I started this on the 10th May 2023, and this will end on the 18th August 2023.
Purpose To be healthy, happy, confident with my body.
The 90 day transformation is a systemic recalibration of my routines around my own health and well-being. It is a full plan with focus on a primary focus on diet and exercise. The following sections will outline this plan in greater detail.
Objectives and Measurements The primary objective of the transformation is to get to a state where I feel healthier and happier with my body. In the last year, I’ve gained about 7kg of weight from the stress and fairly sedentary life I’ve been living in university. The 90 day challenge is a call to correct that.
Primary objective: Lose 10kg of weight while retaining my muscle:
- Daily weight measurements (weight)
- Weekly Progress photos (muscle)
Tools I will be using:
- MyFitnessPal for calorie tracking + diet
- Garmin watch for step/cardio tracking
- Hevy for tracking gym workouts
- A simple weighing scale for daily weight measurements
Daily Measurement Habits
- Measure and enter weight for the day
- Record all of the calories consumed in the day
Diet and Nutrition
I will be following a standard low(er)-carb diet by eating a split of 40% - 30% - 30% , carb - protein - fat ratio. I’ll also be logging these into MyFitnessPal and using it to monitor my intake of food.
My current basal metabolic rate is approximately 1500 calories, which places my TDEE at approximately 1800 calories assuming a fairly sedentary day.
I’m going to start with a 300 calorie deficit, and aim to eat about 1500 calories a day for my desired weight loss. Going below 1500 calories seems unnecessarily risky and weight loss plateaus should be dealt through boosting metabolic rate instead.
Exercise can be split into three forms - activity, cardio and strength.
In the activity side, the goal will be for now to walk 10,000 steps a day. This establishes a baseline energy expenditure to keep my metabolic rate high.
If there is a situation of weight loss plateauing, then additional cardio should be introduced to boost the metabolic rate. This could be HIIT or other training methods but for now this is omitted.
On the strength training side, I need a schedule that is flexible but still offers good strength gain benefits.
In Gym: I will be following the Monday, Wednesday, Friday split of 3 full-body workouts to hit all major muscle groups.
Gym Workout Plan Without Gym Workout Plan
Weight Loss Plateaus
A weight loss plateau is defined when my weight goes up or stays around the same for three consecutive days.
No matter what, weight loss plateaus will happen! And when they do, it’s important to not get discouraged but just treat it as a sign that the body needs a little extra push. When weight loss starts to plateau the first couple of time, we respond by introducing more cardio and boosting our metabolic rate, such that the weight continues to peel off.
At about 4 weeks in, we can start to introduce a refeed day every 10 or so days, where we return to a normal calorie consumption of 2000 calories for a day. This can boost the metabolic rate and enable weight loss to continue on.
[29 May 2023 - 16:47] [Weight: 66.4]
I promised myself I would log more. I really did. But well, I guess today is a good day to start as ever. Tomorrow, will be my third week in, and I’m doing… not bad. Curiously, I had to break routine last week because of my trip to edinburgh-uk and so, my diet habits weren’t exactly in line with what I said above, but hey, we move.
I was expecting to take a hit and reverse some progress, but honestly, it’s not that bad at all. I didn’t make any progress, but I didn’t reverse it either, which is great. Before the trip, I weighed 66.4 kg, and now two days after, I weigh exactly the same. This is probably a sign that my caloric restriction is just right, and I should keep it at this pace.
Other than that, my performance in the gym is looking good, and I haven’t seen any plateaus with my weight loss yet. Which is great! So, it looks like things are more or less moving as per planned. I’ll do these logs every Tuesday, I promise this time.
[08 Jun 2023 - 21:35] [Weight: 65.8]
See, I promised I’d write these more regularly. Anyway, I think i hit my first plateau at the start of this week. Last Friday, I had gone down to a weight of 65.2, and I was expecting to breach into the 64 region this week. But rather unfortunately, it started going back up again over the weekend, peaking out at 66.2 on Monday this week.
Those were all the tell-tale signs that my metabolism was falling, because I was eating the same amount of calories, if not less. The only thing that had changed really, was that my average daily step count had decreased drastically, as my workload increased.
To walk 10,000 steps a day, I need to be walking for about an hour or so. That only happens if, 1) I’m having a fairly chill day when I can afford to take a walk, or 2) If it just so happens that a lot of my work in the day is walking about. Neither of those are necessarily consistently true. So I’ve decided to bite the bullet, and start incorporating some cardio into my workout routine.
So, the path I took to get my weight back on the downer was. 1) I deployed a refeed day on Monday, which should have boosted my metabolism. I went back to eating a nice three meals a day. 2) From Tuesday onwards, I went back to my planned diet and on Wednesday I did my workout routine. Instead of walking, I started incorporating run days into my rest days.
So on Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday and Sunday, I will do runs instead of weights as a form of active recovery. A run lasts about 20 minutes, and it’s a pretty efficient form of maintaining metabolism without spending an hour walking.
That’s it for this log. Tune back in next week.
[23 Jun 2023 - 21:35] [Weight: 64.75]
Progress has been stalling a little since I came to Singapore. Mostly because I keep getting asked out to eat, and eating outside makes it quite difficult to remain at my required calorie levels. I think a key factor here, is also that I’ve stopped weighing myself every day - you-get-what-you-measure.
Regardless, I’ve been maintaining the regularity of the workouts which is a good thing, and it is something I should continue to try to preserve. Tomorrow, I fly to India, and there will be a 1 week hiatus. When I get back, I will recalibrate my routine and diet, to get myself back on track.
During this 1 week, the plan is to just eat conservatively and maintain my intermittent fast. I don’t want to inadvertently reverse all my progress.