Project Rockstar 2015 - Pre-Training Fitness Program Weekly Journals

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  1. #1
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    Sterling is offline Certified Love Systems Instructor

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    Nov 2008

    Project Rockstar 2015 - Pre-Training Fitness Program Weekly Journals

    The Project Rockstar 2015 class has been selected!

    Project Rockstar represents a complete life transformation unlike any other. From the moment the Rockstars are selected the training begins. Before the 10-week program officially kicks off in June, the Rockstars have to go through a mandatory, extremely grueling fitness program. They are tracked daily, with photos and measurements submitted every week for assessment, and pushed to the absolute limit.

    Roughly 2-3 hours of gym time every day for 12 weeks and preparing ALL their own meals as part of a strictly controlled nutrition and diet program. That means upwards of 4,000 calories a day for those gaining mass, and less than 1,500 calories a day for those losing weight. With no question the guys will be stepping into summer in the best shape of their lives.

    People often talk about how they would love to get a 10. It should be no surprise that girl-10s like guy-10s. And fitness is part of that equation.

    As the Rockstars post their weekly fitness journals, our hope is that you are able to draw some inspiration from their journey. And more importantly, to realize that getting in tip-top shape is seriously tough work. But of course, if you want the best, the juice is always worth the squeeze.

  2. #2

    Week 1

    This is my first week on the new diet and exercise plan to prepare for Project Rockstar. I can sum up the experience of the first week with one word. Sore. My body aches all over from the intense workouts included in the body transformation program. My stomach aches from cramming massive amounts of food down my throat. I just feel like I am sore all the time and there never seems to be a moment where I just feel normal. I was mostly sedentary before starting the program because my job consists of sitting at a desk most of the day, and then when I get home I usually just want to rest and relax. The gym was not a priority. Moreover, I didn't eat a lot before the program, and I certainly didn't eat enough to fuel my body for these intense workouts, so increasing my calorie intake has been a big adjustment. I have done similar diet and exercise programs in the past, so I know from experience that it usually take the body a week or so to adjust, and that the first week is a pretty big struggle.

    My biggest struggles over the first week have been getting myself to go to the gym and to eat more. The gym has never been a favored location of mine. I know a lot of people love to workout, and they can spend all day in the gym doing exercises and getting all hot and sweaty. I am not one of them. Going to the gym is a laborious experience for me. Whenever I workout, I want to make it count, so I really try to push myself to the limit while I'm there. This translates to a lot of pain and discomfort, shortness of breath, and sometimes even faintness and dizziness. None of these things are pleasurable for me. Not to mention the stench or the old naked dudes in the locker room with their droopy ball sacks.

    Also, the change in diet has been a struggle. I don't mind sticking to the foods outlined in the diet. It gets a little tedious eating the same things over and over again, but overall everything usually tastes pretty good and it makes it easier to choose what you are going to eat if there are less options. I have a hard time with the amount of food that needs to be eaten to gain size. My body just isn't used to that. I find myself often times eating past the point that I'm full and my body is giving me a lot of resistance. Sometimes it will take me an hour to finish a meal because I'm full but I'm still trying to force it down so chewing takes forever. There are also temptations to stray from the diet now and then. Coworkers want to go out to lunch, your roommates offer you some candy they got from their mom, friends want youto go have a drink with them. Sometimes it is hard to say no, but I know that I have to.

    Despite these difficulties, I know I have to stay focused on my goal to get into the best, most ripped shape of my life. This is what gives me the motivation to drag myself to the gym even if I am feeling tired and I don't really want to, or if I am feeling totally full and I feel like I am going to burst, but I take another bite because I know it will help me grow. Nobody ever said getting ripped was easy. It takes hard work and discipline. It takes commitment to your goal and the drive to see it through to the end. But that is also what makes it worth it. If it were easy to attain, then that takes a lot of the value away. I believe that once I truly habitualize the exercise and eating regimen, then it will become easier as I make it part of my daily routine. But for right now, it is still definitely a struggle.

    As part of my daily routine, I have been waking up at 5:30AM to go on a morning power walk to get the first half of my daily cardio. I do Tony Robbins's "Hour of Power" where I practice being grateful for my life and the wonderful things in it, I focus on my goals and visualize myself and accomplishing them, and then I think about what I want to create and accomplish that day and how I am going to do it. This is an excellent way to begin the day because it puts me in the right frame of mind to tackle everything necessary as the day progresses including eating right and working out. Plus, I knock out the first set of cardio right away as a bonus! I eat nearly all my meals out of tupperwares now and I have two protein shakes per day, one right when I wake up and the other right after my workout. I workout at 24 Hour Fitness. I like 24 Hour because it is relatively cheap and it gives the flexibility to workout at multiple locations around the city, or even when I am traveling. The only major drawback is that some of them are on the smaller side and don't have all the proper equipment I need to complete the workouts, so I have to find another.

