This post has been created as part of a #PowerInProtein campaign. I have been compensated by #Collective Bias Inc. and its advertiser. However, this is my own story with my own opinions and real results I achieved with hard work and dedication.
A runDisney Runner is Born
In October of 2010 I ran my very first 5K through the Magic Kingdom at the Walt Disney World Resort. Well…I use the word “ran” loosely. If I remember correctly I was one of the last handful of red-faced and overweight individuals to schlep across the finish line. Good lord was I out of shape…but oh how much fun we had!
Just three months later my daughter and I volunteered at the Walt Disney World Marathon where we ended up hanging finisher medals around the necks of the people who had just completed 26.2 miles running through all four of Walt Disney World theme parks. We did this for hours, upon hours, upon hours…and as each hour passed the pool of runners coming through the chutes transformed into characters who looked less and less like what you would assume a “full marathon finisher” would look like and more and more like…well…me.
January 2011 was also the month that I made a New Year’s Resolution to get down to a normal healthy weight and register for a runDisney Half Marathon. I had completed 3.1 miles during my Magic Kingdom 5K so logically 13.1 miles was the next step.
My weight that January waivered just over 220 pounds. To give you some perspective, in 1999 I weighed 200 pounds at my last prenatal checkup. I was eight and a half weeks pregnant! A normal, healthy weight for me is about 150 pounds and here I was 20 pounds heavier than what I weighed when I was a party of two in one body.
The Beginning of the Journey
I decided that if I wanted to jump start my journey back to “healthy” I was going to have to reduce my carbohydrate intake so my body would burn my own fat for energy instead of the carbs I was consuming.
I lost 20 pounds in 20 days by eliminating carbs.
Yes. I lost twenty pounds in twenty days by eating as few carbs as possible and upping my vegetables and protein. Since my body was getting so few carbohydrates, it had to burn its own fat to keep all of my vitals up and running. By October of 2011 I had gotten down to right around 187 pounds, completed two more 5K’s and crossed the finish line of my very first half marathon!
Tricks I’ve Picked Up Along the Way
So what exactly works for me?
When I am feeling the healthiest and looking the leanest is when I am eating high protein and low carb. Eating low carb is a heck of a challenge when you are a culinary travel writer. Generally, while I’m traveling, I am also indulging. To balance everything out, I like to eat sensibly (high protein, low carb) when I am back at home. This means grilling and slow cooking a lot of meat, making tuna and salmon salads, snacking on cheese and deviled eggs and yes even eating pork rinds (they have zero carbs).
I am also training for my third runDisney Dopey Challenge. If you’re not familiar with the Dopey Challenge it is 48.6 miles run consecutively over the course of four days (5K, 10K, Half Marathon & Full Marathon). This type of distance challenge requires a lot of training. When you are running three miles on Tuesday and Thursday and adding a long run in on the weekend you need some carbohydrates for your muscles to function properly. But instead of reaching for the bread and pasta I decided to give EAS AdvantEdge Carb Control products a whirl.
These ready-to-go chocolate fudge shakes are 100 calories and provide 17 grams of protein and 2.5 grams of carbs. I try and consume around 1,200 calories per day and try to keep my carb intake at 25 grams or less. And they taste very similar to a glass of chocolate milk!
Runners will often reach for chocolate milk as a post run recovery snack. The same size glass of chocolate milk would set you back around 285 calories and contain 35 grams of carbs with only 11 grams of protein.
For me, it just makes sense to recover from a training run with an EAS Shake instead of a glass of sugary chocolate milk. I can even use the shakes for a mid day snack. Because they are high in protein, they keep me satisfied longer. I’ve even added the Chocolate Fudge EAS AdvantEDGE Carb Control Shakes into my morning coffee to make a Cafe Mocha!
You can find the shakes at your local Walmart store in the Health and Nutrition Aisle.
Not available at your local Walmart? You can also order them online here. If Chocolate Fudge isn’t your thing there are other flavors to choose from like Dark Chocolate, French Vanilla and Strawberry.
So how about you? Are you training for any upcoming races? What are your methods for maintaining a healthy lifestyle? Sounds off in the comments below.