Hey Everyone! Happy October from me and my brothers πŸ˜‰

Fall

It’s been two weeks since the last Update and I have a lot to share!

This week you do NOT want to miss my male client’s mass gain story, an overnight oats recipe, a quick client update and two client strength updates.

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I have two articles coming out this week, so stay tuned for those, they both deal with training!

Last weekend I was in Chicago and the previous weekend I was in Cincinnati for a wedding. Phew! Traveling can be exhausting. If you’re traveling in the near future, check out this article I wrote a while back, it can be helpful with regards to staying on track with nutrition!

I’m definitely excited to be in Boston this weekend and catch up on sleep and powerlifting. However, I wouldn’t trade the last two weekends for anything. I got to see my five closest, best friends on earth. Laughing with them is the best medicine in the world. <3

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If you follow me on Instagram you’ve probably noticed I’ve been flipping and stunting a lot lately. It’s been really cool journey to fearlessness this year. The strength I’ve gained from powerlifting for almost two years now is not only affecting my ability to do gymnastics again, it’s making me more confident and less fearful with skills I used to be afraid of…. strength FTW!!!

In case you were wondering, I totally ate the landing. #daretomove

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I’ve also gotten over a lot of fears I used to have in college cheerleading. I went for a couple cheerleading stunts in Ohio two weeks ago with my old stunning partner. I was able to come very close to a couple of old skills after 4 years of not stunning πŸ˜‰

Read on to catch some yummy recipes, training notes and client updates!

Cheers!

Training:

If you live in Boston, you may have noticed I’ve been taking more Barry’s and Cyc Fitness classes over the last few weeks, and even going on runs! Gasp! Don’t worry, I haven’t omitted powerlifting, I’ve only done the bare minimum. What does that mean? It means I’ve gone into the gym and either done moderate heavy sets of 5 or 3, (for 3-5 sets) to keep my strength. I’ve been up to a little experiment and I have an article coming out this week about it.

The crux of my little experiment has to do with recovery, but also metabolism and strength loss when it comes to switching my training to more moderate load, higher volume training sessions. Last month, my training had more of a conditioning base than brute strength. The experiment was inspired by a lull in my training and wanting to have more fun. After I realize I wasn’t going to be able to compete in bikini in Nashville on November 4th, I decided to take a break from my regimented powerlifting training and have some fun bopping around to various classes in Boston. Stay tuned for the article this week!

I have to say one of my favorite parts of this training switch was working out next to friends and clients πŸ™‚ There are so many great coaches in town and I love learning form other instructors in Boston.

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As for my 30 pull-ups a day challenge, I had to take four days off in the month of September. Overall 26 days of 30 chin-ups went well!

Saturday I was at Rebell conditioning and Chicago and managed to do 12 chin-ups in a row without a warm-up! Unfortunately this was not filmed. This month I’m starting a new powerlifting program and hope that with the addition of weighted chin-ups and more strategic powerlifting programing again I’ll be able to get over 15 in a row by November πŸ˜‰

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I did test my 1 RM with the kettlebell press and the chin-up this month and I got the 20 kg kettlebell chin up for 3 singles (without doing weighted chin-ups at all otherwise this month) and a 45 pound KB press! See below!

In November I want to hit the 24 kg chin-up– Still not giving up on this goal! I did it in 2015, and I WILL do it in 2016 πŸ™‚ Gotta spend October practicing.

Nutrition:

It’s officially fall, so make sure you check out my Pumpkin Protein bread recipe! It’s been enjoyed by me and several of my clients–even ones cutting weight for powerlifting meets! You don’t wanna miss it!

As for me, I’m happily carbed-up from my FAVORITE pizza of all time– gluten-free, dairy-free Heart Smart pizza from Mista’s pizza in Chicago! I had it twice last weekend! It’s a very thin crust, and guilt-free! If you live in Chicago you have GOT to try it!

The recipe of the week comes from my Chi-Town client, Ellen, who loves her over-night oats!

