Yes. I’m doing the most cliché act a Personal Trainer can do – I am entering a bodybuilding competition. I might not win, or I might just, but I’m giving it a go regardless. I’m actually really into the culture and after watching a competition last year, in Dundee, I had to try this show pony thing out for myself. As I write this I am starting my fat loss diet this week and also this blog entry. The blog is a tool I will use to keep me on track and accountable but really I want it to show my clients that yes, I suffer too (or will I?) hahah. Writing is also a great way for me to get my true emotions and feelings out – I analyse a little better. Usually I just ignore everything until it’s too late but I think writing it out will help me overcome my fears…hopefully.

Current fears:
I’m going to lose all of the mass I have cultivated over the past year and I will just get rake thin skinny.
Failing at this is bad for business and my confidence – don’t fail, Scott.
I won’t be able to manage work and this diet.

Expectations at start of Prep:
16 weeks to get shredded (no definition or BF%)
Step on a bodybuilding stage by July
Stick to diet, no complaints
Increase gym days from 3 per week up to eventually 5/6

EDIT: Oh, how naive I was….

The following is a in-depth detail of my diet prep, my discoveries and insights. I tried to record a lot of my thoughts at night time when the day had passed. Some days nothing new happened, some days I wrote about the little things others I just ramble. I discovered the task at hand was going to be significantly longer when I started reading a contest prep book 3 weeks into the cut – although this was very informative (and a wake up call) I had to make adjustments and ‘re-shape’ my expectations.

We will start with the supplements that I used by chronological order (weekly and daily account) of the prep. I would say this is about 85% correct. Not in terms of items, I’m not secretly hoofing steroids, but more of the daily account. It was not always 1 daily a week for the 7 days. I’m human and I forget sometimes.

Week 1:Protein Shakes (2/3 daily), Multivitamin (2 daily), Electrolytes (during gym),
Week 2:Protein Shakes (2/3 daily), Multivitamin (2 daily), Electrolytes (during gym), Creatine Mono
Week 4:Protein Shakes (2/3 daily), Multivitamin (2 daily), Electrolytes (during gym), Creatine Mono, Energy drink
Week 5:Protein Shakes (2 daily), Multivitamin (2 daily), Creatine Mono,
Week 6:Protein Shakes (1 daily), Multivitamin (2 daily), Creatine Mono,
Week 7:Protein Shakes (1 daily), Multivitamin (1 daily), Creatine Mono,
Week 8:Protein Shakes (1 daily), Multivitamin (1 daily), Creatine Mono (on/off),
Week 9:Protein Shakes (1 daily), Multivitamin (1 daily), Creatine Mono (on/off),
Week 10:Protein Shakes (1 daily), Creatine Mono (on/off), Omega-3 (2 daily), Garlic (1 daily), Magnesium (1 daily on gym days)
Week 11:Protein Shakes (1 daily), Omega-3 (2 daily), Garlic (1 daily), Magnesium (1 daily on gym days)
Week 12:Protein Shakes (1 daily), Omega-3 (2 daily), Garlic (1 daily), Magnesium (1 daily on gym days)
Week 13:Protein Shakes (1 daily), Omega-3 (2 daily), Garlic (1 daily), Magnesium (1 daily on gym days)
Week 14:Protein Shakes (1 daily), Omega-3 (2 daily), Garlic (1 daily), Magnesium (1 daily on gym days)
Week 15:Protein Shakes (1 daily), Omega-3 (2 daily), Garlic (1 daily), Magnesium (1 daily on gym days)
Week 16:Protein Shakes (1 daily), Omega-3 (2 daily), Garlic (1 daily), Magnesium (1 daily on gym days)
Week 17:Protein Shakes (1 daily), Multivitamin (1 daily), Garlic (1 daily), Magnesium (1 daily on gym days)
Week 18:Protein Shakes (1 daily), Multivitamin (1 daily), Garlic (1 daily), Magnesium (1 daily on gym days), Vitamin C (3 daily), Psyllium Husk fiber (3g)
Week 19:Protein Shakes (1 daily), Multivitamin (1 daily), Garlic (1 daily), Magnesium (1 daily on gym days), Vitamin C (3 daily), Psyllium Husk fiber (4g)
Week 20:Protein Shakes (1 daily), Multivitamin (1 daily), Garlic (1 daily), Magnesium (1 daily on gym days), Vitamin C (3 daily), Psyllium Husk fiber (5g)
Week 21:Protein Shakes (1 daily), Multivitamin (1 daily), Garlic (1 daily), Magnesium (1 daily on gym days), Vitamin C (3 daily), Psyllium Husk fiber (5g)
Week 22:Protein Shakes (1 daily), Multivitamin (1 daily), Garlic (1 daily), Magnesium (1 daily on gym days), Vitamin C (2 daily), Psyllium Husk fiber (5g)
Week 23: 
Week 24: 
Week 25:Multivitamin (1 daily), Omega-3 (2 daily), Vitamin C (2 daily), Vitamin D (2 daily), Psyllium Husk fiber (5g)

