February 2017 | Dearest Lou

Fitness with Fatty Challenges and Diet Changes

January 2, 2017- February 22, 2017
7 Week Progress Photos

I love reading others fitness/health related posts and decided I would write my own for those who are interested! My journey to clean up my diet and live a healthier lifestyle really began back in the Fall 2013 but I want to focus this post on present day Cecilia and what I have been doing.If you follow along on Instagram you have most likely already heard my turning point this time around but I'll do a re-cap for those of you who may have missed it:

"Putting on weight after birth is SO EASY for me. My stomach literally feels like a never ending pit when I'm nursing. The first couple months after birth I had been snacking on ritz crackers in-between nursing sessions and just over eating in general.. almost binge eating and not knowing when to stop.

I had a "wake up call" on Christmas Day when I stepped on the scale at my parents and saw I was only 3.5 pounds less than what I weighed when I went into labor. The next day I cleaned up my diet and my friend Fati told me she was starting a fitness challenge!"

You can see a photo from my 21 day results here and a few more on Fatima's blog here.

In the first 21 days I lost: 6.9 lbs (5 lbs of which was fat) and my body fat percentage went down 1.7%! I found out these results by doing an InBody 570 Body Composition Test before and after the first challenge! Unfortunately, the machine is currently getting replaced at my gym so I won't be able to update my fat loss until it's back.

What I have been doing the last 7 weeks to achieve these results
  1. Fitness with Fatty 21 Day Challenges
  2. Cleaned up my Diet
Fitness with Fatty 21 Day Challenges:
These challenges were just what I needed to keep me accountable. Fatima's circuits KICK. MY. BUTT. I'm drenching with sweat at the end of each daily workout. Workouts can be done at home so there is NO EXCUSE to not get it done. The workouts last anywhere between 20-30 minutes depending on your fitness level. Every day before doing my workout I had my end goal in mind which is always to beat my "before" photo. No matter what time of day it was I ALWAYS completed the daily workout.

I personally added an extra 20 minutes of sprint/speed walking intervals BEFORE doing the daily workout. I'm used to working out at least an hour a day and also had/have extra fat to lose (; 

I highly recommend taking "before" photos to help motivate yourself. DON'T compare yourself to others online or at the gym. I promise you everyone has unflattering angles that they don't share so stop comparing yourself (; Focus on becoming a better you!

If you're thinking about signing up for Fatima's challenge consider getting a Facebook if you don't have one already! The support group is great and everyone is so uplifting and supportive which helps.

Diet Changes:

I achieved these results without cutting out any food groups, maintaining my milk supply, and consuming ~2100 calories a day!

Like I mentioned earlier, I struggle with gaining weight after pregnancy in the first few weeks of nursing! This happened with both Zaden and Adrien. Gaining weight after pregnancy while nursing is something that isn't talked about near enough. My body goes into rampage hunger mode and I'm ALWAYS HUNGRY. 

Now when I look back at my diet from September 2016-December 2016 on average I was consuming 2500-2800 calories a day. After 4 weeks I was lifting on average 3-4 times a week but not making the smartest food decisions. My diet was consumed with large amounts of processed carbs and sugar. I also didn't know when to stop eating since I was always hungry.

On December 26th I decided I had enough and I needed to make a change. I knew if I just cleaned up my diet and tracked my macros the weight would slowly fall off. I did this back when I was trying to lose weight after Zaden and know this works for me. You can calculate your macros here. Since I am breastfeeding I roughly follow my macros for a slow deficit cut (10-15% less than my TDEE). I don't want to go too crazy since I still need to consume enough to maintain my milk supply. It's definitely a bit tricky and frustrating at times but breastfeeding Adrien is my top priority right now. 

In order to not go over my macros I focus on eating a protein heavy diet! I eat about 150 grams of protein a day. This helps keep me full and foods filled with protein are generally healthier for you. I don't believe in "bro dieting" or cutting out food groups completely! If I feel like eating Olive Garden Breadsticks, a bowl of Ice Cream, or anything "unhealthy" I just plan for it! I don't think cutting certain food groups out is healthy and I truly believe it triggers binge eating.

When going out to eat I just make smarter choices and I don't force my family to eat how I eat. You better believe we still have ritz crackers, goldfish, sugary cereals and all sorts of other foods in our home at all times that I choose not to eat.

Daryl and I go out to eat for date night once a week. The day beforehand I look up nutrition facts online and figure out how many fats, carbs, and protein there are in my favorite dishes. Sometimes I'm shocked to find out how horrible some of the dishes are and I just substitute or get something different! 

For example my usual at Olive Garden is their Eggplant Parmesan! I love that dish. I usually eat 4 breadsticks and 1/2 a bowl of salad too! I was shocked to find out that this one meal I normally get is 1,760 calories 73g F 225g C 49g P. This dish alone is way over my fat and carb goals for an entire day.

