i love me some fat

… but not on me. I also love me some data {and so does Dave! #datacouple}; since January I’ve been keeping track of all my measurements in an excel spreadsheet in addition to front/side/back shots to evaluate my progress. Speaking of which, I 100% encourage anyone to do this if they are planning to undergo a transformation. We all know the scale doesn’t tell the entire story so I wanted to track my body fat as an additional point of reference. There are different ways to measure it but I will only speak to the ones I use. Another popular method that is worth mentioning is using calipers but I was told it is better when someone else is able help with the skin fold measurements – since it has a similar degree of accuracy (3-5%) as the Omron I went with that instead.

Omron
I bought the Omron HBF-306C from Amazon for about $30. This is a handheld body fat analyzer that uses a gentle, micro electrical current (you can’t feel it) to measure your body fat. Accuracy is within 3-4.5%. This is what I used to track my body fat on an ongoing basis. Despite its degree of inaccuracy, if it’s at least consistently inaccurate the delta of two measurements can still provide me with valuable data. The actual number isn’t as important as knowing whether there’s a positive or negative change; it’s about measuring progress.

71qnces9omL._SX425_

BodPod
Since I’m a huge data geek {I think we covered this already} the margin of error in using the handheld device wasn’t enough {I need accuracy!}. I learned that the BodPod is the next best thing and its suppose to be more accurate (within 1-2%). The BodPod uses air displacement technology to determine body composition (fat vs. lean mass). I got the testing done at the Weymouth Club for about $60. Yes, it is a little pricey {…but I fiend for data!}.

This is how it works. Prior to your appointment they instruct you to fast for 2-3 hours prior to the appointment, for the test, you have to wear tight fitting apparel (such as a bathing suit or compression shorts and a sports bra). Once there they give you a {very fashionable #sarcasm} swim cap for your hair and have you remove all jewelry. They calibrate the machine (using the cylinder shape device in the bottom left hand corner of the picture below), you then sit in the alien-looking egg-like dome for a few minutes and viola! they’ll spit out a nice little report with your calculated body fat.

bodpod

so what’s the verdict?
I did the test back in May and decided I wanted to do it one more time (for achieving my latest fitness goal – finishing this bikini competition prep). Here are the numbers {finally, some data!}:

5/25 10/31
body fat 22.5% 13.9%
fat 27.6 15.4
lean 95.1 95.7
weight 122.7 111.1

So what does this even mean? In general, understanding where you stand is always a good, first step in incorporating any fitness or dietary program that you can have a baseline to track progress. For me, although the pictures I’ve taken along the way has already told me that I’ve made huge improvements, as a data junky, I had to do it! I wanted metrics {omg I can create charts and graphs! – ok, I’ll refrain}. Looking at the results, I’ve lost about 12lbs of fat. If you notice my lean weight (~95lb) has stayed consistent from then until now – the girl who administered the test mentioned how impressed she was and whatever I did, it was done properly. So, I guess you can say I’m pretty happy with the results. Now I can use this to inform my next steps; ideally, I would like to keep my body fat as-is and increase my weight in the form of lean mass {muscles!}. Ok, it’s gym time.

BodPod_BeforeAFter

» I’m not exactly sure why I placed my right hand on my chest like that but since I did it back in May I tried to do a similar pose this time around to keep it consistent lol.

the beginning of the end

well well well… look at what we have here, my very first post! this is kinda fun, I get to share my life with you {and you shall listen!…err read? ok, just kidding} so yeah let’s get started!

It’s only fitting that the beginning of this blog overlaps with the final stages of my bikini comp prep, one more week to be exact! {but who’s counting?} I’m working on getting all the things I need organized including a photo shoot, bod pod testing, and of course the actual competition day (all things I intend to write about – don’t you worry). I just got some instructions to increase my cardio and begin a water depletion plan. I won’t get into specifics but I’ll just note that there’s nothing “healthy” (or better yet sustainable) about the final weeks of a prep but since it’s for a limited time frame it’s doable with no harm done. Dave (the bf) asked me if I’m excited and at the moment, I don’t really have any emotions in regards to it; I have a set of things I have to get done and I’m just kinda doing it. Ironically enough I’ve been more excited about setting up this blog.

chicken and greens
Doesn’t sound so good, does it? My food options these past couple of weeks have been extra restrictive so needless to say I’m not a very happy girl. Oh and this came just as I got a stomach ulcer {greaaat}. I think I’m all better now though, symptoms have subsided {yaaaaay}. It’s actually not so bad, for protein I get to eat chicken or tilapia and two of my meals include carbs which can be either oatmeal, brown rice, or quinoa. hmmm… now that I think about it maybe it is that bad. eh, just one more week, then I can start implementing a more balanced diet {I can’t wait!}. Oh, and I’ve also unofficially named November my restaurant month where I’ll will plan to go to different restaurants for my Saturday dinners {aka date nights with Dave – he’s a big fan of the idea}.

chicken and greens

water buffalo
Prior to starting the water depletion plan I had to water load; I need to make sure I’m consuming at least a gallon of water a day. This is a lot harder than you think, it’s almost a little painful. Having to drink water when you are not thirsty is depressing and going to the bathroom every 30 minutes is annoying. I have a gallon I keep with me that I use to refill my water bottle, this is my gallon next to a small {and cute} bottle I bought months ago [#howcute #whydidievenbuythat #atleastitsrecyclable]. Right now I’m on-point – I have finished the gallon every day for the last several days.

gallon

cravings
I’ve seriously had the worst cravings lately. I decided to make a peanut butter chocolate brownie trifle (in addition to another baked good which will remain a secret!) for my post-comp treat. The only problem is that, that has turned into hours looking up recipes and guess what? the recipes are all the same but for some reason I keep doing it {and torturing myself!}. The other day I went to Target to literally *look* at the different ingredients I would need. I went to the baking aisle and omg they have so many options for the brownie mix, like seriously why so many options!? {you’re killing me here!}

brownie mix

It was torturous and completely self-inflicted… ugh {pull yourself together Bermary!}, soon enough.