Week 3 – Day 1
Started off the day not so hungry again. Didn’t eat as frequently as I could have over the weekend as I was busy and to be honest, it’s more difficult eating habitually on the weekend. But I had my eggs and palma ham.
Sometimes it’s a case of adopting “if you really want something you’ll make time, if you don’t you want it, you won’t”. On one hand, I’d actually rather see you write “I didn’t eat well at the weekend as I didn’t want to. I wanted to relax off and enjoy my weekend” than to see what could be interpreted as excuses about it being difficult. It’s only difficult if you let it be that way. What we need to do is get you into some healthy habits that become easy to manage that work with your lifestyle and your 12 week transformation. We don’t want you getting to the end and regretting slacking off and taking the easy way out at weekend.
Let’s look at it thus way, if you are eating 5 meals a day 7 days a week that’s 35 meals. You can afford 3-4 (10%) a week to be “bad” or “not great”. Any more and we might find you wander off from your target body transformation. What I’d really like to avoid, is you getting into the habit of convincing yourself this or that is okay because “it’s hard”. Yes, it’s hard, but so is everything that is worthwhile in life.
This may seem hard/harsh but we are 3 weeks in; you have 2 months of training left. We need to get out of this mindset early, not at the halfway point!
My measurements are reassuring. Gaining on my biceps and shoulders. Losing it elsewhere. Happy Days. Although Sean has reassured me that weight isn’t a drama I am still the same weight. The pictures are showing a loss of fat around the front and mid section of my torso and the muscles are looking more defined.
Weight is irrelevant as muscle weights more than fat. We want a gain in muscle and a loss of fat. You probably will weigh less at the end, but maybe not as much of a loss as you might expect as we will gain muscle!
Really pleased you are seeing changes, well done Bob. You are obviously working hard. Keep it up!
I feel like my metabolism has started working differently throughout the day as my appetite has certainly grown.
This is a good sign. Wanting to eat more means you are training intensely and your body is craving foods for recovery and growth. Just keep to the meal timings and macros and this will help change your body drastically
The workout consisted of different exercises today and it felt good to have the higher reps back. Bench press had me sweating as I am sure my muscles got used to the shorter rep range. The burn felt great. Becoming difficult at around 3rd set 9+ FAILURE at 14.
Brilliant. The system works! Low reps back to high and you’re sweating away. Good to hear.
Pull ups to failure into inverted row. I used a conveniently placed TRX device for my inverted rows. The pull ups were a beast alone. I am using assisted for these. But the weight I use is getting less and less. There’s still a lot of weight of me to lift! My forearms were burning and my upper back was cursing me after the first set. Naturally the pull ups got lesser and lesser before failure and the inverted rows became progressively harder. I had to pay special attention to my form as it did so.
Well done Bob. Inverted row on the TRX is perfect; a great piece of kit. One of my staples at home. Everyone starts with pull-ups on an assisted machine, but as long as the assistance is less and less you are progressing so well done.
My forearms always ache on pull days/back supersets so that’s to be expected! No forearm training needed, you’ll be Popeye from the sessions like this alone!
Good work on the form checks. You always need to concentrate more as the session goes on, because you get tired and the body tries to cheat its way to easier exercises, often at the detriment of form. Keep up the good work, it sounds like you are nailing this now.
Overhead press was the same. As my arms and my upper back were ruined after the last exercise it was more difficult. Feeling my lats do some serious work.
It all adds up. The trick is to keep the mind strong and just work with your weight. Keep up the nard work!
Incline Dumbell Press. It was a relief to be sat down to honest. I was a shaky mess by now. I aimed to keep the intensity up but keep to the tempo. It had been a while since I have done this exercise and fatigue played a massive part in how it went today. It was hard work to finish all sets and I have a bench mark now to improve on.
Well done. I’m sure the shoulder press had your front delts fatigued meaning this was especially tricky, but it’s good to do it and work out your weights for moving forward. Good job.
Bent over row. On my already weak arms and back this exercise finished me in all truth. I really had to concentrate on form as my body was taking all sorts of positions to finish. I closed my eyes and concentrated on the muscles being used. It helped… slightly… more of Sean’s advise, cheers Sean.
No problems. Again; so important to keep form on track when fatigued. Closing the eyes can help you ‘feel’ the correct muscles working which can keep form correct. Well done Bob, sounds like you worked to failure across the session. Very proud.
No spare bench for my seated shoulder press so sat on floor with my back to a pillar. It helped isolate the muscle used. I finished 2 sets successfully. But failure on 3rd at 14. It had been long time since doing this exercise as well.
Good improvisation. Well done.
Deadlifts is an exercise I have grown to love over the last couple of weeks. It was followed by squats!
It felt like the first session I did on week 1 day 1. With exercises I haven’t done before. Like front squats and straight leg deadlifts. I had to find the weight I was comfortable with. I didnt like that much. But the exercises were good. I find it hard to have the intensity that I would knowing what I had to lift or progress onto.
It will come. It’s difficult when we add exercises/change programme slightly to know what to use. However, the idea is that it forces the body to change and adapt again. Every time we add a new exercise, if may well hit muscles you aren’t working or work one muscle more than others. Just take it easy and work to your abilities.
Rest day. I don’t feel so great about the diet today. It’s easier to not eat than graze and have small meals. I couldn’t help but think all day about my muscles wearing away into oblivion because I couldn’t eat the calories. Calories, macros and protein are all I’m thinking about.
You don’t want to create an unhealthy obsession. It’s not necessary and can lead to a dangerous relationship with food. If this process is going to do that for you, I will simply give you 6 rules to follow when eating and 21 foods to try to include. Please be honest here: we don’t want your life ruled by protein and food!
