We’ve heard it fifty-leven times: progress is not always linear. I’ve even shared this bit of wisdom when a friend or teammate seems discouraged. But sometimes our own advice is the hardest pill to swallow when you’re in need of an antidote.
Last week, I had a good day, and then I had a not-so-good day.
I mentioned before how I used to refrain from eating food at work functions because I could not know for sure what the macronutrients were for whatever was catered in. I’ve since had another opportunity to partake in work food, and it was definitely enjoyable.
On Thursday, we had our quarterly birthday celebration, which meant pizza and cookie cake! We ordered pizza from a local place called Rosa’s. In the past, the idea of eating something from a restaurant that didn’t have accessible nutrition facts would have been enough for me to skip out on a meal. But I’ve come to be a lot more comfortable with guessing and finding alternatives.
We ordered a few different kinds of their 16″ pizzas. I used the nutrition listing for a 16″ XL cheese pizza from Marco’s as my base. Marco’s cuts their XL pizzas into 12 slices, but Rosa’s theirs into 8, so I made sure to account for the portion size difference.
I tracked the ingredients for the salad and pizza based on what I figured it looked like.
I know, I know — I mentioned cookie cake. I didn’t eat any at the celebration though….saved a piece for later 🙂
I felt pretty proud of myself for feeling comfortable with the way that I tracked this pizza. I still get anxious with “off the grid” food, but this was a good exercise for me. Really anything that involves eating pizza is a good exercise for me.
But like I said before, progress is not always linear. A couple days later, I took that step back.
Saturday was dedicated to my #fitfam: powerlifting meet in the morning and bodybuilding competition in the evening, followed by dinner with the teammate. She let me know ahead of time that she wanted to go to HOOTERS! I had never been to Hooters before, so I was excited. I told my coach that we’d be going out that night, and she told me to go untracked.
I was a little hesitant about this. I had looked up some of the nutrition facts for their already, and Hooters is basically fat city.
I figured in order to counteract my inevitable fat overage, I’d use intermittent fasting during the day and eat something realllllyyy tiny around lunch time. I packed half of Trader Joe’s Harvest Blend Salad bag (greens, pumpkin seeds, dates, raisins) with some turkey breast. I brought a little bit of the pumpkin vinaigrette that comes with it. It came out to about 260 cals. My regular intake is 2245 cals, so I had quite a bit of room.
The USAPL Georgia Powerlifting for Pink meet started around 10AM; I was there to cheer on a coworker. It was really fun watching people of all ages, levels, and body types participate… one of the youngest kids was ELEVEN! My coworker ended up winning Women’s Masters Bench and placed 5th in Women’s Masters Full Power. I didn’t expect it to last so long, though. They weren’t finished with everyone until after 3:30. I kept meaning to eat my salad but I was just so caught up in the meet and talking to the athletes that I put it off until I had to leave.
After the meet, I booked it on over to the SNBF Pro & Amatuer Grand Finale to cheer on one of my Major Gainz teammates. She is a natural bodybuilding figure pro, and has become a huge source of support for me! I was so happy to be able to watch her pro debut and catch up with her after.
I knew I wanted wings because I haven’t had them in FOREVER. I also felt like I needed to get the curly fries because everyone raved about them. I ordered the appetizer portion of wings and a side of fries with blue cheese.
It certainly doesn’t look like a lot, does it?
I sent this picture to my coach, and she told me there’s no way that I even hit my numbers for the day. She advised me to eat dessert.
The next day, I woke up a pound and a half lighter than the previous day.
I had killed my gains.
Even with the dessert, I don’t think I hit my calorie total for the day.
I restricted all day so that I could have this untracked meal. My wings/fries/ice cream is a normal treat meal for most people. I would have been perfectly fine eating more throughout the day like a regular person.
I restricted because I believed that by not hitting my numbers perfectly, I’m bound to blow up like a balloon. Restricting my intake gave me this buffer that made it easier for me to justify my food choices at the restaurant.
Unfortunately, my goal is to build muscle (read: gain weight). Building muscle takes a lot of time, and this method of restriction will prolong the process.
I confessed that I felt disappointed in myself, but my coach reminded me that we are shooting for progress, not perfection.
I’m able to look back and see that my step forward and step backward are both progress. Without those backwards steps, the forward ones aren’t as impressive, are they?
One, two, chachacha.