8 weeks out updates

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Almost..8 weeks out.
I use my blog to show benchmarks in my training/progress. I don’t send pics to coaches  since I’m self coached but I still do weekly pics.  I have been busting my booty this week. I ‘almost’ had a cold but found my way out of that so that’s good.
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T
his is 11 weeks and 8 weeks out. I’m feeling good. Umm.. a zillion miles to go though!

One thing I’m noticing is my recovery time is not super fast. I am not going to say it’s being 50,  but I’m trying to be mindful of that. I am still busting it so hard but as of yet haven’t resorted to endless  time on the cardio equipment daily.  I get some in and will be adding more, but my airdyne bike is keeping me on point.
In my studio, I have a lot of my team cutting for weddings, shows and just because it’s time!  The workouts we are doing are on point to keep us progressing to the end.

Cold: Immune system: abby
I am using thieves oil every single day.  The product I use is DoTerra On guard.  I was feeling terrible
and started a gargle swish thing with a few drops of this. My cold was gone in 1 day. You can use it for
so much but I am determined to stay well this prep.  You can search Pinterest for more on OnGuard
You can get it here from my guru friend, Abby
Remember the other blog post about colds and flu??

New product:
gnc
I LOVE this product.  I am using this as a thermagenic (fat burner) and my creatine. This product has
Dandelion root for water retention.  I feel really good on this one.  You have to drink it before, during and after your workouts. I do 2 scoops for 5g creatine.  It does have CLA so I’m pulling my Abcuts. Be sure to count  5g of fat for this product.   I just supplement around this with my others to meet my needs.

It’s a weird grainy texture. You might not like it but I got used to is after the first day.
I don’t work for GNC. They don’t give me anything. They have a return policy though…

Changes:
I’m not changing macros just yet because what I’m doing is working. My goal is to keep as much food as I can for as long as I can.  I’m using a little more egg white this week to switch it up. Lots of pancakes, mug cakes.

Last night I had a boat load of macros to eat so I ate this
cookie
I modified the hell out of this recipe. No agave. The base of this is
Chick peas. I used peanut butter with no sugar added. I counted
out sixteen 60% cacao unsweetened  chips for the recipe.
The recipe also  has coconut flour, protein powder, and  almond milk.  I loved it.
I hit my macros and everything on this was squeaky clean!!

The rest of my day was perfect. Veggies, lean protein  whole foods.

I’ve been ending my days with a little too many macros left over so I’m trying really hard
this week to go to bed with only protein left.  I feel better. I think I sleep better.

Being on Bro-preps with M6 as egg whites or chicken  was tough.  Now, I try to have
some great food during the day so I don’t mind the egg white pancake as my last.

I’m sure some Negative Nancy- Mr. Boss Around  will fly in here and debate that meal timing does or doesn’t matter and there’s probably some material to back that up. Don’t care.. If it bothers me, it bothers me.
Some of my clients tell me, it matters or it doesn’t matter.  My meal timing is now intuitive on this cut.  Too many carbs before sleep bothers me.   I go to bed at 7pm. lol

Except for pre-post workout, my ish is tight! I eat with purpose!

Here’s a picture of my kitty, Tatu Baby. She’s my smushy!
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Enjoy your day!

The Green Shake is back

My security blanket is my green shake.
Each prep I have done a green shake for my veggies.   Since I’m doing IIFYM/Flex/Macro counting I’m being very
careful to keep my fiber numbers up.  This is 5-6 cups of spinach and while it does have some lovely micronutrients, the fiber for my  whole day  of veggies was 4g.  Soooo.. I’m on the green beans and broccoli too. ACK .. they are NOT in the shake.
The shake is
Spinach
Cytogreens for Athletes
Unsweetened Almond milk
1 scoop Whey

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This was my shake today.


Since I made my video in 2013, I’ve used different whey protein in my shake and added some chia seeds. Chia seeds are
great.  I do not expect anyone else in the world to get excited about it, but I still like doing it every day.
I feel really good. I like the Greens powder too. I’m using my carbs for some blueberries in it!

Do you like the Green powders?

Fat Burners: Should I use them?

burn-all-the-fat-meme
One of my competitors asked me about Fat Burners/ Thermagenics today. I wanted to share my experience and maybe it will help you in your decision making for purchases.

Edit: This is a running blog post of what I used each year so it is updated.