    I've always felt that I was skinny. My mother always says that I am just skin and bones. I have tried to bulk up before with moderate success, but I tend to go in cycles. I reach a point where I am comfortable and happy with how I look, perhaps not my ideal figure but good enough, and I start to ease off the gas pedal. Eventually, I fall back into my old habits until I get a bit of a beer belly and I realize that I need to start working out again. I feel like this is my opportunity to really break that cycle. I am going to truly dedicate myself over the next several weeks to attaining the body that I have always wanted, and when I show up in Vegas I will be ripped and ready to tackle anything

  3. #3

    Week 1

    So the first week of the Sports Food Fitness Transformation program is officially in the books. To be honest the week has pretty much flown by, in fact everything has been somewhat of a whirlwind since I began the program. Fingers crossed the next 11 weeks will pass just as quickly.

    Unfortunately I havenít seen a huge physical change in my body just yet. Although to be fair it has only been 7 days and as they say Rome wasnít built in a day. Although there hasnít been much visible changein my body yet I am certainly in pain almost constantly... but it is good pain, muscle growth pain as opposed to muscle injury pain. I am not quite sure at this stage how I am going to cope with being in this level of physical pain on a consistent basis for the next 11 weeks straight but nothing worth having comes easy. In the past when I have been training in the gym muscle growth has been quite a slow process for me so I wasnít expecting to see much physical change in the first week anyway. Having saidthat in the past I havenít been training, dieting or supplementing as intensely as I have been in the past week.

    For the first day or 2, I actually found the workout part of the program to be much more manageable than I was expecting it to be. But as the days went on I began to realise that I suffer from DOMS (Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness). I feel the soreness most intensely not the day after the workout but the day after the day after the workout (48 hours later basically). Also when doing some of the presstype exercises I discovered that I have a knot in my left shoulder which meant that I wasnít able to go as heavy with those exercises as I would have liked. It can be quite scary when the knot clicks over the shoulder blade and you realise you may come to failure right as the barbell/dumbbell is over your head. Iíve suffered quite a bit in the past with knots developing around my shoulder area. I have booked in a massage for next week and I am hoping that will solve the problem. Getting it kneaded out is going to be absolute torture but hopefully the results will be worth it.

    I bought a body fat analyser the weekend before I began the program which Iím almost certain is faulty. For the past week it has been giving me readings that fluctuate between 22% & 23% body fat. Iím 99.9% sure that my body fat % is somewhere around the 10% to 12% mark. (I had a personal trainer up to 3 months ago who checked my body fat % regularly with a very expensive callipers, and my body fat % was always around the 10% mark Ė I havenít changed too drastically since hence why I know the 22% /23% readings are inaccurate). In fact one of my aims for this program is to get my body fat % down to8% or below. All this has meant that Iím guessing my body fat % (until my new body fat analyser arrives) and have not been able to track my progress on this front which is frustrating. Another source of frustration is that my weight (which I can measure accurately) hasnít increased very much over the 7 days; in fact it actually decreased one day, in spite of increasing the number of meals Iím eating each day.

    By far the biggest challenge so far has been the diet side of the program and more specifically the food preparation. While Iím pretty used to cooking and eating lean, mean, clean and green I am not used to cooking such big quantities of food. Instead of putting 1 or 2 chicken breasts on the Georgie Foreman Iím now putting on 8, instead of cooking a small saucepan of brown rice Iím now cooking a massive roasting pot of the stuff. Iíve actually found that in spite of the fact that Iím eating more meals in the day Iím getting quite hungry between meals moreso than I would have been before I started the diet (Iím actually hungry as I type this now and I literally just had a Tupperware an hour ago).

    The carb source in all my Tupperwareís this week has been brown rice and I think that this just isnít filling me. I plan to change my Tupperware carb source from brown rice to sweet potatoes this week and hopefully that will alleviate the hunger. We have not received our supplements from our sponsors Sports Food Nutrition yet (it is only day 7). Iím looking forward to receiving the Sports Food supplements and Iím hoping they will help me out in the areas of appetite suppression and muscle recovery.

    We will be taking quite a large number of supplements during the program so today I bought 7 pill boxes so that I can sort all my pills for the coming week every Sunday. After week 1 I feel that I still havenít really got fully into the swing of things. (Although my muscles, which are currently screaming out in agony, would disagree) I need to structure and organise my days abit better next week. Everything this week has been a bit haphazard. Iíve only been preparing my food for 1 or 2 days in advance, I need to dedicate a specific evening to food preparation and prepare 4/5 days of food in one go.

