Day 8 is done! I’m nearing the end of the cleanse portion of the challenge* and have started to feel and see some changes in my body. More on that below.
First, let’s look at today’s stats.
Breakfast: Scrambled egg and an orange
Lunch: Leftover breakfast casserole; Salad
Supper: Grilled lemon herb pork chop (Recipe found HERE); Baked potato; Green beans tossed with olive oil and garlic
Snacks: Spoonful of peanut butter; Banana; Apple
Tea of Choice: Teavana green tea – jade citrus mint
Energy Level: Pretty good. Tired in the afternoon, but my Spark drink picked me back up.
After 8 days on the challenge, I’m down 2-1/2 pounds–a good, healthy loss for this amount of time. In past challenges, my weight loss was more extreme early on, but I also started at a higher weight. This time around, I started close to my goal weight, but my focus is more on changing my body composition than reaching a certain number on the scale.
Let me explain…
Before my surgery two months ago, I felt good about where I was at healthwise. I took care of myself with proper diet and exercise. But after the surgery, I was under doctor’s orders to not exercise or lift. This was extremely hard for someone who’s used to a healthy lifestyle. Combine the lack of exercise with a higher intake of junk food (sometimes you just need a little comfort food, right?), and the result was a loss of muscle and a gain of fat.
As illustrated in this picture, one pound of muscle takes up less space than one pound of fat.
At the end of my surgery recovery, I’d gained only three pounds, but those three pounds took up much more space in my body (not to mention my clothes). 🙂 Now that I’m back in the gym, I knew I would be adding muscle to fat if I didn’t clean up my diet, which would result in higher weight and inches.
That’s where the 24-day challenge came in.
My goal with this challenge is to drop the excess fat while my muscles are building back up. This will hopefully keep my pounds steady (with the chance for a small drop), while allowing me a little more comfort in the waistline of my jeans. So far, I can already feel a difference on both counts!
The takeaway for someone embarking on a healthy lifestyle: Don’t put all your stock in what the scale says. Instead, remember the delicate balance of muscle and fat. If you’re going to the gym for the first time, you might actually see an increase in pounds at the beginning. But the goal is to get the overall composition of your weight to a healthier level. If you add a cleaner diet to your gym routine, you’ll have greater success on the scale AND in fitting into that dream size.
That’s it for Day 8! I’ll be back tomorrow with more takeaways and tips.
*My completion of Advocare’s 24-day challenge is not a personal endorsement of Advocare or any of its products. Advocare’s products may cause adverse health effects in some people and shouldn’t be entered without full understanding and consultation with a physician.
*fitness photos by Ivory Mix/CreativeMarket.com