First: Stop  buying into the hype! If you see it on IG and it’s MAGIC.. whatever. Understand that supplements don’t solve problems when you eat like crap.  Ok.. here you go.

Dr. Oz gets a check. #truth
Dr. Oz gets a check. #truth

Fat burners/ Thermagenics  can be Stimulant based (caffeine) and non stimulant based. Some of them are “the MOTHER of all FATBURNERS” aggressive and containing derivatives of banned products so beware! I had one Sup guy tell me my Preworkout had Adderall in it.  It had “amperall” which is like a molecule off from Adderall. It was crazy.  Anyway.. you can find some beastly products but is it what you need?  Most people ask about things  like “Green Tea” or Raspberry Ketones, or anything from DR. Oz and other Multi level marketing companies.

For our clients I recommend supplement stores and I suggest you go where the product can be returned if you have an issue.  Be mindful of advertising on things DR. Oz recommends. He gets a check, remember? Many of those green tea fat burners have to build up in your system. I think you could just drink some Green Tea and get on with your life.

You can search my blog for more info on Fat burners, but I want to just share what I’ve personally used.

Fat burners in prep:
Prep is the best possible scenario for Thermagenics. Hopefully, you are eating your best,  and training hard.

The planets have aligned so if you use them, you may see changes. If you are doing  the drive thru expecting a fat burner to ‘block’ all the fat, or save you from your binges.. skip it.

ACK
My first coach on Las Vegas Bikini Team had me on Roxy Lean which is a she beast. That one gave me panic attacks but it did work. I can’t do my family like that so for me, that’s a no go. The cycle with Roxy is 30 days on and then the OxyElite pro so you switch them every 30 days.  You need to cycle off fat burners so don’t get comfy with one. It stops working when you get used to it. Don’t be the girl who stops eating either. I’m not here to condone disordered eating. No way!

Yep
I took Epiq-Shred for one of my shows. I liked it. No stimulant. It’s from GNC.

In 2014 I took Hydroxy-cut SX7 and think it was ok too. It was the non- stim one. Honestly, for me, I think it probably helped me more mentally to have an edge. I’m not entirely sure. In prep, I will do everything I can because that’s what my brain tells me to do.  I got that one at GNC. Of course they have new and improved ones all the time. Go where you can return them if you need to! When you ask about them, remember at GNC they have contests to sell products. Each month it’s a different push. So dig deep and ask them which ones get returned less. Read reviews.  Not picking on them, but do your homework.
cla1

CLA
I do take CLA ,which will give you 5g fat in your macros but it’s very helpful in flushing belly fat. CLA is NOT a fat burner. It is Omegas. We would need our omegas anyway. Again.. not a fat burner.

The one I buy is Abcuts from Walgreens Or you can get the Abcuts Dreamweaver to help you sleep. Abcuts has some super fancy pants products so you can spend a lot or get the basics. Order online or GNC stocks them.

Or.. you can buy straight CLA.
I like Abcuts product and I did see a result. You will  pee your guts out!
Oh.. you have to drink water like crazy on CLA but, we already drink all the water anyway..
cla
This is only 7 days on my plan. I used Ab Cuts, 1 gallon of spring water every day, some very good food and worked out like a boss.  I do not get a check form GNC, abcuts. I’m just sayin…

2015

I didn’t do a fat burner. I tried a few expensive ones in my last 5 or six weeks but they made me have panic attacks. I ended up not using a fat burner at all.

These were the ones I  have tried this one from GNC and it nearly put me in the hospital. You might do ok on this one though. It’s intense.
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This one is ‘timed release’ and I’m told, it’s a competitor favorite. This is one of those aggressive ones!!
GNC has a whole page on Hardcore thermogenics now. Just putting that out there.

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2016 I went for  Garcinia Sx7.  I had purchased and returned Hydroxycut Black and it gave me terrible panic attacks.  I was more interested in this product for the appetite suppressant.  Honestly, I kind of half assed this fat burner this year. I was hungry in prep which is normal so it did help but I wasn’t taking it every single day.

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2017 I’m going with this 213 complex from Supplement Superstore.
You can learn more about this product here
This one has the night time and thyroid formula.  I had a great talk with the guys at
Supplement Superstore about why this one is a good fit for me.

