Train Fitness Challenge
This week I’m afraid I have got some heavy reading material for you! But just how heavy?! The subject for consideration is one that can certainly rest heavy on the mind.
We explored this prominent element of the challenge in a recent post, discussing the daily weigh-ins and how each of these affected our progress and weekly fuel consumption. This week I’d like to take a different look at kilos and pounds.
Losing weight is something that each and every human being considers and maybe even does something about at some point in their lives. It could be for a day or it could be for years and years. For some weight loss is a passing fad that never amounts to anything, for others it’s a lifetime obsession. This determination to get rid of some excess baggage can take over a life and have a detrimental effect on health and wellbeing.
Well, so I’m told. Because do you know something?... weight loss is not an issue that’s ever crossed my mind. Pardon?!... nope, never!
Yes I may have wanted to build strength, ‘tone up’ and tighten a little, but actually dropping pounds has never bothered me in the slightest and I know the same is true of James. ‘Lucky you!’ I hear you say and, yes, I am naturally quite petite and of a shape that has never really raised any necessity to shed fat. I have needed all the excess I could muster in order to turn into muscle and develop the physique I have trained for.
Upon beginning this plan I moved straight into deficit. The reason was that I actually carried more fat than I imagined. Despite my coach assuring me there was not an unhealthy amount of excess, I needed to get rid of it. In normal circumstances there would have been no good reason to shrink it but these are not normal circumstances. I have always eaten ‘well’, trained hard and looked after my body. The trouble is that my version of eating ‘well’ also meant eating a hell of a lot. I enjoy my food immensely and, thanks in part to good genes, I have never felt the need to cut anything out. But this wasn’t and isn’t a simple body transformation/weight-loss adventure. This is quite literally a challenge and therefore a difficult journey through the process that athletes on the WBFF stages undertake. So restrictions were set and calories were cut. Inevitably, my weight started to drop. It is science after all!
My coach has repeated that in a normal regime I would not need to drop this weight. The shape I was in before this challenge began was a healthy one, but the name of the game was ‘challenge’. The challenge set was one for both my body and my mind and if I wanted to experience the true essence of these athletes’ lives I would need to understand the hunger they encountered and be prepared to see changes to my body that I had not previously considered. Dropping some weight in order to reduce my body fat was just a part of all that.
I must admit that I enjoyed an element of guilty pleasure in watching my abs appear under the layer of peanut butter and my face begin to develop an outline of cheek bone. It was and is very satisfying to see my body change in response to the hard work I have put in. Sweat and suffering were nothing new in the maintenance of an athletic physique but I had never gone that extra mile that allowed my perspiration to produce such prominent results.
The reduced calories and reduced kilograms have been noticed by those around me. These changes in my body have sparked comment and compliment. I can live with praise and admiration! Not that I’m vane or anything but as we near the end of the challenge I have caught myself looking in the mirror a number of times and I have studied check-in pictures for a ‘before’ and ‘after’ comparison. I am happy with the shape I see in front of me.
Of course, the more you start to achieve the more you desire. Human nature. It is this element of body transformation that can be dangerous. Without expert guidance and support, the body can be pushed beyond a point of good sense. I have come to terms with the fact that the shape I am programmed to continue to develop over the remaining weeks is not maintainable. I’m at a crucial point in the transformation and the last few weeks will see our coaches pushing our bodies to achieve a peak competition physique. ‘Competition’ is the important word to remember here because once I achieve that ‘comp’ level, the challenge is over. The completion is the reason I will continue to drop the last few pounds. I repeat that I can honestly say I am happy with my usual shape and plan to return to this happy, healthy size through reverse dieting once the challenge is complete. Until then, I will continue to be supported through the further changes I must undergo to achieve a ‘stage ready’ form. The tummy rumbles are not over yet.
It’s going to be a challenge but that is the idea. I will reveal more detail and figures about fat levels and weight once I reach the end of my challenge but e-n-d will spell ‘end’. I’m hungry!!!