Sunday morning. When it comes to my fitness endeavors, Sunday morning is very critical.
As with each Sunday, the first thing I did upon waking up this morning was to weigh-in & take my body fat measurements. I’m happy to report that I gained 3 pounds this week.
My lean body mass increased by about 1.5 pounds. Unfortunately, I gained a little over a pound of fat this week but I’m ok with it. I expect to gain some fat over the next few weeks. I am ingesting more calories each week & a decent portion of those calories are comprised of healthy fats (nuts, olive oil, egg yolks, etc.). Plus, I was sick for part of the past week and my eating schedule/intake was a bit off for a few days.
This is the second week in a row that I have gained at least 3 pounds. At this rate, I am on pace to gain another 15-20 pounds over the next 6 weeks. This is perfect. My goal going into this 90 day program was to gain about 20-25 pounds in 8-9 weeks & then spend the last 3-4 weeks cutting any excess fat & getting shredded for my final pictures.
After my weigh-in, I used the next 30 minutes on a few fitness related activities. I began with 15 minutes on the Gazelle:
My protocol for today would be best described as a Variable Intensity Interval Training (VIIT) pace. I worked at varying rates for 30-60 second bursts throughout the 15 minute period. Today, my time on the gazelle was focused more on being an “active recovery” session and less on fat burning. My legs were a bit sore when I woke up but after the 15 minute session they felt more alive.
I would say that I stayed within the 3-8 (out of 10) range as far as intensity goes. 1 is a slow paced walk, 3 is a moderate paced walk, 5 is a fast walk/light jog, 8 is a fast jog & a 10 is an all out sprint. This gives you an idea of the patterns I describe below.
As far as my workout log goes, I basically followed this pattern:
- First 5 minutes: Started at a 1 & slowly worked up to a 3 over the first 2 minutes. Worked up to a 5 over the next minute. For the final 2 minutes of this portion I alternated between a 3 and 5 for 30 seconds each.
- Second 5 minutes: Started at a 5 & maintained this pace for the first minute, dropped to a 3 for 30 seconds, went up to a 5 for 30 seconds, went to a 7 for 30 seconds, back down to a 5 for 30 seconds, back up to a 7 for 30 seconds, down to a 5 for 30 seconds, down to a 3 for the final minute of this portion.
- Final 5 minutes: Repeated the first 5 minutes listed above.
I covered approximately 1/2 mile in 15 minutes today. Nothing major and totally acceptable. I am in a muscle building phase so I need to stay in a caloric surplus for as long as possible. During a “bulking” phase, I tend to utilize VIIT sessions a few times a week.
I didn’t utilize them last week due to feeling ill a few days & I gained more fat as a consequence. It hit me in my lower ab region which is no surprise. (There & the love handles are my 2 trouble spots.) But I’m not stressing about it. I accept it for what it is, realize I will have to put in a little extra work to burn the fat & go forth.
*Note to self: A little VIIT cardio on an “off” day won’t cost you that much muscle but it sure will help you minimize fat gain.*
After putting the gazelle away & getting a small drink of water, the next 5 minutes were devoted to a series of planks with very little rest between exercises. 4:15 out of 5 minutes were devoted to my core being engaged, only 45 seconds of rest total. I also tend to sneak this 5 minute circuit in most nights of the week.
The final 10 minutes this morning were devoted to yoga. I started with a few Sun Saluations & then worked on loosening up my legs. My hamstrings & inner thighs were very tight so I spent a fair amount of time stretching those areas. I will most likely sneak in another 10-15 minute stretching session today just to stay loose.
The other activity that makes Sunday morning crucial to my fitness goals is planning the upcoming week in terms of workout logs & meal plans.
Workout Logs: Printed & in the weight room. I used this morning to list the starting weights for each exercise, each day on these logs. Transferred some notes from last week to these sheets as well. Took me less than 10 minutes to do it but it will make a world of difference in being prepared & utilizing my time in the weight room this coming week.
Meal Plans: Updated in the spreadsheet. Will print them as needed on a day to basis or write them in a steno note pad. Keep them visible during the day so I am able to stay on target.
Proper planning & then diligently adhering to my plan has me on pace to reach my fitness goals. It isn’t always easy or fun but the end result is so worth it that I really don’t see any other option.
3 weeks down, 10 to go.
*Your persistence is the measure of faith you have in yourself*
Today’s track listing:
- Listen Like Thieves – INXS
- No Excuses – Alice In Chains
- Spirit of Radio – Rush
- I’m Broken – Pantera
- Icky Thump – The White Stripes
- Lord of this World – Corrosion of Conformity
- Rock of Ages – Def Leppard
- Desecration of Souls – Mercyful Fate