Bottom line: It’s personal choice and if your coach wants you to.. Some competitors never use them. The ones I posted here are safe for natural body building.

Lifestyle weight loss,  you have to be smart. If you aren’t 100 percent on point with your program, then save your money.
Buy workout tights with the 100 dollars you save from not buying fat burners!

Top Supplements for fat loss

It’s that time of year!  The Supplement stores are excited to see you coming in and part with all your hard earned cash.  I know you are in search of the magic pills to make you lean and tight.

So  I want to give you the scoop on supplementation and it’s place in fitness weight loss.
The first thing I want to say is

Supplements are for supplementation. They are NOT the solution to your problems.
I do not believe in starting my clients on any supplements until we have gotten their food worked out.
Don’t waste your money on magic pills when you haven’t put down the fast food.
You cannot out train a bad diet and you cannot out supplement one either.

But…

Dr. Oz gets a check. #truth
Dr. Oz gets a check. #truth

Stop listening to Dr. Oz, Oprah, Dr. Phil, Real Housewives and infomercials!
Now, I realize that Dr. Oz is a popular guy and while I believe he knows some things and he’s got a friendly face, I don’t think he really embraces  a brand new fat loss cure every single day of the week. There cannot be that many cures or we’d all be cured from belly fat.  Dr. Oz gets a check. So does Jillian Michaels. Uh-oh! I’m in trouble now. I’ve said something negative about the ‘World’s Toughest Trainer’.
*eye roll*

Supplementation products are terrific in theory. You can wander into Target, Walgreens or GNC and find products that promise you everything  you want. I want you to stop for a second and drink this in. If a product has a famous face on it, it is called a “licensed” product. That means the  celebrity that is ‘endorsing’ it got a check. Many times the product ends up being very kitchen sink-y. The product might have more fillers or less  quality ingredients because the company has to pay for the licensing rights.

So.. walk past those products. A personal side note.. please never give the Kardashian family a dime for any fitness related products. *shakes head* Jillian I get.

So where shall I go?
Return policy is #1
I live in St. Louis and the two competing entities in our area are GNC and Supplement Super Store.
I really like them both, but I recommend GNC for my clients for one solid reason. The return policy is great at GNC. There is no ‘official’  return policy at SS2. Quality products are an investment so if you find a product that doesn’t suit your system or you don’t care for, you need the opportunity to get it right. This is absolutely not an indictment of stores that don’t have a return policy. I have had clients who have reactions to high quality products and it’s hard to let go of 75 dollars for whey protein you can’t use. Begin your search in a store that has a return policy.

But I want some supplements because it’s January and I’m on a diet.
January is awesome. You feel all energized and ready to go. Supplements are deeply discounted for this reason. So I’m trusting that you have  your meal plans in order. I also trust that you are not going to be falling for the cardio only workout of weight loss. So if you are solid and ready to get started some supplements, alright!

I can help you with your meal plans!

 

Do you take a multi?
Take a multivitamin every day. I use GNC Active Multi. Love it. But I’m happy if you are on a One A Day.

Fish oil/Omega 3: Let’s do that too. Got mine at Target for 6 dollars. Fish oil is terrific for making your arteries slick and it also aids in weight loss.
It is believed that omega 3 oil improves the flow of blood to the muscles during exercise and helps to stimulate enzymes which transport fat to where it can be used up for energy. You can get Omega 3 in super foods like Flax oil or Flax seeds as well.

Vitamin C 1000mg daily: Recent studies show that vitamin C helps in weight loss and lowering body fat.
Vitamin C is one of the building blocks for carnitine, which is used by your body to transform fat into the fuel it needs.Taking extra “C” can help balance out cortisol spikes so take it!!

Calcium with D: For your bones. You already knew that! If you are taking calcium chews be sure you are tracking the macros for them!

 

I want weight loss supplements

Do NOT buy fad diet items like HGC, that promise rapid weight loss. You are risking metabolic damage. I will never condone anything other than solid meal plans, proper workouts and lifestyle changes. However, unless you are prepared, you ‘could’ walk out having spent a small fortune. You are doing your homework so now you know.

