Prepping not starving: Peachy Birthday Cake Crepe

peach1

I love summer peaches! On my last Bro-preps I got zero fruit so I am excited to use peaches
in my IIFYM/Flex/Macro counting prep. This reminds me of my favorite breakfast at Uncle Bills, Crepes Peachee.
If you are in STL.. you know!

This is my breakkie for today: M1 if you are counting.
Recipe is:
.5 cup pourable egg whites
.5 scoop Muscle Pharm Birthday Cake Whey  (sold at GNC only)
100g fresh peaches
25g light and fit non fat vanilla greek yogurt
.25 cup of IHOP Sugar Free Pancake syrup

Mix egg whites and whey in your ninja.
Pour into a non stick pan and spread it really thin like a crepe.
pan

Add your peaches and greek. (plus a few sprinkles!)

pan2
Macros are:
Calories: 205
Fat: 1g
Carbs: 21g
Pro 29g
Fiber 2g

peach3

10 weeks out Update

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D
ecember 2014 and Today: Aug 2015

I’m 10 weeks from my UFE Show in Chicago. I snapped the above pic on the right today no filter. I am happy with progress.  I want to share a little about this process of being self coached and IIFYM.

The pics above are about 5 pounds apart.

My grow season was about eating some good food and building. I do not gain muscle easily. My macros were over 2000 calories but I  was still fighting binges. I probably always will have that to contend with. 😦
I did get some good gains and I lifted some heavy weight. Lots of PRS! I put the time in on building that’s for sure.
Even though, I’m pretty fluffy in pic 1, I was happy and felt good.   I was in the process of eliminating too many sugary foods that were causing me to binge. It’s taken me months to get into the right groove. But, I always tell my clients..
hey.. we learned something!”

I started a prep in March then halted it for a few reasons.  I was not happy with the balance of food and the length of time I needed to cut . I’ve been working on a slow cut for several months.  The scale.. ugh. It just never gives me the right answer!

Current progress
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Last week to this week. Now, I had just come of my birthday and vacation in Las Vegas. But I’m still liking the change my new macros gave me after 10 days.  I was rudely, publicly criticized  two times this week by meatheads saying that what I’m doing is a waste of time. I think not.  I give zero credibility to people who cannot see past their own arrogance. We are all here to learn.  I am grateful for my circle of friends who are positive!

Strategies
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This prep, even though I’m Macro counting,  I’m using almost no grains. Oats is about it. I’m eating my weight in veggies and creating more balance of food that looks and tastes good than 5 meals of Turkey Chicken Fish.

Most of my food is whole foods.  No nut butters. Those trigger me!  My fats are all coming from super foods, like avocado,
cocoa nibs, salmon, fish oil caps, olive oil.    I’m not sharing my cut percentages., 🙂  Sorry, a few of you have asked.  I am playing with the ones that work and these are the ones.

My proteins are coming from  lean meat , but I’m also using whey, greek yogurt (light and fit ), cottage cheese and egg whites of course. I always start the day with a protein pancake since 2013.  Boring!

Carbs include fruit too. I do not eat food I dislike. I am hungry sometimes but over all feel amazing!

I understand I will have to drop macros more, but for now.. it’s working just fine. I’m sure I’ll keep you updated!
Peach Protein Cupcakes with Raspberry Icing
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I’m using rippedrecipes.com to give me options that are fun yet fit how I want to eat. I’m making Peach Raspberry Protein cupcakes for dinner. They are grain free and high protein.
Look at these macros.. I removed the Agave which takes off 2g carbs and 8 calories  per cupcake. It’s sweet enough without the Agave.   Here is that recipe
FullSizeRender (1)

Here’s why
I posted this for a couple reasons. Slow cuts are better for me!  Don’t get me wrong, I’m working my butt off but a 20 pound loss in 12 weeks is going to go badly on the rebound. My goal is to reverse properly and stay at a solid off season weight that will allow me some choices. I want more muscle for 2016.

Secondly, many of the super stars of IG never show you their grow season pictures.  I’m ok with that, but it’s hard to believe they eat on prep macros all year round and look camera ready.  You need a surplus of calories to grow. It’s science.

Yeah Science
Many times girls want to compete and they show me their current macros that they live on..basically no food.
You cannot start a prep from a low caloric intake.

