Sunday, March 29, 2009

Catch up and questions!

Whew, much busier week than I had anticipated -every time I had a chance to write a post, something came up.

Got in a decent amount of training in by my standards, including a fantastic de dorking by Miss Jo - my posing is pretty rusty but it was a lot of fun to go through it again, accompanied by the beautiful Miss Selina. All good! I've enjoyed five days of maintenance and beyond calories - still mainly Paleo eating ( there was a yummy Vietnamese rice paper roll in there on Thursday) but just a whole lot more - am just loving it right now. This week has been one of visual change but not much scale movement, even had a spike-a-roo in there. Going into the six week out mark is the next sign that the foot is firmly planted on the accelerator this week. I've had a lot of recovery over the weekend as well and I'm ready for this next phase. Then it will be determining when and where to have a planned indulgence meal. I'm thinking of taking hubby out to Vietnamese again - it really is delicious!

Now on a totally unrelated topic, I would love it if you could all post your comments on this blog telling me what you think of sending your kids to a private school vs a government school. We are at the stage of deciding on secondary education for our girls. I went to a government school for primary and a private girls' school for secondary (Catholic school). Although I am Catholic, I don't feel like it deepened my faith in God. I feel that this sort of thing comes from how you live at home.

I'm more interested in my girls having the opportunity to be able to do and learn what they need to in order to be successful in their chosen career path/s - which was one thing my school I'm considering Grammar schools, which I believe are more focused on academic achievement. My eldest daughter is quite good academically (and is in a gifted/talent project at school right now).
If anyone has been to Brisbane Girls Grammar or Ipswich Girls' Grammar please post your experiences. I would find it really helpful. We also have a government school nearby with an excellent reputation except the number at the school is well over 1000 students. The cost of sending them to the Grammar schools is in excess of $10K per year, so we want to know that we're making the best decision for them. So if anyone can weigh in, I would so appreciate it.

Friday, March 27, 2009

Moderation for Cake Lovers

After reading Kerryn's post about the fruitcake figure chick, I decided to weigh in on the old concept of moderation myself. Being in action mode is definitely highlighting to me what I need to do exactly to get competition ready. I've written a bit about my experience with Paleolithic type eating and I've seen the effects of all types of nutrition regimes on my clients - so I'm feeling quite qualified to throw my two cents worth in.

To me, total moderation and total balance is a myth, unless you're the Dali Lama. We're always in a state of flux and moving towards a goal, or simply paddling to keep ourselves from giving into the current and going downstream. Fruitcake alludes to being completely focused and that she doesn't do moderation well - she has a point where it comes to reaching a goal, that is if you are to succeed then you must devote appropriate time, attention and focus to achieving that goal. That is, the goal needs to be prioritized, and dealt with accordingly.

However, as Kerryn says, being extreme all year round isn't healthy, physically or mentally. Having a bit of "dirt" every now and again is good for the soul. Imagine not being able to share a meal with friends because it's not "perfect". The social aspect to sharing a beautiful meal cannot and should not be denied. My only caveat is that it's not a trigger food, the type where one bite is too many and a thousand are never enough.

The whole trigger food thing puts a spanner in the works for a blanket approval of "moderation". I have some great papers of some studies suggesting that sugar changes brain biochemistry to the point of mimicking heroin addicts... definitely food for thought. Trigger foods can be equated to being pushed off a building, you just have to take one bite and then the rest is done for you...down, down, down you fall into a pit of hurt, hate and self loathing..all because you perhaps have unfavourable brain chemistry when it comes to dealing with sugar.

I have written several times about how baking cookies and cakes is my Achilles heel - I'm like a drug addict - I simply cannot be moderate about this stuff once I've taken the first bite. As everyone is aware, it's difficult for the drug addict to be "moderate" about his addiction. I watch for potential triggers in clients when they say "I MUST have x food" - there's the absolute coming in again or "I'm ADDICTED to chocolate"..

So to sum up I believe that you should (and can) be moderate about most things, however there are times when you should not be moderate and get a grip that x food or drink may have to be off limits for a trial period.

