Hello Healthi family!
Coach Brianna here with another monthly recap for you. The month of May was….well, the word my husband and I chose is “journey.” May was a journey.
Long story short: we spent the entire month of May in South Florida at my in-law’s place. I also took the month off of creating content with the intention of having a fun, stress free break to recharge, regain energy, and come back feeling ready to hit the ground running. Instead, we got Covid, my husband got food poisoning, many of the plans we had got messed up due to quarantine rules, and all of that energy I was supposed to find got zapped my some long-haul post-covid fatigue that I’m still working though.
Like I said….May was a journey.
Let’s talk about the diet and weight loss side of May. As you might recall, May was when I planned to go into my diet break. This was a scheduled and important part of my fat loss phase, and is part of all of my client’s fat loss phases as well.
Why did I take a diet break?
Metabolic adaptation is this really cool thing our bodies do to help us survive. If we are regularly eating fewer calories than our bodies need, the body will naturally adjust the metabolism to be lower so the number of calories we are consuming is closer to the number we actually need to function. Pretty cool right? It is if we are actually in a famine or can’t get enough food, but lets be honest, in this day and age we are often intentionally decreasing calories in an effort to lose weight. which means this automatic response actually keeps us from our goals while it’s trying to keep us alive. Bummer!
The goal of a diet break is to prevent this metabolic down regulation from happening by increasing your calories for a period of time in the middle of your fat loss phase. In my macro coach training, diet breaks typically last 1-3 weeks eating at or just below maintenance and then you jump back in to your calorie deficit. This tells your body that you are actually not in a famine and therefore there is no need to down regulate your metabolism.
My diet break actually ended up lasting for 5 weeks for 2 reasons:
- I was on vacation so it was nice to have the higher calorie goal, and
- While my case of Covid was mild, one symptom I had (and still sort of have) was lower appetite, so I haven’t always been reaching my higher calorie goal, so my coach extended my diet break until I was able to successfully eat around 2100 calories a day for an extended period of time.
As of June 6th, I am officially finally back at my deficit calories, eating 1700 calories a day with some scheduled carb cycles in there over the next 16 weeks.
The reality is, over this mess of a May, there wasn’t any progress on the scale to speak of. I didn’t workout because I was sick and had zero energy, I ate more of what I could stomach rather than always meeting my macros, and over all it’s just been a month of surviving rather than thriving. It’s a major bummer that my break from both fat loss and work didn’t exactly go as planned, but it’s important to embrace seasons as they come and adjust accordingly.
Looking ahead, what’s the plan for June? As I mentioned, I’m officially back in my deficit, so I will be working hard to reach my macros. Workouts have tended to be draining since recovering from Covid, so I am focused on overall step count rather than getting workouts in every day. I have to make sure I’m working to balance my energy levels or I won’t be able to accomplish anything, so that takes priority.
Since the summer weather is here, I now get to enjoy some of the foods and beverages I tend to gravitate towards in the warmer months. These include:
- Grilled meats (on the outdoor grill)
- Most other fruits, as they’re in season
- Iced coffee and tea
- Ice cream and ice cream treats (and fruity popsicles!)
- Pasta salads
- Raw veggies as snacks
- Lots and lots of water
Summer is truly where I thrive. I love being out in the sun, going for walks, and not feeling cold all the time. I move more, have more energy (barring something like long-haul covid…) and generally feel pretty awesome, so I am excited to see how my weight loss progress changes now that we are officially in the season where I shine.
Overall, despite May’s struggles and setbacks, I am optimistic about the season ahead. Enjoy every second of this season, my friend, and embrace what’s available to you now that typically isn’t during the winter months. Until next time!