Please understand this.. to get leaner, you must be in a deficit. If you start a 12 week prep on 1200 calories and 6 days of cardio, the only thing you can do is workout more, or eat less.

The trick to this process is to learn where the balance is between off season and show season.  Not many people are proficient because I see women posting all the time about how they rebounded post show.

My goal in this process is to learn as much as I can so I can get better each year.

I’m starting 10 weeks out feeling great. So many miles to go! 
Enjoy your weekend and stay focused. Stay positive! You can do it!

Macro counting secrets to eating food

TOM
When people start IIFYM or Macro counting, many of them are overwhelmed.
Despite my best efforts to help them, they throw their hands up and say “I don’t know what to eat”.

My clients are NOT allowed to say that. Because..
1. We are grown ups, we do not need to be told by another human what to eat.
2. We can take responsibility for our food.
3. We already know what to eat.
4. We eat every day so what is the point of asking someone else to tell us what to eat?

Ok.. so when you start Macro counting, you should do this first

Step one:  Get your tracker set up with your macros and begin to track what you normally eat for 3 full days.
The numbers you have will give you a very clear picture of  how you eat and what things you need to tweak.

It’s easier to tweak the food you already like than to start over trying to build out  all new menus.

Most of my clients tell me that it’s very eye opening that and they often need more protein, fiber and less carbs.

Once you have a good idea of things you need to work on, you can work on it!

Things you should not do

Stop eating food you hate.
Stop eating food you hate.

1.  Eat things you don’t like.
Cabbage diets for people who hate cabbage makes no sense.  If your coach gave you sweet potatoes and you hate them,  why would you eat them?  Come on!  Do you really think that a sweet potato is magic? If you can’t stand egg whites, why wouldn’t  you put them in something that tastes great?  Choking down food you hate is silly. You have options!
If you don’t know how to do this.. go here
brit

2. Asking public forums what to eat.
This blows my mind, why you would do this.
“I have 30 carbs, 10g  fat and 20g protein left .. AND GO!”

If you are guilty of doing this.. Stop it!  No one likes this!
Here are some great resources for you.

RIPPED RECIPES
http://www.rippedrecipes.com
rr
Those silly, dangling  macros are no trouble for RR. You can use the filters and get something you like.
If you want to drop your whole day in the search, you can get all three meals!  You simply add the macro numbers you need and the magic happens.

All Recipes
http://www.allrecipes.com

All recipes!
All recipes!

This site has every recipe known to man on it. You can make something delish and use the
little widget at the bottom to get the macro numbers. You can get them for as many servings as you want.

Pinterest:
http://www.pinterest.com
pinterest
Search terms are “IIFYM”  “Flexible Dieting”  “Macros” and watch the recipes explode. There are now
a gazillion blogs that have recipes with the macros listed!  Pinterest is the place to be. You know you are on there anyway.

Bottom Line: Eat things you like. Eat well. Eat for your physique goals.  Hit your macros +5/-5 .
A little bit of research will give you new ideas!

IIFYM: How do you do “Fat”?

@iifym_memes
It’s super weird when I give clients macros and they see how much FAT they have to eat.
I hear things like

” I don’t want to eat fat because I’m already fat.”
“How am I going to eat all that fat?”
“What’s fat?”

Fat: Whey do we need it?
Just a few reasons!

Essential fatty acids from omega-3 and omega-6 fats cannot be made by your body, and therefore they must be supplied through your diet. Dull, lifeless hair and dry skin can be a sign that you may not be getting enough of these fats.**

Fat enables your body to transport, store and absorb the fat-soluble vitamins A, D, E and K. An absence of fat may mean a deficiency in these vitamins. Fat-soluble vitamins help to regulate blood pressure, heart rate, blood vessel constriction, blood clotting, and the nervous system.**

Immune systems can be compromised!
It’s good for you and helps you keep your immune system strong! 20%-35% is a healthy range.

Last year, I was in a Bro prep and had only 8g fat per day. I got very sick!  I got two eye diseases that came on the end of a nasty respiratory infection.  A weakened immune system was the culprit. My good cholesterol numbers were so low my doctor ordered me to stop prep and get my fats up.  I lost 30% vision in one eye and was on extreme antivirals that kicked my ass for over 6 months. I have been rehabbing my immune system diligently since.