    That is week 1 down. Iím looking forward to week 2, another week of clean eating and gym domination. Hopefully Iíll weigh a little more when I am sitting here this day next week typing my week 2 review and hopefully Iíll have a more accurate measurement of my body fat % Itís great to be part of this programand major props to the guys at Sports Food for creating it.

  4. #4

    Week 1

    When I first glanced at the training program I didnít think it was much different to how I had been training except it had a bit more cardio involved it, how could I be so wrong. When committing to this program I made the conscious decision to give it everything I had, no matter how much I was hurting. I pushed myself way out of my comfort zone right from day one and realised I could actually lift a lot more than what I thought I could, which was something that was missing from my training.

    By the end of the week I had pushed so hard I felt pain in areas I never knew existed before. I guess when you want something bad enough, youíll pretty much endure any amount of pain that comes with it, which is what really tests your internal fortitude to keep going. I found the ab ripper exercise probably the most intense exercise I have done in a very long time, as I never really did any ab isolation exercises on their own, but did surprise myself with how much I push though some pain barriers to finish it in a reasonable time frame. I wouldnít say I have made any noticeable changes inmy body as it is only the end of the first week, but I do feel as though I have a lot more energy than I normally would.

    I think my focus and mind is a lot clearer and is more based on doing the small things right and trusting the process, rather than focusing on the outcomes as I have done in the past. I think to be able to make improvements in any part of your life, you need to be able to make measurable differences and to be able to see them on a weekly bases. By seeing these little improvements through your own eyes, that is the key to making everlasting change.

    Nutrition is the area I have struggled in for a fair while, so following a structured meal plain is something that I really needed to take on board. One thing that stands out the most is the preparation that goes into your daily meals is quite time consuming. I used to always prepare my food on a daily basis but I have now found preparing everything at the start of the week to be way more beneficial, not only are meals ready for me when I need them, but also helps with sticking to the right macronutrient and calorie intake and having consistency throughout the week. Trying to find the right supplements to help with my fitness goal is been something I have had a lack of knowledge with. I never really understood what I needed to take, and the actual benefits of taking supplement which is going to be something I will learn more about along the way

    I think some of the biggest challenges that I have face up until this point was, setting my fitness goals to small or not planning right to achieve what I set out. Like they say ďfailing to prepare is preparing to failĒ and is by far the biggest thing I have learned this week. There is so much misinformation outthere that I was never sure on what I should be following and could never achieve the results that I desired. If I really look back on how I trained this week compared to how I had been training in the past, I think there is a considerable amount of difference. The share hard work to be pushing myself to lift heavier than I have, while still, making a conscious effort to watch the rest periods to keep the intensity up is probably where I was going wrong in the first place, but I do take comfort in, being aware of where I was going wrong and I now know where I should be. As long as I preserve with the training and do everting right Iím sure I see massive changes ahead as I have really big expectations of this training program, as you would expect hard work with high reward.

    Something that I learnt about myself this week is, I stopped making excuses and pushed as past some pain barriers that normally would slow me down. It made me realise that this sort of mentality carriers over into every aspect of your life, as long as you keep pushing through youíll got closer toyour goals. I found having a clear goal in mind gives you that extra motivation to push even further than you had before which is a good feeling. Even though this is only the start of the program I really this it has been a good week and I am excited for what changes lay ahead both in fitness and in life itself.

  5. #5

    Week 1

    Working out and sticking to a diet isnít something new to me. Being a former fat kid, Iíve worked out for several years and been sticking to different diets. Ever since I started working out I was broughtinto the school of ďless is moreĒ when it comes to diet and training. In regards to training this led me to my training over the years being very strength oriented, focusing on the big 3: Bench Press, Deadlift and Squats. The people who preach this always say that with strength comes size, and that volume training is shit basically. During my years of training I have indeed gotten strong, whereas I can pull twice of my weight for sevral reps in deadlift, squat 1,5 of my weight and so on. Despite these numbers which would place me as an intermediary lifter, I look at myself in the mirror and see a body that would fit someone who has worked out for a year. In this regard I am excited for the training regime that the sportsfood transformation follows.

    Its hard to change strong core beliefs and even though my results have been lagging for a long time Iíve had a hard time stepping away from the strength training an trying more volume oriented, the ego takes a big turn when you walk away from the heavy weights to go and pump in the machines. Doing this program is in a lot of ways for me to accept that what I have been doing hasnít been working, that my core beliefs have been wrong, and that big changes is necessary if I want to see big changes in my body. Which I want, I want to look fucking great naked.

