Hello! It’s APRIL and it SNOWED last week!
Last week I survived a red-eye, trained some clients, went to real estate meetings, saw a new apartment and ate some yummy sushi!!
Phew! For a short week it was productive and crazy. Check out today’s Update to see how I dealt with bikini prep, the effect of the deficit on my body and how my clients are doing!
The highlight of today’s post for me is the “What I’m Reading” section, as well as the client updates. I’m really proud of two of my clients and their progress photos speak for themselves.
Speaking of highlights, there were SO many for me last week. To start, I ate at a new restaurant in Snowmass, called Slow Groovin’ BBQ. It’s cool to try a new place after visiting Snowmass for 20 years. Read about my dinner choices during bikini-prep in the Nutrition section.
My second favorite part of last week was getting to workout with Jeff three times! Read more about our workouts in the Training section.
My third favorite part of last week was getting sushi at Genki Ya with my girls Mel, Daniela and V. I felt extra girly because I had my makeup done for a photoshoot that day and it lasted several hours– even after teaching! Read about my nutrition choices in the Nutrition section.
My fourth favorite part of last week was Saturday: I went to Jeff’s best friend’s 30th birthday party and then got to meet his family! I ate one bite of cake at both places 🙂 Check out the Nutrition section to see how Jeff’s parents helped me with bikini prep!
As for CROF Nutrition program, the April 10th program has one spot left, so if you are interested, shoot me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Last week’s training was all over the place. Many of you know if you’ve been reading the CROF Weekly Update for over a year, that I train a squat, bench and deadlift day each week, and then one lifting day that includes some squat variation and an upper push/pull. Last week I tried to follow my traditional plan, but had to get creative as I was without a barbell one twice, felt pain on deadlift day and had to figure out how to add in more cardio. You can read more about why I increased cardio in the nutrition section, but know for now that I wanted to get six 30 minute sessions in last week. Read on to learn about my 5 weeks out bikini schedule.
We got an early start but took an extended lunch. Jeff and I were both still fighting colds and felt exhausted. The snow was a little slushy in Snowmass so we took it easy in the afternoon but still got about 12 runs in!
I didn’t bring my belt with me to Colorado, but still wanted to deadlift, even if it wasn’t heavy. My back felt super funky but I still gave deadlifting a try. I slowly worked up to 215, but when a single rep at 215 felt hard I did 2 singles and then worked my way down, with 3 reps at 210, 3 at 205, 5 at 200 and 5 at 195.
After sumo deadlifts I did some banded deadlifts (shown below) with 135, some machine hip thrusts for 15, adductors for sets of 20. The workout was simple but effective and I was happy to get it done.
Tuesday: front squat, push press, weighted chin-ups for 20 kg 3 sets of 1
Fronts squats are typically my lucky 4th day of training, if I get them in. Last week it was probably my most normal day of training. I was at Titan Barbell and did a quick 30 minute circuit of the following:
1a)front squat with 90 (up 5 pounds from last week) for 6 reps
1b) push press with 90 for 5 reps
1c) weighted chin-ups, warm up then 3 singles with the 20 kg kettlebell. (shown below)
2a) bent over row for 6 (3 sets)
Walked to Barry’s for 30 minutes.
Wednesday: Chest Back and Abs day at Barry’s
Barry’s chest back and abs class with Embo was SUPER tough. I did the running portion instead of double floor in order to get my cardio in. I count one Barry’s class as one of my 30 minute sessions. Check out this move she taught me in class! Loved these!
Shout out to my #WCW @emboslice for training my chest back and abs this morning. Packed house at 6 a.m. Was an epic follow up to my almost packed 5 a.m. Class this morning. If you haven't started your day with a @barrysbootcamp class, you're morning-ing wrong. Video and commentary by @brianpweller #morningAF #team5am #team6am #daretomove #newswag #chest #back #abs also– subbing for @emboslice this Friday because she's headed out west! We traded places!!! #barrysbootcampboston
Thursday: Abs day at Barry’s + triceps and shoulder with Jeff
I did Greg’s abs class for my cardio (2 of 6 done), and that evening I trained triceps with Jeff and shoulders. I love doing Barry’s because I always have friends there to keep me motivated.
Check out his workout below:
1a) machine chest press for 12-10-10-1
1b) push-ups 12-10-10-8 (I did 8-6-6-4 since I was sore from barry’s)
1c) incline chest press 12-10-10-8
2a) skull crushers 12-10-10-8
2b) push-ups 10-10-10-10 (I did 6-4-4-4)
3a) Buddy push-downs 12-11-10-9…. to 1 rep I-go, You-go.
Friday: Squat day without a barbell
On Friday I couldn’t make it to Titan Barbell so I opted for a heavy dumbbell workout. I tried it, almost died and then Jeff did it that evening and nearly died. Check it out below.