Week 1:  02/03
Target   Calories: 3500   Steps: 5000        Gym: 3days        Cardio: 3days x 30min
Actual   Calories: 3393   Steps: 5979        Gym: 3days        Cardio: (3) 2days x 30min + 1 x 20min

Day 3 I have over ate every single day so far!! WTF! Hahhaaha You can’t write this up. I genuinely usually struggle to hit my calorie target on my bulk but for some reason I have nailed it when I want the opposite. I think I’m still reluctant to commit. HAhah que eye roll from my ex.

Today I have written down all of my previous recordings – I have organised them all in one place: my last 5 months of average weekly calories, weekly weight, weekly exercise, and weekly sleep average and then narrowed them onto monthly averages. I think the averages will help me understand clearly a definitive number but also show me my weaknesses. Check the photos out to see what I have recorded (below). Its months of daily recordings to keep myself on track.

Superman’s weakness is kryptonite, mine is definitely Sleep *sigh*. Calorie averages are proving science wrong apparently, looking at the calorie averages it makes no sense – some weeks I average less calories but I still put on weight (or more than usual). I think the recording process was quite relaxed and I missed a lot of calories (because I usually just add up at end of the day). Still, I’ll use this data and create an action plan draft for the next few weeks. (8, I think). Plan is to find my calorie baseline and eat that (hopefully high) but now introduce cardio. Current cardio was zilch so any will be a blessing to create a calorie deficit. Writing this down has helped big time!

Day 7 Craving Garlic bread and Chips & Dip. FFS. I rarely eat this but as soon as I’m restricting myself they are seemingly ever more desirable. Bought the Garlic bread. It will still fit into my calories, so all good.

Today I picked up BCAA’s (branched chain amino acids) today in the store and then thought to myself ‘You don’t need these, Scott. You just want to buy something for the sake of it, use your head.’ so I put it back. When the diet advances I will definitely be taking on EAA’s (essential Amino Acids) as these will prove necessary during workouts and bouts of hunger. I also considered the ‘Natural fat burners’ in the store. I got tempted by the fat loss shortcuts but I had to stop and really think it through – they’re garbage and I hate that they pray on the vulnerable looking to improve their life. I was looking to purchase out of excitement, not necessity. When time gets closer I’ll probably start to use green tea extract and caffeine, and cayenne (so spicy foods). Proven methods I am comfortable with.

Week 2: 09/03
Target   Calories: 3500   Steps: 6000        Gym: 3days        Cardio: 4days x 30min
Actual   Calories: 3461   Steps: 6264        Gym: 3days        Cardio: (3) 2days x 30min + 1 x 20min

Day 9
Great day with clients, felt like everyone was hitting their targets and taking it in their stride. Bumped into Aleks in the gym (we are dieting for the show together and he’s bloody great at getting you motivated. His eastern European accent really musters up Arnold Schwarzenegger and the no shortcut attitude). It’s always great seeing him in the gym, gives me such a boost and inspiration to push myself that bit harder – I think this is very important and I will save this for the weeks I feel like trash. But, I got home and realised that I hadn’t met the step target – this resulted in a 10pm walk round the block for about 20 mins. Motivation is high to get this diet down right!

Today I noticed that my meal timing has been on point and food a lot better than recently. I have a goal and suddenly everything has sharpened up. It feels great. I’m not worrying about next week, focusing on this week and what I can do now trusting myself and the plan.

Day 12 Up in weight this morning, according to the scales. Slight panic followed but then I had to remind myself to stick to plan and that fat loss is not linear! I will keep on track with plan and make adjustments at end of week (Sunday). Must. Not. Try. Anything. Drastic. Lol I want to eat less but I know that’s not smart.

