From A-D: Breast augmentation & training 2-Weeks Post-op (Update #2)

Today marks just over 2-weeks post my breast augmentation, so I’m attempting to keep myself sane by creating some sort of ‘memoirs’, if you can call them that. Really, I’m just noting down my current state: both psychological and physical during my so-called “break” from training for the next few painstakingly, monotonous and mundane weeks – I think this sentence pretty much sums up my current stance on a strictly no-training-allowed basis. Clearly this is self-inflicted and easily avoidable; so I’m not going to receive too much sympathy I know, but hey, any other fitness fanatic will understand how taking time off from training feels; even restraining yourself from the gym for one day is tough enough!

“My time off is allowing me to construct and plan my goals for next year.”

I have a few shows that I intend on competing in next year: NABBA West (which I have competed in for the past two years); PCA which will also be held at the same venue as the aforementioned federation and fingers crossed for an invite to the finals for both federations in the event that I pace within the top 3. This will undoubtedly be the most challenging year of competing for me due to the volume of shows I intend to participate in; but they all slot in perfectly – allowing me to dial in my conditioning and really challenge myself like never before. I’m aiming for this to be a very successful year; holding nothing back and really digging deep! My time off is allowing me to construct and plan my goals for next year – remember, prep is key.

My next check-up appointment is on the 8th of September, which will mark 4-weeks post-op. I’m hoping that I will be given the all clear to start light training with extra precaution of course. At the moment I’m able to pick up very light weight in terms of daily chores: a rubbish bag, washing basket and so forth, but I still remain particularly weak and feeble – no, I’m not joking. I think this is more psychological rather than physical; I’m overriding my instincts to return to my clumsy and careless ways (in terms of flailing my body about), to avoid any unwanted injuries that may regress my recovery.  Believe me, this is  a challenge in itself.

Aesthetically I’m not too pleased. My full-looking muscle bellies have dissipated; any resemblance of athleticism has, in my eyes, disappeared and my appetite has diminished – which spells out a chaotic path for competing next year. This is currently how I perceive my physique and current physical state; however, we all know the mind divulges in game-playing, so my cognitive ability to objectively access my current state is somewhat obscure. Arguably there is no denying I have lost a percentage of muscle mass, but this was inevitable and a risk I knew I would have to take. Until my next check-up, I will continue to keep as active as possible through dog-walking and the odd bit of low-impact cardiovascular work!

Thanks for reading guys & Happy Lifting x

 

From A-D: Breast augmentation & training (Update #1)

By now most of you know that I have undergone surgery – specifically, breast augmentation. Some may be asking why I had this done; in terms of changing my physique and taking time off training.

The answer is simple really: I have always disliked my abnormally small ‘assets’; stemming from bullying throughout my younger years to not being able to fill beautiful garments; they had always been a hinderance on my self-esteem and ability to look how I wanted. It seemed as if during my stages of forming within the womb the ‘breast-development’ stage was skipped – thanks a lot.  It was difficult growing up watching your sister, friends and other girls develop breasts while yours stubbornly remained at such an embarrassing size and ceased to grow. Even that little bit more for a respectful B cup would have been a step in the right direction… but the day never came.

As a bodybuilder, my aim is clean-cut and simple: I want an admirable physique; one that I can continuously sculpt and carve to create my desired look. We all want to look and feel as good as we possibly can – whether your goal is to compete; train for health benefits or otherwise, the end result is the 9/10 going to be the same – we want to feel better about ourselves – am I right?

My were thoughts were this: I’m training 5-6 times a week trying to achieve the physique I desire through correct training and nutrition, yet I’m lacking in an area which I can’t enhance myself – my breasts. So, the opportunity arose and I took it. I’m in my off-season and strong which will aid in my recovery; my next competition isn’t until April/May 2018 which means I had to make a decision there and then. I didn’t want to get further down the line in competing and then decide to have the surgery done – it just wouldn’t make sense. Therefore, sacrificing some time off training now will be advantageous for my future plans!

Where am I now? So evidently I’m not allowed to do any resistance training as of yet; this means no upper or lower body training (your core and upper body stabilise during these movements) for at least another week; I’ll assess how I’m feeling and then decide how to approach my training from then on. At the moment I’m just doing functional, diurnal activities such as dog walking, household chores and just generally keeping mobile and active! Yesterday I went back to the gym to do some cardiovascular work – yay… but it felt great to get the blood shunted around my body again. Evidently, this has to be low-intensity and with minimal impact, so I’m using the recumbent bike for the time being! The reason behind this is that the implants are not yet settled within my body and its surrounded tissues; any excessive and high-impact movements could result in displacement of the implants and complications that I would much rather avoid! As you can see, it’s not that exhilarating but it does the trick.