1a) 8 single leg hip thrusts
1b) 6-8 bulgarian split squats (rear foot elevated)
1c) deficit sumo squat (standing on two high benches)
2a) 1.5 goblet squat for 8 reps
2b) walking lunges with 2 dumbbells 20 steps
2c) squat jumps 10 reps
3a) machine hip thrust for 12 (see video below at 1:07)
3b) frog pumps for 20, clam shells, 10/side no rest in-between
4a) heels elevated 1.5 glute bridge (3rd exercise in instagram series below)
4b) 10 kettlebell swings
Finisher for second lower body day this week👆. I had to do one day without a barbell and one day with a barbell (today) and combine deadlifts and backsquats because I didn't have time to get to a gym with a barbell on Monday. Gotta do the best you can! Check out the third exercise in this series, idk what to call it, but I like it!! Do 20 reps of each exercise – you won't regret it!!#daretomove #10weeksout
IT SUCKED and we were both sore for days.
I got my cardio in by walking to Barry’s to teach the 4:20, and then power walked in Kelly’s 5:20 class. On days when I teach two Barry’s classes I count it as 1 set of cardio because I’m on my feet for 120 minutes.
Last week altogether I got all six cardio session by:
1) Tuesday 30 minute walk
4)Friday two barry’s classes + class (2x 30 min)
5)Sunday Snowboarding all day counted; so I got all 6 sets in, technically speaking 🙂
Saturday: back and biceps
Jeff put me through this workout:
1a) lat pull down 12-10-10-8
1b) machine bicep preacher curl 12-10-10-8
2a) single-arm cable row, seated position 12-10-10-8
2b) bicep rope curl 12-10-10-8
3a) TRX row for 12-10-10-8
3b) bicep high elbow curl, 12-10-10-8
SHORT, SWEET and FUN!
Aside from Sunday being a 1585 calorie day (which wasn’t bad since I snowboarded 6 hours) and Friday being a 1500 day with sushi (which also wasn’t bad because I taught to classes, lifted AND power walked) my days last week were between 1100 and 1200 calories. Gasp!!!
If you’ve followed me for a while you know that even in my last bikini prep when I weighed less, I didn’t go that low with calories until 2-3 weeks out. So why was I that low 5 weeks out?! Well there are a few reasons. First, I wanted to do an abbreviated prep for this show to experience it. I’ve done the slow and steady prep, (you can read about it here and here) and I’ve done a competition without really prepping (I just maintained 4 pounds above my first bikini show and did the two competitions 5 months apart), read about it here.
Second, each time you prep it’s different. This time around I had a year of non-dieting under my belt, more body fat and also a heck of a lot more muscle. I went from barely being able to squat 200 pounds in January 2016 to hitting a 225 pound squat in January 2017, as well as sets of 5 at 200 pounds (see below), and from barely making a 115 pound bench press to 135.
Flights out of Boston were canceled. Getting to Indy and then Chicago to compete wasn't feasible. And I'm not that mad; avoiding stressful airports is okay with me! But I wasn't going to NOT test my 1 RMs this weekend!!! I didn't eat jelly beans, I didn't cut weight and I didn't get a whole lot of sleep last night. But I wanted to go for the tests anyway so I have recorded benchmarks as I am approaching the 10 weeks out marker from my next bikini competition. Because there was nobody here to spot me, I was not only cautious on loads but also with form; my depth wasn't really there on the squat, I lifted my heals on bench and didn't have the adrenaline from a crowd to go higher than 275 on the deadlift. My squat was 225!!! A 25 pound PR from last January's meet. My bench was 135!!! A 20 Pound PR!!!! My deadlift remained the same but I have strong feelings that 300 will happen in 2017 and I can't wait!! Glad to have these 1 RMs on film and in the past– I'm so ready to pump and lean out!! I absolutely love my body at 125-126 pounds, but, everything feels a little easier when you're lighter. I'm posting this because I want to demonstrate how consistent effort in the gym over TIME will produce results. But it doesn't have to be your entire life! I've been snowboarding the past two weekends, doing gymnastics all year, taking yoga once a week and two weeks ago I taught 4 spin classes. Do what you love and you won't ever be "on" or "off." Strength is a skill and strong is power. Own it. Practice it. Be proud of it.#daretomove #powerlifting #fridaynight
I figured my body would respond well given the time off of dieting, and I technically started this prep in January, as in, I was mindful of what I was eating. I tracked everything and began a slow and steady MILD cut. Read about what I mean here.
At the 8-weeks out marker (around March 5th-12th, 2017) I began truly cutting calories. However, I did not cut out alcohol. I didn’t eat “clean,” I just tracked everything I ate and made sure it was within my calorie numbers. The biggest difference for me this round is that the calorie cut is intense, as of 4 weeks ago. 1100 calories and 1200-1300 calories is no joke. By Friday of last week I came upstairs from my lower body workout (you read about it above) feeling like I was going to pass out. Jeff told me to lay down I looked so weary. I took an hour nap and felt better.
