16 Weeks out plus big booty hoe goals

Back Squat PR 155
Back Squat PR 155.

Switching my show from the April to June time frame was the best thing! I’m so glad. I have a new coach and I’m really trying to be less stressed.

One of my biggest concerns has always been my inability to sleep well. I fall asleep early (8pm) but I’m up awake with a busy mind. I am such a worrier! I worry about my family, my clients, it’s just over whelming. I find myself thinking about work all night long. Just so you know, this is not a new development. It takes me days to relax when we go on vacation. When I was in prep for my show last year, I had the same trouble.
One lovely night, the planets aligned and I got 9 hours of sleep. I woke up to a new set of abs! You see, sleep is very important to progress.

My coach suggested a cortisol blocker and I picked up some Down Time from 1st Phorm at Supplement Superstore. I took that Saturday night and had
an excellent night of sleep. I was actually relaxed. It was awesome! I recommend it. I was a bit groggy when I got up and with the time change, we didn’t make it to the gym until 11 am. It was really nice not to “have” to be somewhere.
squat

Legs: booty boo,
Goal: The last 30 days we have been working on a glute thrusting challenge with our team at Sleek.  We thrust every day and are hearing amazing results from our clients.
I did not thrust before this but it’s a crazy effective workout.  I PR’d last week at 185.
I started a month ago at 65 pounds and was too sore to move!
I have a very hard time maintaining muscle once I start my cardio/cutting phase.
I will be thrilled to have more muscle this year than last!  I’m lifting so much heavier this time.

PR
I do my leg day on Sundays and this week was one of my best. I fueled up with my Alpha Cre HD, C4 and a bottle of waterlemon branch chains. I started with my back squat. My last PR was 135 and I did 155 this week. I got in 2 sets of 8. I dropped back to 115 and did a bunch of  quick pace  @ss to grass squats as well.

I did not PR on my deads this week, but I did drop back to 95 and did 6 sets. My glutes/hammies were on fire. I added Sumo deads in.  My inner thighs.. oh lawdy. So hard to get tight.

Finished my leg day with, diamond squats on the hack, back extensions with 25 pounds, back lunges, thrusts until I wept.

We are going to begin official prep at 14 weeks. I’m excited about that. I’ll be able to hit my track workouts outside with Rob, my team and my boo, Claire who never quits!

Today is a glorious day. I hope you have a fantastic one and that you are mindful of your goals. Keep pushing!!
xoxo

Supplement 101: Pre-workout C4 Extreme

In my training, I rely on a pre-workout for amazing results.   There are many pre-workouts on the market and the one
that I like the best is Cellucore’s C4 Extreme.  I want to tell you why a girl like me, would use a product like this.

As a side note:  I know that there are a million reviews, articles, and videos about supplements such as creatine, BA and
pre-workouts, but I want to keep it simple for my clients and those who just want the basics. If you want to get super geeky, then Google away!! 

My supplement philosophy: The supplements that I use and recommend to my Elite clients are to help with muscle recovery and better performance. I do not believe all supplements are perfect for all people.  Everyone is different.  I also do not recommend any supplementation unless your food is correct. If you are someone  who feels that you might enjoy the benefits that a pre- workout can give, C4 might be your holy grail!

Why do I take it?
I am a low energy girl. I’ve been caffeinated since 1982.  Whoohooo…C4  contains 135 mg of caffeine. This is the equivalent of one  8 oz. cup of drip coffee or a double shot of espresso.   Caffeine does help in workouts with mental focus. It makes me fired up and ready to work!   I can tell when my clients pre-workout has kicked in!  It’s GAME ON.

My holy grail: Creatine
C4 has 1 gram of creatine.  I am a huge fan of creatine.   There has been so much research about creatine yet it’s very misunderstood. I have had amazing results with  creatine through both my preps.  Creatine’s benefits include:

1. Building lean muscle mass
2. Assisting with high intensity workouts.  Those arch stairs were a breeze, because creatine assists in athletic performance with longer durations of high intensity work.  I flew up those stairs, like never before and there are LOTS of them.
3. Assisting in anaerobic capacity.  My HIIT workouts are necessary for my prep. I need to be able to workout longer and harder for best results.
4. Building strength.  Who doesn’t want more strength!!
5. Creatine also assists in muscle recovery.

Beta-Alanine.
C4 also contains 1.5 grams of Beta-Alanine.
Beta Alanine is a natural formed amino acid that you typically would find in animal proteins like beef, pork and tuna.

