Archives For Fitness

Impossible-It always seems until its doneIt always seems impossible until it’s done… I need to set seemingly impossible goals to experience the excitement that fuels my motivation. Without a challenge I’m unmotivated to commit to what I need to do for exercise and nutrition. However, for me there’s also a fine line between setting a goal that’s big enough to paralyze me with fear, and an even BIGGER GOAL where there’s so much excitement that it overcomes any fear. I’ve come to learn that if I find myself lacking in ambition, drive or motivation with anything it’s because I have not set a big enough goal. DREAM BIG or GO HOME!

The last time I competed at the Canadian Natural Championships in April, 2012 (where I placed 5th) I was 188lbs at about 6% body fat with a lean mass of 177lbs. My goal this time is to compete at a weight of 198lbs with 6% body fat (or less) and a lean mass of 186lbs. Currently, I’m sitting at 198lbs with 13.5% body fat and a lean mass of 171.3lbs.

Transformation99In 18 weeks I need to build 14.9lbs of muscle while dropping 7.5% body fat (14.9lbs). Is this really possible? It always seems impossible until it’s done! This is where sharing a little bit of my transformation history is helpful. In this “before” and “after” pic from 1999 I built 18lbs of muscle while losing 20lbs of fat within 18 weeks. However, I was also quite a bit younger (29 years old vs 45 today) and my lifestyle was much simpler with no kids and a low stress job with regular hours. Now having two young kids and being self-employed working from home presents both challenges and opportunities. An edge I never had before though is the nutritional cleansing lifestyle we follow as part of our contest prep along with what’s proving to be a uniquely effective line of new high performance nutrition products. Alissa and I made the commitment from our first competition to avoid the use of any fat-burners or high stimulant pre-workout drinks and nutritional products of any kind containing artificial sweeteners or colours. That really cuts out A LOT of products out there! So we are very excited about having access to a completely natural line of products for enhancing performance and recovery.

It’s been 7 weeks since I started my prep and I could not be more pleased with my progress so far. Here are my results to date:

Body Weight = 196lbs to 198lbs (+2lbs)

Body Fat = 16.5% or 32.3lbs to 13.5% or 26.7lbs (-5.6lbs)

Lean Body Mass = 163.7lbs to 171.3lbs (+7.6lbs)

If you believe the sky’s the limit, you probably won’t break through the atmosphere. But if you aim for the stars you’re much more likely to land on the moon!

Cndn National Championships-WorldQualifier-June2016

image

When I hit the gym I hold NOTHING back. I’m often asked, “What are you training for?…What sport do you play?…Why are you training so hard?” My answers used to be, “For the joy of it…Life is my sport…How you do one thing is how you do everything, and I’m one who believes we are here to give 100% (whatever that may be in this moment).”

Now, I’m training for something BIGGER. Something I never thought I’d be training for…In honour and for the love of my brother, and using the sport of bodybuilding as my vehicle. With only 1 week away from my next competition (IFBB World Naturals Qualifier) there’s a fine line between maximizing results and risking illness or injury when your’re giving every you’ve got.

A couple of days ago I strained a muscle in the left side of my lower back, to the point where it had me immobilized for most of the day yesterday. BUT with lots of rest, massage and stretching throughout the day my recovery process accelerated enough that I could hit the gym today for one of my last critical workouts. Although I knew I would have to be very careful and be prepared to modify my routine.

Exercising with a heightened sense of body awareness I began with the first exercise. I could tell the muscle strain was there but through extra attention given to the most perfect technique that involved consciously recruiting the muscles contributing as synergists and stabilizers I was not only able to avoid further stressing the injured muscle BUT better isolated the target muscles of the exercise AND at an increased load!

As I progressed through my routine I approached every exercise with this same strategy. By the end of the routine I could no longer feel my strained muscle! Rather than giving in to injury, I was able to apply “intelligent intensity” to training the “movement” of each exercise in such a way as to better isolate the target muscles and help the strained muscle recover.