As the weeks progress, I will continue to upload updates in regards to my training and current mindset! If you have any questions in relation to the surgery; training with breast implants or anything else that you may want to know, please send me a message and I’ll get back to you ✌🏻

Thank you for reading – Happy lifting x

Ketosis – how increasing your fat intake will help you lose weight!

You may have seen the word “Ketosis’ or ‘Ketogenic Diet’ surface a lot recently and some may wonder:

  • A: What on earth is ‘Ketosis’,  ‘Ketogenic diet’ or ‘low-carb diet’?
  • B: How does increasing your fat intake help you lose weight?
  • C: How can I pursue a Ketogenic diet correctly?

Well, that is what I am going to tell you now; not in an overdrawn and scientifically heavy manner either – I want to make this form of ‘dieting’ a lot more accessible and understandable for everyone.

Let’s begin with the noun Ketosis:
Usually our bodies use carbohydrates as a main source for fuel in order to generate movement/muscular contractions and provides us with energy; this can vary on the duration and intensity of your exercise; but that’s a whole other discussion we can cover later. This is broken down into glucose which is then converted into glycogen and stored within our muscles and liver as a fuel source. Easy so far right? So once we start to reduce our carbohydrate intake, our glucose levels undoubtedly will diminish and our blood sugar levels will dip – the body requires an alternative fuel source; fat is next in line. The body oxidises (burns) fat stores in order to meet the body’s demands; this produces metabolic by-products called ‘Ketones’.

Due to the fuel source changing from carbohydrates to fats, we therefore need to change our caloric percentages and macronutrient split.

In order to truly become in a ketogenic state, your caloric percentages should be as follows:

  • Carbohydrates (5%) or lower: your overall caloric intake should consist of 5% or less carbohydrates. For example, if your overall caloric intake was 2,500kcal – 125kcal (31g) of that should be carbohydrates.
  • Protein (20%): again, we don’t need to go protein mad as this can in fact stop ketosis through a metabolic process called ‘Gluconeogenesis’. This is where the body converts excess protein into glucose; the body therefore believes it is once again reliant on carbohydrates as a fuel source – so be aware of this little demon. Therefore, an intake of 2,500kcal, with protein at 20% would equal 500kcal (125g).
  • Fats (75%): Automatically your hands will now be clutching at your phone, laptop or whichever device you are reading this from and start contemplating: “surely that is not right!?” I’m here to tell you it is! The media have hard-wired our brains into thinking “fats are the enemy”, “carbs are the enemy” – it is simply not true. These people are not nutritionists; they lack the scientific knowledge and expertise… so I’ve diverged away from the subject at hand, I apologise… so, at an intake of 2,500kcal, 75% – 1,875kcal (208g) is derived from our dietary fats.

Here is an example from my diet during competition prep –
Note: at this stage in my prep, I was in full Ketosis from tapering off carbohydrates.

Meal 1:
2 x whole eggs
2 x egg whites
40g x soft cream cheese (dairy-free)
25g x almonds

Snack 2
25g x Brazil nuts

Meal 2
20g x Pecan nuts
100g x Almond yogurt
Cinnamon

Meal 3
180g x lean turkey mince
1/2 (50-60g) x Avocado
Mixed green leaf salad

Snack 2
1 x tbsp Meridian crunchy peanut butter

Meal 4
Turkey bacon x 3 rashers
2 x eggs omelette with 1 x large portion of spinach
3 x asparagus stems

NB: this is an example of my diet – remember, this is only relative to my micronutrient split – everyone requires their own individual macronutrient and caloric needs.

There we have it – the ‘Ketogenic Diet’; short but sweet…well not sweet at all due to the lack of carbohydrates, but you catch my drift. I hope I have provided you all with a better insight into what the diet entails and how it can facilitate fat loss. If you would like to try a Ketogenic diet, I am more than happy to help!

Happy Lifting!

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Why So Serious?

So for a while now I have been meaning to start either a vlog or a blog – evidently I have opted for the latter; believe it or not, I am a little camera shy so I shall build my way up to video blogging…

The whole purpose behind this blog is to allow others, such as yourself, to have an insight into my life as a bodybuilder – what my schedule looks like on a day-to-day basis: training, nutrition, coaching and all the nitty gritty details that are frequently brushed over – especially during competition prep.

Realistically, I want this to be platform for discussion and clarification for those who are unsure – let’s face it, there is a lot of overwhelming and conflicting information out there that we have all fallen victim to and I’m here to help.

So this is just a brief introduction to let you know what I aim to achieve with my blog.

My next post with be about “The Ketogenic Diet’ – if you have any question you would like answered in relation to this subject, please get in contact and I will do my best to answer then.

Happy Lifting

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