Sports Nutrition tells us that we should NOT go below 20% fat per day even on extreme diets!  Yes… competition prep is extreme  and temporary.  We must care for our health even if coaches tell us we don’t need to.

However, the thing about ‘fat’ on a cut is if you aren’t careful, you can blow your diet out of the water.  That spoon of peanut butter ‘unmeasured’ can really push your fats into a surplus.  Many times clients say.. “I eat clean” but are overweight.
Bag and bags of nuts and ‘healthy snacks from Trader Joes, might give us some insight to the surplus!

Getting it right.

oliveoil
1 Tablespoon is deceptive. This is 15ML of olive oil. This is almost half my fat for a day.
Measuring fats is really important. Don’t eyeball your olive oil!
Use your scale!  Once your really understand what a tablespoon of olive oil looks like, it’s easy to see why we are over.
1ML is the same as 1g on your scale.
Serving size is 1 tablespoon or 15ML

15 ML of Olive oil is 150 calories
14g fat

What if you have lots of fat left but not a lot of other macros?
If your fats are higher than you are used to eating and you don’t know what to do think about
using higher fat products like Sour cream. OMG.. I know some of you gasped.  I had 30g of fat left
one day and instead of using Fat Free Greek yogurt for my Qdoba salad, I actually used some real sour cream! Measured it on my scale and it was incredible.  No body lost a limb when I did that. I hit my macros that day. It’s ok if you are on point!

What are some other things that will help me reach my fats without having to eat a bunch of mayonnaise?
Walnuts!!
nuts

This is a 1 oz (28g) of walnuts. If you need to get your fats out of the way quickly, here you go.
(ML=G)
Calories: 190
Fat: 18g
Fiber 2g
Protein 4g
Carbs 4g

HEY!! What are Cocoa Nibs?
coco nib

Cocoa nibs are 70% cocoa solids. It takes the super food status to the next level.
They are the least processed and most natural form of chocolate.
They have lots of health benefits including anti-oxidants and fiber!
They are not sweet, kind of nutty and work great in yogurt  or just as a snack.
I got them at Whole Foods, but Amazon has them too!
One ounce of Cocoa Nibs (28g) is
Calories: 130
Fat: 13g
Fiber 9g
Protein 3g
Carbs 10g

Let’s not forget the solidly awesome Omega egg !!
Calories: 71
Fat: 5g
Fiber 0g
Protein 6g
Carbs 0g

Pro tip: if you are not getting your EFA’s you can add 2 Burpless fish oil sups!
Remember to  add them to  your tracker.

If you have a “Lot” of fat to eat, use super foods like I’ve shown above.

Update 2016: Over time we have had clients who decided to hoard their fats and save them all for the weekend so they could drink and eat fast food. Fat Cycling is not a thing. Fat is necessary daily. Please remember it’s optimal to eat for health! Flexibility is great taking liberties as such are counter productive.

 

**fatsecret.com

Meal Prep Sunday

blogi
um… well

My lifestyle clients, brides and competitors are all macro counting. Doing flexible dieting is
an amazing experience and for some of us, we have to be super tight with macros.  I’m glad I have more
options in my prep but I’m still keeping my food very tight. Lots of veggies.  I love this meme though because until I found
a food scale and the ‘gram’ setting, I was all over the place.   Just for fun, I wanted to show you the actual tablespoon serving of jelly for your rice cakes.
blogh

My normal thought pattern is to use that giant serving spoon in the back of the drawer!
Ok.. moving on.

Prep this week is pretty simple I got some great items at Costco. I got rotisserie chicken and
lots of veggies.  I don’t prep a lot of food because I can make a lot of it as I go.
My protein sources are still meat, egg whites, eggs, whey, and some dairy like greek yogurt and cheese.
I don’t do a lot of dairy but I’m not pulling it yet, either.
Here’s how my day started post track workout which I did fasted.
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Heated a pan with butter flavor cooking spray and added a bag of spinach.
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Added fresh kale from my client’s garden and cooked it down.
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Went with some portabello mushrooms.. mmmm.

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Here’s how that came out!

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This is my fun beaker from Home Goods. It’s all kinds of scientific.  So that’s my egg whites.
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I let that set up like a frittata and added my portabello mushrooms.
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Finished that off with a serving of fat free cheese.  Folded it over and let it melt. It
was perfect.  I ate the spinach and kale on the side.
Breakfast for me today was
Calories: 255
F: 2g
C: 20g
P: 41g
Fiber 9g
blogk

I’m on a lower carb day today so this was great!  It filled me up!

