It's been a whole week since I started this new way of eating so I thought I'd share my keto diet results here. Joseph and I set a goal of losing at least 20 pounds each this year. He has already hit his goal and is working on losing even more. I, on the other hand, am actually several pounds heavier than I was at the beginning of the year.
I'd been hearing a lot of buzz around the keto diet and so I decided to give it a try. The idea is that by cutting your carbohydrate intake to under 20 net carbs a day, you put your body into ketosis, where it starts burning fat as it's primary fuel source. Basically, keto makes your body eat its own fat stores.
The down side to the keto diet is that I have to cut out some of my absolute favorite foods. Bread and sweet treats are my weakness. But that's also what drew me to keto. I like the idea of going cold turkey on sugar, because as much as I love sweets, I know that overindulging in them is hampering my health and fitness goals.
I also like the simplicity of keto. I eat meat, veggies, and fats. A lot of fats. With all that we have going on right now I need a weight loss plan that's pretty easy to follow.
My Keto Diet Week 1 Macro Ratios
If you are new to keto dieting or calorie counting, you might not be familiar with what a macro nutrient ratio is. It's the exact mix of carbs, protein, and fat that you have in your diet. I can be measured in percentages which can then be followed by anyone regardless of how many calories they decide to consume. Or you can measure it in terms of weight.
So for keto, you generally want to stick to under 20 grams of net carbs if you are in weightloss mode. Subtracting the total count of grams of fiber from the total amount of carbs gives you your net carb total.
Based on a keto calculator that I found through a keto subreddit, I decided that I wanted to eat around 1700 calories and 100 grams of protein. That means that most of the calories in my diet will actually be coming from fat.
My Keto Diet Week 1 Menu
I ate the same thing all week. Like I said, I like to keep it simple. And as long as I make sure to make food that I actually enjoy eating, I don't have a problem eating the same things for an entire week. To keep things interesting, I do try to vary my meals from week to week and month to month. Ideally, I try not to repeat a meal more often than every other month.
But even after all of these years I'm still trying to fill out my go-to recipe list. Plus it's always fund just to be able to try new things anyway.
For this first week of keto I kept it extra basic by sticking with rotisserie chicken and salad for my two lunch meals and grilled flank steak and veggies for dinner. I ate two eggs, a serving of spinach, and two pieces of bacon for breakfast every morning. My snack was a daily avocado to get in even more good fats and because it was easy. See a pattern here? Lastly, I included a fat-heavy cup of coffee every day.
Bullet proof coffee
2 slices of bacon
1 cup of spinach
Lunch 1 & 2
4 oz rotisserie chicken
1.5 cups spring mix
0.5 cups cucumber
1/4 cup bell pepper
0.5 T olive oil
4 oz flank steak
1 cup zucchini
Throughout the day I made sure to drink lots of water. I also kept a shaker bottle full of electrolytes and branch chain amino acids (I used this brand) to help with keto flu symptoms. On days when I felt the need to eat more than this, I'd either eat some more meat or make myself a bowl of egg drop soup with one cup of bullion and one egg. So satisfying.
My Keto Diet Week 1 Exercise Routine
I really enjoy working out but I really haven't done a good job of prioritizing it, which I know has to change. Over the past few weeks I've been working out here and there. It's been just enough to get my muscles back into weight training mode so that doing one bicep curl doesn't make my whole body hurt for a week.
My goal was to work out at least four days a week: Saturday, Sunday, and the two days that I work from home during the week. Now that we have a home gym in our basement, working out has become even easier than it was before. I also picked up an awesome exercise book that has a ton of at home workout routines.
But for this week I decided to follow a plan that I'd used in the past and really enjoyed. Bodybuilding.com has a ton of workout plans to fit just about anyone's needs. My personal favorite is Jamie Eason's Live Fit Trainer.
I was really disappointed when I realized that the program, which had once been offered for free, is now behind a paywall. But the good news is that you can still access the exercise plan itself through the Bodybuilding.com app without paying a fee, so that's what I did.
Working out on keto is really different from working out while running on carbs. I could feel that my muscles were tired. I couldn't lift as heavy or for as long. What should have been a really light workout ended up making me feel like I'd just been put through a gauntlet.
I read that it can take a month or two before your body fully adapts to burning fat for energy. Until then, being on a keto diet will most likely mean that you won't be able to workout as hard as you are used to.
This week, I weight trained three times and ran once. The plan doesn't actually call for cardio but I just can't get comfortable completely leaving it out of my workout plan. I'm slowly working my way through a couch to 5k plan in the hopes that I'll be able to run a 5k later this year.
Keto Diet Results Week 1
One of the best parts about the keto diet is the potential to see a pretty big number drop the first week. That can really help keep you motivated to stick to the plan.
At the beginning of the week I weighed 215.6 pounds. By the end of the week the scale had dropped down to 209.4. a total weight loss of six pounds in one week! Ultimately, I would love to get down to 165 pounds, a number that I haven't seen on the scale since before I had Alexis.
Now, don't get me wrong, I know that most of this weight is water weight. When you switch over to keto, your body burns through it's glycogen stores which causes you to also drop a ton of water weight. That means that when you go off of keto and start eating carbs, your body replenishes its glycogen stores again and you put back on the water weight.
Still, it's really nice to see the numbers go down when you are suffering through the keto flu and watching your family members eat peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, fruits, and all the other goodies that are no-nos on keto.
My Thoughts After Being on Keto for a Week
The other thing that I love about eating keto is that my hunger felt entirely under control in a way that I've never experienced in my adult life. Normally, if I don't eat every 3-4 hours things start to go really wrong. I would get moody and irritable and food would basically be all I could think about. Then when I would finally eat, I would be so ravenous that I would eat way more calories than I needed to.
On keto, I find that my hunger is a lot more manageable. In fact, Alexis and took an impromptu trip to the mall that caused us to miss dinner. Normally, that would mean that I would have to stop somewhere in the mall to get food or else I'd die. But this time it was different. I was definitely hungry, but it was a very mild feeling that I found that I could live with for hours until I got home to eat my perfectly portioned keto meal.
It was so amazing to finally feel in control of my appetite. I don't know why keto has this effect exactly, but I'm sure that the extra fat in my diet really helps me feel fuller longer. And maybe it also has something to do with having steadier blood sugar levels. All I know is that it is a relief to not feel the need to eat constantly.
The other thing that I've had to get used to while on keto is never feeling full or stuffed. Mentally, it's a little tricky letting go of the idea that my stomach must feel full in order for me to stop being hungry. Now my stomach rarely ever feels full or heavy because fat packs in a lot of calories in a very tiny package.
Having spent most of my life chasing after that feeling of fullness, it's really strange to feel fully content without it.
At this point I'm not sure that I will stay on keto forever but I can say that there are things about it that I absolutely love and never want to change. I love not being hungry. I love feeling fully in control of my appetite. I love the constant level of energy I feel throughout the day. I love that I don't have any cravings. All of those things makes this the easiest meal plan that I have ever been on. I can't wait to see how next week goes.