Gravitating towards whole foods and less stuff out of packets is the easiest way to begin I think. Cooking from scratch has more benefits (for me, that is cooking savoury stuff from scratch!) - no added chemicals, preservatives or the like.

Meanwhile life goes on - I'm sitting here being thankful that Indian is not a trigger food for me and neither is Vietnamese. We had the nicest dinner last night - go the gai larn is what I say! Yummo :)

Training is going OK and after a few days of maintenance type calories , I'm back into the swing of looking for another 0.3-0.5kg off this week.

Monday, March 23, 2009

I know I said I was busy...

I know I said I was busy, but I'm taking a break from being the House Cleaning Gnome to write about my latest news. We're building a house! It's been a long time coming as we originally purchased our land to build on in 2006, just before we got shipped off to Woop Woop - it's a lovely big block with views of the city - even if the city is a little further away than we'd like. It has been 'touch and go' as to whether we would ever build with the exploding real estate market and cost of building and then the subsequent crash. My hubby works for a mining company that recently laid off 20% of its workforce - so we had to wait and see whether we would be lucky and stay employed, or be made redundant - we were incredibly fortunate that his old job was made redundant, but that he was offered another position within the company so we are OK. It has been incredibly stressful and my heart goes out to those who haven't been as fortunate with employment as we have.

Anyway, we finally (after a false start) decided on a builder - IDH, or Individually Designed Homes - they have been tremendously helpful thus far. We have designed our own home and have been having fun choosing various things like appliances, flooring and carpet. We have decided to go with Miele appliances, expensive but we've never had any of our Miele stuff in our other houses kick the bucket - I'm rather looking forward to cooking with fantastic appliances again. The gas cooktop we've chosen even has a rather nifty wok burner which is going to get some good workouts I am sure! Hmm what else - we're going to invest in solid timber floors (another dream of mine ) - can't wait. I guess I will have to start a house blog shortly once the council plans for house and pool (yes, we're doing the pool now too because there will be limited access later) are approved.

Thank you to everyone who posted comments about my photos - as I said in my earlier posts, I didn't know if I wanted to compete or even mention it on my blog - but the support and encouragement I have received has been gratefully received at this end. It really helps to know that when you're not feeling willing, you can write a blog and somebody will be along to give you a kick in the pants.

Have had a pretty good training session today and did what I call a post shoulder PB on the bench press this morning (did 3 x10 @ 35kg) - I cannot believe that six months ago I couldn't even trace the movement with my hands!

Am looking forward to salmon and asparagus for lunch - may do both on the BBQ - this sort of food may sound plain to some, but it is simple and delicious.

Anyway, back to work - life is good!

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Busy As!

Gosh, seems like the weeks are flying by these days - just stopping in for a quick blog before diving into the week with a vengeance. Everything is going pretty well, catching up on all the boring things like housework over the weekend and giving good old Gollum a bit of a slap at the same time.

Sometimes we're way too easy on ourselves under the guise of being "kind" to ourselves. For me, trolling my way around the pantry because I'm bored and picking here and there is not being kind to me, nor is it inducing me to perform better fitness wise. I guess, because I am taking such strong action at the moment that these sorts of thoughts bubble to the surface.

One of my fellow LLers, Mary L has a great way of looking at so called "hunger".
1) This is not real.... truly "starving" and I wouldn't be living in a first world country
2) This situation is temporary and will pass. You will eat again...
3) I am in control
4) There are alternatives to this behaviour. This is where the phone-a-friend strategy can work really well as can going for a walk, driving etc.

The amazing thing, when I troll for food, I'm not hungry, I'm bored and procrastinating about something - I open the door for Gollum to get in and tell me I need a "treat". Bugger that-am off to fold my washing right now!

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Aaah photo opportunity!