Day 13 DOMS are killing me from Thursday (leg Ext and Leg Press superset). I haven’t had DOMS like this in a long time and it makes walking very difficult hahah! On a side note sleep has been appalling, so that’s good. I really need a better night’s sleep but work and meal timing has been priority recently. If I’m not worried about not having enough sleep the night before I’m worried about when I need to eat next. When getting in from work I just need a few minutes to myself to unwind (but a few minutes are hours and I just can’t go to bed early). I will work on this as I think it’s causing me the most stress and definitely affecting my energy levels and enthusiasm to work harder. Aiming for Sunday (tomorrow) to fully recharge me.

Day 14 Bumped into a close friend, Liam, at Pure Gym today– he reminded me about posing for the shows and recommended that I vlog my journey, like a documentary. This made me realise that I need to start posing ASAP. From what I’ve seen from competitors they tend to start posing months in advance to master this art but, more importantly, give it the attention it deserves when they have the energy to practice. Apparently, being very lean means energy is low and so is motivation, making posing a real nuisance. I’ll leave the vlog to next time (if there is another time)

Week 3: 16/03
Target   Calories: 3500   Steps: 7000        Gym: 3days        Cardio: 4days x 30min
Actual   Calories: 3126   Steps: 9447        Gym: 3days        Cardio: (3) 3days x 25min (70)

Day 15
Up weight from last week’s average. Bit disheartening if I am being honest but I’ll stick with the plan.

Day 16 Not a great day for business – Coronavirus has now closed the two gym companies I operate out of (D&A College and LACD). This is quite disheartening for business but my optimism is shining through, probably because I’m not really thinking about it in the long term at the moment. I’m thinking of the time off to focus on myself and relax and unwind for a few days, this makes me happy. I am looking to read more into contest dieting, and posing – that’s the goal anyway. I will read Layne Norton’s: Fat loss forever book and I am hoping to study some Bob Paris posing videos (my favourite bodybuilder).

Oh, and to top it all off I was also up again on the scales this morning (eye roll). If it is still high tomorrow I will adjust cals *calm panic ensues*.

Day 17 Adjusting cals. Currently I am maintaining yesterday’s weight. I will aim for 3200 calorie on average this week but maintain my step average and cardio/gym routine etc.
Due to gym closure I decided to take my cardio outside for a run (first time in what feels like years). New music added to the phone and I was all set. Only lasted about 25 minutes as the ankles and calves were in a lot of pain – I should have expected this. Still, very happy with the outcome even if I stopped short of the 30 minute goal I set. Successful day unemployed lol.

Day 19 Matt (long term Party boy and family friend) and I went to Puregym last night when it was quiet/low threat. It was exceptionally quiet but the workout was trash! You have to laugh, I thought taking an energy drink, ‘Tenzing’ (stay away from this brand, PLEASE!!!), would help get me energised for the late night workout. I was partially blind in my right peripheral vision, eyes were sensitive to the bright lights, I felt nauseous and light headed. To top it off, I forgot the names of some exercises. Only thing missing was the pointing and laughter as I spewed my guts everywhere. NEVER AGAIN! Chocking this experience up to a lesson learnt.

Day 20 Food has been so hard to get in the stores for everyone. Specifically, I need Milk, bread, Chicken, Turkey/Chicken Sausages, Berries and Greek yoghurt. Thankfully the rest of my needs are still available. I guess it’s a good time to hit this ol’ diet – at least I know if it gets tough I won’t be able to complain because 1. I’m doing this to myself, and 2. Everyone is struggling in their own way with food. Pop Tarts are still fueling me physically and emotionally – may the Pop Tart stay shelved now and always!

Big walk today with one of my clients, Natalie (2/3 hours roughly). Walking has been great this week and its really making me feel a difference. Last night was apparently the last gym session for a while– today Puregym are closed all locations. I have no gym. Life it futile.

Day 21 BIG drop in weight today, 3lbs down from day before (14st. 1lb today). This is worrying for me as I don’t want to lose too much too quickly. Tonight I will calculate all cals and steps and exercise and adjust for next week. Good session today at the outdoor park. I have purchased an outdoor portable speaker for my workouts. The speaker is beautiful and really helped me push through today’s workout. I’m worried that these workouts will not be enough, but it’s all I got.

An example of what my diet looked like this week (on average).

Week 4: 23/03
Target   Calories: 3250   Steps: 10000      Gym: 3days        Cardio: 3days x 30min
Actual   Calories: 3074   Steps: 8825        Gym: 3days        Cardio: 3days (80mins)

Day 22 Weight is back up (14st. 4lbs). I did allow myself some extra food last night to help bring the average up for last week. I will stick with the plan this week and make no adjustments until Sunday. Late night walk tonight to make step count. Definition is coming through however and that is exciting!! Can’t wait to see how this ends, motivation is high!!

I’m struggling to eat so many meals now but at the same time I get hungry quicker!?. Added milk back in, even though I know it gives me gas, at least it doesn’t hurt me if I consume early in the day. I will look to add more omega-3 good fats. Like the salmon I had today.  I will go back to adding in walnut oil and avocados into my diet –calories permitting.

Lockdown tonight from Boris – they will allow trips only to the store for essentials with only one hour out of your house for exercise. You can travel around if you are a key worker or helping a sick/elderly person. Scary times ahead. I’ll probably go out twice a day (1x walk, 1x to park to exercise). I let Matt borrow one of my resistance bands but made sure I didn’t get close to him, I also washed the band for him – he looked at me like I’m mad hahah! I don’t know how I (or Dundee) would cope if If I killed Dundee’s Chris Pontius – safety first.

Day 23 Banded workout outside today for Chest and Back with triceps.

Day 24 Struggling to find motivation today – with work and with cardio/gym. Although sleep has been great, nights have been late. I think the motivation is low due to uncertainty of when this will all end – plus I haven’t got a definitive plan yet, just an outline. I will try to get a plan together for myself tomorrow. I write this at midnight with a run still due. I’ll leave in 10 though. Motivation is low!

Day 27  Really did not want to do the workout today. I mustered up enough energy and got through with it but it was tough. Motivation is so low at the moment. Plus, yesterday I found out that all the bodybuilding shows are cancelled until October or thereabouts. This was quite disheartening as I have to decide If I want to continue with the cut or postpone it till October and get back on the bulk. I think I will stick with it and prove to myself I can do it, unless anything major changes.

Day 28 The DOMS are killing me today, my glutes and hamstrings feel like they have gone 15 rounds with Mike Tyson!! I guess this is good news that my home workouts are just as torturous as my gym ones. Run today was also very good – 30 mins non-stop with less than average ankle pain. Had to kick myself to go run (at 2am, this quarantine has warped my perception of time) but what really got me up was changing the run route – I always preach the benefits of just exercising for your own fun and not a distance or time to beat, this time I took my own advice and not only was it a great run, but this helped motivate me to actually do it. The positives.

Reading more into Layne Norton’s Contest Prep Guide and I think I will use it to change my programme. Very interesting to read that I’m overeating protein. A great read so far based on some excellent and practical research based actions.

Remember how I was supposed to plan my workouts the other day…not done it. This is really affecting my planning, I know a plan will help me. I will aim to complete one tomorrow, even if its just a draft.

An example of what my diet looked like this week (on average):

Week 5: 30/03
Target   Calories: 2960   Steps: 9000        Gym: 3 days        Cardio: 3 days (80min)
Actual   Calories: 2871   Steps: 6509        Gym: 4 days        Cardio
: 0 days

Day 29 Reading more into the contest prep and what it requires is a little worrying. Basically I will need to spend longer in a diet phase in order to get the best results (too fast means I would lose too much lean body mass, which is not the goal). Instead of 12 weeks it looks more likely to be 16-24!!! Looks Like I will do some diet breaks to help maintain muscle. TBC!

Trying to get sleeping routine back on track, length and quality of sleep is generally pretty good due to no work but also a little worrying for me. I will reduce the cardio this week as I felt I was chasing the minutes to get them up, instead I will increase the gym sessions (4-5 a week).

Day 30 (31/03/20) Good outdoor session today for chest and delts. Back was still a little tender from the last workout. Pics and measurements tonight – trying to do this every 4 weeks to visualise any noticeable changes. I think it’s natural to feel like my muscle is shrinking and I’m just looking thin (or I had a warped view about how big I was in my bulk. Maybe both). I will attach pictures in of me posing (Below), I was actually dying at my facial expressions lol!

Jack Johnson has been helping with his relaxing music, great for my runs and working out.

Day 31 (01/04/20) Pretty happy with the measurements, specifically the waist and abdomen recordings are down! Unfortunately, some other areas are down but I know this is probably due to water and tbh, it’s expected. Still, I’m focusing on the lower stomach which is amazing! The eye test is also showing good signs for me.

Good leg work out today in the garden. Though RPE (rate of perceived exertion) was wayyyyyy higher. Struggling to finish the workout. Still, no actual plan on paper yet but I will go with Chest/Back, Shoulder/Back, Legs split.

