Day 1 of 8: Zero Carb LCHF Mini-Challenge – And My Low Carb Coffee Dilemma…


Yesterday I started the second half of my 16-day mini challenge. I originally called it a 17-day Challenge, but that’s because I obviously can’t count. πŸ˜› I can’t believe nobody else caught that either! LOL

So this post is my meals & macros for Day 9 of the challenge, and Day 1 of the Zero Carb Week. – See All Posts

Unfortunately the last two days haven’t been so great. On Day 8, I didn’t feel like eating at all. And I didn’t.

Then yesterday (Sunday, Day 9) I felt sick all day. I have no idea what caused all that. Stress? A stomach bug? Who knows. At one point I wondered if I had eaten dynamite in my sleep or something. LOL. My stomach was NOT happy…

The Challenge Of Going Zero Carb

For me, the biggest challenge is my coffee. For months now I’ve been enjoying Coffee-Mate Sugar Free Hazelnut Powdered Creamer. It’s 1 carb per TBSP, absolutely delicious – and while it’s low carb and sugar free… I drink entirely too much coffee, which means I end up consuming at least 1/2 cup of this creamer a day (if not more).

I lovingly refer to it as “My Chemical Coffee” given it’s one of the few things I enjoy that is not “real food”. Since I often have 7-10 coffees throughout the day (yes, all the way to my “bedtime coffee”) this adds up at 1 carb per cup to almost HALF my daily carbs! That takes up a lot of carbs I’d rather use on healthy green veggies.

I started by cutting it way down, with the goal of eliminating it from my diet altogether in favor of a “real food” alternative. That proved to be challenging…

If you’re a “light coffee drinker”, I highly recommend the Sugar Free Coffee-Mate flavored creamers (powdered). They are very low carb and amazingly delicious!

For me though, this is a problem area. As we strive to become our healthiest, leanest, happiest selves… we have to identify our own “problem foods” along the way, and deal with those, as part of that process. For me it’s the “overdose of coffee creamer”. For you, it may be something totally different.

This Coffee-Mate creamer replaced Splenda (which I referred to as “My Rat Poison”) when I decided to quit THAT. *sigh* Yes, it’s been an ongoing challenge, lol…

My Low Carb Coffee Trials:

With it being Day 1 of my Zero Carb challenge, I had to deal with the 7-10 carbs a day of coffee creamer. I woke up and brewed my first pot of coffee, and I brewed 1/2 TSP of cinnamon in with the half pot (6 cups).

  • Coffee One: 1 TBSP HWC & 1 TSP Torani SF Vanilla
  • Coffee Two: 1 TBSP HWC
  • 1 cup of chicken broth
  • Coffee Three: black

HWC = Heavy Whipping Cream, which is .4 carbs per TBSP, or 1 carb for 2 TBSP

I also had 16 ounces of water in there somewhere. The cup (8 ounces, not a “mug”) of chicken broth (1 carb) between my 2nd and 3rd coffee was because I wanted something to sip on that actually TASTED GOOD. πŸ˜›

At this point it was 11:15am, and I STILL didn’t feel like eating. That’s after NOT eating the entire day before. 😐 But at least I was making progress with my coffee, and thought I had it licked…

Zero Carb Lunch

Ricky came over and made sausage and fried eggs, and I had another 16 ounces of water with lunch. I had no appetite, but I didn’t have any problem eating it all – which seemed like a good thing.

Zero Carb Breakfast

After lunch, for my 4th coffee, I decided to make a large glass of BPC (Bullet Proof Coffee). I don’t really see any “amazing benefits” with BPC, but it was a zero carb coffee option to try at least. And I liked it okay when I tried it before. Except last time I think I added HWC to it (Heavy Whipping Cream).

* If any of these acronyms confuse you, see Common Low Carb Terms & Acronyms.

So for that 4th coffee, which was actually two coffees in a large glass, I added: 2 TBSP salted butter, 1 TBSP coconut oil.

*Note: It’s important to use organic extra virgin unrefined coconut oil.

I felt sick (again) about halfway through that BIG coffee, and after eating “real food” – so I didn’t finish it. I drank about half of it. I don’t know what was wrong with me. My stomach just did not feel right at all. πŸ˜›

I laid down for a nap around 2:00, and slept maybe 90 minutes. I got up and had dinner and two more coffees, but ended up going to bed early (like 8pm early, lol).