    Following the training regime is not something I see as a problem. The cardio is a nice time to plug in an audio book and float away for a little while whereas I look forward to falling in love with the pump and Swoleness and Broness this training will bring.

    The hardest part for me on this transformation will definitely be the diet. The diet wont be hard in the regard that im not used to consuming this much food on a day to day basis. Whit my prior diet im used to eating the food thatís eaten, but only on workout days. The diet Iíve been following up to this point has had a cyclic approach where macro split and calorie intake vary based on if you work out or not. This cyclic approach has always been good mentally for me since I used to be fat and this would ensure that mass that is gained is lean. Even though this would logically be the case I look back at my progress and can conclude that the mass Iíve gained hasnít really been lean. In this sense eating thismuch food on all days will be a huge mental challenge.

    Being a former fat kid I have a daily struggle about feeling fat and seeing myself as fat when I look in the mirror even though this isnít the case. Iíve been down to 6% body fat waking up and getting anxious because I feel fat when I look in the mirror, and its a mental hiccup that doesnít seem to get away. This has led me to having a really hardtime sticking to a diet for a longer time when I try to gain mass since Iíd after just a couple of weeks feel fat and start dieting again. Iíve done this over and over again for the last couple of years which has led to my progress being basically non-existent. When I look at the diet in the transformation itsboth with fear and excitement. An everlasting fear of me getting fat again, but also excitement if this turns out to be the way for me to go to progress in my fitness. It would be a huge thing for me.

    The measuring progress part of the transformation is something im not really used to and it will be really interesting to look back on and see the progress thatís made. So far Iíve gained a little weight, proboably because of the increased food intake and water intake, and bf% has stayed the same. I fell a bit more Swole, probably because of all the bicep curls in combination with the damn maid washing my tshirt in to warm water. See you in a week.

  6. #6

    Week 1

    Week one of the body transformation has been completed. I can say with confidence that I have never been this perpetually sore in my life. The days I spend letting one muscle group recover are spent putting in work to make sure different ones sore. Rinse and repeat. Itís pretty awesome, though, because I donít think I have given myself the opportunity to work this hard in a long time.

    To start off, my fitness background is an amalgamation of high school sports teams, fitness articles, and all of the counter-intuitive science of Leangains. If you were wondering, Leangains is high intensity compound exercises (like low rep sets of squats deadlifts and chin-ups) plus intermittent fasting (eating all of your food in an 8 hour window everyday) to use certain proven internal processes to get into great shape while eliminating cardio and all but a few lifts. This was where most of my fitness knowledge was as of this time last week. Since then, I have taken a complete 180 in my fitness regimen and am now following a modified body transformation program coupled with the P90X ab routine.

    The changes Iím seeing in the mirror even after just one week made me realize that there are so many ways to get fit. I have realized thereís no one right way. The big thing I have always worried about is becoming the guy who never sticks to one fitness routine long enough to get fit. By going to the other extreme it has also been to my detriment. I was blindly following a system without being open to other routines that may have suited me better. Now after starting a new program I am lucky to realize that there is a middle ground. I would say any routine should be stuck to with 100% conviction for about three months. If you are not happy with results after that then it is ok to redirect your path to get you towards your fitness goals. Luckily, I know that this program I am starting will get me results in three months because itís literally called a 12-week transformation program. Now that I have faith in the program all that is left is for me to dedicate myself to executing perfectly.
    Like any self-respecting body transformation program there are two facets: Exercise and Diet. You need to do both perfectly if you want to get the most out of it. I have pushed myself to hit these every single day this week, to the detriment of my social life and sleep, but Iím glad I did because I have gained new respect and viewpoints on each.

    You have to push yourself as hard as you can every single workout. No exceptions.
    You only have 3 months to get into great shape so donít waste it because those days will compound really fast. How do you ensure you get the most out of each set? You have to push until muscle failure. If your muscles fail before you get to your set reps (or youíre still not satisfied) take a quick break and bust those bad boys out. I know Iíll be thanking myself in three months for committing to that rule.

    Here is a lesson I learned today about pushing through the pain. I had a splitting headache and about 5 reps into each set the pain would get intense, Iíd feel my neck and back tighten, and Iíd wince my eyes close. Partially out of necessity (the gym was closing in 1 Ĺ hrs) I redirected this extremely unpleasant feeling I would get mid-set into something positive. I used it to get angry and bust through those last reps so that I could get through the pain. After completing each set the pain would fade back and I felt awesome for having just pushed through. The act of pushing through a bad headache itself is not a story I plan on saving to tell my grandkids someday, but there is a lesson in there. Itís another experience to reinforce to myself that when it gets tough you have two choices: quit or keep going. In most cases, nobody judges you for not finishing the set if youíre already in a lot of pain from a headache, but when you do complete it despite the pain, you feel like a champion. You realize that the pain was temporary and, now that you just completed the entire set without wussing out, youíve done something that most people would have been fine settling out of.
    Also, I need to stretch and drink more water because while I am proud of not quitting when confronted with that pain, Iíd rather put my focus towards my exercising. Thereís a lesson in there too. Do not make things harder than they need to be.