The fast track is NOT easy. But the thing is, I know this is going to be uncomfortable. I know that I have to actually prioritize cardio this time around, too, which is different for me. In my first #bikiniprep process I didn’t add any additional cardio in except for the occasional Saturday morning Barry’s class which was in addition to the 3 short spin classes I taught each week at Cyc Fitness. This time around I started doing 4 sets of 30 minutes at the 6 weeks out marker, did 6 30 minutes sessions last week, (which you just read about) and plan to do 6 again this current week.
Like I said, it isn’t easy, but it’s a big science experiment for me. I’m not sure if I’ll get lean enough. I’m not sure if I’ll place well. I still feel behind, but I’m not giving up. Fear is giving me an edge.
To show you how far I’v come since January 12th, see the measurements below:
January 12th to April 3rd:
Chest: 31.5—> 29 inches
Bust: 36—> 35
Hips: 34.5—> 31
Waist: 31.5 to 26.75
Thighs: 21 and 21.5—>20.5 and 20.75
Butt: 35.5—> 34.2
Here’s a quick break down of the meals I ate while away from my kitchen. Let it be known that I was consistently boring with my meals when I was in my own kitchen. I eat things that are easy to track and enjoyable: Quest protein powder, Tripact protein powder, gluten-free oats,whole grain tortillas, cod and apples.
Sunday at Slow Groovin’ BBQ: I chose to get a salad with dressing on the side (basically a huge bowl of mixed greens–no nuts or dried fruit) with plain pulled pork. The portion looked big, but I’d had a light lunch of tilapia wit salsa and an apple. The best part of dinner (besides 1 bite of Jeff’s brisket) was that the restaurant’s home-made sauce was in a jar with a calorie count!!! It was 40 cals for 2 tbsp and so I enjoyed it knowing was I was eating. If you haven’t been, this BBQ place is a MUST try!
Monday at Panda Express: believe it or not, Panda Express has calories counts and plain mixed veggies! I got 80 calories of their mixed veggies and then 170 calories of their chicken and mushroom dish which Jeff helped me eat. Later on when he had a great big sandwich from a brewery, I ate some grilled asparagus and mushrooms as a late night snack before our red-eye.
Friday at Genki Ya: I chose the naruto roll (shown below) which has crab, shrimp and avocado. I picked out the avocado on half the rolls and then had a salmon tartare on top of rice. I only ate the rice of two of four tartare rolls. Then treated myself to a side-salad with the ginger dressing.
Saturday at Casa de Kusmierz: Jeff’s family so graciously prepared grilled shrimp and chicken with asparagus, a fresh green salad and corn on the cob so I could stay on track for my bikini competition. I enjoyed some grilled chicken and shrimp with extra asparagus on the salad as my dressing! After dinner I had a bite of Jeff’s birthday cake, which was actually my second bite of the day. Earlier in the day at his friend’s birthday party I had a bite of his cake too, but not too worry! Those two bites probably made up what would’ve been an afternoon snack calorie-wise, so they fit, imperfectly. Remember, no single food will cause weight gain, it’s the amount of which you eat that has influence over weight gain or loss.
What I’m Reading:
My friend Lauren Palm, aka “Fingers” launched her own website last weekend and although it’s new, it’s full of great articles and helpful health and fitness tips!! CHECK IT OUT!!!!!!!
[inspirational story]: my #bikini teammate @laurenmpalm was once just my supportive college gf. We were in the same sorority, we lived together for two years and we definitely knew how to party together. Formerly known as "Fingers," Lauren has always been active. She set numerous goals in college (all of which I watched her SLAY) including running a half marathon and holding a leadership role in Panhellenic. I'd always looked up to her, but my admiration grew when she reached out 8 weeks before my second NPC bikini competition and asked to join me. I believed her the moment she said she would do an 8 week prep, and very quickly she went from a client to a teammate and a teammate to my coach/ emotional support. Flash forward and she's crushing her 12 week prep, supporting me through my 8/9 week prep and launching her own online business. I've given fitness/ online business/ coaching help and tips to close to 100 people, and she's the first to ever launch her business, enroll in several certifications, begin to study, Write numerous *helpful* posts and actually dive right in!!!!! She's doing all this midst prepping, being a newly wed, and working at her Church. If you need any help or guidance with fitness or nutrition, check out her website, (live today) www.laurenpalm.com she is my fitspo and I cannot wait until she begins coaching!! See you in 4 weeks, Fingers!!!! So proud of you!! #garrettandfingerseatcheesecake #roundtwo #bikiniprep #macros #flexibledieting #bikini #strength #outofyourcomfortzone #daretomove #daretoeat
#DTE Group member Alicia:
Alicia sent me her 12-week update with week 8 and week 12 side-by-side. Her progress is remarkable. It’s crazy what you can get done is just one month! Also, her measurements are below, so you can see that like my changes noted in last week’s CROF Update, you CAN make strides in just 4 weeks! Way to go Alicia!