Carb Cycling…..it works!!

Carb Cycling?? What is that you ask? Carb cycling is something I have been practicing for a while. It’s almost like you are playing a trick on your body! This is something that bodybuilders use to drop weight (get leaner) quicker. Between the numbers of low-carbohydrate diets and studies linking the consumption of processed carbs to obesity and chronic diseases, carbs have become the black sheep of the nutrition world. But let’s get one thing straight: Heavy consumption of PROCESSED carbs affects the body’s hormonal machinery, leading to inflammation and excess fat storage. However, all carbohydrates are not bad for you.

For muscle growth and overall performance,  HEALTHY carbohydrates are a necessity. The challenge is to take in just the right amount of carbs — at just the right times. It turns out that what carbs you eat — and especially, when you eat them — can drastically affect your body’s response to them. Through a process called carb cycling, you can manipulate carb consumption to maximize muscle growth while you minimize negative effects.

If you ask any doctor, He/She would tell you to go on a low carbohydrate – high protein diet! (which worked to jumpstart my weight loss) but for the rest of my life? That will not be easy so that’s when I began researching carb cycling.

Carb Cycling for Fat Loss is very meticulous and must followed closely to achieve success. In carb cycling, your week is divided up into 3 days: No Carb Days, Low Carb Day, High Carb Days.

NO CARB DAYS: On these, you eat high-fiber vegetables such as leafy greens, asparagus, broccoli, onions, peppers and mushrooms freely, along with lean protein and a serving or two of good fats. Refrain from starchy carbs such as potatoes, rice, cereals and oats. These include starchier veggies such as beans, zucchini, squash, and pumpkin. Total carb intake should be less than 25 grams per day – all from fibrous veggies.

LOW CARB DAYS: Here, the goal is to stay below 75 grams of carbs. Once again, fibrous veggies can be eaten freely, but add in two to three servings of starch from clean sources such as brown rice, sweet potatoes, oats, starchy veggies and fruit. “Clean” carbs are hypoallergenic ones — free of gluten, soy and dairy. For best results, having starchy carbs post-workout on these days is recommended.

HIGH CARB DAYS: The total amount of carbs will vary based on your size and activity level. Women will consume between 150 and 200 grams while men can get away with up to 300 grams. Most of these should come from clean sources. But if you are going to enjoy a cheat meal, it is advantageous to have it on a high-carb day.

Don’t forget to continue to eat plenty of lean protein and a serving or two of healthy fats. A high-carb day is not an excuse to binge eat; it’s a systematic way to reset muscle-building and fat-burning hormones.

 

In order to keep track of what you intake be sure to use a tool like myfitnesspal (followme @chehaughton). I’ve used this tool for 5 years! It tracks everything! Takes the guesswork out of it for you. Absolutely love it. What do you use??

And now you know about carb cycling! Give it a try! Hope this helps someone.

 

~cheinspires

Sodas for what?? 128 ounces/per day!

As a child, kool-aid made with a TON of sugar was our drink of choice. 20160602_165854We would add more sugar if it wasn’t syrupy sweet. As I grew older, soda was my crutch. When I started this journey, over 5 years ago I was drinking at least one 2 liter Pepsi per day. (One 2 Liter of Pepsi if you drink the entire bottle has: 850 calories and 232g Sugar.) IMAGINE THAT!!!  It was the hardest drug to let go of but I stopped with soda cold turkey and immediately began to lose weight. Did I have withdrawals? YES! Did I give in? NOPE!

Water was hard to stomach because it didn’t have a taste. But just like everything, I made it into a challenge. I researched and learned of its benefits. After learning of its benefits I was intrigued and I continued. Now water is my ONLY drink of choice. I down a gallon per day!