    It is just as key as working out, but it is a whole different ball game.
    The difference between diet and working out is that working out is about pushing through pain in the moment while dietís focus is on always being strong and committed. Itís like working out is offense and dieting is defense. Itís easy to over emphasize one at the detriment of the other and I have made this mistake on both ends of the spectrum. Now I am fully committed to seeing this 12 week transformation through, so I know they both need to be followed to a T if I want to get everything out it.
    Let me preface that it is true that if you miss your diet one day you out of 84 you will not suffer some insurmountable obstacle. You can recover from most bad cheat days. But thatís missing the forest for the trees. Instead of asking ďCan I get away with cheating just this once?Ē I ask myself, ďWhy am I following this diet?Ē Because I want to be ripped as fast as possible. By just asking two different questions my ability to fight off the cheat food increases dramatically. Just like not squeezing each rep from each set, not hitting calories and macros will compound to huge differences at the end of these three months.

    Looking forward to next week already.

  7. #7

    Week 2

    Itís the end of Week 2 and I can honestly say I feel amazing! I was not expecting to see changes so soon, but when I look in the mirror I see positive changes with my physique- a little more definition and that I can start to see my abs a little even when Iím not flexing. I still have a long ways to go but I am pretty happy about it. I have also noticed that my energy levels have been really high and consistent throughout the day without the usual crashes. I still donít think I am getting enough sleep- I am probably averaging only about 6 hours per night. I think a lot of it has to do with my new job and the awkward 2 hour lunch break in the middle of my day which just is not enough time for me to hit the gym, eat, shower and make it back to work in time- so I am having to workout pretty late and usually donít even get home until midnight.

    I used to not be able to eat right before going to the gym, but because i am getting very hungry within a couple hours of each meal it does not seem to be a problem anymore. I am still a slow eater so sometime my meals take over an hour to finish (also because i usually get hungry before my lunch starts and again before the end of my work day so I try to eat as much as can while I can). Preparing my meals in advances has really helped out a lot as well as I know exactly how much I should be eating. At first I was not sure I would be able to eat enough because in the past I was always full after each meal, but now I get full and then feel like I am starving again after only a couple hours. My water intake has definitely increased as well as I have made sure to keep a few 32 ounces bottle with me and refill them throughout the day (adding lemon for flavor also helps). I had been eating a lot of chicken and turkey breast but this week I added ground eye of round- did not realize how much I missed the flavor of steak! I think always mixing up my proteins will help to keep me from getting bored- also I have gotten some recipes from my parents using lots of spices for flavor so the chicken, steak, and turkey always have tons of flavor. Although I do love sweet potato it seems to not have enough carbs for the amount I am able to eat so brown rice has been more of my go to. I used to drink a lot of tea with at least 3 tsp of sugar at least 3 times a day, sometimes up to 5 times a day. Also when I did feel tired I would drink 1 cup of coffee, but usually with 4-5 tsp of sugar for sweetness. Now my tea is black with ginger for flavor and I can actually take it down pretty easily. I wouldnít be lying if I said I did not miss those foods (especially deep friend chicken taquitos) but since the foods do have a lot of flavor and I am seeing results it has been very easy to stay focused on my own goals.

    The coolest this I have noticed so far is how supportive my friends, family, and coworkers have been. At first none of them could believe how strict I was being, most noticeably when going out to bars and only ordering water. At first my close friends couldnít believe it and thought that there must have been something wrong with me. I assured them that everything was fine and after explaining my training and diet I seemed to have gained a lot more respect from them as well- especially when I tell them I have to run to my car to eat the meals I brought with me instead of my normal ďIíll eat anything and everythingĒ stance. A few of my friends have even questioned their own health status and are considering joining me for the remainder of the program. I just laugh though because i know that they do not come even remotely close to understanding how committed I am with the whole process-preparing all my meals and counting my daily intakes as well as the weightlifting component. The main difference I know comes down to how motivated I am in the whole process and not on the final results- I know and understand how hard the next few months are going to be and that I have just barely started.