Zero Carb Dinner

I had my 5th coffee before dinner with 1 TBSP HWC (Heavy Whipping Cream) + 1 TSP Torani Sugar Free Vanilla Syrup. I boiled eight eggs when I first got up in the morning, so I creamed up one of those with salt & Duke’s mayo. Then I heated up two leftover baked chicken thighs to go with it.

Zero Carb Dinner

The chicken thighs are baked with skin on & crisped: add a pat of butter to the top of each, cover pan with foil, bake at 350Β° about 40 minutes, uncover for 15-20 minutes until brown & crisp. You can see the original recipe here. Thighs are better than breasts because they have more fat, and because they taste better. But even better: They don’t dry out when reheated, so you can easily cook up a huge pan of thighs and have chicken to eat on for days. They make great chicken salad too. πŸ™‚

My 6th coffee: 1/2 TBSP HWC & 1/2 TBSP of the sugar free coffee-mate. This stuff is like crack πŸ™ Fortunately since I went to bed early, that was my last coffee of the day.

Here’s how my macro ratios worked out for my first Zero Carb day – including all the crazy coffee concoctions:

Zero Carb Food Diary

1332 calories
4 net carbs, 5 total
80% fat / 19% protein
Water: 48 ounces

One carb for the eggs, the other three carbs were all coffee stuff.

I went to bed super early.

After a roller coaster schedule and an unhappy tummy for two days in a row, I was just wiped out.

I woke up refreshed this morning after a solid sleep of more than 8 full hours… and expected the scales to finally move.

And they did. In the WRONG direction.

I went from 153 pounds to 154.6 over the last two days. πŸ˜› lol – Rah!

That can be disheartening, especially when you didn’t eat for a whole day (which some people do on purpose – fasting) and when you try SO hard to fix your “chemical coffee” addiction. You know how these things go though… it can take your body a few days to figure out what the heck is going on and do some adjusting.

I stood there on the scale (half asleep still, lol) just staring at that number for a loooong minute. Then I stepped off and back on again. Hmm. Totally puzzled, slightly annoyed, and still fuzzy from a long sleep… I promptly went in the kitchen and fixed a coffee with a full TBSP of my “coffee crack” (Sugar Free Hazelnut Creamer).

It’s not called a CHALLENGE just for the fun of it. πŸ˜›

I just fixed my second cup of coffee, with nothing but HWC. I know better than to let the scales get the best of me. I will NOT let this defeat me. I will NOT let this give me an excuse to continue to my addiction.

In fact, I’m going to show those scales that mock me who’s BOSS.

Damn straight.

I’m glad I managed to get two full meals in yesterday. I have plenty of extra food on hand today, so hopefully I’ll get even more in today. I had Ricky go ahead and cook up the whole package of sausage, so I have the rest of that. And I still have two chicken thighs leftover too, along with 6 more boiled eggs ready to eat.

It’s going to be a good day. Me and my crappy coffee are armed & ready! πŸ™‚

How do you take YOUR coffee?

Lynn Terry,
aka @LowCarbTraveler

p.s. I didn’t get my workout in yesterday, because my stomach was “explosive”. I was slightly sore (not bad) from the T25 and my Ab Carver Pro the day before, so decided to let my body rest & recover. Today I’m going to do that same combo though. πŸ™‚

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About Lynn Terry

I love making the low carb diet EASY for people with a busy lifestyle (like me!) with my KISS / Keep It Simple method. :) About Lynn Terry: Host of the Low Carb Challenge
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38 Responses to Day 1 of 8: Zero Carb LCHF Mini-Challenge – And My Low Carb Coffee Dilemma…

  1. Traci Knoppe says:

    How do I take my coffee? Very seriously! πŸ˜› Only with HWC.

    • Lynn Terry says:

      LOL Traci! Me too… obviously. πŸ™‚

      I am on my 2nd cup now with HWC only. Blah. I’ll get used to it, just like all the other changes I’ve made… *sigh*

      • Traci Knoppe says:

        Years ago (literally 14-15 years ago), I used to drink my coffee with sugar and lots of powdered creamer. I gradually cut out the sugar, and just used the powdered creamer. Then about 7 years ago, I switched to heavy whipping cream. At first, what i didn’t like about using HWC, was it cooled down my coffee; but my Keurig is set to make the coffee really hot, so when I add HWC,, the coffee is still hot. You do get used to it – eventually. πŸ˜‰

      • Lynn Terry says:

