I do make a lot of smoothies for my kids so I just modified that recipe a little for a fruit smoothie, which is quite tasty. I also supplement dinner and one snack with real food carefully calculated to ensure I am staying within my calories and ratios.
This morning I was feeling I might need to try something a little different. When I started this I bought one vanilla and one chocolate protein powder. My chocolate hasn’t been getting much use really as I couldn’t figure out what to put with it. I am not a huge fan of chocolate peanut butter flavored things so the protein/fat smoothies are my big challenge and I also don’t really like chocolate and fruit together so you can see my dillema here.
Side Note: I use and recommend Jay Robb Whey Protein. It tastes great and meets all the recommended quality and nutritional recommendations — high quality ingredients and sweetened with stevia.
I threw some things together this morning and it turned out pretty good, so I thought I would share my couple of shake recipes with you.
How Much of Each Ingredient?
Each one of us will have specific quantity requirements to meet our calories and macro-nutrient ratios. For this reason I have left the amount off of anything that would add to the caloric total or affect the ratios.
There is a whole section of the diet manual dedicated to calculating your needs. This is a very important part of the program so don’t skip over this part.
Morning Wake Up Call
Chocolate protein powder
1 t. instant coffee
1 t. unsweetened baking cocoa
Mix it all together in a blender. May need a little more time in the blender than other shakes to fully dissolve and incorporate the instant coffee granules.
Basic Fruit Smoothie
Vanilla protein powder
Fresh or Frozen Berries (whatever you have works great – I love the frozen mixed berries)
Blend and enjoy!
Side Note: If you like your smoothies colder or thicker, add a couple of ice cubes after you have blended the ingredients together and then spin it again until all the ice is crushed up.
Bonus Tip: One thing I have noticed about protein powder is if you let it sit for a minute or so after blending but before you drink it, it tastes better and has a better consistency. This gives it time to fully dissolve. What I do is blend it up and then let it sit for a minute or two and then give it another little spin before I pour it into a glass. Way Better!
But, not being a body builder and not know about all the various supplements they take, I had some questions. What are BCAAs? Why do I have to take them? How much do I take? Where do I get them?
As I see what others are asking about them, I also see that people are having a hard time interpreting the label and determining how many pills they need to take.
So, I thought I would take a few minute and share what I have learned and give you a few resources. I am not a doctor or a trainer or a nutritionist or anyone with any expertise in this. I am simply following the Xtreme Fat Loss Diet and searched out some additional information I thought some others might find helpful. Please do not take this information as gospel. Do your own research and by all means talk to an expert if you have any concerns.
What are BCAAs
BCAA stands for Branch Chain Amino Acids. Amino Acids are the “building blocks of Protein”. Proteins are made up of strings of amino acids. BCAA are just a specific kind of amino acids that contains a branch in it’s molecular structure.
When we eat protein, it is broken down into amino acids which are then used by our bodies in different ways. How efficiently we absorb these amino acids varies greatly depending on the quality of the food we eat and differs in different kinds of protein (dairy vs. meat for example).
So, BCAAs are really just the basic fundamentals of proteins in a pill.
Why am I taking BCAA on my fast day?
BCAAs make up about a third of the bodies amino acids and are an essential component of skeletal muscle mass. The purpose of taking them on the Xtreme Fat Loss Diet fast day is to prevent the loss of muscle mass that would typically go along with the giant caloric deficit we are creating on this day.
How Much Do I Take?
These calculation are specific to the Xtreme Fat Loss Diet and the amounts are just for the fast day. If you are not using this system, please follow the dosage recommendations on the package.
For the fast day you want to take .3 grams (or 300 mg) per pound of total weight. You want to take this total amount and split it by six so you can take it six times a day.
Let’s use me as an example…
.3 x 163 lbs = 48.9 grams BCAA per day
Six servings of 8.15 grams
Now lets look at how to determine how many pills to take. It will very likely be unclear what amount of BCAA will be in each pill so you will need to look at the label and do some math.
On the nutritional label of your BCAA bottle it will list the total amount of BCAAs per serving. This will likely be broken down on the label by specific amino acids. You want to add up the amounts listed for each amino acid. The amino acids start with an L- . This doesn’t mean per pill though. It will say how many pills per serving.
For example, my bottle of MRM BCAA+G 6000 says that each serving contains 6000 mg ( = 6 grams ).
There are five pills per serving…
6000 mg / 5 pills = 1200 mg per pill ( = 1.2 grams/pill )
OK, so I need 8.15 grams per serving.
8.15 /1.2 = 6.79 pills per serving
Now we all know you can’t take a part of a capsule so I take 6 pills for a couple of servings and seven for a couple of serving to make it work out.
Where can I get BCAAs?
I got mine at my local natural supplement store, but you can easily get them online as well.
I use the MRM brand and they are available on Amazon for a pretty reasonable price, quite a bit less than what I paid.
Amazon: Browse BCAA Supplements
Learn More about the Xtreme Fat Loss Diet – Main Website
I hope that this information has been helpful and good luck on your journey.
The last several days my son has been very sick and Monday we spent the good part of the day and all evening in the ER. He is getting better and is going to be just fine, but the stress has been profound. Believe me, the last thing I want is excuses for why I can’t succeed at this.
This is what I struggle with time and time again. Life gets in the way, the stress gets to me and then I eat to make myself feel better and then I feel guilty and crappy about myself so I give up.