    I think my mindset is probably the biggest factor in my success up to this point. There are always ďfood distractionsĒ around me (for example I had a bag of doritos salsa verde chips that has been sitting in my car for the last 2 weeks just staring back at me. I just know and keep saying to myself that I am fully committed to this whole diet and training regime that I will not let anything or anyone act as an excurse to cheat on myself because i know the only one who it will truly affect is me and my goals. I made a commitment to myself and know that this is the most important thing in my life right now. I also know that 1 mistake could affect all the hard work and discipline I have achieved and I do not want to cheat myself out of it. It really does help to also know that I have other friends that are going through the same difficulties I am and it does help to talk to them about the diet and training component whenever I do have questions. I know it would be incredibly difficult if I was doing this all by myself, so having the support of so many people close to me can not be understated. At the end of the day though I am the one who has to deal with the consequences or reward of my decisions and that tis why I am doing everything in my power to make sure I am making the most out of this experience. Coachella is coming at the end of week 3 so I know this next week will really push my limit and determination, but I also know I have the determination to succeed.

  8. #8

    Week 2

    It is Easter Sunday evening, which marks the end of the second week of the Sports Food Transformation Workout Program. This morning one of the Sports Food guys said something along the lines of ďYou donít get points for showing up at the gym you get points for crawling out of itĒ. Itís a quote that really resonated with me, and I used it as motivation for my leg work out today, which resulted in me very nearly throwing up in the gym this morning! As I type this in the evening I am still feeling nauseous, Iím not sure if it is from the sheer intensity of todayís workout or if I am actually getting sick, time will tell I suppose.
    This week we were split into loser and gainer groups, with those in the gainer group aiming to gain weight and those in loser group aiming to lose weight. Our groups were based on our weight and body fat percentages from week 1. This meant that I was initially placed in the loser group, as the body fat analyser I was using last week was giving me a body fat % of 22%/23% which was way higher than it actually is (it is about 15% according to the more accurate analyser I purchased this week). Anyway the upshot of all this was that I was placed in the loser group for Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday and then placed in the gainer group on Friday. I got to say major props and respect to the guys that do this program in the loser category, those 3 days for me were hell on earth. I was eating roughly 2000 calories (which translates to fuck all food basically), constantly in a state of near starvation, desperately trying to use cups of black tea to fill up. The only thought going through my head all day long was ďfuck Iím hungryĒ, I even went to bed extra early on those nights just to sleep to escape the hunger. My energy levels were low and I was just generally miserable. I was never so delighted when I got the text Friday morning telling me to switch to the gainer group. I leapt out of bed, ran downstairs and feasted on a bowl of porridge, 3 extra large boiled eggs and a protein shake. I know for the last couple of weeks us gainers may have to cut back on our food/carb intake in order for our abs to pop out so for now I am just relishing being a gainer. The extra expense in buying more food and the extra time in preparing more food seems so trivial now. Even today eating my Tupperwareís was a bit of a challenge (given that Iím nauseous) but I would take this any day over being in that constant state of hunger.
    Again I havenít seen much of physical change in my body this week. One of the Sports Food guys told us that week 4/5 is when we will begin to see noticeable physical and described weeks 1 to 4 as a Ďblind tunnelí. This is a relief to hear as I was beginning to get slightly worried about the lack of physical change. I lost nearly a kilo in weight, and over full 1% body fat during my 3 days in the loser group (which is pretty amazing on its own) which I have nearly gained back now, this means my overall weight hasnít changed much and probably feeds into my physical appearance not changing much. Having said all that I got my first comment today Ė one of my housemates who takes my progress photos said ďJesus you arms are getting big alright arenít they?Ē Iím not really sure if they are to be honest but I am looking forward to more comments like this over the next 10 weeks.
    Last week I spoke of trouble I was having with knots in my shoulders. I was supposed to get a shoulder massage this week but that didnít end up happening. Wednesday of this week was dedicated in entirely to shoulders in the gym. There was a lot of machine work (which is generally kinder to my knots for some reason) and thankfully the knots in my shoulders didnít play up. It will be interesting to see how they fare out this coming week.
    In terms of gym work, the intensity has definitely been cranked up a gear this week. The week started on Monday with an insane chest/tricep workout which incorporated drop sets, supersets and giant sets. I had never even heard of giant sets up until this week (they are supersets except you superset 3 sets of exercises as opposed to 2). The intensity remained high for the rest of the week. This is the first week we have done drop sets and giant sets and from taking a quick look at what is coming up in week 3 it looks like a trend that is set to continue.
    Overall week 2 has been somewhat of an odd week for me personally. In week 1 I unofficially placed myself in the gainers group, then on Tuesday I was placed in the loser group and then back to the gainer group on Friday. It was definitely interesting being in the loser group for a time and I even took some of the diet with me - 3 boiled eggs in the morning and occasionally putting some red onion and red pepper (that I cook with no oil on a George Foreman) through my brown rice to add some flavour. The net result of being in both groups was that my weight fluctuated a small bit over the course of the week. In week 3 Iím really hoping to see a steady but constant increase in my weight even if it is just a small increase, it will be nice to have some constant growth in one direction. I know our gym work is going to be intense again in week 3 and I hoping to gain a little muscle, even just to get that vein in my bicep popping out would be cool. Either way I will be giving it absolute socks in week 3.