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Recipe:

  • 1/2 cup oats
  • 1/2 cup almond milk
  • 1 tbsp chia seeds
  • If the rest of your day will be protein-packed, or you’re about to go lift: 1/2 cup of fruit
  • If you want protein in breakfast for more satiety: 1 scoop protein powder
  • If you want more carbs+ protein: 1/2 scoop whey, 1/4 scoop fruit
  • If you want more protein and carbs: omit chia seeds and almond milk, add protein powder and 1/2 cup fruit, like blueberries
  • sweeter to taste and cinnamon

Side note: Ellen is currently down 8 pounds in 7 weeks! Can’t wait to reveal her progress!

Next week I will walk you through a few other client faves, stay tuned!

What I’m Reading:

  1. When it comes to strength, stop chasing fatigue, start chasing proper form via Meghan Callaway Fitness
  2. What women should eat to gain muscle via Girls Gone Strong
  3. It Never Gets Easier via Ross Training
  4. Beauty Pageant or Balance Beams? You choose via Go Fit U
  5. 11 Things I’ve learned coaching elite and professional athletes via Precision Nutrition
  6. Why I quit Running via 20 to 80
  7. 12 Things I learned from the Creator of Nike via On the Regimen

Client Spotlights:

Male’s Mass gain story:

You may remember my client Adam’s dramatic transformation a few years back (click here to see it again). This client update is about a client who wanted to stay lean, but add mass– NOT an easy feat.

  • Program duration: 6 weeks
  • Training schedule: 1-2 days conditioning, 3 days heavy lifting
  • Calories: 2500, 2700, 3000-3100 high cal days
  • Initial weight: 170
  • Ending weight: 174

While it may see like eating more calories would be awesome, it wasn’t easy at first! Having protein-packed snacks on hand and carbs ready to go before and after training took a lot of planning ahead, especially with his busy schedule.

The crazy part was that as an ectomorph, he was actually sometimes still hungry on his high calorie days. In those cases he listened to his body and added in an additional 100-200 cals via a protein shake. Making sure protein was high/sufficient wasn’t too hard for him because he was used to prioritizing protein. However, ensuring he kept tabs on the balance of carbs to protein to fat was tricky at times, as it takes more time and consideration when you aren’t used to being concerned with all three macros.

For his training, we had to tweak a couple of things, mainly the reps and sets. I had him starting working brute strength, sets of no more than 5 reps, and going as heavy as possible, instead of doing a more aerobic type of lifting with sets of moderately heavy lifts for 10-15 reps. His diligent weekly check-ins, adherence to training and calorie intake paid off big time– the four-pound gain is very clear to see. During weeks five and six we monitored calories more closely and dropped them slightly in order to make sure he could maintain his abs. Way to go! So proud of this guy!!

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Left at 170, right at 174

Carlos’s deadlift progress:

My client Carlos is really killing it on his lifts. He used to feel kind of stuck at 225, but after a few form tweaks in a one-on one session he feels more confident and is pulling 255 Β for 4 reps as of last week! He used to pull conventional and now with a moderate sumo stance he feels less tension in his back. Way to go Carlos!! Unfortunately the video could not be shared, but I’m sure you will see more of his deadlifts soon πŸ™‚

Bani’s Group Program success:
You may remember Bani from her first Dare to Eat program, or her half marathon success with a Dare to Run program. Here she is again, after an 8-week #Dareteat Group Program!!! Last week, you saw Kara‘s success from the group, check out Bani’s below! The results are evident. Proud of you, Bani!!!!

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Meghan’s unassisted chin-up in Hawaii:

I interrupt your #flexfriday to show off my client @mcapitula … this girl has been strength training with me for just about a year now. She crushes chin-ups every session (volume for the win), and she deadlifts like a boss. Her hip thrusts and back squats are naturally strong, despite injury. However, upper body strength has taken a lot of patience and practice. I could not be more proud of her dedication to strength. Here she is on vacation in Hawaii, doing chin/ups, and this was not her first set– she thought to film after a few reps and a 4 mile hike ? Im so darn proud of her. Practice pays off, the empowerment lasts a lifetime. Go, Meg!! Also, thanks to @titanbarbell for letting us train in your incredible space!! #strengthforthewin #daretomove

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