But, “most of the exercise” and “eating similarly” are not the same thing as actually doing the work all the way when you’re training for a bikini contest. I have learned in the past couple of weeks that unless you are 100% focused and dedicated, you are not going to see the results you want.
Last Wednesday (just after 10 weeks out), my trainer measured me at 25% body fat. That’s bad because I went up 2% since he measured me last two weeks ago. I knew I hadn’t been strictly sticking to the meal plan/workouts (with being out of town, and then my Grandma being in town for a week) and it showed. For a contest like this, the goal is to get down to around 10%.
So, to get serious, we analyzed my food portions and cut from 6 oz to 5 oz of carbs on meals 2, 3, and 4. Cutting too drastically and I’d have nowhere to cut in the later on. I’m also going to up my cardio 5 minutes, from 40 to 45 minutes 6 days a week. Not that I had even been doing a whole 40 minutes 6 days a week yet. 🙁
I also realized I made a mistake in calculating my calories in my meal plan – it should be about 1500 calories, not 1900. I made the error by inputting the wrong amount of potatoes in MyFitnessPal, so it calculated the calories too high.
I’m still in that “hard beginning part” and am a little freaked out because I only have 9 weeks now to get it done. I have to remember to trust the process because I know from experience that it works. This prep is also difficult because the first time, I was much more excited about doing it- thinking about it a bunch, but this time, having done it before, there’s not as big a fanfare as I made it out to be last time. Now, it’s just about doing the work, day in and day out, and keeping on with the rest of my life. It’s more like just a part of how I live right now.
Those training days with my trainer are KILLER because we do our weight workout for nearly an hour, then I go straight to my 45 minutes of cardio. When I do cardio after weight-training, I get on the treadmill and put it at the highest incline (for the treadmills they have) 15, then alternate walking at 2.5 – 3.0. Or I might ramp it down to incline 8 and bump the speed to 4.0. To lower my heart rate, I’ll bring it down to incline 5, slower pace.
On days I only do cardio, I go to another gym closer to my house, and get on the bike. I put it on “quick start” at 7 and then make sure to keep my heart rate in the 70-75% range using my Polar heart rate monitor.
Tuesday: Cardio (35 minutes sprints outside- 3 miles)
Wednesday: Train Legs + Cardio (45 minutes on treadmill) – measured 25% body fat (calipers) yikes!
Thursday: Train Back + Cardio (45 minutes on treadmill)
Saturday: Train Chest & Arms + 10 minutes cardio on bike (just a warm up before training)
Sunday: Cardio (45 minutes on bike)
Total calories burned Week 10 = 2160 (according to my heart rate monitor)
It’s crazy how little calories I actually burn during a workout (which is why it’s so much better to not eat too much in the first place). I keep track of calories burned with my Polar heart rate monitor. Of course, calories burned depends on your body size. My husband, for example, will burn over double what I do during the same workout.
On training + cardio days, I might burn 550 calories. On cardio alone days, I only burn about 300.
I measure the protein and potatoes exactly with my food scale. I put my frozen veggies in there and they are cooked through once thawed in fridge and microwaved. I’ll add a little ketchup to the meatballs and sometimes a tiny bit of salt to the veggies- but not always, just if I want it. Salt is okay at this point, closer to the competition date, we’ll cut it out.
Because I like to post in real time, here’s a peek at 9 Weeks Out, picture taken on Sunday, May 10, 2015. I had to scroll through all the pics to find ones that looked like an improvement and I’m doing the ‘bikini’ stance, which is meant to make your waist look smaller since you’re standing twisted and to the side. You’d be surprised how much effort it takes to suck in and stand this way for longer than a few seconds!
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