As I mentioned in my first post of the day, Shelley and I had lunch today after meeting up at Fatness First for a bit of a walk and talk on the treadmill and then lunch at the Vietnamese. She also took some eight week out photos - we've done a couple of rounds of photos in the exact same spot in the Fitness First bathroom - we have our "posing tile" and we have to make sure that we cover the word "store" that is on the door - I didn't do such a good job here, but I will blame my height for that...or that my head needs more muscle! It's also a great reminder that even though I'm slim by most standards I'm not yet comp ready (I've been having a big case of the "smallies" this week - thinking I'm tiny and puny) - which is a good thing at where we are at right now. Anyway it was good to have a bit of a catch up - the girl is looking awesome and we're both looking forward to putting out the "big gun show" on together at the comp..hee hee.

Started with a Little Kiss, like this...

Seeing Kerryn is "Walking This Way", thought I would keep adding to the lyrics!

Taught Bodystep this morning - woohoo!!!! and trained my puny chest - it hasn't had any work for well over a year due to injury and surgery - so I gave my pecs a good reminder of where they were this morning - just home now with a belly full of oats and Melbourne Breakfast tea, so all is nice in my Universe right now. Meeting Miss Shelley for lunch - judging by her blog I'll be looking for the chick with the big guns :)

Anyway, who loves the rock band "Kiss"? I just think hairy men with make up are classic!

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

What I ate today

I have had a few emails/comments about what constitutes a Paleo intake - good reading includes the original "Paleo Diet" (though it should have been called Lifestyle) and the resource I have used the most, "Paleo Diet for Athletes".

Thought I'd list out what I ate today as an example in full prep mode - the athlete's book provides for one serving of grains.

Breakfast: 50g oats, 1 scoop protein powder, glutamine, creatine
Morning Tea: 200g raspberries
Lunch: 160g salmon fillet, macadamia nuts crushed, 1 cup fresh beans, 2 cups broccoli, lemon juice
Arvo Tea: 6 egg white + whole egg omelette made with half bag Woollies spinach, 2 cups mushrooms, 1 tomato , shallots and cracked pepper., 2 plums
Dinner: 150g chicken breast poached in tomato puree, canned tomatoes, 1 big bag of spinach, onion, garlic, fresh herbs, 2 cups of green beans
Dessert: 200g raspberries and a plum.

Carbs well over 40% in this example - believe it or not this just scrapes in under 1300 cals. I'm not advocating the lower cal number necessarily, but just highlighting that you can eat an abundance of food, even when in full prep.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Over and Out

Staring into the barrel of an extremely busy week and I'm going to have a 'media free' next coupla days whilst I get on top of it all - training, working, writing - am going to give any computer time that's not work related the flick for a day or so - result of the management meeting I had with my own bad self after RPM this morning... you know doing what is most important and all that :)

See you all in a day or so!

Saturday, March 14, 2009

I just want the world to stay saved!

I'm a big fan of kids movies, especially when they have adult undertones throughout them. I think "The Incredibles" is one of the best animated movies I have seen in this regard and it's very, very funny. I mean, who names a supposed super hero "Syndrome"? LOL!

I'm feeling a bit like Mr Incredible today on many fronts - I just want the world to stay saved! Firstly I'm amazed at how my orderly clean home went into a state of disorder so quickly - I had everything perfect and then a cyclone, otherwise known as Life has cut a path through here this morning. I had my two RPM classes and took my time coming back to Earth and DH had lots of errands to run. The RPM classes went really well - the first one was pretty good, but the second one was a smasher!!! I often find that if I have to teach a double (which is rare, thank goodness) that the second class is often better than the first - you work out all the kinks in your teaching and you're more relaxed (probably because your legs feel like jelly to begin with)..

Secondly I've had a visit from both Gollum and the Insane Scale Leprechaun who were neither friendly nor favourable and that Incredibles Quote really resonated with me - it would be so good if we could just maintain a fantastic state of mind and then experience linear scale drops, but it's not the case - Gollum turned up with my other good mate, TOM and I expect that once they've had their jollies they'll be on the way out - but today I am feeling utterly female, hormonal and all the other good stuff that goes with the territory.