Benefits of Beta-Alanine
1.Boosts explosive muscular strength and power output.
2.Increases muscle mass.
3.Boosts muscular anaerobic  endurance. (HIIT)
4.Increases aerobic endurance.
5. Increases exercise capacity so you can train harder and longer.

Like creatine, BA helps the muscle work longer and harder.  It makes you vascular so you pump more blood to the muscle.
I have always found great success in my prep with a BA/creatine stack.  This stack in C4 is much less than I take during the day so I do supplement with extra to reach my recommended daily amount of 3-5 grams of creatine and 4-5 grams of BA.

Beta Alanine can give you the tingles. Not to worry, if you take it with food, it lessens. It does subside as you take it longer.
I don’t notice it anymore.  You can also increase your water and that helps as well.  A lot of people like the tingles. I don’t mind.

I recommend that everyone investigate the label of your products and make sure that they mesh with your medications or ability to take caffeine.  For that reason, I also recommend you purchase your supplements at a store that has a great return policy.

Where to buy?
I purchased my C4 Extreme at GNC and I love the new Strawberry Margarita flavor. The Fruit Punch flavor is on sale currently at Costco for 38.99 for two 30 serving containers. That’s  a steal!

A friendly reminder:  Stores like GNC have bonus incentives for their sales people to sell certain products each month. I have noticed that I don’t always get the same recommendations on products when I shop at the supplement stores so I like to do my own research.  You *might* go in looking for C4 and be steered to another product based on what their incentives to sell are.  Just tossing that out there.. See if you can score some samples. If the manufacture is making a big push, they will often send samples to the store.  That’s how I found C4.

Cautionary tale
A local trainer once told me that creatine has no benefits and has a placebo effect. He shamed me for taking it and deemed my results basically imaginary. He then posted a link to his favorite workout supplement giving it glowing praise.  His post said he could not have won his trophies without this amazing product.  I looked up the ingredients for his product and found 5 grams of creatine and 5 grams of Beta alanine in the stack.
*smh*

On that note, I am here to assist, to give you my perspective and experience with products I have used.  At the end of the day, you can do amazing discovery and decide what is optimal for your training and desired results!

Christmas update : Preparing to prep

Image
My son gifted me this old-school hex bar for Christmas.  I love it!

Merry Christmas!
Yesterday was our family Christmas day. We had an amazing day together.
I hope your holiday is amazing!!

UPDATE:
This is a little prep update. I’m feeling pretty much like it’s two steps forward and 1 step back.
In the last several weeks, I’ve found some things have not been working.
I’m going to refer to this as a very good learning experience.

My stack:
 I made changes to my stack at the advice of my contacts at both SS2 and GNC.
I feel both of these men know their products but the disconnect is, they don’t know me.
This project is about ME figuring out what is the best stack for me.

Creatine/BA

I removed Alpha-Cre HD because I felt it was causing me quite a bit of bloat.
Alpha-Cre is a product that contains a mix of Creatine and Beta-Alanine (BA)
Pros of ALPHACre-HD
1. I felt great.
2. Noticeable strength gains
3.Noticeable increase in cardio fuction  during durations of 30-50 second blasts.  (Arch stairs, blown away)

Cons of ALPHACre-HD
1.Puffy.
Note: Creatine can cause you to hold water in the muscle. I understand that is part of it’s general function. Each rep tells me though that their product won’t bloat.

Switched to
Epiq Strength. 
I switched because this product was supposed to cause no bloating. It was to go straight into the muscle as opposed to being passed through or pooling around the kidneys causing belly fat.  There is less creatine in this product than is in Cellucore’s C4 pre-workout.
I felt like a wet noodle.  I got no BA tingle and noticed no vascularity, no creatine pump.
I’m sure all the super lifters will tell me that  I am probably misunderstanding the ins-and outs of creatine as there is so much research out there. I am still learning!

I saw great results with Krey-alkaline in my last prep. I still feel like the monohydrate  (Alpha-Cre) worked best of all.
Both products are about the same price: $45.

I’m sure I could rock some old school cheap pharm creatine and BA. Maybe next off season, we’ll test that out!

