Fitness

Tough cycle to Wilmslow

Managed a cycle to Wilmslow on my day off. Had to get the train back as it chucked it down 😂
Fitness

On my bike

I have been looking around for quite sometime for a bike. I really wanted to spend the time finding the right one. I had been advised to find a hybrid, basically a road/track bike. I tried this Roam 4 2021 out in Suffolk and kind of fell in love with it! Can’t wait to go on cycle days and to include it in my commute.

Fitness

Yes, managed 95 lengths

Started to get my rhythm with front crawl. Early mornings a really helping me and starting weight training again, with 1hr sessions in the evening. đŸ’ȘđŸŒ

Fitness

Fitness Update

Its been ages since I wrote about fitness, the last time was back in April when I was well underway with my cutting programme. After losing what felt like alot of body fat I eased the deficit back after my holiday to Ibiza in July. Since then I have alowed myslef into a slight surplus of calories. I really didnt want to increase it all by much but just enough to continue to give me a good source of energy. 

If you have been reading the past couple of blog posts, I have since moved to Manchester. I have been doing my hardest to remain in a good fitness routine, I have since discovered how much a good routine can impact nearly every part of your fitness. So I guess I just told myself that I have to accept the moving transition and just do my best to achieve my goals.

One thing this year was the discovery of my new favourite YouTuber Jeff Nippard. I have been following Mike Matthews for a while now and he was the guy who wrote Bigger, Leaner Stronger which is what I based my cutting diet off of. So I found Jeff Nippard, he is a Canadian based natural bodybuilder. I initially came across his videos on YouTube and I particularly liked his scientific-based approach to his content. Jeff and Mike both share this pattern and I really like that how every statement he makes is backed up by a lot of research from studies all over the world. I also found a few similarities in both their training patterns and processes. When you have clarification from tips and suggestions it really helps you believe you can achieve and I guess this is how I have become motivated.

Imagine this with a smile haha

During the tail end of the summer, I really started to enjoy working out the lower body. I found it super challenging and also rewarding. I have put as much skill as I physically and possibly can into leg training, some days have been terrible but other have been great. Last night I had a great leg workout and managed to reach my PB which I haven't in ages due to attempting to perfect my form of the squat. Anyways, I decided to change the routine around. When I discovered Jeff Nippards PPL (Push Pull Legs) programme I was excited that I could train legs twice a week. I really felt like that's what I needed to do to progress. It just gives your body enough time to recover during the week before hitting the same muscle groups again. 

The programme is designed to take you through 8-week blocks of increased volume work. The idea is that you (like Mike Matthews) just add volume and increase resistance over time. Along with this, I have kept a reasonable diet, aided by the calculations from the Bigger Leaner Stronger book. For me recently I feel that my shoulders and legs have progressed on better than other areas. I have really enjoyed this programme and I am now able to exchange exercises more confidently than I did. I have been continuing HIIT training twice a week where I feel it fits.

I have recently made a discovery in Manchester, they have just opened a Barrys Bootcamp. I went to a class with my brother and his girlfriend the other weekend and I have decided that these classes can replace one of my HIIT training sessions. Also I have felt it nessecary to start going from a socialbe aspect too. 

Now I'm not a big one for creating to over the top new years resolutions, but I want to start a deficit diet in the new year. Sometimes it is just easier to join everyone else who is trying to diet in the new year. I will next post a fitness update in 2019.

Fitness

Cutting Update

So I have now completed 9 weeks of my cutting diet. I have found it a real challenge,  I have been sitting in a calorie deficit for the whole 9 weeks. I have attempted to keep my activity levels higher so I have been burning more calories through out the day than what I am eating. This has then caused my body to start eating at fat storage. So, if you want the figures, I have been eating around 2000 calories and have been burning around 2700 a day on average. I have learnt so much about how the body copes when you give it less energy that it requires. Heres what i've learnt Energy Levels  You cant really measure energy levels but its certainly noticeable within a few weeks of changing your diet. You start a cut with a lot of energy and when your body tries to adapt to the increase in activity levels and the reduction in calories your energy levels do drop. Now my aim during this diet is to maintain a constant stream of calories and also to ensure that the deficit sits between 20 - 25% of the TDEE (Total Daily Energy Expenditure). Any more than this your body would really suffer with energy levels and it would all be too much. Weight and Body Fat I have monitored my body weight and also the BF percentage. I started at around 95.5kg and I weighed myself this morning at 89.4kg. I started at around 18% BF and now appear to be somewhere around 14%. I feel happy with the results but I have learnt not to take weight and figures to strictly as they will vary massively. Fluctuation is very very common and trying to get an accurate BF measurement can be tough unless you always measure at the same point on the body Appearance and Clothes Everyone is completely different with their bodies. You can hold mass in different amounts all over the body but for me I have lost fat nearly all over the body. People have really seen it in my face, I have seen it mainly in my torso. In my book it says that the navel is a good point to reference off because thats where fat normally comes away from. It was so true! Strength With any cutting diet you have to be prepared to work hard to keep strength in the gym. For me I have managed to maintain my strength. I have not really progressed with the squat but with deadlifts, chest press and over head press I have gained some strength. I have really focused on form during the cut and I wont let myself get out of line with good range and rep speed. Whats next? I have good plans for my next steps. As i'm off on holiday shortly, I am going to use that week as a kind of re-feed week. Im going to have just 7 days away from weighted exercises and mainly focus on body weighted while I have a little extra calories. Im not doing to stray away from good proteins and complex carbs but I will come back off the holiday ready for more training.
Fitness

