Who are you and what do you do?
My name is Brian. I have been doing the Wall Street / Junk Bond thing for about 20 years. I’m still trying to figure out what I want to do when I grow up. When not working, I drive my kids to ball games, follow the Red Sox, and try to make as many visits as I can to my gym [Dynamic Athletics] each week.
What’s your why?
I started in January 2017 when we were doing the “Resolution Challenge” at Dynamic Athletics. My why is some combination of vanity and mid-life crisis. I’m in my late 40’s (ok really late 40’s) and just decided that I don’t give a damn what the calendar says, I want to see how fit I can really be. In simple terms, could I put a bathing suit on this summer and feel good about it? I have been working out since playing sports in college, but never made a real commitment to being mindful about what I eat.
What is your personal definition of flexible eating or tracking macros?
For me, it’s just about being conscious of what I’m putting into my body each day. The MyFitnessPal app is awesome! I’ve lost over 20 lbs since I started and never go to bed feeling hungry or unsatisfied. I also eat things like pancakes, burgers, etc. that I never touched when I was on “diets”. Those diets never lasted, by the way.
What was your diet like before tracking macros?
It wasn’t bad, but it was not nearly good enough to get the results I’ve had over the last few months. It was low carb and most of my proteins were lean. I was so-so on vegetable consumption. I have never been a big sweets or soda guy, but definitely took in too many wasted calories in the form of beers on the train during the week.
What has been your biggest breakthrough since tracking macros?
As I mentioned, I initially did this out of vanity and I’m leaner and have more definition than I have had in many years. But I also feel a lot better and have more energy each week. I’ve also found that my time to recover from workouts have decreased dramatically. Three days in a row of CrossFit used to crush me, but now it’s no big deal. I have also gotten much better at pull-ups since I’m -20 lbs from start of the year.
What are your goals regarding flexible eating and beyond?
I’m almost at the target weight Georgette has set for me. Next is to focus on trimming body fat which can be tougher than just shedding pounds. After that, the key will be consistency. This was not a quick-fix type deal for me. It was a lifestyle change. I’m very happy with the results and plan to stick with it.
What are your three most important guidelines you give yourself?
- Input everything you eat and be honest with yourself on portion sizes when you can’t measure. If not you are just cheating/kidding yourself and won’t get the results you are looking for.
- A bad day where your macros are off is not the end of the world. It took me a while to figure this out due to my OCD tendencies. Vacations and weekend getaways can be tough to stay on track. The key is not to let a bad day or two become a trend. Get right back on track on Monday.
- Don’t listen to anybody who tells you that you can’t pull this off. Too old, too fat, whatever. There is no need to settle. I had plenty of friends my age who said “You’re in good enough shape, why bother with this stuff?” Do listen to your teammates from FYF who can show you what is possible. The peeps at my gym are also awesome, so much positive energy and reinforcement there.
What is the best piece of advice you wish you had when starting flexible eating that could help newbies?
- Tracking your food is not as hard as you think. At least commit yourself to sticking with the plan for a month. I thought it was a bit of a pain at first, but after a week it was not big deal.
- Don’t be intimidated by the concept of measuring either. When at work and traveling, I have to estimate a lot. It’s manageable as long as you are honest with yourself.
- Eating similar meals each day makes it a lot easier. My breakfast and lunches do not vary much day-to-day. I do get some variety at dinner thanks to an awesome wife who is great at finding new and interesting healthy meals for us to make.
Dreams + hard work + dedication = results. “Juice cleanses” and all that other quick fix junk, do not. Georgette, Billy [owner and head coach at Dynamic Athletics] and everybody at Dynamic Athletics, you guys are the best! Thanks for helping me turn back the calendar.