Fat Burners
There are two types of Fat Burners:
Stimulants (Stim) and Non Stimulant.
If you can take caffeine you ‘might’ do ok on a Stimulant. Fat burners are NOT made to allow you to eat whatever you want.
They raise your metabolism slightly and some have ingredients that stabilize your insulin. Extreme fat burners might have the Geranium oil and use tag lines like the ‘meanest and cruelest’ fat burners on the market. You may really like the idea of sitting on the couch and losing 5 pounds, or sweating like crazy while at your desk, the risks are real. I used a Stim fat burner and had terrible panic attacks. If you are on medications, be wary also. Mixing extreme fat burners if you are on anti-depressants or other mood altering pharms might not be a good idea. Do your research!!

Non-Stimulant Fat burners use ingredients like Green Tea, Raspberry Keto to rev the metabolism. Be wary, they take a long time to get into your system and work. You can certainly drink green tea as a natural fat burner if you prefer.  If you try one of these for a month and don’t like it, you didn’t give it a chance to work! The stores will try to sell you more than one month supply because YOU NEED more than 1 month.

But, there were great results on the commercial!
Those products are tested on people who are most likely
1. sedentary
2. eating terrible
3. out of shape.

They give them a controlled meal plan (read the fine print).
Get them off the couch.   Wow!  huge results!

But: it says I don’t have to exercise if I take this.
If you are still standing by the ‘no exercise’ success stories, you need to save your money on pills.
To lose FAT you need to burn it off. You need a deficit of calories. That is either by lower calorie intake or by training or moving more.   If you are not moving more, you will burn off muscle and that will slow your metabolism down.  Even weight training 3x a week will amp your metabolism. Let’s make good choices this year!!  Get lean the right way!

What I used:
The Non-stim fat burner I used before my first show was Epiq Shred from GNC. I had great results with it taking just one capsule a day.  My second show I used Hydroxy Cut non stim from GNC. It’s not the crappy version from Walgreens.  I liked both of those.

Do not purchase a fat burner that has an appetite suppressant. You must eat to lose weight. If you are not eating you are burning muscle. Your weight loss will be temporary and you will gain even more weight. Don’t be that girl!

 

Here’s my review of a great Fat Burner stack I love for my clients

 

Week 10 Update:

Landmine lunges. 1st time. Oh man
Landmine lunges. 1st time. Oh man

The last few weeks I’ve been struggling with my weight loss. I had lost 3 pounds but made a well needed change to my meal plan and
started the scale moving again. Even though I’ve stressed out about my weight loss, I have discovered that in one month I’ve lost a total
of 6 pounds and 2.1 percent body fat. I felt like I was leaning out, but really retaining water. I had a heart to heart with a competitor friend
and she held me accountable to my water jug. No excuses. It made a huge difference.

I did a small intermitten fast followed by a high carb day. I’m super bloated from that. I always drop a bit after that type of re-feed.

Tidbit of information:
The best pants in the entire planet to squat in are LuluLemon Wonder Under pants!

I love these pants.
I love these pants.

I’m becoming a collector of Lulus and rock lots of their styles, but these are my favorite because they don’t move.
Girls, you know if your V-string pops out of the back of your tights when you squat, that’s not ok. Just saying. It’s the little things.

Today, my workout was less than beast mode. I had fully intended to GO HAM. My pre-workout let me down.
I get samples from GNC and they tossed a sample of Arnold’s Iron Pump pre-workout my way. I should never have tried that on my hardest leg day. It was
a thumbs down. I was fueled correctly but nothing kicked in. I missed my C4. So I will not cheat on her again!!

I had PR’s today but not like I wanted.
I added Land Mine legs today. First time ever and you know what.. I might have died.
I did Land Mine Goblet Squats and lunges. I was shaking and could barely walk away.
If you haven’t added those yet, to your training, it’s time!
Follow my Instagram and see my video of my workout!
@bikinicompetitor_tracyh

This week, is more pushing!
Go after what you want!!

Supplement 101: Let’s learn the basics

Today I want to take a moment to demystify supplementation and it’s place in fitness weight loss.
The first thing I want to say is

Supplements are for supplementation. They are NOT the solution to your problems.
I do not believe in starting my clients on any supplements until we have gotten their food worked out.
Don’t waste your money on magic pills when you haven’t put down the fast food.
You cannot out train a bad diet and you cannot out supplement one either.

