Originally Posted by BendtheBar
Right now you are in the off-season. This is a good time to start counting calories, and learning how your body reacts. Losing the belly fat while adding muscle is going to be tricky.
I think cycling carbs is a solid approach. While it may not lead to fat loss while adding muscle, it should help to minimize any fat gains.
A rough place to start is:
--Protein - 1 gram per pound of bodyweight.
--Carbs - 1.5 grams of carbs per pound of bodyweight.
--Fat - 20 to 30% of your daily calories.
Right now simply eating healthy is most likely a detriment. Most women tend to undereat protein, and eat too many carbs. You need to move from the stage of "eating healthy" to "eating to maximize your body composition." This will involve a time of micromanaging your intake to learn your body.
My wife eats healthy, but always thinks she's eating more protein than she is. To her, high protein is about 50 to 70 grams per day. She then ends up eating about 50 to 100 more grams of carbs per day to fill the hunger gap.
I can't say that you're undereating protein. I'm only talking out loud. But it may be the case. And this might make it seem like your carb sensitive when you're really just eating too many - if that makes sense?
I would add that many also under or over estimate how much their total cals are. Eating too low can send the message that you are starving and cause a plateau just as eating too much can cause a plateau. It would be helpful for you to log what you eat for a week or two to see where you really are.