I may have smaller snacks in between meals and use the main 3 meals for the majority of my calorie intake.
If that works better for you then fine. Just try to ensure your largest carb meal is post training as that will help refuel and aid growth. If you are still counting macros then 3 meals is just as effective as 5. It’s what works for you.
Dinner was different to the meal plan (but fitted into my macros).
- Steak (lean of course)
- Grilled Mediterranean vegetables
But come bedtime I was starving! So had a casein shake and insta oats.
Well done Bob, this sounds great.
I woke up feeling refreshed today. I’ve been waking up tired for a few days. I think the late night snack helped. Will remember that.
Often lowering carbs considerably can lead to a lack of sleep/inability to sleep well. The oats and casein may have helped. To save you money though, regular oats are just as good and can be microwaved in 1.5-2mins with water, allow to cool and add casein. A good pre-bed meal I find.
- Palma ham for breakfast.
Which was so good considering I was hungry. With a casein shake for the journey into work.
I wouldn’t necessarily say you need the breakfast and the casein. but if you are working to macros and that works for you, go with it.
Also my supplements of
- OMEGA 3
Good man. CLA over time can help the body metabolise fat. Omega 3s are really important for a number of processes especially if you don’t eat much oily fish. Well done Bob, keep this up.
The workout was a great one today. Really intense. Rep range changed from Monday’s 12-15, lowered to 8-12 which means overloading and improvements. Yay! This is my ideal rep range but I understand that the last few reps on the new exercise helps improvement. In most cases it did.
I’m glad you’re enjoying it. It does help if you are. When it becomes a chore (especially if the eating feels that way) the process can become unhealthy. This is a good sign.
I was able to up the bench press finally.
Pull ups (supported) to failure to inverted row really finished me. I lowered the supporting weight for the progressive overload and it worked. I reached failure in less than I have done. I again used the TRX machine to do my inverted rows. They didn’t feel like they improved but maybe with more reps of them than Monday they hopefully should.
Just keep training and over the weeks the improvements will come. It’s very unlikely one session to the next that you’ll notice changes.
The overhead press was great; I managed to up the weight and finish the sets although it was tough. My form looked better aswell.
Good news. Well done Bob. Seems like one you’ve worked hard at. Superb.
Incline dumbbell press was a challenge. Heavily fatigued from the effort on the bench press, I couldn’t over load on this much – to my frustration. Finished the sets and I know I can up the weight next session.
Great positive mind. But do take into account the bench press and the shoulder press – two pressing exercises preceding this one. It will always be tough in this order!
Bent over row. I wouldn’t think it was the same exercise as the last session. It almost felt natural I was able to up the weight and it felt like it fell into place it left my back burning but it felt great to progress on it considering the effort I had to put in on Monday.
You’re getting fitter and to quote my old PT Troop Sgt Major “the body becomes its function”. You are asking your body to become good at moving weights, and it is doing so slowly but surely. Keep it up. This process could change your life, so stick at it.
Seated dumbbell shoulder press. Massive improvement on this. Increased more than the recommended 2-2.5. I have noticed a pattern on the newer muscle groups increasing more rapid and reaching a point where improvement slows down.
This is natural as at first you are getting used to them, the neural pathways and your confidence help you adapt and increase quickly. Then the muscles plateau when they become the sticking point. Take it slow and they will keep adapting and increasing.
The finisher was a dumbbell snatch. The finisher lived up to its name tonight. Heavily fatigued upper body and finished me off! I really enjoyed this exercise.
Hahaha! Glad it lived up to its name. Good work to get it done
Shower then post workout whey, casein and creatine. Then dinner.
Well done. Good shake combo. The whey is absorbed fast for a quick supply to the muscles and the casein is absorbed more slowly to keep muscle synthesis going for longer. Get some carbs in there though! Either a banana or some dextrose. You need carbs at that point to refuel the muscles and help with growth.
Had a weigh-in on Sean’s request for a change on diet. Sad to see the same weight as last week again. But I can see in the mirror the changes in my body so not too hung up on it just yet. I’ll panic if at week 12 I look the same as now because I can see the work that needs to be done.
Most people don’t notice too much of a difference until week 6 so stick with it. Are you using the same scales? Same time of day? Same clothing? All these things count. I used to ban clients from weighing themselves as it can be such a negative on the mind. I needed your weight for kcal maths, otherwise we’d have left it!
The workout started with deadlifts; the weight was increased but not by much. It felt strange doing this exercise as it felt like I had done it already. All the muscles involved felt tired. I finished the sets but was a bit worse for wear after!
Onto squats. Much the same; muscles felt tired. It was a relief to finish the sets.
Hmmm. I wonder if this was a lack of glycogen replenishment after yesterday’s workout? You didn’t have any carbs in the post workout shake or with the shake. What carbs did you have with dinner? Get them in or the body will feel sluggish. If it’s not that, it could just be the end of the week. You’ve worked hard so maybe just need a weekend off!
Front squats felt a lot more natural today and were easier than the squats. The same weight as before though.
Good decision to leave the weight the same and great news that they felt more natural: the body becomes its function. Keep it up
Straight leg deadlifts I think are my new favourite. Difficult though I had to check my form a few times which made it hard to stick to the tempo.
Form is really important here. Keep checking and don’t go too heavy too soon. Glad you like them, though. A lot of BIG muscles worked so can have a great effect on the body in terms of a transformation.
Sprints. Sprints are sprints; I enjoy them, others don’t. I did these in between cones with a walking recovery. I’ll do it on the treadmill next time to keep the intensity up.