Change of Focus

After a lot of thought (possibly brought on by last week’s PMS munchies), I’ve decided to postpone the second half of the Cheapass Challenge for a while and focus on maintenance and maybe a bit of muscle gain through the holidays. Part of making healthy eating and regular exercise a lifestyle is knowing when to pull back from doomed self-defeating behaviors like, for example, trying to do a hardcore cut during Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year.

I have very modest fitness guidelines for the next 4 months:

1. Maintain my scale weight between 130-138 lbs and my body fat below 19% (preferably between 16-18%).
2. Lift weights a minimum of three times a week.
3. Perform cardio for 25 (HIIT) or 30-45 (lower intensity) minutes a minimum of three times a week.
4. Keep my intake at an average of 1800-2200 calories/day.
5. Stay within 40-50% carb / 30-40% protein / 20-30% fat macronutrient ratios.
6. Experiment with at least one new healthy recipe a week.

The challenge for me when it comes to the holidays has never really been the food. I don’t go overboard very often because I’m too cheap to go out to eat all the time or spend money on overpriced junk food at the grocery store. I just get lazy about hitting all of my workouts consistently, and if there’s one thing I’ve learned about my body over the years, it is that regular exercise will always have to be a necessary part of my daily life if I want to keep myself out of size 11/12 pants. I never lose muscle when I stop lifting or doing cardio, but my subcutaneous fat cells are quite good at filling back up in case of future famine. It’s as if my butt has a permanent morphic field stamped with a size 12, and constant vigilance and daily exercise are required to keep said rear end from expanding to fill that imaginary space. 🙄

I’m going to see what it’s like to actually go through the holidays eating at maintenance while hitting 5-6 workouts a week, even if they are only 30 minute ones.

Call it a test drive of the rest of my life.



1. 1 scoop dextrose, 1 scoop whey protein, 1 tsp. GNC Creastack
2. 1/3 c. oatmeal, 3 T. raisins, 1 whole egg, 3 egg whites
3: 4 oz. chicken breast, 1 medium pear, 1 c. vegetable mix
4. 1 rice cake, 1/2 T. all natural peanut butter, 1/2 scoop whey protein, 1/2 c. light soy milk
5. 1 rice cake, 1/2 T. all natural peanut butter, 1/2 scoop whey protein, 1/2 c. light soy milk
6. 2 whole eggs + 4 egg whites omelette with 1 c. red peppers, eggplant, and scallions from the garden
7. 1/2 bag light popcorn

Water: 16 cups

Supplements: multivitamin, calcium 600+D, EAS l-glutamine

Calories: 1889 calories (46.3% carb/32.5% pro/24.8% fat)


* Chest/Biceps/Triceps (60 min)
* Walk (3.6 mph / 23 min)
* Run (6.5 mph / 10 min)
* Bike HIIT (Lvl 8 – 12 / 17 min)

Calories burned: 826 calories

DEFICIT: -625 cal

2 thoughts on “Change of Focus

  1. It’s cool to see that someone as hardcore as you pulls back and does maintainence once in awhile. You my friend are a rockstar and I love reading your blog (and trying all your yummy recipes!). I know precisely what you mean about your ass being stamped a size 12 and those lovely fat cells just itching to fill up again – mine’s exactly the same!!!

  2. Good for you Maggie! Balance and moderation are my two keys for not just “getting through” the holidays, but enjoying them as well.

    Interestingly, I find that I have to workout consistently to even have a hope of fitting into those size 11/12 jeans that you dread. 🙂

    Although considering the smallest woman’s size I have ever fit into was a 10 in eighth grade (when I was superfit for soccer), that’s probably not such a bad thing.

    Good luck with maintenance!


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