        Ditto – I went from LOTS of “milk & sugar” to heavy cream & splenda. Then cut out the splenda, and went with the lower carb sugar free powdered creamer that’s already flavored. And now to just HWC. It’s been a process. A painful process. lol. But each time, I adjusted… so I’m forcing this change! Dangit! πŸ˜›

  2. Robin says:

    I’ve been doing an Egg Fast and managed to cut the SF creamers by making the BPC with just butter/mct oil…it was ok but still not the same delicious SF creamer coffee that I love. Today starts day 1 of Zero Carb for me. Meat/Water. That’s it. I did use some butter on my meat this morning which I will be stopping after that meal – the rest of today is meat and water. I felt pretty grumpy yesterday and so tired I slept 730-530a which is WAY more than I usually sleep. I was up 2 lbs this morning but trying HARD not to let the scale set my mood or make me stop. I’m committing to 30 days of meat/water. I’m hoping to see below 200 lbs one of these years…Hope you have a GREAT day!

    • Lynn Terry says:

      Hi Robin,

      This is day 3 for me of being “moody”. I wonder if our irritability and moodiness is related to withdrawals or just major changes. This is definitely an interesting experiment so far…

      So are you quitting coffee altogether?

      • Robin says:

        Yeah – that’s my goal – or black coffee…I figure if I need something other than water with my meat I will have it black…hoping that detoxing all the art swtnr I will eventually not crave it any longer…I think Dairy is slowing me down – including HWC so I’m hoping 30 days of meat only with water only will help me get very on track and less dependent on the stuff I crave…I am a binge eater and when I use HWC it’s like half the jug LOL so I just need to stop and having a clear focus point of meat/water only is hopefully going to make things easier for me. I’ve done 5 weeks of hard core vegan – years ago – so I’m like ok – if I can do that, I can do anything, right!? LoL…it was a long 5 weeks! This 30 days won’t be so bad eating bacon burgers and steaks lol.

      • Lynn Terry says:

        I agree – much easier. πŸ™‚ And yes, one of the major benefits of going “zero carb” is that it breaks some of those nagging habits AND totally cures cravings. That’s the goal! πŸ™‚ *cheers*

    • Mindy says:

      Please please post your progress!! I am stalled, & eventhough bodies are different want to know how u do.

      • Lynn Terry says:

        Hi Mindy! I have more updates coming this week, so stay tuned. πŸ™‚ I’m waiting for my (stubborn) scales to move at the moment… but I FEEL it coming!

        How long have you been stalled??

  3. Shirley Terwilliger says:

    I also am a coffee drinker, and would drink a 12 cup or two of them. I use Jordan’s Skinny Syrups and really like them, no carbs. I am really trying no carbs and see how it works, need a back to the core and try and see how I feel during that time. I am a nervous or unhappy eater, and that is not good. I use to exercise and lift weights, but tore up my neck,shoulder, and arm (left one), so not good, and will never get much better, but they prefer not to do surgery,because I am a risk. I hope this works, because I would love to order some more of the bagels and bread. I truly love this eating style and don’t mind it at all.

    • Lynn Terry says:

      Hi Shirley,

      I’m so sorry to hear about your upper body injury. πŸ™ Pain is no joke to deal with. I’ve had my share of back pain, mostly from inflammatory arthritis / sciatica – ugh. Fortunately eating a ketogenic low carb diet helps A LOT with the inflammation associated with so many of these injuries.

      I have the Torani sugar free syrups on hand (3 flavors) but they are made with Splenda. I like them. I have nothing against them. But my goal right now is to eliminate artificial sweeteners. At least “on a daily basis”.

  4. Chris says:

    I went black. This is my 3rd day. Big change from using HWC and real sugar. I never measured, just guessed till I got about the right size pile of white granules in the bottom of my big mug, then poured in the hot coffee, then poured the HWC till the color looked right. (Hey, I just woke up, so who can measure and honestly, who cares? I just want my coffee NOW… lol.)

    So anyway, I’m surviving with what I’m calling “the black out”. Not crazy about it, but I’m going to stick to it, at least for a few weeks to see if it makes a difference. Or maybe, if it gets really tough, I’ll just allow myself one day a week to have my “real coffee” (with sugar and HWC. Sorry, but I’m not going near those artificial sweeteners. I tried. Can’t do it.) What’s really painful is opening the ref door and seeing the 3 quarts of HWC sitting there taunting me. I always kept a good supply cuz the grocery store was notorious for being out of it at any given time. I don’t play that game – I stock up!