But…

Dr. Oz gets a check. #truth
Dr. Oz gets a check. #truth

Stop listening to Dr. Oz
Now, I realize that Dr. Oz is a popular guy and while I believe he knows a lot and he’s got a friendly face, I don’t think he really embraces
a brand new fat loss cure every single day of the week. There cannot be that many cures or we’d all be cured from belly fat.
Dr. Oz gets a check. So does Jillian Michaels. Uh-oh! I’m in trouble now. I’ve said something negative about the ‘World’s Toughest Trainer’.
*eye roll*

Supplementation products are terrific in theory. You can wander into Target, Walgreens or GNC and find products that promise you everything
you want. I want you to stop for a second and drink this in. If a product has a famous face on it, it is called a “licensed” product. That means the
celebrity that is ‘endorsing’ it got a check. Many times the product ends up being very kitchen sink-y. The product might have more fillers or less
quality ingredients because the company has to pay for the licensing rights.

So.. walk past those products. A personal side note.. please never give the Kardashian family a dime for any fitness related products. *shakes head* Jillian I get.

So where shall I go?
Return policy is #1
I live in St. Louis and the two competing entities in our area are GNC and Supplement Super Store.
I really like them both, but I recommend GNC for my clients for one solid reason. The return policy is great at GNC. There is no ‘official’
return policy at SS2. Quality products are an investment so if you find a product that doesn’t suit your system or you don’t care for, you need the opportunity to get it right. This is absolutely not an indictment of stores that don’t have a return policy. I have had clients who have reactions to high quality products and it’s hard to let go of 75 dollars for whey protein you can’t use. Begin your search in a store that has a return policy.

But I want some supplements because it’s January and I’m on a diet.
January is awesome. You feel all energized and ready to go. Supplements are deeply discounted for this reason. So I’m trusting that you have
your meal plans in order. I also trust that you are not going to be falling for the cardio only workout of weight loss. So if you are solid and ready to get started some supplements, alright!

Do you take a multi?
Take a multivitamin every day. I use GNC Active Multi. Love it. But I’m happy if you are on a One A Day.

Fish oil/Omega 3: Let’s do that too. Got mine at Target for 6 dollars. Fish oil is terrific for making your arteries slick and it also aids in weight loss.
It is believed that omega 3 oil improves the flow of blood to the muscles during exercise and helps to stimulate enzymes which transport fat to where it can be used up for energy. You can get Omega 3 in super foods like Flax oil or Flax seeds as well.

Vitamin C 1000mg daily: Recent studies show that vitamin C helps in weight loss and lowering body fat. It’s also important to note that many fat loss programs have less fruit due to the sugar content. Take your C everyday.

Calcium with D: For your bones. You already knew that! Don’t get any chews of any kind. They have corn syrup. Well.. that’s not helping the weight loss!!!

I want weight loss supplements

Do NOT buy fad diet items like HGC, that promise rapid weight loss. You are risking metabolic damage. I will never condone anything other than solid meal plans, proper workouts and lifestyle changes. However, unless you are prepared, you ‘could’ walk out having spent a small fortune. You are doing your homework so now you know.

Fat Burners
There are two types of Fat Burners:
Stimulants (Stim) and Non Stimulant.
If you can take caffeine you ‘might’ do ok on a Stimulant. Fat burners are NOT made to allow you to eat whatever you want.
They raise your metabolism slightly and some have ingredients that stabilize your insulin. Extreme fat burners might have the Geranium oil and use tag lines like the ‘meanest and cruelest’ fat burners on the market. You may really like the idea of sitting on the couch and losing 5 pounds, or sweating like crazy while at your desk, the risks are real. I used a Stim fat burner and had terrible panic attacks. If you are on medications, be wary also. Mixing extreme fat burners if you are on anti-depressants or other mood altering pharms might not be a good idea. Do your research!!

Non-Stimulant Fat burners use ingredients like Green Tea, Raspberry Keto to rev the metabolism. Be wary, they take a while to get into your system and work.
You can certainly drink green tea as a natural fat burner if you prefer.

I used:
The Non-stim fat burner I used before my last show was Epiq Shred from GNC. I had great results with it taking just one capsule a day.

Do not purchase a fat burner that has an appetite suppressant. You must eat to lose weight. If you are not eating you are burning muscle. Your weight loss will be temporary and you will gain even more weight. Don’t be that girl!

In my next blog post, I will explain my fat burner stack.