  9. #9

    Week 3

    Itís now the end of week 3 which means we are officially one quarter of the way through the 12 week Sports Food Transformation Program. To be honest in terms of how I physically look I would have to say that Iím definitely not one quarter of the way to be being where I want to be come week 12, although having said that we have been told by the Sports Food instructors that week 1 to 4 is somewhat of a Ďblind tunnelí in terms of noticing physical changes. Apparently we will start to see some very noticeable physical changes in our bodies in the next 2 weeks, which is something Iím really looking forward to.
    Although I havenít seen much physical change I have definitely made progress on the scales this week. For the first week I have been consistently putting on weight everyday (with the odd downward fluctuation on some days Ė but it has generally been an upward trend). Overall from Monday until today (Sunday) I have put on just under 2 pounds. I know 2 pounds doesnít sound like much (a good shit probably weighs 2 pounds) but it really is a great feeling to step on the scales in the morning and actually see that you are making progress. Even though the daily weight increase is fairly minimal itís really encouraging to know that you are progressing in the right direction. It just shows how important it is to meticulously record your measurements if you are doing a program like this, not only for progress tracking purposes but also for motivation.
    Gym wise the beginning of the week was super intense. We had 4 days stacked in a row of intense workouts followed by our first official rest day on Thursday (well I say rest day we still had to do 40 minutes of cardio Ė but thatís as close to a complete rest day as we get on this course Ė thankfully my walk to and from work counts as my cardio). Iím beginning to learn that leg day absolutely kills me in the gym. Our leg workouts so far seem to be particularly intense (thatís not to say that the workouts for the other muscle groups are not intense because they fucking are). I would have done squats and deadlifts in the past but I would never have worked on my legs in isolation. Exercises like leg press, leg extension and calf raises are all new to me (in fact my calves are absolutely killing me right now). I have to admit that motivation can be difficult on leg day. During my leg sets I find myself trying convince myself that hot chicks dig big, well defined calves and thighs. On our day off on Thursday I found myself with some spare time (a very rare commodity these days) and reflected on just how hectic these past few weeks have been. Since the beginning of the program it has been one big whirlwind of cooking, eating, gyming, buying food, planning etc. For the first time I began to kind of miss having some down time for myself to unwind and relax. At the same time and rather weirdly I felt like I should have been in the gym and in a way I kind of missed being at the gym. Still it was really nice to just kick back and relax for one night.
    The first 2 weeks highlighted how much hard work and dedication is required to successfully complete this program and give it your all. But this week I learned that there is third element that completes the trifecta and that third element is sacrifice. Let me explain Ė I play in an astro turf soccer league with my friends. We play every Wednesday throughout the summer and winter and it means the world to us. Sometimes itís pissing rain or even snowing but we always turn up and play, our key motivation, aside from the general sense of achievement from winning, is the night out together we get to have on trophy presentation night if we win the league. This year we won the league and our trophy/medal presentation night was on Friday. After playing week in week out over the course of the year I ended up missing the whole presentation ceremony Ė why? Because I was at the gym after work working on my shoulders, calves and abs and after that I had an evening of food preparation to do (Should really have spent Thursday evening doing food prep as opposed to all that reflecting). This meant I didnít get to join up with the lads until about midnight. Midnight onwards was spent touring around pubs showing off our trophy and medals and getting free drinks and free shots, none of which I could drink of course. On that note this was my first night out since the program began and thereby my first experience in a LONG time of going out and not drinking. Thankfully the whole not drinking thing was OK for the most part and the lads (who think Iím doing an elite business/fitness courseÖwhich is kind of true I suppose) were really supportive, which was really cool and somewhat surprising. Obviously during the summer we will all be going out not drinking but until then I will most likely be the only sober person in my group on nights out. This is going to be really interesting and as the weeks roll on I plan to do a much longer post on this topic.
    Overall week 3 has been a really good week for me. To eventually be putting on weight is really satisfying and hopefully I will continue to gain weight in week 4. As small as my weight gain has been itís great to see that the all the hard work and perseverance is beginning to bear some fruit. Iím beginning to get really excited the summer of that lies ahead but for now I must go do..AB ..RIPPER ÖX!!