Let’s talk fitness

So as we are all aware, a New Year is upon us. I am not really a big believer in a New Year, new me only because I don't feel that I need an excuse to start a fresh. Definitely making an instant change it the way to do things.. why wait? This can be said for almost all areas, not just fitness and health. All you need is a goal. Something to be as a target or and achievement, it shouldn't be to out of reach either. For me my aim/goal is to attempt to loose stubborn fat and once achieved I will start to build and lean out as much as I can. 2017 has been a wild year, I have started to make it to the gym at 6:15am most days. Now I feel that little and often works well for me although a morning rise means that you need a bigger warm-up before exercise. I have ensured that I have slowed down my reps as its easy to get into a habit of speeding up. Also in 2017 I have discovered the world of Body Pump. This, if you don't know is a high endurance class where its weight based. I have been using this class to really extend my range of nearly all forms of compound and isolated moves. Its also fun because you are in a group too. When I participate, I don't necessarily load the biggest weight on, instead I focus on completing the reps along with the instructor. So, I have now started to put a bit of time into research and plan exactly how I will attack my fitness. I have discovered that I love pushing my body to limits and its what I enjoy regardless of what people may say or any opinions that they have. I have also realised what a mental stimulant it is for me, allowing myself to have an hour to myself each day. I will also continue to stretch, its important even on my days off the gym. Since doing may classes I have learnt a-lot of stretching techniques. Here is my fitness plan going forward:
  • Legs and Abdominals
  • Chest and Triceps
  • Back and Biceps
  • Shoulders
  • 3 x Cardio Sessions @ Heart Rate: 140bpm for 30mins a week
  • 1 x Body Pump Class for 1hr (I may use this as one of my cardio sessions)
So as you can see there is a-lot to do. But, I will be having rest days from the weightlifting which would leave me a only a 30 minute session on the rest days, it wont take me long. As for nutrition, I have done well with splitting my meal times up recently, I will continue to have between 5 and 6 meals a day. I will also take a multi vitamin and some BCAA's. I had experience on a cutting diet from the summer 2017 and I have learnt a-lot about the correct foods and portion sizes. January, is often a good time to focus on health and fitness as a-lot of people generally do. Have you got any plans? Comment below.
Fitness Health

Dumbbell Bent Over Row

Ok, here is another great body manoeuvre that can give you a stronger back. I'm not a personal trainer but I was taught this from one years ago. You get a flat bench and rest one part of your body on it. You will then raise a suitable dumbbell from a low position to a high position. It is incredibly important to ensure that you back is straight and that your shoulders are parallel to the floor. If you are struggling with your shoulders then you probably have the wrong weight. Repeat on each side and remember 'Form' is everything. Count up and hold then lower down slowly. :)
Fitness Health

HIIT 

I've decided to take another direction with my morning runs. I've decided to start HIIT. (High Intestity Invertval Training). Basically you have two maybe three modes of training levels done in separate intervals. Research has shown you can burn more fat than someone running at a steady pace with less amount of time. But you have to slowly ease yourself into this type of training as it can be fairly intense.  Today I got up in the pouring rain and headed out after downloading a HIIT app for my phone/watch. It then timed me to do 10 sets of 15second sprints and 60second rests. I did manage quite well, although I'm going to increase the sprint time and reduce the rep time each week. Let's see how I get on.  Here is more information - Bodybuilding HIIT
Fitness

The Squat

One of the best multiple compound moves the human body can preform. I find that doing this move can strengthen nearly every part of the lower body. The main muscles that are in use are the Quadriceps, Glutes, Adductors and the Hamstrings. It's essential to keep a solid straight back and not allow a too heavy weight effect your preformance. A good range is key. If your putting in enough effort you get more worn out than going for a sprint!