I’ve come to the half way mark of my 12 week challenge. From the beginning until now I’ve been pretty dedicated to my training and nutrition program. I’m really happy to have finished out the first 6 weeks strong without any major setbacks. Now I’ve got my sights set on the second half of this journey and am pumped to see the changes that have already happened…and envisioning the changes that will take place over the next several weeks.
- I changed up my actual training program to reflex a slight change in what I want to accomplish in the next 6 weeks.
- I still only workout 3 days per week but now I’m doing big compound lifts such as dead lifts, front squats (excellent exercises for adding size to the front of your legs) and some other exercises I wasn’t doing before.
- The soreness is back big time! Doing the “big exercises” that work the most muscle at one time are taxing but really rewarding. Forget isolation exercises if you want to gain lean muscle, lose fat, and look your best.
*TIP* If you are just starting to workout or coming back after a long layoff sore muscles are inevitable (If you aren’t sore you aren’t challenging yourself enough) You can pick up some Epsom salts and have a hot soak in your bathtub. The salts will help alleviate some of your soreness and draw lactic acid buildup from your muscles, reducing muscle soreness.
- My rest periods slightly changed too. Of course, I’m still using my stopwatch to keep me on track and follow the rest times I’ve set out in my workouts.
- I’m starting to notice my core is getting really tight. I’ve lost approximately 1 1/2″ off my waist so far. I’d like to lose another 1″ to 1 1/2″ in the next several weeks.
- Since I started eating carbohydrates again my muscles are feeling bigger and fuller. This was totally expected. I am still keeping my carb intake lower than I ever have before, but instead of zero carb a breakfast now might consist of 3 scrambled eggs, 1 whole wheat English muffin w/cashew butter, and strawberries or raspberries.
- When it comes to food I’m making healthy choices. As much as possible I stick with the least processed foods I can. That means 100% whole wheat breads, English muffins, berries, broccoli, spinach for carbs. For protein, tuna, chicken, steak, eggs, cheese. Stay away from the middle isles of the grocery store, you won’t find much nutrition in all those refined heavily processed foods.
- As the day progresses I eat less carbs.
- Currently I’m eating 6 times a day in an effort to keep my metabolism stoked throughout the entire day. I try not to go over 3 hours without eating something.
- Every meal or snack I eat must have some protein.
- I added a multi-vitamin each morning (which I should have been taking since day one) plus I take omega 3s (fish oil). Fish oil is well documented and can reduce triglycerides, boost HDL cholesterol, and lower blood pressure. They are both inexpensive too.
- I’m drinking a casein protein supplement each night before I go to bed. Casein is a slow acting protein (compared to whey which is fast acting) so it’s good to drink before your body will essentially be fasting for the night.
- I continue to drink at least 6 liters of water a day. * Don’t underestimate the power of being well hydrated. Dehyration = lower performace!
Couple meals I ate: