8 weeks out and enjoyable training

Hi there!

Today is the 8 week out point from the shoot with x-processed photo. I am really excited about the changes! It’s weird because my “little person” clothes from this last prep fit already.  This is a pretty sweet surprise! Things aren’t quite as lean as they were when these clothes fit before, but I was also further along in prep at that point. Things seem to be shaped differently, now. This may have a lot to do with the different training (more “athletic” type training in the off-season then switching to heavier more “body building” type training for a little while for upper body size and then the switch to Carter Schoffer‘s program for the two upper body days). It seems my waist is smaller, more muscle has been put on in the upper body and legs are definitely smaller and a bit leaner than at this point before. This is what we want for the shoot!

Cravings have been little to none and since the last time I had a “cheat meal” was just a week ago (the wedding), that’s not really that big of a deal but it’s still great to not have them. From now on, the plan is no cheats. Since the meal plan hasn’t changed from the 10 week out point yet,still feels super adequate and the excitement is there, this won’t be a problem. This also means that changes may start to come super fast (which feel like they are on the way again).

At least 10 minutes is being set aside in the morning before training for meditation and/or relaxation movements (Chek Zone exercises are excellent: check out How to Eat Move and Be Healthy by clicking here). This has been the regular ritual for quite a while now and not doing it for at least a few weeks made a really big difference. I was starting to feel “busy brained” (not really sure how else to explain it) and felt a little loss of the ability to step back and see things objectively. If you’re tired/feeling rushed a lot and/or going through more of the things that can come along with contest prep, perceptions can be skewed. If you let yourself know that it is because you might be tired or part of the prep and try to be more of an “observer” of the change in moods/thoughts, you can quickly learn to step back and have a lot easier of a time seeing things clearly without them becoming clouded by your perceptions. It can be pretty funny to see how much of a difference rushing or feeling a little tired can make in the way we see things. Training can be used big time to help with this, right up until show or shoot day.

There were times where I would crank the music and push through workouts when feeling run down or uptight and rushed. Going from movement to movement,  pushing it but just going through it kind of out of a feeling of “having to.” I know others who train like this and some, quite often. It’s not very enjoyable and it doesn’t have to be like that. Turning off the music (or at least not blasting it) and putting more focus into what is being done/felt can teach more, give more energy and just be all around more effective than “numbing” ourselves to a workout could. Focus on each movement, putting all focus into the muscle(s) that are being worked, each movement (body sensations) and your breath. It’s amazing how enjoyable things become. If you are drained because of tasks you’re thinking about, or a particular situation(s) that are feeling stressful to you, this helps you become more balanced (centered), so that you become better able to deal with those things when it’s time to, instead of allowing thoughts to drain you when you’re trying to be effective at other things (like training). Practices like this can carry over to all parts of life.

I am off for the day! Have a great weekend!

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