Macro counting and social situations

tell me
Macro counting is for people who have specific physique goals.
WOW.  Hear me out.  If you want to be leaner, you have a specific goal.
Now, it’s time to acknowledge that you have the magic at your fingertips. YOU
control how well you do. If you want to reach your goals, then you must consistently
count your macros. And that  means on the weekends and at social events.

You  could have just joined Jenny Craig..
But, you chose macro counting to get lean, so this doesn’t have to happen.
tup
Saying “screw it” and eating whatever you want will continue to wreck your physique.
You will feel bloated-because you are.  You certainly won’t be happy when you check in with your coach.
You are reinforcing negative behaviors that probably got you to a point where you are now.

What do you want?
What do you want?

How to be successful.
First and foremost: Set a goal. If you don’t have one, get one and write it down! What are you aiming for ?
How about 1 pants size?  Write that down and eat according to that goal.

Flexible dieiting is great because you are not limited to turkey chicken, fish and lettuce!
But it’s not a free for all. You must reach your macros consistently +5/-5 each day.

***. You can eat foods you like so There is no need for binging.

2. It’s YOUR  job to plan your events. If you have a party to attend, hold back some carbs.
As long as your carbs equal the total amount you have for the week at the end of 7 days, you are good to go.

3. Having social situations is going to happen all year round. When is the best time to lean?  it’s right now, you made the decision to do it!
4. Finish your cut and reverse to maintenance macros so you can eat more food!

Social situations solved (good housekeeping circa 1972)
But I don’t know what they are going to have to eat there?
Eat before you go. Nibble. Don’t stand near the cheese table. Drink lots of water.  These things all still apply because you are trying to get lean.

We are going out to dinner but the macros aren’t online for this restaurant.
You can order off the menu.  Ask for the food you want and have it prepared as you want. Hold the bun, steamed veggies instead of fries, dressing on the side, no croutons?   These things all still apply.  You know what is in a burrito, you can use Fatsecret.com for ingredient macros.

Stragetgy: Bank some carbs and fats for the end of the day. Eat lighter in the earlier part of the day so you have macros for your event.

A word about cutting: 
Everyone wants to get lean, but some  forget that cutting is an uncomfortable situation.
To get lean,  you must be in a caloric deficit.  That means, you don’t get all the food you want. If you are currently overweight then you have been eating in a surplus of calories and now you have to stop doing that. By nature, this will be uncomfortable.
Beer, craft beers, ball game beer, float trips, all the beer, and Limaritas you would like to enjoy while on your cut are not going to fit in your macros for active fat loss.  So you are going to have to say no to them, while you are leaning.  If you are in a social situation and need to make alcohol fit, be sure you are tracking it correctly.  See this blog post.
Do not simply add it to your tracker or worse, NOT add anything. Be accountable.

This is Your project. Never use excuses to reason why you can’t get lean. Yes you can. This is your decision and
you can problem solve!

More  strategies here including how to do faux drinking!

The “I don’t know what to say” salad

salad

The beauty of Counting Macros/Flex/IIFYM is that you can eat what you like. No food is off limits.
However, not everyone can eat the same things. Your macros will deem how crazy you can go with your
super fun foods like treats. I had frozen yogurt dinner last week. 2x.

Quality food plays a part, I believe.  If I get in a rush, I can reach my macros easily with lots of processed foods including my fiber.  Two Quest bars a day will do that with no trouble. The last 2 weeks, I haven’t felt super awesome in my workouts
and it’s because I’ve let more sugar sneak in. It fits but I can tell the difference.

Learning/experimenting
My experiment in this challenge is to try to eat more of my carbs from veggies.  I still do eat processed foods like “light and fit” greek yogurt and flat outs. I have cocoa nibs so I’m not feeling bro.  I just think my schedule has been an excuse to buy and eat more protein bars.   In any case..

The  super food salad.
I had to go to the fancy store to get the ingredients
140g fancy organic kale
136g carrots
150g shredded broccoli
10g walnuts

40g strawberries
249C
F: 9g
C:40g
P: 13g
Fiber 15g

It looks good on paper.  Two of these a day would meet my fiber and use of 80g C.
I will never be hungry, it’s a lot of chewing! I know my skin looks better when I eat veggies.

