So this week is the week. Show time. Almost time to present what I’ve been working up to since the day after I got off the UKBFF British stage last October.
The feedback from last year? Same story. Nothing’s new – “nail the condition”. Boring. But I actually needed to do something about it this season.
Condition = Kryptonite
Superman has kryptonite. I have condition. It’s a weakness – it’s one of those things. I need(ed) to overcome it. So have I?
Honestly? “Stage lean”? In my head? No not yet.
I am overly negative and critical of myself. I am my own biggest critic. No judge, critic or anyone could possibly say something about me worse than I think about myself.
I think you have to be brutally honest in life no matter what if you intend to get the best results, and I think that transfers 100% into bodybuilding. You have to take your ego out of things and look at your biggest weakness(es) – this is what the judges look for. This is how you’re going to be judged.
I’m still not happy with how I currently look sat here writing this 10 days out. No doubt within the next few days I’ll feel better, and should I manage to qualify for the British Finals I’ll have another 6 weeks from the Welsh qualifier to really nail it down.
For the last 4 or 5 weeks I’ve been moaning to my coach (Paul Scarborough) that I’m not losing body fat at the rate I needed to. I think he’s been very cautious about putting me in more of a caloric deficit than I’ve been in for fear of burning me out and it having a negative impact on me in the gym and ultimately my physique.
However, I think now he’s coming around to the idea that my body can take some battering and starvation! I don’t work like anyone else I know. And I think he’s seeing that too now.
A rare breed. A genetic anomaly?
If anyone knows me, they know that I grow on very little calories. I get heavy very easily. My metabolism has the economy rating of a Teslar (manufacturer of electric cars). So whilst this is great for getting hyoooge and jacked because it doesn’t take much effort (or as expensive a shopping bill!), when it comes to going down the other side of the mountain (i.e. dieting for a competition) things get a bit tricky.
I HAVE to starve myself. I do not care what an expert or guru or science nut says. I’ve tried high cardio and high calories, I’ve tried keto – I’ve tried all sorts! Cardio seems to just be a massive stress on my body. None of it works any better than good old grindin’ the living s*it out of it and just eating next to nothing.
I’m a contract computer programmer / web developer. I work for myself. During the working day I’m sat on my backside for 7-8 hours a day. The only real caloric expenditure I occur is walking to the car, working out in the gym and doing cardio. That’s not a whole lot of moving around. Which would account for such low energy demand. This seems unfathomable to most. I can’t help that. It is what it is.
I always find the reaction of people so funny when I tell them the number of calories I’m on.
“You’re 270lbs! You only eat THAT many calories?! How do you even function on that?!”
I… umm… I dunno. *shifty looking* I just do?!
Just because something can’t be understood doesn’t mean it can’t be worked with! Like I have no ego with what I lift in the gym (it’s all about the feel from the muscles than the weight on the bar), I have no issue in cutting calories and drinking a black coffee if I get a bit hungry.
So how many calories am I on – It’s actually around the same as you’d expect an 8 stone bikini girl would be on. No joke. It’s almost embarrassing, but it is what it is. Calories in Vs calories out. It’s just a number. I just don’t seem to put as many calories out as 99.9% of the population!
It’s cool to be different anyway, right? A genetic anomaly.
Training and injuries
I’ve always been relatively injury free. I’d like to say “I’ve been lucky”, but I haven’t. It doesn’t come down to luck, in reality in the past I’ve just always been careful. I don’t train to get strong. I execute the exercises correctly, with a full range of motion and stop when I know I need to. I don’t do crazy lifts with crazy weights. I have no ego in that regard. I go in to the gym, I get the job done and I enjoy it
This year I’ve been a bit more “flirtatious” with lifting in the gym. I started deadlifting earlier this year and I’ve pulled 7 plates a side (300kg) for a double on a few occasions (videos on my Instagram account). I’ve had an on-going tricep tendon issue for over 12 months now, where I’ve had physio, shockwave therapy and a PRP injection. It’s better, but it’s still not 100%. I’ve had other little pains and aches which have mean I’ve had to hold back slightly so not to totally write myself off.
From here on it’s going to be all sensible and calm in the gym otherwise I’m going to have bigger issues to handle.
Well, I’m pretty much using what I use year round. Supplements become more and more important for health purposes during a contest prep. Because calories are lower, we can generally struggle to get key nutrients that the body needs from whole foods, which is where a concentrated amount without those calories (i.e. supplements)
ProIsolate – towards to later phase this become more and more vital due to the low calories, high protein and low fat/carbohydrate content
ProGreen capsules – nice and easy way to get important nutrients in. I hate eating veg and all things green, so these are incredible
ProOmegas – healthy fats are vital for hormonal function, joints and also fat loss (believe it or not). A real must have in my opinion
ProTect – joint care done properly!
ProHealth & Immune – for obvious reasons. Solid multi-vitamin and multi-mineral to keep things ticking over as they should be
ProVital – antioxidants, cardio protective qualities and endocrine support factors
ProBiotic – gut health and digestion are important in order to keep the body ticking over as it should be
Man I hate that phrase! It’s up there with the most stupid thing to ever come out bodybuilding and physique competition. I think people who utilise the phrase truly believe that their physique will magically transform for the better during the last week leading to the competition.
I can assure you – it doesn’t. If you’re not ready a week or two before the show, the week of the show will sadly disappoint you.
Anyway – What will I do last week of the show?
Probably not a lot! I’ll keep salt in, keep to the usual foods, and keep to the usual routine with training and cardio. Change as little as possible. A few days out I’ll take a look at myself in the mandatory poses, send pics/videos to Paul and maybe consider a day or two of carb loading if I’m looking flat.
Just simmer on in to the show and roll with it. I will probably train all the way into the weekend too.
Qualifiers are so unpredictable. You never know who can turn up. You may have an idea based on social media and hear-say but the fact is there could be some super freak training in his garage with a York dumbbell set who comes and shocks the world. Unlikely. But you never know!
I just hope to be able to qualify for the British Finals. If I can pull that off, there’s 6 weeks from the Welsh show until the British Finals. This will give me a solid run to hammer the rest of the body fat I have and come in as skinless as possible.
Can all but hope.
But from now until, I’m off to study and defeat my kryptonite!