I'm looking forward to hitting my training a bit harder this week and the next job is to look at my diary and block off my training times before anything else. I have a job to do and I'm looking forward to grumbling about insane tough workouts this week.

Friday, March 13, 2009

Good Vibrations

Today I'm as "happy as a pig in mud" - put in a good solid morning trained 5 clients, and then had a very relaxing lunch with Lisa , ate Vietnamese (as per usual) and followed it up by two big mugs of English Breakfast tea, which fit the bill perfectly as it's been rainy and overcast here - it also seems as if the peeps in the shopping centre have turned up the aircon in the bid to encourage shoppers to buy winter woollies, we were all marvelling at how chilly it was inside Indro today. I missed my training today, but I am not too concerned as I am teaching double RPM tomorrow morning with Bronwyn for our St Patrick's Day open weekend at the gym. After a day off and a good rest, I think I will be jumping out of my skin at the prospect of a double whacker. I've added in glutamine now which has been making a difference to energy levels and recovery as well - I went to the supplement shop and asked for the cheapest, nastiest glutamine that was on the shelf :)

I'm also really excited because I'm going to FILEX on the 17th April and sharing an apartment with Kerryn - Selina and Amanda will also be around and I'll get to do the new Les Mills releases at the Super Workshop on the Sunday...woohoo!!! It all started yesterday when I got an unexpected delivery in the mail from Kerryn - see above. I think that I must have been channelling some Dirty Diana vibes to her and I see that it was mailed well before "Supersets" week (which I'm looking forward to next week, girls - after all I have to take my own medicine!)
So I'm looking forward to having a little date with Di later on tonight with hubs before hiding the chocolate away from him until next time..thanks Kerryn, made my day!! We got talking about FILEX and I thought to myself "I really should go...", then there is a wall post from Selina on Facebook "you really should go.." and then Kerryn going as well and there it was the old "three signs that that's it, I must sign up!" scenario. It's only 4 weeks away and I am really looking forward to it.

Off to cook dinner, I feel some chicken and vegetables tonight..yum..yum!

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Thursday's thoughts

Thursday is the day that I teach Bodystep at Fitness First. As I have previously blogged, I have only just started teaching Step again after a looong layoff and I am loving it! It's such a departure from the usual training I do and classes I teach ( I know my RPM class wouldn't be too enthused if I started adding armlines) , it's got some real fun factor going on. Plus connecting with the other Step instructors (most of whom do other programs like Pump and Bodyjam) has been a hoot.

In terms of competition preparation I've just been humming along and doing what I can, whilst accepting what I can't do - brings the old "do your best and forget the rest" Tony Horton mantra to the surface. I have noticed some changes in the old lean-o-meter this week and wish that I had more muscle - I think I've been looking at pictures of all those pro IFBB girls, some of who I'm sure have pharmaceutical help as well as hard training under their belts. However, I'm a firm believer in competing naturally, so I'll leave it there.

I have to work hard at my leanness, particularly at the beginning of any prep before anything happens. That is my pattern and the good drops I'm reporting are a culmination of all of the work that has gone beforehand rather than it being suddenly the event of the day. Now I've broken through with the initial good loss, based on my own past experience, I should be able to cruise in and put in some maintenance weeks which is nice. I heard a great quote this morning: " Many of life's failures are those people who were so close to success and gave up". Can't remember who it was by but it's a good one to have by you when things aren't running as you'd like them (for me, more often than not!)

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Green Day

We have an Open Weekend at Fitness First this coming Saturday and Sunday and our theme is "St Patrick's Day" - so as I do not own any green workout wear, it was time to pop over to Lorna Jane and buy something that would fit the bill - so I ended up with the green workout top you see on the left as well as a matching green headband. I did eye off the matching blue capri pants with the green and white trim, thinking they would look nice in Bodystep but decided that the top would do nicely. I also bought a long sleeved shirt and a T Shirt so all in all I think I did pretty well.