I did some research and found an alternative dish which had more protein, the Chicken Margherita. I planned my day around this one meal and was looking forward to eating out and enjoying the evening with my husband. I also calculated for 2 breadsticks and a 1/2 bowl of salad. These were my macros: 1,010 calories 46g F 71g C 80g P. 

Such a difference right? 

Here's an example of how I eat on a regular basis for those who may be wondering:

1.5 English Muffins, 1/2 Tbsp of Butter (yep the real stuff), 3-4 servings of Egg Whites and a Protein Shake (ON 100% Chocolate Whey from Costco is bomb).

Small Green Apple, 1 serving Cottage Cheese, and 1 serving of PBfit (powdered peanut butter without all the fat, this stuff is AMAZING).

1 large can of All White Tuna, 2 slices of Sour Dough Bread, Greek Yogurt, and 2 servings of carrots

Kirkland Brand Protein Bar and 1 serving of Sharp Cheddar Cheese

Post Workout:
Protein Shake and .5 English Muffin with .5 serving of PBFIT

1/3 of a Frozen Pizza, 1/2 bag of Caesar Salad, 1 Almond Roca Candy

Bed Time Snack (if I'm still hungry)
I usually eat another protein bar or a serving of greek yogurt or PBfit with a green apple. Just to help satisfy that sweet tooth and also provide extra fuel for the nighttime feedings (;

Anyway, if I can do this SO CAN YOU! It's never too late to live a healthier lifestyle. If this post just helps one person change their lifestyle than it was totally worth sharing. Feel free to comment below with any questions.

Evy's Tree Style: Macy in Fern

I'm wearing: The Macy in Fern

Evy's Tree just released this little number just in time for St. Patricks Day next month! This green is absolutely perfect for the month of March and will keep you safe from pinches on St. Patricks Day (; I love the polka dot hood lining!! I styled mine casual with a fun printed skirt, some tan booties, and red lips. 

Head on over and pre-order to get it in time for the 17th!

Sunday Thoughts

Dress: Lettie Boutique | Adrien's Romper: Rags to Raches

“The work of a mother is hard, too often unheralded work. Please know that it is worth it then, now, and forever.” —Jeffrey R. Holland"

Today in Sunday school we had a beautiful lesson on motherhood. It was just what I needed to hear. I have been especially hard on myself this week. I kept feeling like I was falling short in every aspect in my life but especially in the mama department. Tears were shed and lots of love and comfort given by both my forgiving children and husband. I strive for perfection in nearly anything I do and am constantly striving to find balance, especially when it comes to working at home and being present for my family. Motherhood is HARD, but I wouldn't trade raising these little humans for anything. Remember mamas, we are doing better than we think.

Little Unicorn

Photographer: Becky Kimball | Featured Products: Little Unicorn

Last week Adrien and I had the opportunity to model for Little Unicorn! 
We had so much fun, here are a few of my favorite photos from the shoot. 
Happy Friday!!

Asymmetrical Hair + Park Hangs

Featured Products: Fawn Design | Ellamena  | Piper Finn  | max + moose

If you follow along on instagram you may have a couple of photos from this day already. I just wanted to share these while Adrien still looks like this. Before I know it he will be even chunkier and bigger. Why do they grow up so fast?

Also a few weeks ago my sweet and talented friend Christy cut and colored my hair. I wanted an asymmetrical cut and subtle color to add dimension and boy did she deliver! I love my new hair!

Evy's Tree Style: Layering Leaves in Lemon Zest

I'm wearing: Layering Leaves in Lemon Zest 

Happy Valentines Day everyone! I feel like I'm on a roll here, two blog posts this week. Hopefully I don't lose my momentum (;

Evy's Tree just released their new layering leaves tops! I absolutely LOVE these tops and know this will be a staple in my closet this winter/spring. You get two tops for the price of one (the reversible side of this one is black and white striped). I love how versatile this top is, I styled mine casual with a leather jacket, gray leggings, and tan booties. If yellow isn't your color they also have it in black with a reversible black and white striped.

Head on over and order before they sell out (these sell out quick)!

Evy's Tree Style: The Trish in Merlot

I'm wearing: The Trish in Merlot + Blanqi Postpartum Leggings + Vionic (Malia) Boots

It's been a while since my last style post, over three months to be exact! I have definitely been in a funk when it comes to expressing myself through my style lately but really want to get back into it. These photos are from earlier this year and I'm just now getting a moment to blog them. I can't believe how fast this year is passing by!

This year has been exceptionally warmer than previous winters and I haven't needed a coat. I have been getting by with all of my favorite cardigans and tops from Evy's Tree. The Trish in Merlot has been one of my go-to tops as of late! I love the rich color, flowy fit, and cute pockets.

Oh and did I mention this number is on sale? Head on over to their site and see for yourself!