Day 32 (02/04/20) I have attached some pictures of the meals I had to today (Below). It’s a little different from the past few weeks but I think it’s a little easier to maintain (now that chicken, rice and vegetables are back on the shelves). By taking the pictures I think it’s great to show what I eat, great to document for my future and this spurs me on to stay on track.

Day 33 (03/04/20) So, I have calculated that I am way behind schedule. I’m currently losing weight (based on my average weight per week) at around 0.6lb a week. If I want to hit the newly adjusted 24 week target, based on losing 0.8% of bodyweight a week, I need to lose 1.6lb per week.

Current stats based on Layne Norton’s contest prep:

  • Target Weight of 73kg: Starting at 92kg.
  • Lose weight at 0.8% of Body weight per week: equates to 1.6lb per week for 25 weeks to target, for me.
  • Current estimated Body fat: 16%. Goal percentage: 2% (I’m over shooting here)
  • Estimated baseline calories: 3582 (from 16/03/20-22/03/20 data)
  • Expected Calories to drop: 622 (this is based off of 0.8% bodyweight to lose a week and accounting for Fat and Lean Body mass loss expenditure)
  • Target calories: 2960 (Baseline minus Calories to drop)

Basically this is the number I have been eating at this week. With increased gym sessions (3 to now 4/5) and decreased cardio (I will do one day on a rest day) and lower cals (2960. Previously 3074 the week before) I should hopefully see a drop near the 1.62lb/0.736kg. If I don’t I fear I may do something drastic and panic ahahha. BUT, I know from Layne’s advice I will start with a 5% reduction in Carbs and Fats, maintaining protein at same level and then may increase cardio by 5%. Really enjoying Layne’s book – so fascinating. On a side note, I was probably over eating protein in the past currently, via Layne’s book recommendations, I’m actually only needing to consume 185g per day – previously I was consuming 200g plus plus!!

Oh, and FINALLY finished a workout plan to follow I will link it below for free! Don’t expect anything amazing. Damn Rona virus!

Day 34 (04/04/20) For some reason I woke up today on the wrong side of bed and have been furious the whole day! I can blame it on the Rona but I think it’s due to a lack of direction. Still, I won’t let this affect my prep – Food all on point today as was the training session earlier in the pitch black night. Yesterday I finally looked into posing and technique – I’m excited to get practicing – most nights I have actually been posing in front of the mirror. I can’t control what reactions my face make, I either look like I have pooped myself nervously or it looks like I’m ready to kill. I think I’ll take the kill face for now, not the poop, never the poop. Perhaps if I master the gaze of intimidation I will project a strong presence on stage and intimidate the judges for a high score? (Do I look like I poop at the wrong time, or murder? haha)

Tonight I will stay up all night and morning to try and get back into a normal routine, it’s been so fucking awful waking up at noon or later (I know, I know, believe me). I think missing the mornings are affecting my mood, energy and motivation so I will slumber party for one tonight.

Week 6: 06/04
Target   Calories: 2651   Steps: 6500        Gym: 4/5 days   Cardio: 0 cardio
Actual   Calories: 2793   Steps: 5456        Gym:  4 days      Cardio: 0 cardio             

Day 37 (07/04/20) Hit 14.1 on the scales and it feels good to be on target.

Day 38 (08/04/20) Diet feels really easy!! Not hungry by the last meal of the day and actually having to add a lot more food in to just meet the calories.

Day 40 (10/04/20) looked into the actual amount of calories needed to lose 1.6lb of weight. I have basically looked at the total average weight lost from last week and calculated how much food that equated to in a deficit. I’ll put the equation below and explain. Turns out I was eating daily 2871, or 608 calories below my maintenance and that equated to 1.2lbs of fat loss, I should have been eating 2669, or 810 calories below my maintenance to hit 1.6lbs of loss. I will aim to average this number now for this week.

7 day calorie average: 2871 Calories
Weight lost: 1.2lb (0.544kg/544g)
We can assume this is fat, though likely a little lean body mass too but let’s say fat for ease. Fat is roughly 87% lipid and 13% other components of mostly water.
So, 544g x 0.87 = 473g of lipid or fat loss.
1g of fat in calories is = 9 calories. We can then calculate the fat loss in calories
473g x 9 = 4257 Calories. Don’t panic this is taken over the week I averaged so the fat loss is divided by days.
4259 ÷ 7 = 608 calories under my maintenance. This predicts my maintenance calories as
2871 + 609 = 3479

To discover what a 1.6lb deficit would look like I will use the same equation but instead of using 1.2lb I am using 1.6lb (0.725kg/725g)
2669 calories daily, or -810 under the maintenance, is required to hit my 1.6lb deficit.