Today's workouts were along the lines of Workout W or "Where I could fit it in" between clients. I started off with RPM at 6am this morning and channelled positive energy to Carolyn who is down in Brisvegas and was doing the 6am CBD class - then it was off to train a client for an hour, then fit in some weights and some rehab stuff. Got stuck into a few tight spots with my muscle mate, did lots of pec minor stretching as well ( that hurts!), before doing a chest workout - I lifted at about 75% of max effort - my philosophy is that anything that activates a muscle is better than nothing and I'm more concerned about crappy movement than competing in the long term. Workout consisted of push ups (I love push ups), bench press (pain free..wahoo!) and incline flyes - these I still have to be pretty careful with but I am improving. THis all took about 40 minutes and then I had another client who has been having rotator cuff problems - did a little trigger point massage, stretching and pulling work and she was moving properly within the hour.
This is what I find incredible - how you can make such a difference to someone's movement patterns within one training session.

The only regret I have today was eating my oats before RPM - whilst digestively I was fine, the post workout snack I had wasn't large enough and in hindsight I should have flipped them around - I've upped my oat intake big time, though I doubt I will ever hit Shelley's fantastic oat intake quota :) Hence I was pretty hungry by the time I got home but feeling so much better after an omelette and fresh fruit.

Scale is moving in the right direction and this week I'm seeing some nice changes in the old bod.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Don't Wanna, Not Gonna'!

After having a perfect delicious dinner of oven poached fish in garlic and lemon and a rainbow of vegetables, not to mention raspberries for dessert ( the point here is that I'm not suffering AT ALL) I sat down to watch Desperate Housewives and I wrestled with Inner Gollum telling me that Paleo was boring and that the best thing to eat would be a bowl of cereal or a piece of toast and honey or peanut butter crumpets...all glutenous problem foods for me.

However he was masquerading as someone else which made it initially difficult to see it was him - he was masquerading as my body, telling me that I "needed" comfort carbs. When I looked rather dispassionately at my food log, it told me that a) I was nowhere near malnourished (calories fine) b) I was nowhere near carb depleted (despite the myth that Paleo is low carb, my carb intake was 47% of total cals yesterday) and the kicker c) that I had only eaten dinner less than an hour ago.

Using cold hard facts, I was able to determine that my thoughts were simply phantom hunger cravings - in fact the real truth was that I'd been putting off watching a DVD that is part of the Bootcamp experience - I had been finding it hard to get it to work. I managed to set the DVD player up to make it work and I got to watching an interesting program from the History Channel about the "Seven Deadly Sins". The series goes through each "sin" from a historical perspective and this particular program was about gluttony - how it seemed like a "soft" sin but how in reality, it was one of the most dangerous. eg a person in hell - gets to choose to live with one of the sins as punishment, so thinking it would be the least harmful chooses gluttony. Gets drunk and accidentally kills someone..."living hell" . Take home message I got from that one was to keep life simple, treat every now and again with gratitude and that is not just for food - it's for everything.

In the end I chose to honour myself and not go for the very foods that seem to be causing me such odd reactions - and woke up feeling much better for it. I didn't have to say "wrong way d..head" to the scales this morning - just had to get up , do my workout and enjoy the busy day of clients I had.

Workout was "D" - "Do what you can!" - shoulder is playing up and there's some crappy movement going on in there so the strength training was more rehabilitative than hardcore but I'm OK with that. I am still jumping up on that stage although my delts may not be bulging as much as I'd like.

Monday, March 09, 2009

A date gives you incentive..

I'm off to train my legs this morning. Those of you that know me well would have heard me complain about how much I dislike leg DOMS - however, I have a date with a bikini now, so I'm going to forge ahead with the job regardless. It's funny how I can handle (and actually don't mind) upper body DOMS but lower body...not so much fun for me.

Today I am grateful for some inner peace that has been a long time coming. I feel at one with the world and connected to my higher purpose. I know who I am and the role that I play so well and I am grateful for all of the clients who put their trust in me in their journeys to get lean, get strong and to love their lives as well.