This cycle, I only lost half a pound. I have hit my mark in that 163 pounds is this sticking point for me. I have not been below it since my son was born three years ago. I try and I try and I get to 163 and it just won’t budge. Well, here we are again after a stressful and disappointing week and I have to say I am not surprised. I am trying very hard to look past that number and not feel defeated.
But a couple of really good things have come out of this cycle and right now I am celebrating the littlest of victories. I am still here. I haven’t given up, I haven’t blown my diet. I am sticking to the plan, despite all the obstacles. I will finish what I started and push past my fears.
I also started exercising again. There are still many things that I can’t do with my thumb as it is, but I went for a run and biked as well. I also tried out some of the bodyweight exercise routines, which I totally love. There were several of the exercises that I couldn’t do as I am unable to put my full weight on that hand, but I either modified, substituted or skipped the moves I couldn’t do and kept going. Tonight I am going back to swim classes for the first time since the accident.
The biggie though has been gaining some control back over the food. The fast days have been so pinnacle in this. Yes, I get hungry but I embrace that and I have control of whether I eat or not. And that gives me more control over the rest of the days when I have to choose what I will eat, whether I will stick to the plan or give into the little gremlins in my head.
Through all the last few weeks of craziness with family in and out of the house and two major medical events, I have stuck to the plan as much as I could. There have been moments of weakness and moments of circumstance, but I didn’t let them affect my resolve. I just kept going. This may not seem like much to you, but for me it is a pretty big deal.
I have two more cycles to go and I hope that I can get it together enough to lose a little weight in the process. But even if I don’t, I have gained a lot from this and I will be completing the program again in July before my husband and I take a trip to Sonoma. So, I will have another chance to make it happen for me.
I have updated the Xtreme Fat Loss page with the latest. Not much to look at though…
Don’t let my lack of success deter you from this program. My results have nothing to do with the program. I have no doubt that it works and that you could achieve significant results.
Don’t let your fears or reservations stop you in achieving your goals. When we fall all there is to do is to get up and keep going.
I will take my one pound and rejoice it. I am also looking forward to rocking it this cycle. I have three to go. That is plenty of time to do some serious damage.
Wow, I sound cheezy.
Anyway, new stats and even a new photo (eek!) have been posted on the Xtreme Fat Loss Page.
Despite my obstacles I am dedicated and feeling very positive about this program.
I have not been able to work out at all. I tried to do some lower body work, but any bouncing of my body is painful and any significant increase in my heart rate starts it throbbing.
I also just generally don’t feel particularly well with a feeling of general wooginess. When part of your body is dealing with trauma it is like the rest just functions at half mast.
I have been pretty good about sticking to the food plan though, with a few minor exceptions. I couldn’t fast entirely, but I did manage to keep it to three small bites of food corresponding with when I needed to take my medication.
I didn’t have a chance to plan as well as I would have liked and grocery shopping got pushed out a couple of days so I had to wing it a little. I found myself very hungry yesterday during moderate carb day. I assume that had something to do with not planning and therefore not eating enough of the right things at the right time. Hunger is not something that has been an issue with this program at all, except on fast days and that is to be expected and easily managed.
All of this makes me a little nervous for this cycles results. I am just hoping that I can really dig in next cycle.
Joel had a bodyweight workout made to accompany the program and I am really excited about that. I am a huge fan of bodyweight workouts and much prefer them to weight lifting. Included is a booklet explaining everything and with logging sheets. Also there are instructional videos for each exercise as well as follow along videos for each type of day. I am really excited to give these a try next go around.
My new cycle starts tomorrow and once again I have family coming into town. I have definitely had my challenges with the program and ultimately I am impressed that I am still motivated and dedicated to making it happen. Big step for me.
Unfortunately we have hit a little bit of a snag for this next cycle. Saturday night I slammed my right thumb in the car door and it is pretty bad. I can’t work out for a couple of days at least, heck I can hardly take care of myself. My mom stayed an extra day to help me out and take care of the kids.
Also, this is my fast day but I am having to take pain killers and therefore I have to keep a little food in my stomach. I am keeping it to the bare minimum, but total fast and the three workouts I had planned for today are out the window. So, I am definitely not expecting much from this next cycle.
This is a total bummer because I feel like I had really good results the first cycle and I learned so much about what I need to do. I am just going to have to be super strict on my food for the rest of the week. I guess we will see what happens.
My protein only day went pretty well with my protein grams ending up spot on and my carbs super low, but my fat was too high. Another thing to think about about this next cycle.
I lost 4 pounds in five days! Want to learn more yet?
Remember to plan ahead, log your food and exercise and keep your thumbs out of car doors. OUCH!!!!
I was worried as I was adding foods to my log that I was going to go over but at the end it worked out fine since I logged my entire breakfast and only ate about two thirds of it.
I tend to be over critical and think too much about things but getting all these ratios just right is not that easy. This probably means I should have bought the upgrade with the calculator and menu plans.
This all gives me more to think about when planning out these two days next week.
Maybe I just need to give myself a break as well. It is my first cycle and the truth will be told Sunday morning when I check my stats. Stay tuned for that.
I have been really good about my workouts all week, but didn’t get my workout in yesterday since my mom was coming last night and I had so much to do. Need to make sure I make working out a priority and to make time for it. Doesn’t take that long, really.
Have a great day and remember to do something nice for you mom tomorrow.