I also have to admit that going into my workout I sent out a little prayer to Steve to help me get through this training session successfully. Thanks little Bro for whatever role you played in this 🙂

image

It’s amazing what quality nutrition you can throw together, especially something quick and easy to eat when there’s little time in your day to even eat it! Today I was booked back-to-back performing practical assessments on my university students for their CPTN personal training certification. The 4 meals pictured here took me a total of 10min to prepare. Then before beginning each of the scheduled practicals I simply took 5min out to fuel my body’s health, performance and recovery needs!

Meal #1 = IsaLean Shake* & Rice Cakes (morning post-workout)
Meal #2 = Cottage Cheese & Apple
Meal #3 = Tuna & Raw Veggies
Meal #4 = Chicken (leftovers) & Raw Veggies
Meal #5 = IsaLean Shake* (late afternoon pre-workout)
Meal #6 = Chicken, Beef or Eggs & Cooked Veggies & Brown Rice or Pasta
Meal #7 = Yogurt + whey protein + chia seed + almonds

Meals 1 to 4 are pictured as what I packed for my day.

*Note: The IsaLean shake is a whole-food total meal replacement with the nutrient equivalent to 4 balanced meals.

After my practicals I hit the gym, and after my workout I will consume my post-exercise recovery IsaLean Shake and then an hour later my largest meal of the day. This will consist of some source of protein (chicken, beef or eggs), some veggies and either pasta or brown rice for tonight.

Train Smart. Eat Smarter. Transform!

image

Yes, I can train and eat my cookies too! This is my post-workout meal combining the highest quality protein and a high glycemic carb. (No, I’m not going to eat ALL these cookies, just two 🙂 The RESULTS from exercise are enhanced because of how this takes full advantage of the unique physiological state the body is in immediately following exercise. The combination of exercise, the Isagenix Nutritional Cleansing Lifestyle and proper nutrient timing still allows me to enjoy my food even when training for a bodybuilding competition!

Train Smart. Eat Smarter. Transform!

image

First workout for today. Shoulders and calves to follow later this afternoon. CAUTION: I would never train with this intensity or volume without supporting every cell in my body with the proper nutrition plan guaranteeing my cells receive sufficient high quality protein and ALL the essential nutrients in a whole-food form complemented with synergistic supplementation. To attempt this kind of training with anything less is inviting INJURY, DISEASE and even ACCELERATED AGING with a SHORTENED LIFESPAN!

Train Smart, Eat Smarter!

image

As promised, after sharing my morning training session here is workout number two for today. Tomorrow I’ll be engaging in some ACTIVE RECOVERY and FAT-BURNING with a single session of a cardio-based KETTLEBELL CIRCUIT for 20-30min.

image

Just 7 weeks to the IFBB WORLD NATURAL QUALIFIER in Winnipeg on April 28th! This week I continue into my second week of increasing workout frequency by accelerating RECOVERY through NUTRITION. The combination of consistent meal timing (every 2.5-3hrs), increased protein intake (1.25g/lb of LBM), pre/post-exercise IsaLean Shakes and Product B Telomere Health & Antioxidant Support (6/day) is allowing me to achieve the otherwise impossible! I am able to reduce recovery time by up to 2 full days. For example, I train my arms 3x/week versus what I normally do at 2x/week. My chest and back are ready for more on the third or fourth day instead of the fifth day. In order to accommodate the ideal rest period for ALL muscle groups (as they all have different rates of recovery) and keep my workouts under 60min I will sometimes schedule 2 workouts per day for 2 different muscle groups.

Here is this morning’s workout for Chest and Back. For each workout I know EXACTLY what exercises I will be doing, how many sets and at what speed, how long my rest between sets to the second and with SPECIFIC goals for a certain number of reps at a pre-determined weight. However, I also fine tune this in real time during the workout to ensure my efforts are maximized…and so are my RESULTS!

This morning I was approached by another gym member who said “I’ve seen you training and you definitely look like you know what you’re doing. I have a question…” This happens quite often whether I’m at the gym, waiting in line at the grocery store, or enjoying time with my family at the beach. Outside of referrals, this is how I get most of my new clients, simply “Living by Example”.

As I post this I am just about to start my second workout for the day which I’ll be posting soon.