“In the ZONE” Challenge, June Special

Hi and welcome to another week,

We have a great special running this week – From May 25th until May 30th you can join for 3-months for just $200.  My maths are not great but that sounds like a $50 saving (20%).  Train all winter – and be ready for summer when it arrives – for just $200.  Anyway…promotion over – back to our usual programme.

Great work to everyone who got their training done last week.  I was pretty happy with the way the sessions worked out – but WAY too many abs.  I think it was Wednesday that finished with 4-minutes of Abs which was then followed by a 1%’er that was ALSO abs…Thursday and Friday I was feeling the pain.  I am looking forward to this week as well – there is some great variety in the sessions (partners training makes a return tomorrow), the return of a couple of ‘old school’ combinations (speedball with hand-weight punching and lat raises anyone) as well as some isometric work for the first time in a few weeks.

We are just one week away from the kick off of our two newest gym programmes – “Beach Bodies” and “In the ZONE”.  Today’s blog is focussed on the eating component of both of these ‘events’ – the “In the Zone” challenge is all about managing food quantities whilst the suggested diet for “Beach Bodies” has been put together using the same matrix.  That said, a lot of what follows is specific to the ‘In the ZONE’ challenge but – particularly given the 3-month duration of “Beach Bodies”, it should be helpful for those participants as well.

Our ‘In the ZONE’ challenge is based around a simplified version of the ‘ZONE’ diet.  What we will be doing is eating set quantities of protein, carbs and fats at each meal.  Which makes it really, really simple.  But what we will be doing is eating set quantities of protein, carbs and fats at each meal.  Which makes it really, really hard.  It is simple because it makes it crystal clear what you need to do.  It is HARD because to get results you actually have to DO IT.  And this involves – for a little while at least – some careful measuring of your food quantities.

I can hear the resistance already – “I’m not measuring my food – I don’t have time/can’t be bothered for/with that”.  And I get it – really I do.  For the first week in particular it is a real pain in the bum trying to work everything out and eat this way.  But at the same time, if you want results from your training then you have to be prepared to watch your food intake.  And if you are REALLY measuring exactly what you are taking in – not just with regards to food types but also how much of each type – then you can make adjustments if you aren’t getting the outcomes that you want.  And remember, after you have measured a ‘serve’ of chicken or spinach or whatever 7 or 8 or 9 times, you pretty much ‘know’ how much it is.  And from that point it is just a matter of doing a ‘spot check’ measurement every 2-3 weeks to make sure you are still on track!

I usually like our gym challenges to be ‘simple’ – and I am happy to acknowledge that this is not ‘simple’.  It is simple to understand, but it is not ‘simple’ to execute (particularly if you don’t have support at home in terms of managing your food!)  Our standard recommendation – to stick to the outside of the grocery store and filling your trolley with fresh meat and fish, fresh fruit and veggies and some nuts and seeds remains true.  But for the first time at Round 1 we are trying to provide you with a plan that will help you determine your eating quantities based on your body size/activity levels.  I have tried it – it DOES WORK.

What you find when you are getting the right amount of food in the right quantities is that you just feel ‘better’ – you feel that your energy levels are good, you certainly feel you are performing well in the gym, but in addition when your food is dialled in you just find those body composition changes you are after ‘just happen’.  You might not lose the 5kgs you were trying to lose…but because your muscle has gone up and your fat has gone down, you might also find you don’t care quite so much about what it says on the scales any more!

If you want to read more/find out more, well, don’t forget that we are running info sessions NEXT WEEKEND at 3:30pm on both Saturday and Sunday (at the gym – bring a chair).  I will also be running another info session – a quick, whiteboard based q&a session – immediately after the 9:15am class this coming FRIDAY morning…so to all of those 9:15am people, if you want to do the “In the Zone” challenge this coming Friday morning is your chance to ask questions!

And I have put a pretty useful document about all the zone diet stuff in the ‘Link of the Week’ section of this week’s blog.

Good Luck!

See you in the gym,

Michael.

Gym Update #1 – June Challenge – ‘In the ZONE’ – Starts NEXT WEEK.

The last section was all about the ‘IN THE ZONE’ challenge so I don’t want to repeat myself all over again.  Suffice to say it is about sticking to a ZONE eating protocol (managed food quantities based on lean body mass) AND doing a little bit of exercise.  The exercise component requires you to complete THREE (3) group sessions per week with no more than a two day break between sessions.

