Stepping Up My Game

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You don’t see any workout posts lately because I’m not doing my own programming anymore and I’m not working out alone or remotely anymore. I joined a local gym a couple of months ago and it has motivated me to step up my game! I’m ready for some PR’s, getting lean, and feeling great! I’m tired of settling for “just enough”. I want more once again. I took two and a half years “off”. Although I kept working out and trying different programs to gain strength or whatever, I didn’t focus on nutrition AT ALL. I kept eating fast food, junk food, and drinking tons of sodas.

Then came the new gym. I have people to work out with every day now. I have coaches who help correct my form and give me advice. I have a leaderboard to look at every day to see where I stand up against the other girls who can WOD Rx. I once again have motivation, desire, and a need to improve! I also have the tools and access to people who can help me to improve. I’m no longer going it alone!

It was a big decision to do the Whole30 challenge, as it meant ending my love affair with sugary and diet sodas. (Cherry Coke, I miss you.) But, it has been 7.5 weeks and I’m still alive. I haven’t died yet. I miss them still from time to time, and there are days when I would just rather order a pizza or pick up some Chick-Fil-A. But I’m afraid of the fall-out from doing that. Will it put me back on that slacker track? Will I be like a crack addict? Will I be sick and in gut pain for days?

I don’t intend to find out yet. Coming straight off the Whole30 I decided to pull out my Eat To Perform books and join the ETP two month challenge. My goal is to get stronger, hit some new PRs, put on some muscle mass, and hopefully lose some bodyfat as well. The ETP Challenge means tweaking my diet until I get it just right. Getting it “right” means the right number of calories, tweaking my macro percentages so that I can build muscle and lose fat, and make sure I also do the right percentages on WOD days as well as rest days.

I’ve got a starting point, and my plan is to stick to the plan as closely as possible, while evaluating how I feel weekly to see if I need to make adjustments. Everyone is different, and as much as I want to take everyone’s advice and suggestions I have to just figure out what specifically works for me. There is really no one-size-fits all, so I’m not going to have expectations of immediate results. In fact I expect to have to make adjustments often.

But, I am looking forward to the next two months to see what I can do and what I can achieve. It’s time to Step Up My Game!!!

UPDATE as of 12/29/2014: In the three months since starting ETP I lost a total of 8.1 lbs of FAT, and gained a total of 6.3 lbs of MUSCLE. After the first two months I gained 2.5 lbs muscle and lost 5 lbs of fat. Then I increased my carb goal by 25g (250g training days, 125g rest days). The third month saw 3.75 lbs muscle gained and 3.15 lbs fat lost, for a new bodyfat % of 14.6.

For month four I’ll stick with my carb goal and see how it goes. If that goes well again I may increase it 275g training days, 137g rest days). My goal is to continue to perform well in the gym while seeing how low I can get my bodyfat before performance starts to decline. I’ve never been lower than 14% so I have no idea if I can even go lower, or what it would feel like.

I also want to test my carb limits to see how high I can go before I see a negative impact on my body composition. I am my own test guinea pig, and now that I have found a plan that is sustainable long-term I feel comfortable making small changes as I go to see what impact those changes have.

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