Interestingly enough I think my peace has not come from some magic psychological revelation but from eliminating gluten and its close relatives from my diet. Over the weekend I have been researching food allergies as they relate to weight loss and it seems to be consistent that those who have wild spikes in scale weight may have allergies and intolerances to certain foods. It's not the first time I have had trouble with gluten - I was hospitalized in 2004 for suspected inflammatory bowel disease and as soon as I took out the gluten (not even consciously - I just gravitated towards more vegetables), my tummy improved dramatically. Now with the swelling and fluid retention I have been having lately, I've noticed a positive correlation between my Paleo meanderings and lack of swelling and retention. The one serve of grains I have are gluten free. It's all rather interesting - another thing that was discussed was allergies affecting the brain as a site and therefore having an effect on mood. This has been the most interesting aspect of the whole shebang as I feel that a light fog has been lifted from my brain.

That is not to say that I'm never going to be a Dirty Diana - quite the opposite. I always did well with any treat meal that doesn't contain processed flour etc - for example the chocolate flourless cake I had at Freestyle with the girls did not affect me one iota - neither does icecream. However at the moment, I will keep embracing my Paleo lifestyle until the swelling is completely gone - it's a lot of vegetables, but it's really not a chore or bad news when the results it gives you makes you feel sensational! And, yes, I've even had a nice little scale drop over the weekend which is an added bonus!

Sunday, March 08, 2009

Contextualizing Food

Now that I'm in action, as opposed to maintenance, you may see some more content from me relating to competition preparation and training and so forth. However you're never going to see a post from me about how all I ever do now is think of food and my next meal and what my macros or even calories are going to be for the day. Whilst it is important to plan out your nutrition for a competition preparation no question, this post does not relate to this aspect of action, or body fat loss at all.

What I am talking about is how I choose to contextualize food in the course of taking action and even through maintenance. Like most of us, I don't know anyone that doesn't love eating, particularly when it's top notch, decadent, fancy, tasty food. Like Carolyn, I'm a bit of a foodie - I enjoy the good things in life - and will continue to do so. I will probably enjoy food that I consider a treat on my path to the stage. When I told others that I was going to commit once and for all to do this comp, they said "I couldn't do that, I couldn't be that disciplined with my eating" - and then the kicker, "If I couldn't eat what I wanted, I would be so unhappy - I'd be starving".

That's when I thought, "whoa!" This person was talking in real absolutes - so unhappy? Starving? Then, throughout the week whilst chatting to various clients I heard of food spoken about in almost pornographic detail - unbeknowingly, they were all "making love" to their meals in such vivid detail that their phrases could have easily been slid into a Mills and Boon novel (a few character changes of course) and nobody would have been any the wiser. Then I thought of all the times I have innocently said that I was "starving" - and came to the conclusion that I've been feeding (pardon the pun) myself a bit of bull as well. I may get really hungry but in a first world country it is very unlikely that you're ever going to be starving. Now I'm making an effort to tell myself the facts...what really is true.

My own take home message for the week was enjoy food - but put it in the right context - if your day is spent in salivation over the meals ahead, you've placed too much importance on something that may not be as important as you think it is. Where is the "most important" in all of this? Where's the rest of your life, your family, your friends? Successful weight loss or comp prep doesn't mean hiberating from the world for 12 weeks a year. Integration of all parts of your life is the key. I am looking forward to my next meal out - the food, for sure and even more importantly, who I share it with.

Training and Nutrition
I taught RPM again this morning and managed to keep that wonderful momentum I felt yesterday going through today's class. What helped me the most I feel was a more deliberate than usual shift of focus to the participants and the whole coaching process. When I hear the groans and the "yahoos" and see the smiles, I feel so uplifted. Same for all of the clients I see - in some cases I've started off with one and inherited a whole is too cool.

Nutrition - all going well - eating a truckload of fruit and vegetables to bump my carbs up to over 40% - I'm not a low carb lover, more of a middle of the road chick and now my hands are looking rather frog like - puffy on the tips of my fingers and back to normal finger joints. I think I may just be winning the swelling race! Scale has begun to catch up after the hard yards I have put in this week which a nice change.

