I want to start this one out with a question. When it comes to fitness, are you Baby 1 or Baby 2?
I mean, let’s be real, we’re all Baby 2. Haha. I always want carbs, whether or not I give in to them is something else. That picture made me want Nutella really bad right now, haha.
Fitness has been an up and down journey for me, as I’m sure it has been for a lot of people. I grew up playing tennis competitively, so I was training my body since I was about 7 or 8. I remember playing tennis, doing drills and training my body for hours every day all the way until I was 17 when I told my parents I wanted to quit tennis to play music. You can imagine how surprised they were since I had just given my entire growing years to the sport.
Once I stopped playing tennis though, I realized I was still eating the same and started to gain weight. That was the first time in my life when I actually had to think about fitness. Before, getting fit was for tennis, but now without tennis, I needed to find other ways and the motivation to stay healthy. Since then, I struggled with my weight. I was never happy with how I looked and I knew diets weren’t working, but that’s all I knew how to do. Those would last for a couple weeks or months, but it was never a lasting thing because tacos and pizza and ice cream! Duh.
It wasn’t until last year when Aaron and I wanted to lose some lbs for our wedding that we found something that helped us shed some fat and is a lifestyle that, so far, has worked for us. I say so far because, you never know, it may not work for us later on in life.
We discovered that counting macros (short for macronutrients: fats, carbs and proteins) has enabled us to lead a balanced life and stay on track all while not having to cut out any foods that we love. Some of our friends first told us about this because they had seen awesome results and I have to be honest, when Aaron first told me we should try it, I told him it sounded too complicated for me. I didn’t want to do that much thinking about every single thing I put in my mouth! But once we linked it up with the MyFitnessPal app, it was a piece of cake!
This is how it works. We’re all allotted a certain amount of fats, carbs and proteins in our daily food intake according to our age, height, current weight and our goals. Once we figured out what those numbers were in each of those categories, we entered it in our MyFitnessPal app so it can keep track of them and add them up for us on the daily. From there, we just log in our food as we eat and try to stay in line with our macros for the day.
MyFitnessPal has a huge database of food, so we’ve always been able to find what we ate or something very close to it. You can even scan the barcode on a food to get the nutrition facts or create your own food from a recipe you made. Aaron and I build our own smoothies and I’ve even put in our Hojarascas recipe’s nutrition facts so we can log when we eat some.
As you log your food, the app will count your macros so you can stay on track. This is a screenshot of my best day last week. You can see that it tells me that my daily food intake goal is to have 40% protein, 35% carbs and 25% fats. That day, I ended with 40%, 34% and 26%. Win!
What I love most about keeping track of our eating like this is that NO FOOD GROUP IS OFF-LIMITS! If we know we’re going out to dinner at a Mexican restaurant later in the evening, we can just plan on making room for it during the rest of the day. I would just eat mostly protein during the day and say no to the carbs at breakfast, lunch, and snacks so that I can say yes to the chips, salsa, and tacos later. I can eat anything I want, just as long as it fits in my macros! It’s so beautiful!!
If you would like to know what your macros should be for your body and goals, check out this Macro Calculator and learn more about the benefits of counting macros!
We saw amazing results! We both got to our fittest we’ve ever been for our wedding. My dress was even looser on me than I would have liked for our wedding day. When I bought the dress, we had just started getting serious about counting macros, so I ordered a size down from what I was measured (risky, I know). When it came time for the fitting, the lady had to take it in two more dress sizes and then it still was loose on me on our wedding day. I was concerned that the back little tiny button that was holding it together would snap when I was dancing, haha, but it ended up being looser, so I didn’t have to worry about that.
When we coupled high-intensity interval training (HIIT) workouts with counting our macros, it was like we hit the sweet spot! We decided to do Insanity with Shaun T and it is bananas! Before our wedding, we committed ourselves to doing it every morning. It was awesome.
Right now, we decided to take a break from the videos and do some HIIT workouts on our own combined with 2-mile runs. We run a mile to warm up then we incorporate exercises we learned from Insanity. Usually, we’ll do 3 minutes of exercises, take a 30-second break, run to the next stop and do 3 more minutes of other combined exercises, then repeat. After, we run another mile.
The exercises are all pretty simple: jump squats, push-ups, jumping jacks, high knees, burpees, power jumps, mountain climbers and any that use our body weight to shape our body.
Ultimately, we just want to keep bettering ourselves and improving our health and fitness. We’re still learning and growing as we go. I want to encourage you guys that your body is a gift – treat it with love and care, for yourself and for the people who love you. Also, it’s not always about the number on the scale. I realized that my body could be leaning up and I could be losing fat but also gaining muscle, so the number on the scale stays the same. You can gauge your progress in more ways than just the scale.
Regardless of weight or body fat, the process is the best part of the journey. Don’t rush past the process, don’t ignore the lessons, pay close attention and breathe it in. The beauty of life is in the moments where we breathe it in. You are beautiful!