  10. #10

    Week 4

    Week 4 has been completed and it has been yet another eventful week. I had my first proper brush with injury this week, which was pretty scary because at one point I thought I might have to stop lifting completely for a few weeks, which would have been disastrous. During week 3 we started beginning and ending our workouts with a set of 150 seated barbell twists (I think the idea of this is to tighten up the skin in the abdominal zone, so that come the end of the program our incredibly shredded abs will have extra definition). These twists were putting a pretty intense stain on my left elbow; it was particularly painful at the end of every rotation. The pain was so bad I was having to split the set into 3 sets of 50 in order to give my elbow a rest. I knew this pain was not the good Ďmuscle growthí type pain that we have grown accustomed to over the past 4 weeks, it was more the Ďsomething is about to snapí pain, and rather stupidly I ignored it and hoped that it would go away.
    On Monday we had a rest day and I played a soccer game in the evening. After the soccer game I was in pretty serious pain for an hour or two, I assumed I had shipped a knock on my elbow but couldnít remember when. The pain completely dissipated after an hour or so and I kind of hoped that would be that. On Tuesday my elbow was a little sore but nothing too worrying. It was back and bicep day in the gym. My elbow held up fine for the back exercises but it flared up really badly during the bicep exercises. The bicep exercises themselves were hard-core (I think we were either doing triple or quadruple drop sets of machine preacher curls and ez bar curls Ė my gym hasnít got ez bars so I had to use straight bars which put even more pressure into my forearm/elbow zone) but I was on the verge of tears from the pain coming from my elbow. As with Monday night after an hour or two the pain went from intense to pretty much nothing Ė really bizarre!
    On Wednesday I played another soccer match (well part of it) but I had to come off as the pain in my elbow was excruciating. I broke my wrist before when I was like 16/17 and this was the same debilitating pain, I was certain I had broken a bone in my elbow but I knew I definitely didnít take a knock on it. This time the pain did not go away and I had to load up on painkillers and I usually never take pain killers. The plan was to do my work out after the soccer game but that was not happening. I took Thursday off work and woke to find my elbow was bizarrely fine again. I did the Wednesday work out (with my elbow holding up pretty ok) in the morning and then went to the physio and did the Thursday work out after the physio. The physio was just as baffled by the bizarre nature of my elbow injury and was not able to give me a precise diagnosis. (Sidenote: Iím in pretty ok-ish shape now, not ripped, but certainly a little muscly and definitely not fat. The physio asked me take off my t-shirt, I did so 90s Levi ad style and in my mind I was like Ďyeah drink it in!! Ė statistically this is probably the best body youíll see all dayí Ė she mentioned her boyfriend is a marathon runner so I canít imagine he is a muscled beast. Anyway it is pretty cool to have confidence in my body now and I CANNOT wait to be at pool parties and the like in Vegas with the finished product on show). Anyway she narrowed the problem down to severe tightness in my back resulting from the way I sit at my desk in work. Other contributing factors were: putting all my weight on my left elbow at work, being able to hyper extend my elbow, damage sustained during an arm wrestle that I got engaged in while out last weekend (long story Ė I won the arm wrestle but at a serve cost it seems) and the barbell twist. She gave me a back massage (really not sure how my back is connected to my elbow problem but I didnít object) and gave me some exercises to do in the gym before I start my work outs. Iíve been doing these exercises and they seem to be working. The last three days have been abs, rest and legs so the real test of the elbow will be next week but I am confident that the exercises will do the trick. The extra physio work also adds to the time Iím spending in the gym but if this is what it takes then this is what Iíll do. The fitness element of this program only lasts 12 weeks and I am determined to give it my absolute all for these 12 weeks.
    On Thursday I got a massive box of Sports Food supplements delivered to my door. Luckily I had taken the day off because there is no way I would have been able to carry the box from the post office Ė they gave us an absolute fuck ton of stuff Ė protein powder, BCAAís, L-glutamine, green tea extract, fat burners and shit loads of other supplements. It really picked up my spirits to get that delivery, I pretty much felt like a professional sports star that day Ė 2 gym sessions, 1 physio session and a massive supplement delivery from sponsors! Iíve only been using these extra supplements properly for 3 days now but Iím already noticing that I have extra energy (hard to pin point from what Ė the green tea extract Iíd imagine).
    My whole week was dominated by my elbow and worrying about my elbow. At this stage Iím just gunning for week 5, Iím really hoping my elbow wonít act up and Iím really looking forward to seeing what effect a full week of supplementing with the Sports Food products will have Ė all will be documented in the next post!

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