Saturday, March 07, 2009

Exercise High

Have you ever had a workout where you felt the stars, moon and all the cosmos line up in perfect harmony and you are at one with the task that is ahead of you? That was my RPM class this morning - I don't know if it is the effects of the Paleo eating or just that I "broke" through a personal barrier this morning but I just taught the best class ever. My coaching was right on song and my energy on the bike was fantastic today - not to mention that every single participant rode like a demon - it was if we were all one and just giving the whole shebang a massive hit out! I am so grateful for this light after the few weeks I've had of not-so-stellar anything with the weird swelling and achy joints going on.

Followed it up by a new client assessment and some gorgeous Paleo fruits to get my carb intake up after class (I'm embracing my inner Paleo princess). Now off to chill out and read the newspaper - it's amazing how well some of us fitness nuts can go into full on sloth mode - I do a pretty good job of it!

Friday, March 06, 2009

A week already?

I can't believe an entire week has passed and it's only 9 weeks until the INBA comp. I've done pretty well on all training and eating fronts this week - chowing down lots of good food and trying to fit in some training where I can. My left shoulder is bothering me but my magic physio, Louise, has really helped get things moving in the right direction. I did a little chest workout yesterday and I caned my back this morning in 15 minutes flat after a bit of a run. Weight has inched down by 400g - so right on track for a fantastic next week. Bring it on!

Photo above is Miss J, me, and Mrs W (who shall remain nameless for now ) after last week's Bodystep and RPM launches. The two steppers looked far more exciting than Miss Bland RPM did! I got my chance to teach Step on Thursday - new release - started off a bit nervous but really got into it by track 4.

Thursday, March 05, 2009

Dirty Di to Queen of "Clean"?

Reporting in to say that I am still having trouble with swelling in my extremities and am turning into a human pincushion in attempts to work out what is going on. My joints have also been very achey - so as I mentioned in my last post I have been eating Paleo style to see if I can eliminate any variable in my nutrition that may be contributing to this. Paleo eating harks back to the Stone Age through to the period before Man discovered agriculture - the simple premise being that we're not evolved enough to eat a lot of grain, let alone any grain that has been highly processed eg breads, noodles etc etc. Paleo eating is based on what man did to survive during that period, eating unlimited quantities of vegetables and fruits (in season), lean protein, eggs, nuts and seeds etc. Dairy was limited until animals were domesticated by ever try to milk a wild yak? Didn't think so...

From the fat loss perspective, Paleo is good in that you require more energy to digest all of those vegetables and lean protein - but it's no magic bullet in that regard - rather it's illuminating in how you can learn to eat so much more and not overconsume calorically speaking. It's much easier to get your calories level out of whack with incorrectly measuring grain portions (should be weighed on a kitchen scale - my half cup of oats comes in at 56g others are at 40 - significant difference) as opposed to accidentally eating 2 cups of broccoli instead of one (unlikely as broccoli here is ten bucks a kilo...)

I'm still eating my 40/40/20 ratio of P:C:F - and when you're eating Paleo style that is a truckload of vegetable and fruit. I have kept my morning oats (50g ) and protein powder in though - a girl's gotta have her oats!

I think it's done me the world of good psychologically speaking - my head feels clear and I feel good with the world.

Not that being a Dirty Diana is a bad thing - I think it's important to be able to factor in a wide variety of good healthy foods and some that may not be in a Paleo plan. My reasons for doing Paleo are to try and nut out a health problem I'm having. The resultant weight lost will be a bonus.

Training: Yesterday: Teach RPM/participate Bodystep
Today: Chest/Serratus work (limited due to left shoulder now being hinky), biceps and putting together the beginning of my routine (now that is!)

Tuesday, March 03, 2009

What's different today?

Thanks to all for the kick in the pants to get going and do this comp! I woke up this morning to a visit from the "wrong way, dickhead Leprechaun" but all the signs are there that I'm visibly leaner. I believe that by using the scale and your body as a guide you get to learn an awful lot - so I just did the scale cackle and am looking forward to a drop later in the week.