First Phorm Ignition.
Added that for one month. Pulled that back out.
I was taking less than half a scoop of Ignition pre and post workout.  It is straight up sugar. It tasted AWESOME! Whoo hoo. It’s straight up sugar! I felt great, but…apparently, even that amount of sugar is too much for me. I lost definition in my abs. I probably needed to adjust my calories and carbs elsewhere, but it was just a bust.  Here’s why I think it wasn’t right. I train at my studio for 3-5 hours
and am much better and leaner with ‘slow-carbs’.  I leaned out on lots of sweet potatoes.  Quickie sugar products like Ignition might be awesome for someone like The Rock. Apparently, despite the research on Ignition, it is not for me.

Pro-sculpt:  I was on GNC’s prosculpt for 2 months.  I love that product.
I switched out to my regular CLA caps and Epiq Shred fat burner. I used Shred last prep season with great results.
This time, I’m not totally sure. I have had terrific results on Prosculpt.
My GNC contact tells me that it’s crap. I needed to switch up anyway after using it for 2 months.  I really miss it.
I’m almost done with my month off so I will most likely start
back on it again until I have to pull my supplements. One man’s crappy product is a winner for me. My clients had great results with it too.  Go-figure.

Sleep:
What’s that? I am exhausted and fall asleep sometimes at 7pm.   I have a hard time staying asleep. My brain will not shut off. I take my ZMA before bed and have added  GNC Beyond RAW® RE-FEED – super anabolic night time recovery protein (casein). It has ingredients to help you stay asleep. So far I like it. I think if I had a solid 8 of uninterrupted sleep, I’d feel much better.  Sleep is always my challenge in this process.

De-load
 I have been training hard for the last 3 months.  The problems I am having now, may not wholly be supplement based. I really started to feel like I was over training. My gains slowed down and my energy was really low.  I did a de-load week 2 weeks ago and came back to lift heavy last week.  Still felt pretty weak.  pffft.

This last week of the year is a great time for me to listen to my body. I’ve added more pilates back into my workouts. I did some re-feeds as well.
I feel so much better.  I am still hitting the gym but taking my lifts down quite a bit.  I have 30 days before I start my actual 12 week prep. It’s a great time to reflect on  what I’ve learned in the past 3 months, and set goals going forward.

Merry Christmas!

Prep Update- 25 weeks out

I am 7 weeks from my bikini challenge goal and 23 weeks from my show.

Successes this week.
I was spot on with my food and workouts. I had the best Plyo session of my life. I really don’t like Plyo so that’s huge.
I also have the coolest clients, who came out on Sunday morning to run the arch stairs. We did 22 trips up and down. That’s by
far the most I’ve ever done. We hit box jumps on the benches under the arch too. I felt great. I’m so thankful that I feel great!!

Box Jumps video

Switching up:
Working on some tiny tweaks to my meal plan this week. I’m feeling frustrated because I am holding a lot of water from my creatine loading.
I understood that it could happen. Some people actually like that! I am on Alpha Cre HD for just 30 more days. I will then switch to KreyAlkaline until we pull that before my show. I had only used KreyAlkaline in my last prep,so this is a new experience for me.
KreyAlkaline is supposed to have less bloating and I definitely experienced that. I did not, however have the strength gains I’ve had with my new stack. My strength gains are amazing. I leg pressed 230 two weeks ago. That was the highest I had done in my last prep.
This past week I did 4 sets at 300 pounds. Whoo hoo. I need to lift heavy. I have to build out my glutes. Once I start cutting, I tend to lose a lot of muscle! Come on, round booty!

I’m excited to notice a huge boost in my performance as well. Yesterday I did fast sprints up the arch stairs. Creatine helps those longer sprints too.
Getting used to being more bloated is tough for me. It’s a mental exercise to get used to my off season body.

New supplements this week. Cinnamon Toast Crunch protein. YUM
New supplements this week. Cinnamon Toast Crunch protein. YUM

We also stopped by Supplement Super Store and picked up new protein powder. Level-1 Cinnamon Toast Crunch, Frooty D loops and Ice Cream Sandwich. I’m adding in Ignition post lift too. These flavors are incredible. They are very sweet especially with the Ignition. I’m going to make the ice cream sandwich thicker and freeze it for my last meal. That will satisfy my need for sweets before bed.