I’m going to have to experiment because…it tastes like Ass.  I said it.  face palm.
Maybe I can make it all ground like tabouli…

So round one.. goes to the salad.  I need to ponder this.

IIFYM: I can’t eat all this food

m1

Are you  struggling to eat all the food that you have on your macros?

Some of my clients complain that they can’t eat all the food. While they have previously told me they have no issue binge eating on the weekends or go overboard on candy or treats. Yes.. there is some truth to the struggle to eat nutrient dense food. It does fill you up!

Also.. Many of my clients were used to eating very little food!
Low carb, no carb, zero fat, no protein  diets are common so when you now have to eat more food than you are used to, #TheStruggleIsReal.

One thing to consider is that once you start IIFYM and eating on your proper macros, your body will adjust.  You may realize after a while that you are hungry on those macros!

It might take a bit for you to get your macro nutrients up to where they need to be. That’s ok! Don’t give up.

Why you should eat all your food.
The answer is simple. Your body needs fuel. If you are cutting out macronutrients like fats, carbs or protein you are starving your body.

If you stop starving your body, you will then begin to see your physique change and you will let go of that stubborn body fat.
You will also see an amazing transformation if you give it the time and are consistent.  Tell yourself you can do it!

 

But it’s so much! I can’t eat it.

Eddie knows, you need to eat.
Eddie knows, you need to eat.

Secret 1:
If you are on IIFYM/Flex and feel  you have lots and lots of food to eat, you can eat more Caloric Dense foods.

Let’s begin with the difference between Caloric Dense foods and
Volume foods.

Caloric Dense foods are food that provide lots of macros for a little bit of food. Girls who need to eat  more macros for can use these.  (formally known as Nutrient Dense)

Volume foods are foods that offer a lot of food but take very little of your macros. Girls who are ‘cutting’ and have poverty (very little) macros to work with love volume foods.

Example of the difference between the two.
Let’s say you have a certain amount of money to spend and you want to shop.

If you shop at Saks Fifth Avenue, you will probably purchase something small and it will cost you more of your allotted spending limit.   This is your Caloric/Nutrient Dense food.

Volume foods are like shopping at the dollar store. You can get lots of things for your allotted spending limit.

So let’s say that you consistently have 60  carbs left over each day, you could add a Caloric/Nutrient  Dense food like Quinoa to your meals.
Quinoa is a very carb rich food. You can eat very little of it and
up your carbs quickly.
quin
250g of cooked quinoa is about 1.5 cups.
I used CalorieKing.com to calculate these macros.
This cooked quinoa has over 50g carbs!

On the other hand, eating zero calorie/zero carb pasta
(a volume food) would not further your goal to reach your carb macros.  You’ll be eating for days!!

Other Caloric/ nutrient dense foods to help you hit your macros are
Bananas
Legumes (beans)
Lentils (is that a legume?)
Pasta
Nuts (fats)
Fruits (grapes.. eat 3 and look at the carbs!)
Olive oil (fats)
Full dairy  protein, fats
Honey
Juice
When you read your labels, look for higher macros in a smaller serving to help you hit your numbers.

You can also investigate the fantastic flex bowl!  Have you seen this yet? It’s my favorite way to get those extra macros in. click here for that post

If you are cutting and want to know about Volume foods you can read about them here!

xoxo

Mastering Poverty Macros on a Cut

 

munkey

This picture says everything I want to say.  In our house, when we are out of macros we say we are on
Monkey Macros.  This poor little guy is inconsolable!

If you are on a ‘cut’ or ‘active fat loss’ phase of your diet then you understand how precious each one of those
macros are each day.  I have had days where I was out of nearly all my macros by 2pm.

Let me explain.  I wake up at 4am to go train clients.  If you are a coach, or competitor that’s the normal time for your own workouts too.  I have to fuel up before I start and post workout.  By 7:30 am I’m already on Meal 2 and hungry.
The day progresses and by 4:30, I’m pretty much done for the day.   It makes no sense for me to skimp on my necessary pre and post workout macros just for the sake of having more for couch time.

My main goal is muscle development and fuel so most of my food is eaten during the day when I’m either working out or training clients.  That leaves me with “monkey macros” come late after noon or evening.