The benefits of drinking water and staying hydrated:

  1. Weight Loss – Water is one of the best tools for weight loss. Why? Because it often replaces high-calories drinks like soft drinks and alcohol with a drink that has no fat, no calories, no carbs, no sugar. It is also a great appetite suppressant, and often when we think we’re hungry, we’re actually just thirsty. So if you are wanting to lose weight – INCREASE YOUR WATER.
  2. Energy – Being dehydrated takes away your energy and makes you feel tired. If you’re thirsty, you’re already dehydrated – and this can lead to dizziness, fatigue, muscle weakness and other symptoms.
  3. Headache Cure – Another symptom of dehydration is headaches. In fact, often when we have headaches it’s simply a matter of not drinking enough water. There are lots of causes for headaches of course but dehydration is a common one.
  4. Healthy Skin – Drinking water can clear up your skin and help you look more fresh and glowing. Commit to drinking a healthy amount of water over a week and see the effects on your skin.
  5. Digestive Problems – Our digestive systems need a good amount of water to digest food properly. Often water can help cure stomach acid problems, and water along with fiber can cure constipation (also a result of dehydration).
  6. Cleansing and Kidney Health – Water is used by the body to help flush out toxins and waste products from the body. The more water your drink the better your kidneys will function.
  7. Better Exercise – We all know it is essential to drink water when exercising, but did you know being dehydrated can severely affect your workouts? Slowing your down and making your workouts harder. So the best time to drink water is actually two hours before you plan to exercise and of course during and after.

Here are some tips that I used to stay focused on drinking enough water to experience these benefits.

 

 

When you are craving a sweet drink, try sweetening your water with Crystal light sugar-free packets or making fruit infused water that has benefits that you can use. You can find more combinations on Pinterest (follow me @eyecandyinc)

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Water is now my drink of choice, I can say with confidence that I haven’t had a soda in over 4 years.  I would much rather EAT my calories than drink them!! If you are on a weight loss journey, start by eliminating the calories that you are drinking and replace it with water!! Easiest place to begin. Get rid of those pointless calories.

-cheinspires

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“Use Bleach”….Acanthosis Nigricans….

20160528_073119As a young lady, I struggled with extremely black, dry, scaly neck, elbows, cheeks and legs. I was told to SCRUB HARD….“you must not be scrubbing hard enough.” I would scrub until it hurt.  “Try bleach in your bathwater, sure that would work.” NOPE! Nothing worked, so I learned to live with it and cover it as best as I could. Pants to cover it on my legs, long sleeves to cover my arms and scarfs and collar shirts for my neck. The sides of my face were really black as well, I just had to deal with that and the ridicule that came along with it.

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17 years old. Acanthosis Nigricans on my face.

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It wasn’t until my adult life that I began researching what this was and how as a young lady, I could never get this to go away no matter what I did.

This condition is called:

Acanthosis Nigricans which is a brown to black, poorly defined, velvety hyperpigmentation of the skin. It is usually found in body folds, such as the posterior and lateral folds of the neck, the armpits, groin, navel, forehead and other areas. It typically occurs in individuals younger than 40, may be genetically inherited and is associated with obesity or endocrinopathies, such as PCOS (polycystic ovary syndrome) which is a set of symptoms due to elevated male hormone in women. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Acanthosis_nigricans

In my case, it was directly related to obesity and was a visible marker that suggested insulin resistance. Higher than normal insulin levels in the blood due to overeating of bad foods causes the growth of darkened skin over certain areas of the body. NO SKIN TREATMENT will get rid of it. Acanthosis Nigricans may lighten up and possibly go away by treating the root cause, insulin resistance but it could take months or years to do so.

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@_asleevedbelleinmaryland after losing over 100 pounds.

Once I began losing weight, I no longer struggle with Acanthosis Nigricans – my legs and arms are completely clear. My neck is no longer black, it is still discolored but could be from sun spots at this point in life. This post is for that young woman that is struggling with this and have no idea how to get rid of it, my advice is to focus on your diet, speak to your doctor about PCOS and don’t use bleach! You will get through this as long as you take control.

-cheinspires

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