In simple terms, this challenge is all about rhythm – eating regular meals at regular times, training a few times each week…generally getting a nice consistent, sustainable ‘life plan’ happening to remain fit and healthy for the long term.  If you are keen to have a go, the registration link is here:  Register for In the ZONE

Gym Update #2 – Beach Bodies 3-month Program – STARTS NEXT WEEK

Beach Bodies is another program starting next week – it is a 13-week program that features Thirteen Weeks (3-months) of programming across all elements of your athletic development – strength, agility, speed, conditioning…you name it.  There is even provision in there for a couple of classes each week so those who want the chance to do Beach Bodies but still want to get to train with their friends will have that opportunity.

It is by far the most ambitious program we have ever done and I still cant believe how much time it has taken me to get all of the programming together.  There is some ‘new’ and ‘different’ stuff in there – my plan is to put up a quick video each week detailing the movements not everyone will be familiar with.

The program will run via Google Docs (please get yourself a Google ID if you are keen!) and will be shared with all registered participants on each SUNDAY.  The 13-weeks of the program will be released one week at a time.

If you are keen to have a go at Beach Bodies, the registration link is here:  Register for BEACH BODIES

Gym Update #3 – Body Work (Last week)

This week is the last week of our current Body Work 5-week cycle.  If there is a session you have been particularly keen to ‘give a go’ – “2 x(50x Body Weight Squats)” anyone?? – then this week must be your week…because after Saturday they will never be seen again.

Gym Update #4 – Barbell Racks are Ready to Go.

There is a great new wall-mounted barbell rack that is about to be installed to get all of those new barbells off the ground in the Tanks/Lifting area.  A little bit of messing around is required (moving the TANKS white board etc) but hopefully should all be done in the next couple of weeks or so…If it isn’t done before the long weekend then that might be the target installation time.

Gym Update #5 – New Wall Ball Covers, Handstand Push-up Matts

There is some new equipment kicking around the gym as of this week – some new Wall Ball covers AND some handstand pushup matts (‘Place Skull Here’).  The wall balls don’t seem to last forever – luckily for us RX (www.rxsmartgear.com) make replacement covers for them.  Our balls have seen a heap of use in the last month or so (they are part of the warm-up for each of our Body Work sessions) and having a full complement of both 12lb AND 20lb balls available is great.

The handstand push-ups?  Well, for you guys who insist on doing them, hopefully the matts make your life a lot safer and more comfortable!

Gym Update #6 – New Reception Area is Coming soon

We have been doing a fair bit of work lately on revising the Round 1 ‘reception area’ and the plans are pretty close to finalised – just awaiting final quotes and it will be good to go.  The basic premise is making getting ‘in’ to the gym a lot simpler – avoiding the bank up of ‘traffic’ at the front door – and making it easy for members to get their workout started.

It should be amazing when it is all done – there will most likely be a ‘little bit’ of an interruption to normal proceedings whilst the cabinetry is being installed but here’s hoping for smooth sailing.

Footy Tipping Results for Round 6

A good week for tipsters (after last week’s disaster!) with Amanda Dixon standing alone atop the tree on SEVEN (7) points.  There were upsets galore and it seems the losses by Port, the Bulldogs and Hawthorn caught nearly everyone out.  Amanda backed Sydney to take a measure of vengeance after their grand final defeat and was rewarded by winning the week.

On the overall ladder, Dani Elsum has joined Michelle Howley atop the table – both ladies are on 50 points, one clear of both Christine and – breaking up the run of girls – Justin V.

Dream Team Results for Round 6

Some big scores in our Fantasy competition this week with NINE teams cracking the ‘magic’ 2000 points mark.  Unfortunately for a couple of people, they cracked 2000 points and still lost…so commiserations to Craig B (Cat-Astrophic) and Cam H (Snake Eyes) who suffered through that situation.  Top scorers for this week were Ash Bachman (NeverNeverLand) with 2193 points, Dale (MagpieMan) on 2134, Kim (Half Time Heroes) on 2146 and Andrew (Roos Stars) on 2112.

Good luck next week.  Remember – the first ‘bye rounds’ of the year are in 2-weeks so if you haven’t started planning your trades around this, well – this might be the week.  Or just wing it like I do!

Link of the week

As promised in the opener, here is a helpful link on food quantities – including some diet planning – associated with following a ZONE eating plan.

http://library.crossfit.com/free/pdf/cfjissue21_May04.pdf