte or cappuccino,  bread, bagels or muffins (sugar), your body has to burn off those calories first before it runs out of the simple carbs to burn fat. The REAL bummer, is if you are taking in more calories than you can burn, your body STORES the extra sugar and calories as body fat to use for later.

The reality is, if you eat like described above for breakfast, you're likely to eat a lunch with more bread, hidden sugars, a soda drink or sweet tea, and the cycle goes on and on along with the storing of more and more body fat !

When you start this program, the first few days can be rough getting through the cravings, or over the habit of grabbing the "thing" that pulls your blood sugar up fast.

BUT ! If you can get organized and have things ready to help get past that initial carb burn out, and fuel your machine properly, it WILL pass! If you are truly hungry, you can eat anything ON PLAN... nuts, mozzarella cheese stick, celery & salsa, protein shake, etc, or drink water. (Sometimes hunger is just boredom or actually a thirst trigger)

Keep this process going and soon, you too will be "In the PINK" and burning fat off your body!

Go to the tab and buy your testing strips!

Ready, set,  GO FOR IT!

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

The Day to Day of Low Carb living and staying "on plan" !

I've  had some amazing responses recently with readers wanting to join the journey of Low Carb Living.

HOORAY,  and Welcome!

I am so happy to be helpful and open to anyone starting out and interested in the how, what, and when of what I've done and am continuing to do to maintain this weight and low carb lifestyle.

You too can get on program, eat yummy great food, and feel great!

If you have specific questions, be sure to ask them on the COMMENTS section, I will be sure to respond, plus I am sure others are wondering the same thing!

So... what do I eat, exactly.

Pure Protien Shake with water and 4 ice cubes.
Starbucks - Venti Pike with Heavy Whipping Cream and 3 splenda (double cup)

Lunch: Chicken pot pie (no crust) (1 cup) with roasted broccoli and garlic (1-2 cups)

Dinner: Baked Pork Chop with 1-2 cups mixed veggies and melted butter

Pure Protien Shake with water and 4 ice cubes.
Starbucks - Venti Pike with Heavy Whipping Cream and 3 splenda (double cupped or in my thermos)

Iceberg Lettuce (1-2 cups), with Raw broccoli (1/2 - 1 cup) broken into bite size pieces
Hardboiled egg, Sunflower seeds and Ranch dressing. They were serving pasta at school today so I just got a scoop of the red meat sauce (no pasta) and a glass of H20.

Steamed Broccoli with melted butter, Beef with diced onion and Half and Half Snapple tea

Pretty good stuff, huh!? This is nutritious, satisfying and ample food options to stay full.

Sometimes, if need a mid day snack, I might have a handful of almonds, a mozzarella cheese stick, or more raw veggies. Farther into the process, I added a bag of Skinny Pop which is filling and about 6 net carbs.

Also, you might think you are "hungry" but you are actually thirsty, so always have a glass of H20 handy.

What are some of your favorite go to Low Carb meals and snacks?