I should have done this at the start of the week but mood has been so low so. However, I just kept calories at the same from last week and kept exercise similar until now. Still not the best, especially as my sleep pattern has reverted to 3am or later – not happy with this. This also means a drastic few days to now hit my new low calorie average (as I was over eating for the start of this week).

2669 x 7 days = 18’683 for the week
currently I have ate 14’700
Leaving me 1991 for the next 2 days.

I’m not torturing myself with this. I will average it lower over this week and the next.

2669 x 14 days = 37’366 for the fortnight
currently I have ate 14’700
22’666 ÷ 9 (days I have left in this fortnight) = 2518 Calories

This is much more attainable and realistic for the next few days.

Day 41 (11/04/20) Changed my leg routine today – motivation still low. So, I changed up the routine and loved it! Here’s how it went. I decided to just go for a walk around the block and hit 5 Body weight squats at each lamppost. Second loop around the block was forward walking lunges from lamppost to lamppost and then walk to the next lamppost, repeat. Feels good and actually only took me 40 minutes!

Day 42 (12/04/20) missed the protein target today, caught off guard with the new calories that I have to hit. I think this is the first time I have missed the 185g target, hopefully it will be the last time.

Week 7: 13/04
Target   Calories: 2518   Steps: 6500        Gym: 4/5 days   Cardio: 0 cardio
Actual   Calories: 2377   Steps: 2254        Gym: 3 days       Cardio: 30 mins

Day 43 (13/04/20) Looking really full and trimmed today, this has actually given me some great motivation and I took this to the shoulder workout – great session!

Day 45 (15/04/20) Completed a 5k run today after a nomination from one of my old clients (maybe previous is better, he’s not old). Safe to say I was dying after it haha not built for running now, I’m more a gym rat on the weights. This does make me a little sad because it means I’m getting older, getting slower and suck at the general basics – running to be specific! Maybe after this diet I will put more focus back into the basic movements, running, jumping, body weight exercises and the ‘Don’ – Basketball. I do miss it and I’m interested to see if I can train myself to jump out of the gym.

Day 46 (16/04/20) Today my left foot is in immense pain –how…why…seriously!? I noticed this on the way down to Farmfoods for the essentials: a pizza and tinned peaches lol. This is the run’s fault. See, nothing good comes from running hahaha Also, I have noticed a little red mark on the inside of my leg knee – of course I jumped on webMD, or something similar, and I am now convinced I am going to die with a Pulmonary Embolism due to DVT. Ha…Ha..Ha (seriously I wrote a mini Will just in case I passed in my sleep). I can laugh now as I am writing this as a recounted effort for the past two days (Today is Friday (17th). I did , however, make it through the night, what a relief!! We kid now, but I was seriously freaking out.

Day 47 (17/04/20) yesterday was a rest day and so will be today. My leg is causing me quite some stress and so I will take it easy until I make a decision about calling the doc.

The daily walk today was cut short due to the immense pain in the arch of my left foot. For the past two days it’s been hell to put any bit of pressure on it while walking. I have applied a massage ball to the arch and rolled it out but this hasn’t helped. I’m hoping it’s a case of the ol’ ‘it’ll sort itself out’s”.

Week 8: 20/04
Target   Calories: 2669   Steps: 5500        Gym: 4/5 days   Cardio: 0 cardio
Actual   Calories: 2483   Steps: 2282        Gym: 3 days       Cardio: 45 mins

Day 50 (20/04/20) Food is getting to me. The sausages and chicken are really putting me off my meals, pretty much gagged on some chicken today because I got the notion in my head that it wasn’t cooked thoroughly. Felt like I was chewing the chicken alive. TBH it was really chewy and probably 4/5 days old after cooking.

During my walk today the foot felt great until roughly 30mins the pain returned.

Day 51 (21/04/20) The sleeping pattern has really been playing tricks on me and my motivation. Due to the late nature of my wake up I completely forgot to workout today – not good! Doesn’t help that I’ve recently plugged in my brother’s PlayStation.

