Managing Body Fat Percentage, In the Zone Challenge, Exercise as a Journey

Hi and welcome to another week,

Great sessions last week.  I do feel like I spent a little bit too much of my time pushing a sled up and down the gym – but still, that’s good for you right?  Right??  In between all of that sled pushing were some interesting sessions.  I really enjoyed pistols being back in the programming (and I need to do more of them) and the ring muscle-ups (even our modified ones) are a great challenge that help make me better.  I am looking forward to doing 7-minute rounds this coming Wednesday (haven’t seen those for a couple of weeks) as well as the return of the ‘Deck of Cards’ tomorrow (Monday) and a pretty traditional barbell circuit on Tuesday.  We are now nearly half-way through the current ‘run’ of Body Work classes and I still have one of them left to try – the classes so far have been great but best of all has been the dynamic warmup of Med Ball work, Ninja rolls and empty bar squats and presses – it translates really well to my lifting sessions!

Last week I also did my first body scan (on the InBody 570) in a little more than 2-months.  As always, I was a little nervous about it – hopeful but nervous.  My training has been good for a while now and I was quietly confident of a good result but – as always, when you stand on those scales it is with a bit of trepidation.  And unfortunately for me, the results didn’t really turn out the way I had been hoping.  Despite being more consistent with my strength training than at any time in the last 5 years – I am always pretty good with getting boxing classes done – I actually lost muscle (only 100g but still) and gained fat (700g).  Not awesome – fat up, muscle down…kind of the opposite of what I was aiming for.  The question I guess is ‘how/why did this happen?’ The answer is both simple and complicated.

Because I have been more consistent with my strength training – and still doing my classes – I have been finding myself getting very physically tired.  My response to this has been a pretty simple one – add some extra food (particularly extra carbs – mostly sweet potato) to my diet.  Late in weeks (Thursday and Friday are the days I find the tiredness can really take hold) I have even been adding in a very small serve of oats (less than a cup) to start my day when the alarm goes off at 4.05am.  BUT – the extra carbs can also mean extra weight…and whilst I have gotten stronger (I am lifting more despite the small drop in overall muscle) I am not all that happy about an increase in body fat percentage.

It is important to remember that for every change you make in your training, in your food, in your work hours, in your sleep patterns there is going to be a reaction and a counter-reaction.  Adding an extra weight session per week might sound like a great plan for muscle growth – but unless you are fuelling for muscle growth, it wont happen.  And if you ‘over fuel’, well, you might find the scales showing you a number you are less than happy with in terms of body fat %.  The reverse can also be true – if you eat LESS food in an effort to get your weight down, your body might resist the change and your next scan might show that your body fat % has actually INCREASED – whilst your muscle mass has dropped…again, not ideal!

But then I remind myself – this stuff is hard.  I am a pretty normal guy living a normal life and it doesn’t really matter if I miss a target by a little bit – there is no Olympic medal in my future either way.  There is also no perfect exercise plan or perfect eating plan – one size does not fit all.  There is nothing I can do that will ‘guarantee’ the results I ‘want’.  For me, it is about continually trying to manage my food quantities BASED on the work I am doing…obviously in the last six weeks or so I got this all a little bit wrong.  Not massively so – but I definitely missed the mark somewhere.  The answer (as always) is to persist.  I am happy with my strength gains but to get my body composition ‘back’ (I usually scan at about 8.5% body fat – the last one was 9.2%) then I need to look at my food quantities, particularly my carbs.  Challenge accepted!

See you in the gym,

Michael.

p.s.  Still very keen for some new member’s profiles – would be great to get some more up onto the website.  Send me a note to info@round1fitness.com.au and I will get you the forms.  I have a couple of new ones ready to go which I will publish in the next couple of weeks.

p.p.s.  If you haven’t grabbed your bottle opener style gym tag yet, be sure to grab one soon.  They have your membership number laser inscribed on the back so you can ‘tag in’ without some of the drama that can be involved with ‘long wearing’ plastic tags.  The new tags don’t even cost you 10-burpees…they can be had for $5.

Gym Update #1 – June Challenge – ‘In the ZONE’ – Is coming soon.

Our next gym challenge is planned for June and as per the ‘rhythm’ we have established it will include both training and eating components.

The food components of the challenge will be both ‘less’ and ‘more’ restrictive than other challenges that we have run in the past.  The ‘LESS Restrictive’ part is that it is pretty much a free-for-all with regards to food types.  There will be no set restrictions on eating bread, pasta etc as there have been in recent challenges.  The ‘MORE’ part is that it will involve some food ‘quantity’ management…this can be quite painful to get started but for those of you out there who are commenting that it is ‘how much’ you eat that is the problem you have with body composition management, this is the challenge for you.

There will be a training element to this challenge as well – like the food elements it will be based on quantity management.  The requirement for the challenge will be THREE sessions per week with NO MORE than two days ‘off’ between sessions.  There will also be a one-day per week rehab requirement of a 30-minute walk done OUTSIDE.

The ‘In the ZONE’ information sessions – which will go through how to work out your food quantities and answer any other questions will be held on the weekend of the 30th and 31st of MAY – each session will start at 3:30pm and will go for about one hour.  Attending the info sessions will be open to all Round 1 members (gold coin donation at the door).  As with the 28-days later challenge, there will be two payment options for this challenge with one including 2x Body Scans and one without.  More details on this next weekend.

Gym Update #2 – Trainers on Training

Many congratulations to Elie and Kirei who have been spending some time expanding their skills over the last couple of weeks.  Elie finished off his ‘Punch’ certification a couple of weeks back whilst Kirei has spent this weekend completing her Crossfit Level 1 certification.

Really looking forward to the new skills each of them will be able to bring to our sessions at Round 1.

Gym Update #3 – New Lifting Equipment is GO!

To go with our recently arrived new barbells and bumper plates are 3x new vertical plate stackers and a whole heap of barbell clips.  Next up is a new wall-mounted barbell rack.  All of this extra gear is to support the TANKS/Body Work/No Rules users as well as to be prepared for people participating in the forthcoming ‘Beach Bodies’ program.  More info about Beach Bodies below.

Gym Update #4 – Beach Bodies 3-month Program

The first Beach Bodies update was sent out last week…if you didn’t get it and WANT It, please let me know on info@round1fitness.com.au.  The program itself is ‘nearly’ done (testing the google docs uploads and editing is happening at the moment) and it includes 6-days per week of training every week for 13-weeks + food plan + training logs etc.  The idea is we train hard (and eat well) from June till September so that when summer runs around, our boardies (or bikini’s!) are waiting for us.

Just on that, the program does feature different rep ranges for boys and girls based on the lessons learned through Tanks, Body Work and (yes!) Boxing over the past 5 years.

Footy Tipping Results for Round 6

Best result for this week in a very tough round (Saints over Dogs?  Giants over Hawks??  Eagles over Power???) was Damien Kelly who picked 6 correct – there was a group of 3 tipsters right behind him on 4 (Shelby, Aaron Thomas, Brad Mahar) but no-one else did better than 4.  Justin continues to lead the way but has been joined on top of the table by Michelle Howley.

Dream Team Results for Round 6

A couple of great scores in DreamTeam this week.  Nicole and her ‘ABC Underdogs’ scored 2146 and Rory’s Bourbinators also topped the 2k mark with 2046.  In a tough week for scoring both were very impressive results.  Leading the way after 6 rounds are Dale Godsell, Justin Vanderhoek and (last years winner) Kim Devereaux.

Link of the week

Enjoy the exercise journey:  http://breakingmuscle.com/sports-psychology/exercise-is-not-a-final-destination-how-to-enjoy-the-journey