Supplement stack: Fat Burner Pro-sculpt

Image

I have found a product that I really like and it’s called Pro-sculpt.
Pro-sculpt is classified as a ‘fat burner’ and it is from GNC.
You can watch my video review of my fat burner stack or I will give you the key points here in this post.

Pro-sculpt is great because it contains 3 of the supplements I took in my last show prep.
It is a powder mix and you only need a tiny scoop as a serving size.  I start my day with my
vitamins and a scoop of Pro-sculpt.

What it does.
Pro-sculpt has a non stimulant fat burner. It does not make me feel jiggy. It has 200mg of caffeine which is just enough to
make me feel good and have great focus. It has green tea and white willow bark which are fat burners.

It also contains BCAA: In our studio we take Branch Chain Amino Acids (BCAA) during our workout. BCAAs help with muscle recovery and it helps you to not be so sore.  Pro-sculpt has the amino L-Glutamine which is very important for muscle recovery. It also is an immune system boost.

Pro-sculpt also contains CLA: Conjugated Linoleic Acid is an essential fatty acid that not only reduces body fat from the mid- section region,  but also increases muscle strength and exercise endurance.  The recommendation for CLA is that you drink 100 oz of water each day to flush out the toxins. Just a heads up! CLA makes you pee a lot!  Did I just say that?  I’ll bet I get an AMEN here.

Pro-sculpt also contains Beta Alanine which is an amino acid that gets your muscles prepared to train.
It also has L-Carnatine for even more energy and fat burning. Whoo-hoo.

This product is a supplement /fat burner stack. It is not classified as my pre-workout. I use Cellucore’s C4  exactly 30 minutes prior to lifting for amazing results. I will do another blog post on pre-workout.

Because you must cycle off Pro-sculpt after 60 days, I had to use these products as a replacement for 30 days.
We cycle our supplements because, like exercise, your body somewhat adapts and it stops being as effective.  I typically do not mind switching up because this is when I find products that really work for me.

My switch up:
Fat burner: GNC Epiq Shred capsules: 1 per day.  I used this fat burner for two cycles during my first show prep. I had amazing results. I love it. It does not make me feel jiggy at all. Since I cannot take Roxy like many of the other competitors do, I felt really happy that I got such a good result with a non-stimulant product.

Ab-cuts:  AbCuts is CLA.  The AbCut company has several different versions of this product but I bought the basic mid-section formula at Wal-Mart for 17.99.  The down side is that you must take 2-3 capsules with each meal.  That made it tedious.  If you shop online or at GNC for Abcuts, be prepared to pay over 50 dollars for it.  It works.  You can also buy straight CLA from GNC.  CLA is typically not sold at Walgreens or drugstores.

Glutamine:  I purchased a container of Glutamine from Amazon. It was a very basic, generic brand. You don’t need fancy here.

I take other variations of BA and Carnatine as well but frankly, it sure is nice having everything in one product.

This product got 4 out of 5 stars on the GNC website. It retails for 49.99 for non-members and 34.99 for members. I try to get my products on a BOGO so I have two months worth ready to go.  It comes in Blue Raspberry and Fruit Punch. Both flavors are fine.

Worth noting:  Glutamine is in many products that are marketed for muscle recovery.  It is a bit powdery and hard to mix.  The same goes for Pro-sculpt. I use my Ninja Blender but if you have some good arm strength you can get it done with your blender bottle.

My recommendation is Pro-sculpt over the other 3 product stack. I am not loving my results as much with this interim replacement stack. It just doesn’t wow me. I’m preparing to begin another two month round of PS as I begin my show prep.  I will have to pull all my supplements close to the show so this will be perfect.

Not every supplement is right for everyone. One of the reps at GNC told me he thought this product was not good. I say different strokes for different folks.  This one in my book is a winner.

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!

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!!

Back Workout

First gym back workout.
First gym back workout.

I have started my stack so I should start to see more muscle development.
I felt good today, but really could have used my pre-workout!
Started today off with
First Phorm  AlphaCre HD
ProSculpt  Extreme Muscle Definition system
Half shot of Phormula-1 CTC (cinnamon toast Crunch)
1 shot of Blox (pink lemonade) BCAA
plus my vitamin stack.

I’lll hit another shot of AlphaCre 8 hours from my first dose.
I was bummed out because the assisted pull up machine was out of order.
I will hit that again later in the week!!  On to family time!
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