The only thing that I did differently from yesterday when I hadn't made the decision to forge ahead, was visualize myself looking really lean and stage ready. I picked up a great saying from Dave Greenwalt , who sourced it from Ernest Nightingale - "you become what you think about most".

Competition nutrition was no different from my daily nutrition - until I have the swelling issue resolved, I'm sticking with paleo style nutrition. I'm really enjoying it at the moment and will stick with it until I decide that I'm in need of a little Dirty Diana.

Got my training in and a bit of Bodystep practice, now off to bed. All in all, a successful day.

Monday, March 02, 2009

To be or not to be?

Some of you will know that I've been toying with the idea of competing - I get enthused one minute and the next I'm "nah..don't want to do that". However, I'm thinking of competing in May for the last time at possibly the INBA and/or the ANB shows.

However, I've been having all sorts of self doubts - have I lost muscle (I'm up there 2nd from right)? I haven't been training all that consistently and I had an abdominoplasty not even a year ago - will I still have swelling issues? Plus, will my viral issues head out the door in time? I've made some really good strides this last week and am wearing parts of my comp wardrobe with ease. I've got about 4 good kilos to get to comp lean physique.

I want to do this competition solely for myself, to remind myself of the discipline and commitment we need to get into THAT sort of shape in a tiny bikini on that stage - Having not been on stage for three years has made me forget how much determination you need to get there, even with a top notch and sane eating plan.

In the meantime I'm going to work my butt off in the gym and start taking some supplements (I'm very lazy) over the next 10 weeks, and keep up the positive self talk. I can evaluate the belly situation more when I'm leaner. However, I think I'm using that as an excuse..I just need to do what Nike says...Just Do It...

I did train this morning - lower body - squats and deadlifts - just the most basic stuff - that was it and went at 75% of max effort - I couldn't walk most of last week, so thought I would ease my way back into it.

Sunday, March 01, 2009

Fitness Freebie

I just discovered a new site and got myself a Free Digital Subscription to Fitness Rx magazine - US. In the interests of sharing the love with my fellow fitness devotees here is the link

Hope you enjoy!

Scale Perspective

After reading Lia's post referencing the Figure Athlete article about throwing out your scales and a few other random posts about "how the scale should be thrown away", I was saddened that this poor old measurement tool is being so maligned.

Here are my thoughts....

When the scale isn't useful -
-when you're taking a one off reading or sporadic readings eg this can include the "once a week" weigh in.
- when you're not using it in conjunction with other measurements
- if you're at a healthy level of leanness (plus you're happy with that, and you're maintaining happily without food issues ) and the sports you play don't require a weight/class or division.

When the scale is useful-

As a means of data collection and you are taking consistent readings - eg daily, same conditions etc - the more data points you can collect, the more statistical significance you will create.
- as an adjunct to other measurements. I'm always amused when I hear that others may just use caliper measures only and throw out their scales. In the physique transformation world which I'm very familiar with, there's a fairly consistent correlation between weight and caliper readings. Unless you're using your local pharmacy, skin folds usually drop as weight does. Sometimes, there's a lag between skin fold drops and weight, but if you've collected enough data, you should be able to see where things start to meet. In other words, I've never seen, nor prepared a competitor who dropped bodyfat, but not weight to get to the stage.
- keeps you on the straight and narrow if you're in maintenance - if you're a weight fighter like myself, keeping tabs of things on the scales helps me to keep my body in check rather than me stick my head in the sand in denial.
- you can also use a weight range as a "control" in the study of your own personal data.
-much easier and more accurate for everyday people who may not have access to a skilled operator in taking % BF measurements
- cheap :)

I'm going to happily keep weighing myself on a daily basis - even when the scale doesn't reflect what you want it to see, you can use the number as a learning process or reminder as to where you want to be physique wise. I'm also going to keep combining this statistic with how good I look in my clothes - my own experience has told me I don't go wrong when I keep up this practice!