Last night I had my consult with Leigh, the metabolic repair/fat loss expert to whom I referred in this post. It was originally supposed to be a half-hour consult on Monday night, but due to technically difficulties she rescheduled to last night and gave me a bonus half hour for the inconvenience. Considering I was sitting there on Monday sweating bullets waiting for her call and actually felt a bit relieved when she rescheduled, I was happy to take the free time ;)
Fast forward to last night: there I was, sitting on my couch, sweating bullets again. I can’t really explain why I was so nervous to talk to her, but emotionally I had a lot riding on the call. I’d taken a questionnaire of hers indicating that I was experiencing a moderate level of metabolic adaptation. My initial reaction to this was excitement because finally I could “fix” my metabolism and be normal again; however, after reading the necessary steps for metabolic repair, I was dreading the process and hoping that she would tell me I was just eating too much.
First, Leigh was incredibly friendly. I’d heard that she was a “hard-ass,” so I was expecting to be yelled at, which was not the case. I had sent her a 20-something page document in December with terrible photos of me in minimal clothing both flexing and not flexing, as well as pictures of what my dream body looks like, a history of my struggle with my body, what I typically eat, etc. She took almost the full hour explaining to me what I had done to my metabolism, how it should be working, and how I can get it back to normal levels while gaining the least amount of fat and water as possible throughout the process. In a nutshell, I am exercising at the level of a trained athlete and not feeding my body as such. As a result, my body has lowered its efficiency so that it can keep up my regular functions (hair growth, nail growth, etc.) without using as many calories, which is why I can’t eat nearly as many calories as online calculators or the GoWearFit tells me that I can without gaining weight.
My repair plan kicks off with two weeks (gulp) of no formal exercise and eating at my current calorie level (1400-1600 calories a day). After two weeks, I can start to add some formal exercise back in, but nothing intense; I’m pretty much limited to playing around with weights. I’m also to start to increase my calories after two weeks, adding slowly until I reach the point that I “should” be at. At this point, I can expect to gain some water and maybe some fat, but once I’ve plateaud at a higher calorie level, I should be able to start cutting calories again and the wonderful mathematical equation for weight loss (cut 500 calories a day and lose 1lb a week) should start to apply again.
I’m excited and I’m also really scared, which she sensed and encouraged me to talk about.
Leigh also talked to me about how much water she thinks I’m currently holding (“girl, your calves are like 4 pounds of water right now), and predicted that over the course of my two week exercise hiatus, I will drop several pounds of water. Stay tuned…
Leigh has a real knack for looking at photos and being able to tell people their body fat percentage, water retention level, and how much excess skin they currently have or may have to deal with post weight-loss. At the end of the call I asked the question that I was dreading the answer to: how much excess skin do I have? I was shocked to find out that she sees absolutely no issue with excess skin, and that apparently my skin has exceptional elasticity for someone who has lost 100lbs. Also shocking was the fact that Leigh says my dream body is completely attainable for me, that it’s very well aligned with my general body type, and that I shouldn’t even have to suffer too much to get it. Rejoice!
I also ask Leigh to share her thoughts on my muscle balance (or lack thereof), and she confirmed what I suspected: My pelvis is anteriorly tilted and my biceps, chest and quads are disproportionately strong in comparison to my inner thighs and upper/lower back. She put some common exercises on the no-fly list, and gave me some ideas for other exercises I can do instead. Oh, and she really drove home the importance of mobility exercises (foam roller here I come!).
So, over the next few weeks I’m hoping to document my experiences with this recovery process. If there’s anything in particular that you’d like to know about my consult, please let me know! Like I said, she talked for an hour and spewed a LOT of information, but I recorded the call using GarageBand on my macbook so I can re-listen and share any information you’d care to know, if it was mentioned.