It also dawned on me that I’ve been having issues going number 2! Mainly I’ve not been as regular and when they have been they have been real fist clincher’s hhahah. If you’ve ever lived with me you’ll know that toilets are no much and it affects everyone in the house haha! Back to topic. I realised that I have been lacking fiber recently. When I’m bulking I get a lot from the veggies and especially the bread. I don’t think I am hitting my target (10g of fiber per 1000 Kcal). Recently there has been less than my 5-a-day of fruit and veg but mostly I blame the reappearance of milk at most meals. I just need to make better choices and not quick substitutes. I’ll add the veggies back in otherwise I may end up like Elvis (RIP KING, lol)

Day 52 (22/04/20) Veggies are in with the main meals today, so far feeling veg-tastic! Even had a workout today that felt relatively good. Recently, it’s really helped my motivation to journey off plan. Usually I’m a stickler for this, but I’m a strong believer in just moving and getting any workout done as opposed to missing out. It’s been fun as I’ve taken my PT hat off and gone with what I enjoy most. I try not to worry about tracking or hitting the numbers.

Walking is down on average this week so far. Need to get my butt out the house and moving – I know this is due to my late wake ups but I’m also blaming my left foot as it is still causing me pain when walking any more than 15 minutes. *sigh* (as I secretly find comfort in putting my feet up).

Day 53 (23/04/20) Breaksfast was all dairy to day. 1.) Because I am lacking my protein favourites of chicken/turkey sausages, and 2.) Because who doesn’t like cheese, milk and Greek yoghurt with berries for breakfast!?

After being revolted by my turkey sausage and chicken basics I have got some venison sausages. It was a brilliant switch as I forgot just how amazing venison is, and lean also! (…expensive, too!)

Day 55 (25/04/20) back to the basics again with the food after a rough week – Chicken, rice, veggies, sausages and the stuff in-between. The past few days I have been scraping the odd things together – resulting in low protein days (so much for not missing my protein target again). I think this is also tied with my motivation but it’s just so hard to break out the slump. Saying that, something so minute can bring me out of it – bumping into a mate outside on a walk, new music, sunny days, my own reflection etc. Last one’s a joke btw.

Stayed awake overnight (again) today, just to get back on to a normal sleeping patter. Fingers crossed it works and I stick to it this time. Really fed up waking late and not getting any of the great weather that bestowed of Scotland in April. The PlayStation hasn’t helped either but tbh I’m getting bored of it now. Pray for my sleeping pattern.

Day 56 (26/04/20) Up in the morning and feeling pretty great today. Food has been regular and protein good. Worked in a light German Body Composition workout today in the sun also. So far a success and I felt motivated to tick a few items off of my to-do-list: Road tax, clients, back up laptop, read, Set-up bank account etc.

Week 9: 27/04 – DIET BREAK WEEK
Target   Calories: 3193   Steps: 5500        Gym: 3/4 days   Cardio: 0 mins
Actual   Calories: 3167   Steps: 3718        Gym: 3 days       Cardio: 0 mins  

Day 57 (27/04/20) So far, today has been amazing and really enjoying the food. Pretty excited, but a little hesitant about going in to this diet break week. The reason I am hesitant is because it’s a week of no weight-loss, not even muscle gain, it’s basically a pause week. The reason I am pushing forward with it is because of the benefits: more muscle is preserved as opposed to continuous dieting. In addition, with an increase in carbs I can speed up my metabolism for the week and revert any hunger bouts I had. The major issue I have is that in order to preserve more muscle mass during this diet it extends the time to process. According to Layne’s book on contest prep and dieting (that I’m using like a bible) diet breaks are recommended for a ratio no greater than 2:1. 2 being number of weeks dieting and 1 being the diet break week. So you could have 2 weeks on and 1 off, or 4 on and 2 off etc.I will roughly follow this, I will be taking a more relaxed approach with a ratio of 3:1 AND I am now adopting this method 9 weeks in hahah. So let’s see how it goes. This also reminds me that I missed my measurements last week. Will need to get this complete by Friday.

Morning routine and walking is back on track to day. I feel sleepy after the day which is great, though I attribute this probably the beer I had (one always get me sleepy. Two or more and the party keeps on going). I decided to kick back and bring beer back for this week (nothing crazy but one here and there) feels great and relaxing.

Day 58 (28/04/20) Decided to take pictures of my food for today to show you what I am eating – don’t judge me hahah (Below). Reason I am taking the pictures is to show you what is possible and even though I am dieting I am eating foods that I love. Not ridiculous foods, still staying on track and trying to hit my Macro targets but basically filling the void of my cravings from the past few weeks.

Walking today’s been good, food on target, gym good (still working off-plan and at random) but felt a little weaker, which was surprising. Hopefully this week will boost my strength a little and improve my motivation.