If you are low on macros, those are referred to as Poverty Macros.  It’s like stretching your money from paycheck to paycheck.  You must tread carefully so you don’t over spend and have nothing left!

One salvation for poverty macros is Volume Foods. 

Volume foods are the equivalent of shopping at the dollar store.  You get lots of stuff for a little cost.
So basically, volume foods are foods you can eat more of and that will fill you up but take very little of your macros.

Items such as
Cabbage
broccoli
Squash
Sugar Free Jello (you know you do it- it has protein!)
and my new favorite Shiratake noodles.

The Spiralizer
spir
My girlfriend, Christine surprised me with a spiralizer for my kitchen. It was the As Seen On TV version
and we vowed to try Zucchini pasta.  That moment saved my prep and my macros!
Green Zucchini is fantastic.

Zucchini is made mostly of water and but it fills you up really well.
100g of zucchini is
16 calories
3g Carbs
1g Protein
0g Fat
1g Fiber

There are so many wonderful recipes on pinterest for spirialized zucchini.
It tastes amazing. My kids actually ask for it.

shir

Miracle noodles are another great volume food.  These Shiratake noodles come in
orzo, fettuccini,  and angle hair pasta. The mister rocks these with shrimp and Thai seasonings for me.
They are Soy Free, Gluten Free and Vegan. They can be made to taste like whatever you like!
They fill you up. I ordered them from Amazon Prime! Easy peasy.

cookie
This is a 10 calorie “Miracle Noodle ” cookie!
If you click on the picture, you can see the recipe!

Macros on Miracle Noodles are
3oz
0 Calories
0 Fat
0 Carbs
0 P

Salvation.

When you become a label sleuth, you will find that you can actually fit more into your day and feel full. I encourage you to check out pinterest and RippedRecipes.com to plan your Poverty Macro meals!

IIFYM and accuracy

To make your IIFYM experience really successful, you have to get accurate.  Whew!  Who knew!

I always feel like I’m totally accurate! Maybe you are, but your kitchen utensils might not be.

eyes up!  Weigh it properly for success!
Eyes up! Weigh it properly for success!

1. I started with my scale and my weighing unit. I put the plastic bowl on the scale and zero’d it out.
2. I poured 1/2 cup of dry quick oats into my Pyrex measuring cup. It looks totally right!

3. The label on my oatmeal says 1/2 cup of oats (40g) is
150 calories
2.5g Fat
27 C
4. When I weighed my 1/2 cup of oats I got 51 grams!
So I was over by 11 grams.  That is 41 extra calories and 16.5 extra carbs.

Competitors!! When it’s measured.. it needs to be really measured.
The interesting thing is each of my measuring cups gave a different weight.
I’m better off starting with an empty unit on the scale and adding 40g of oats.

The little scoop in my chia seeds did not hold the amount of grams that was a full serving as per the label. I poured that little scoop into a measuring spoon and it was exact. The weight was under by 10 grams.

I don’t ‘eye ball’ my food ever!
Most everything in your tracker like MyFitness Pal and My net Diary is listed in grams so it’s good practice to start using it.

I have a friend who “eyeballs” olive oil.
Use ML as it shows on the bottle for liquids.
oliveoil
Single-Varietal-EVOO-1

Using flatwear table spoons for cool whip, peanut butter, fluff, honey, etc is lazy.
You need to be accountable and get that on the scale!
peanut

One coach had 1/4 cup of cashews for M2 .
So listen, the girls took their ninja and ground those nuts to a powder and packed it in there good.  That was soooo many more calories and fat than the normal
Cashews 1/4 cup
Calories 170
P: 4
F:13g
C:

Cashews ground 2 oz (quarter cup)
Calories 337
P: 7
F: 278
C:18

So that can make a difference when you are trying to get lean!!

You may feel like this is too picky or complicated but as a competitor, I don’t have room for error.  If you are not seeing results, check your measurements. It may not be a problem with your macro numbers, but your
grams.  I’m sure you aren’t just eating your food all hilly, willy,nilly!

Weigh your Quest bars as well.  I’ve heard rumors of the label weight being off on products like that as well.

Edit:  Weigh your protein powder! Do not believe the scoop. One scoop of my protein powder was actually a full scoop and a half!
Use the grams for everything in weight.

Continued success!
t