To be honest, I didn't really want to take any pictures this morning. I just wanted to drink water with lemon juice, clean my desk (to get ready for a thesis writing session) and then eat breakfast.
I remember once someone told me or I read somewhere that I should take progress pictures every 3 or 4 weeks, not weekly. So I decided that the next time I'll take pictures will be in about 2 weeks from today (at the end of week 6), then every 2 weeks after that.
I can't believe 4 weeks have already passed, October is almost over! I am so glad I started this, I am noticing results, my mind is clearer and I feel happier! So here's a recap of the last 4 weeks....Phew!
- I feel much stronger, fitter, firmer and toner, but not necessarily leaner.
- My jeans don't fit me anymore. They are all lose and my smallest size is a 0, but I am not happy my jeans fit me lose. That means I need to go out and buy more, ugh. My goal is to lose weight, but gain muscle and as a result I've lost more body fat.
- Since I haven't changed my diet much (in terms of cutting out certain foods), I am not as lean. I hold fat and water mostly in my belly and in my legs (especially my inner thighs).
- My upper body (chest, arms, shoulders and a little of my back) seems to respond faster and gets toned faster. My forearms and hands are getting really veiny because of the lower body fat and I should tell you I like to see my veins ;-)
- For the last 4 weeks I did not do cardio. (Hmmm, maybe this is why I am not as leaner?) As I had said before, the only low-intensity cardio I did was the 30 minutes total (walking to the gym and walking back home), but I don't think that counts.
- After the last 4 weeks, I feel I am more health conscious than I have been ever before before because I know now that eating properly gives you the energy your body not only needs to survive, but the nutrients it needs to grow.
- I am a plant-based eater; I devour many fruits, vegetables, greens, seeds, legumes and whole grains.
- Since this was the muscle gaining phase, I wasn't so concerned about eating a squeeky clean diet. I was still eating whatever I wanted (healthy, of course) and I ate out this month 6 times. I can even remember the dates, who I was with and what we ate, I enjoyed it!
- I have limited nuts in my diet (even though there were 2 consecutive weeks this month where I ate nuts), cooking with oil, but I have to be honest, I have baked Brussel Sprouts in vegan butter...
- For one week I gave up peanut butter, but then I replased. I ate one bite after a week and then I kept on eating it.
- I tried to give up soy milk for 1 week, by replacing it with almond dmilk, but then I drank the almond milk so fast that the next day I craved (plant) milk, so I ended up drinking soy milk.
- My next step is to make my own almond milk; I just have to buy almonds, but I'm ready to start now!
- This month I tried not to eat Ezekiel bread, but I didn't try. Still had it, there is nothing wrong with it.
- Over thelast 4 weeks I placed sleep top pf my priority list. Getting sufficient sleep is crucial for muscle repair, growth and the rejuvenation of the body.
- There are few factors that have helped me improve my sleeping:
- Because of the medication I am on, I tend to get tired earlier in the day. I either take naps during the day, go to bed earlier/or later, depending on how I'm feeling that evening.
- I am not working right now, so I do get to sleep in if I want to. I usually sleep between 8 to 9 hours a day.
- But as I said, my medication makes me sleepy and tired. I should remind you that I am doing my best not to let my medication affect me. I know lethargy, weakness and sleepiness are common side effects and so I try to do what I can during the day. I have been sleeping about 1 hour more hour a night on average, however.
- Bret has a good sleeping schedule; he is in bed by 9:45pm and starts snoring within 5 minutes (well, not really, he just breathes deeply and normally :)! I go to bed at this time also, and if I'm not sleepy, I'll read a book and in 5-10 minutes the lights are out and I start catching ZZZs.