    • Lynn Terry says:

      LOL Chris – that’s me with my Coffee-Mate. I have something like EIGHT full containers of it in the cabinet staring me in the face every time I open that door. πŸ˜› And it’s something close to $5 each. *sigh*

      I like your idea. Maybe after my Zero Carb week I’ll enjoy it only on Saturday mornings or something. IF I can kick the habit and enjoy it in moderation like that, that would be fine.

  5. Chris Pyle says:

    I have issues with the Torino SF any flavors. You might need some supplemented potassium to feel better. I am also a serious coffee drinker and use HWC. As gross as this sounds some times I just eat a pat of cold butter instead of a meal. Gives me energy. 0 carb.

    I have been staying under 5 carbs/day since April. Even eating out.

    One other thing. Your foods posting looks like MFP. I have found the nutritional values to be slightly off many times. I quit logging at MFP and went to another site and my weight started dropping because the nutritional values were closer to the USDS. MFP has a great support forum but the rest is not for me.

  6. Angie says:

    My Coffee, I went from having those expensive lattes to making my own instant coffee at home with 1 splenda, half & half, and coconut oil.

  7. Chris Pyle says:

    It gives me a tummy ache. IT seems odd when I do use it it puts me into a stall on weight loss. even though it is zero carb. Sweetened by sucrolose. On the other hand the skinny girl SF for my coffee does not and it is Sweetened by Etherol. For most I have heard the Etherol is the one that causes issues. I am fine with it. I LOVE the Torino SF too. It was very hard to stop it. Cry cry cry. but I need to drop the pounds so anything I have to do makes me happier then missing a few of the things I love.

    It is good you are checking the USDA for nutritional value.

    • Lynn Terry says:

      Yes, always double check. πŸ™‚

      I hear you on that. I prefer Quest Bars both for flavor and quality of ingredients, but they stall my weight loss. Atkins Bars do not. So odd! You just have to find out what works for you…

  8. Roye says:

    I love my morning coffee but as I’ve mentioned before I switched (cold turkey) πŸ™‚ from lots of milk and real sugar to black years ago. I only drink it black now and love it that way so thankfully this is not an issue with me now for this challenge. My challenge is chocolate, dark chocolate is my weakness.

    I stopped using Splenda quite awhile ago and went to Truvia (Erythritol) now to cook with. Haven’t heard any mention of that here. I even do a homemade Truvia with Erythritol and Stevia because the Truvia is expensive.

    Hope your tummy troubles go away.

    • Lynn Terry says:

      Thank you Roye! I’m feeling slightly better today, which is a huge relief. Still not 100% but definitely better. I don’t know if it was the day of not eating, or if that was part of the overall problem. We’ll see if it works itself out…

      I’ve heard Truvia and Stevia are both good options. I don’t eat enough sweets (make low carb desserts, etc) to invest in either. The one thing I did eat with Stevia in it… had a harsh aftertaste. But most places use way too much for my taste anyway. πŸ˜›

  9. Baysette says:

    I would give up all food before my coffee! I drink 3 cups of NescafΓ© Instant Rich Hazelnut coffee, which has 2 g carb and 1 g fibre, plus 15 ml 35% creamβ€”yum! Since I found it in our local grocery stores, it soon replaced anything else I drank. It’s difficult to make a decent cup of coffee in a classroom because you can’t leave hot liquid hanging aboutβ€”so instant made its dΓ©but. I never thought that would happen. I knew I was hooked when I went to Myrtle Beach for March break and could not find it anywhere. Yikes! Since then I bring it with me from Canada everywhere I go. Not taking any more chances! For everyday travel, shopping etc. I went to the Dollar Store to purchase a small insulated lunch bag, then I took it apart and reconstructed a small container to bring my cream with me, as that is also difficult to find unless you go to Starbucks. Love my coffee!

    • Lynn Terry says:

      I hear you, Baysette! This is one of the reasons I switched to the powdered Sugar Free Hazelnut creamer – because it’s so portable! I stick a TBSP measuring spoon down in it, and it goes with me everywhere I travel. I miss it sorely already. But I was consuming more than HALF CUP a day of it – and it is FULL of ingredients / chemicals. πŸ™

      If I enjoyed it in moderation, that would be fine. But it became one of my “problem foods”. And I am pouting and kicking and screaming and whining all the way without it, lol.