Meal Prep:

Rob always preps my food. I’m so lucky. We have a deal I clean and do laundry while he food preps. That works for me! Here’s what our meals are for this week. Believe me, this is a bounty of great food. I am thankful every day for the ability to do this and for the support of my family. They eat what I eat. 🙂

Buffalo chicken, sweet potato chips, Chicken Fajitas, Chicken and Egg plant
Buffalo chicken, sweet potato chips, Chicken Fajitas, Chicken and Egg plant
Front: Herbed Chicken with yellow peppers, Spinach and kidney beans, Cajun tilapia
Front: Herbed Chicken with yellow peppers, Spinach and kidney beans, Cajun tilapia
Chicken stuffed pablanos with egg plant chips
Chicken stuffed pablanos with egg plant chips
Organic Girl baby Kale bakes into garlic kale chips.
Organic Girl baby Kale bakes into garlic kale chips.

All of the meals are separated into our containers after they have been weighed. Rob made all this food in 3 hours. We also have in the mix a no carb noodle made from tofu. Found that at Walmart. I won’t over indulge on that but it’s great. He did ours with chicken and mushrooms.

I’m set to have a great week. I hope you do too!

4 week progress update

Not every week is perfect.
Not every week is perfect.

I am 4 weeks into my off season training. My challenge goal of December 23, is just 8 weeks away.
This week was a mixed bag.

Positives:
I got all my workouts in. I lifted really heavy and really hard.
Gave my booty some extra push this week.
Food was spot on.
Water great.
Supplements… Check.
I felt really strong this week. Love, love that!

Not so great:
My cheat meal on Saturday messed me up. I did NOT feel well!
I felt like I was coming down with a cold this week, which I did not. Bullet dodged!
I’m doing some different things with my supplements. I tried to take Pro-sculpt twice a day (as per the label)
I also started Mega Ignite which is the product recommended with Prosculpt. I had some rough panic/mood issues. I
I know, consider yourself lucky you weren’t around. I dialed that back immediately!

I’m also crazy bloated! Jury is still out on why. Is it the Creatine monohydrate or salt, or just me. hmmmm.

I didn’t sleep well, but let’s be honest. I don’t usually. In my last show, I got to a point where my gains were really slowing down. One night I slept 9 hours and my abs came in! I know sleep is probably one of my biggest hurdles.

I think I look super puffy today. I’m pressing on. Not every week is going to be perfect. Looking for some great strides in the coming. Re-thinking my cheat meal for sure!

21 days into my off season training results

My results with my meal plans and supplement stacks.
My results with my meal plans and supplement stacks. This is just 21 days.

I’m finishing my meal plan for week 9.  I am 9 weeks from my challenge goal date of December 23. No show on that day, this is when our bikini challenge at my studio ends..
So actually this is 21 days into my program.  I am eating over 140 carbs a day-more on my leg days. Right now, I don’t see myself  cutting carbs at all.  My goal is to eat as many clean carbs as I can and still continue to see results.

I have had at least 1 cheat meal each week. I have had cupcakes 2 weeks in a row.
I didn’t this past weekend for my cheat meal. I was not feeling well after I had one at my cheat meal day 15.  I’m not craving, jonesing, tweaking, twerking or anything for crappy food right now.  That’s a great place for me, since I’m a closet binger. I am sooo much more focused when I have accountability and a goal.

I have stayed on my meal plan spot on this week except for 2 days when I did not get all my protein in.  One of my days I did not get all my water in. I’m aiming for 100 ounces daily.
Supplement changes
I am loading creatine right now and had a few days where I felt some bloat, but today, I actually didn’t feel bloated at all!  Hopefully I won’t have a big issue with it overall..  When I started prepping for my June show back in January 2013, my coach put me on Kre-Alkalyn Efx. I had great results with it.  Since I have 27 weeks until the show, I wanted to try AlphaCreHD. I’m taking 1 scoop before my workout with 1/2 scoop of C4.  One scoop of AlphaCreHd 8 hours later.  So far, I’m really feeling good in my workouts and liking the results.

I’m documenting my supplements (all of them.. so many.. sooooo many!! ) and referencing them with my weekly meal plan changes and selfies.   I’m the queen of over thinking, but that’s how I learn.

Workouts are the same as my clients thus far.
Monday: Glutes-hamstrings.
Tuesday: Back-biceps
Wednesday: Plyo (sometimes plus Quads/calves) This week was straight plyo for 30 minutes and nothing else.
Thursday: Chest-shoulders-triceps
Friday: Pilates I did three hours of pilates today. Two hours on the springboards and 1 hour on the mat.
I do not recommend 3 hours of pilates but that’s my job.  Clients who came, got 1 hour.
Saturday/Sunday: Rest for me this week.

So far, feeling good. Cheat meal on Saturday night. whoo hoo.
Tell me how your program is going!!