Wednesday, March 23, 2016

On a personal note... goal setting post.

I've been in this sort of "at my age who gives a shit I'm just gonna cruise along doing my thing" sort of mode the past few years, as far not being this super driven "gotta be the most ripped, gotta keep up with and outdo all these guys in the gym 10 or 15 years younger than me so everyone knows I'm the best trainer" sort of guy.

And I'm all about that life. For my clients, for anyone following my on social media... it SHOULD be all about "being happy where you're at, and feeling great about where you're headed, at your own pace". It's not about keeping up with or outdoing anyone else and it IS always about being happy where you are not but heading towards where you'll be happier still.

That's what I believe and what I try to facilitate in people who come to me for help and advice.

HOWEVER... I think it's a possible combination of being inspired by all the amazing athletes I've seen who were here for the Arnold Classic, plus the more pleasant, mild Autumn weather... and throw in that my birthday is coming up in a month as well.

It was at about this time LAST year that I decided I'd stop being complacent and dial in some tight Flexible Fueling targets according to my own system, and work on hitting them consistently. What I set out to prove last year was that you get better results by working towards optimal targets rather than just slashing into deficit of where ever you are starting from, and that even while pushing those higher numbers on intake, you'll still see weight loss while improving performance and maintaining (even adding) lean mass.

If you go creep my instagram you'll see that this worked out exactly like I said it would. Pushing around 2900 - 3100 (and at times even more) calories per day I dropped around 1kg over the winter, if I remember correctly. Maybe it was a little more. I'm not saying it's a massive drop in weight or anything like that, but that wasn't the point.

The point was, and still is, as follows:
If you're an athlete, or anyone training for performance and condition, don't be afraid to push towards an optimal aka maximum usable energy intake. You will not get fat. You will actually see a decrease in fat mass as more of those valuable resources are made available to fuel performance at training, recovery from training, and the creation and maintenance of lean mass as an adaptation to training.
So to recap... I started out if I remember correctly at about 2400 - 2600 calories per day, perhaps less as I had gotten quite complacent. Start pushing 2900 and up throughout the Autumn and into the Winter, and see a gradual reduction in bodyweight. THEN though in the late Spring, I cut back to 2600 and immediately dropped another 2kg. This is all documented on instagram and in fact there is one photo captioned "fuck! This cut has gone too far!" or something like that.

What else you can see on instagram is I didn't let up on the massive amounts of fruit that I'm known for, still ate pizza twice a week, and in fact the only way I could force myself to hit those over 3000 targets was by including a couple of mint slice chocolate biscuits on a daily basis. And I got leaner. Because that's how it actually works.

Anyway.

That's what I decided about this time last year, and I made it happen just like I said it would.

Right now though, I'm fired up after hanging out in the gym with so many amazing athletes. So many people who really seem so happy based on setting goals for themselves and working diligently towards them and reaping the rewards. So what I'm going to do this year is one step beyond what I did last year.

This year I'm going to GAIN weight while still getting leaner.
That's the goal anyway. There's a limit to how much lean mass a mature male should be able to add without use of any steroids or anything like that. It's not a huge amount, sadly enough... so what weight increase there will be will hopefully be a little lean mass plus more glycogen in the muscles. I'm looking at maybe 3kg, realistically. But, I'll come out of it next Summer heavier and visibly leaner.

That's the goal. Watch and see.