  10. Diana says:

    Glad your feeling better and have an appetite again πŸ™‚ saying a prayer for you!! I LOVE my coffee!!! I have mine with HWC. But in the afternoons, I’ll have a cup of BPC. I make mine with 1 T. Coconut oil and 1 T unsalted butter and I use Kerrygold butter only. I tried other butters and they didnt taste as good. Around 4p, I grab me a cup of BPC, go sit outside and just relax and enjoy :))

  11. Linda says:

    Wow…I feel very grateful that I drink my coffee black. No cream, no sugar. Getting a mocha once in a while was a treat. I also drink unsweetened ice tea. I have 2 cups of coffee in the morning. Iced tea with my lunch and 2 cups of decaf coffee after dinner. I usually have my Russell Stover sugar free Pecan chocolate candy with my last cup of coffee. I eat 1 and only 1!! I love the taste of coffee and never wanted anything to interfere in that taste. Now, if I could only get used to BP coffee I could up my fat intake. Good luck with zero carbs…I have a hard enough time sticking to under 20.

    • Lynn Terry says:

      Thank you, Linda! I aim to work my way down to black coffee. What kind do you drink? I’m thinking I’ll order some good quality coffee beans. I have a grinder, and I think a GREAT coffee might help me make the final step – ditching the cream!

      It’s easy enough to increase your healthy fats with simple foods. Pecans are my favorite. Avocado is good too. Salmon is the fattier fish (tilapia & whitefish are all protein, no fat). Chicken thighs & wings instead of breasts, etc.

  12. Pingback: Day 2: Zero Carb Challenge (My Meals) | Low Carb Diet Tips for Busy People

  13. Kathy says:

    I had been zero carbing it since 6/7 when we took a 2 week vacation to Germany, our first trip ever. Thought i could stay with it but nope, fell completely off plan and somehow gained 30 lbs even though we walked for miles every day siteseeing. Wow! Back on it again now and lost 11 lbs in 3 days but coffee is my nemesis. I love a 3 shot espresso with 2 packets of stevia, a dash of sugar free hazelnut syrup and 2 T. of hwc, iced or hot either one and can drink 4-5 a day if i let myself. Killing me to not have any coffee at all, hoping to lose my last 50 lbs soon and then try adding a least one cup back in a day to see what happens. Following your week for tips, thanks for posting your trials with coffee!

    • Lynn Terry says:

      You’re welcome, Kathy! It’s nice to know I’m not alone. It turns out coffee is a big struggle for a lot of us. πŸ˜› I really enjoy my creamy delicious coffee, so this has been tough already this week (day three for me now).

      It does help to brew cinnamon in with my coffee. I do 1/2 TSP per half pot of coffee. That gives it at least a little flavor. 😐 Ha!

      The HWC is giving me a few carbs, but at least it’s a “real food” (not full of chemicals like my flavored sugar-free creamer) – and it gives me that creamy taste I like.

      Congrats on getting right back on track! That’s the hardest part. Kudos! πŸ™‚ *cheers*

  14. tina says:

    Hi Lynn
    I was hoping to stay under 5, and without even realizing till it was to late I ate 1/2 avacodo. so even with my error I stayed at 7 for the day.This is a challenge cause since the 90 day started my usual carbs were 16 17 a day so being at 7 feels great. You are an inspiration to me. I listened to the call last night and found it very helpful and inlightening.


    • Lynn Terry says:

      Thank you Tina – I’m glad you enjoyed it! What a deep topic we got into. πŸ˜› lol. It sounds like you’re doing great. Avocado was a good pick for those carbs!! πŸ™‚

  15. Adele says:

    I love my coffee, too. I also used to use the coffeemate. I can’t handle it black. I tried the bulletproof coffee ( butter and coconut oil) and it was too buttery for me. Now, I use the HWC with just a smidgen (1/2 tsp) of coconut oil and use a milk frother to get a nice creamy consistency.

    Something you may enjoy on occasion is using a bit of browned butter with some HWC. It tastes a bit caramel-like

  16. Lynne says:

    Lynn I need your advice I drink coffee in the mornings ( black) What are the benefits of BPC and how you suggest making it?

    • Lynn Terry says:

      Hi Lynne,

      For the benefits and details, see: I personally don’t drink BPC (bullet proof coffee). I did try it for a week or so last year and didn’t see any difference. But I already eat 70-80% fat just through my food choices. And I do prefer to get my healthy fats from sources with more nutritional value (like pecans, salmon, avocado, etc).

      But check out that link to learn more about it. If you’re going to do it, it’s ideal to use kerrygold butter (or real butter at least) and you need UNrefined coconut oil.

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