Confession, Carbs and New Nutritional Goals

Shhhh, confession time: I am TIRED. Actually I’ve been exhausted for a couple of weeks now. As I’m sure you can already guess, tiredness does NOT mix well when you have goals!!!

It may sound silly/ridiculous/nonsensical, but fatigue is one of a few select things about myself that I equivalate to defeat or weakness. I am proud that I finally reached a point where I can accept taking time off to injuries, although I am quick to learn from it and create a prevention plan. I can also say that I really enjoy my two complete rest days of the week; it’s a lot to me, but I love it and so does my body! My latest achievement is being able to cancel certain workouts here and there when I am fatigued, but canceling a string of workouts on my heavy load day because I’m TIRED?! This is a first, and it hurts!

I knew there was something wrong that had to be addressed while driving to the gym for my afternoon workout. There was a general, overwhelming feeling of tiredness, even though I already had an hour nap under my belt. Something felt … off… but I needed to verify it with someone who was more clearheaded than I was. Quickly, I dialed HB (I used the phone while driving-horrible, I know!), described to him what I was feeling and asked him if I really was tired or sounded like I wanted to get out of my workout. I was a bit surprised when he agreed that something was off and suggested that I go home, and so (siiiigh) here I am.

Possibilities for the fatigue:

  1. Overtraining? This was my first thought. The symptoms – fatigue, crankiness, impatience – seem to point towards overtraining, except for that these days I’m working out less and voluntarily resting a lot more than I ever have.
  2. Baby? Omigosh PLEASE no! I am not ready!
  3. Water? Good guess, but I drink a ton and do not drink any caffeinated drinks (except for green tea). If it were only this easy.
  4. Nutrition? A possible bingo!

According to the book “Vegetarian Sports Nutrition” by D. Enette Larson-Meyer, low carbohydrate intake on a particular day can result in “feeling tired, fatigued, or dead-legged… poor running, lightheadedness, or excessive moodiness during a training session.” ALL ME!

Accounting for my lean body mass and level of activity, the book recommends that my carb intake be in the ranges of 302g-358; however, silly me was still eating according to SP’s recommendation that was much, MUCH lower… Furthermore, I never adjusted my fitness goals in SP to reflect my current activity level! (oops)

In addition, I can now recall that I started feeling tired when I started tracking my food. During my SP break, I was eating whatever I wanted, including dessert almost every night. (Actually it was dessert EVERY night… But who’s counting?) Back then, I was working out even more than I do right now, yet I felt completely energized; every workout was met with renewed vigor. Unfortunately, even working out at that level couldn’t burn all that bread pudding I ate, so when I grew out of my “skinny” jeans, I came back to SP and started tracking my food. I lost weight immediately, but in the process I also cut out vital calories and carbs that I needed to get me to the gym. Doh!

SIDENOTE: I am a self-professed carboholic, so this is a mixed blessing. It’s like telling an alcoholic that he/she needs two glasses of wine a day to be healthy!

So starting tomorrow, these will be my new nutritional goals that I will work towards. Hopefully the results will be immediate! crossing fingers

  1. I am very petite, but I know I can’t live on 1200 calories a day. Maybe more like 1500 should be the bare minimum, or even 1800? I might try to increase it 100 calories at a time and see how I feel. I’m sad that it will take longer to reach my weight goal, but slow and steady wins the race, right? (Fake it til you make it, ha!)
  2. UP THE CARBS! This is a tricky process. Too much = weight gain, not enough = misery. With my current fitness load, SP recommends carb levels 197g-284g, which is lower than the book. I’ll start by including 2-3 fruits a day to boost my current levels up and go from there.
  3. EAT WHEN I’M HUNGRY! Or rather, eat snacks so that I won’t get hungry. So elementary, but I still don’t get it. Grrr.

Okay, that’s it for now on the home front. Will update on this!


2 thoughts on “Confession, Carbs and New Nutritional Goals

  1. I am so glad you have this blog! I “met” you on Spark but I left to keep because I was using “my food diary” and my major skills do not allow me keep track of everything. I credit you and your posts with being one of the reasons I lost that first five pounds so I would love to see your updates here:)
    (Angelica-amie on Spark:)

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