Day 59 (29/04/20) Today just got away from me and I didn’t manage to gym or get out for a walk. However, it dawned on me about the steps average. I will attach a picture of my steps from pre-diet to now (Below). You can visibly see my effort in the first month of the diet – maybe something to reflect on and bring back up. Clearly it’s connected to my motivation dip and exercise drop.

You can really see the “go-get ’em” attitude in March, the then the return to normality in April and the “fuck-it” process in May. I wonder if I can one up May with a sub 1000 step average!?

Day 60 (30/04/20) Today my supplements arrived: Omega-3 for daily fats, Magnesium for post workout days, Garlic Extract as I’ve been a little worried about my heart health (and I needed to make up the cost for free delivery) & L-Leucine to try.

Walking today was cut short due to foot pain and later I was concerned about the back of my leg again. I felt a twitch and of course I associated it with poor circulation (que the paralysing thoughts). I will give it till Sunday before I call the doctor.

Forgot to weigh myself this morning.

How I keep track of my daily supplements

Day 61 (01/05/20) Short session for legs today – motivation is low and I considered a 30 minute workout is better than nothing. No walk today due to weather and foot pain. Thankfully, I was kept busy with hobbies, to-do’s and little tasks.

Day 62 (02/05/20) This may sound ridiculous, but today I realised that food has been tasting better, especially the protein drinks. Previously, I have been gagging at the protein shakes but now they have been more tolerable, same goes with the chicken and rice – the flavour has returned. This is most likely due to my increased appetite but I think this week has really set me up well for the weeks to come.

Managed to get a 30 minute walk in today (foot pain crept in at the end) but no workout (motivation). I did also manage to pick up my posing again at night – a bit rusty but it felt great to pick it up again. I realised just how much smaller I have become and how slender I perceive myself. This is definitely a bit disheartening knowing my body is only going to get smaller…but I knew that coming into this.

Day 63 (03/05/20) Today was a reeeeeaaal relaxed Sunday. Walk was nice and relatively pain free for most of it. No workout. Naps and food. Basically I’m an OAP or a Baby with the smallest peak of abs coming in!

Week 10: 04/05
Target   Calories: 2483   Steps: 4000        Gym: 3/4 days   Cardio: 0 mins
Actual   Calories: 2361   Steps: 3021        Gym: 3 days       Cardio: 0 mins

Day 64 (04/05/20) Food is back down to the lower calories after the diet break week. Coming in to this week I was expecting complete dread and hunger that would rival those poor kids in Africa. A bit dramatic, but you get me. The food today turned out to be no real problem at all, it turns out that I have not developed a ravenous appetite and so I’m quite content.

Workout today was a bit of chest and back, still following the random plan. I say random but really it is the exact same chest/back workout that I recorded in my diary from last time except this time I added in a couple more reps. No major walk today – will need to pick it up this week.

Day 65 (05/05/20) hour long walk today and, surprise to me, my foot feels great. Must be the extra naps I’m taking. I wish naps were the cure for everything. ‘my legs are too small’ Get yourself 3-5 naps a day pronto! ‘War’s goin’ on’ – you might want to sleep on it!

Day 66 (06/05/20) This week’s been good so far. I’ve found it easy to hit my Protein and calorie targets, my Macros are relatively similar to each day but not identical. I have, however, ran out of multivitamins. I knew this was coming and I should have prepared better but it’s always been a love hate relationship with supplements for me, primarily due to cost. I hate parting with money knowing full well that the purity and quality will be insufficient/unknown. I was happy to splash on supplements last week (perhaps out of quarantine boredom) but I considered I would do without multi-vitamins for a while. Cost is the main factor – high quality goods cost a high quality price – I knew this about the omega-3 yet I still purchased some last week (not for a high price either). I know all about the poor quality of omega supplements on the market but I guess I thought ‘not little ol’ me, I’ll get a good batch. Maybe the factory worker will put a special effort into my box and finish it off with a kiss. “Only the purist and toxin-free for this lucky lad”. My box I order will be different’. Always the optimist I am.

Another Brucey Bonus from today is the weight. I’ve noticed a drop each day this week so far (14.1 st down to 13.12 st). These visible accomplishments are very motivating!

Day 67 (07/05/20) After a spike in weight at this morning’s recording I believe my metabolism has adjusted and I will need to lower the calories even further, or increase exercise/steps. Shouldn’t be an issue. I’ll work on steps for now and try to beat the target. However, today’s walk was finished with some, all too familiar now, foot pain. I hope this isn’t permanent at this point (still not gone to doctors).

Day 68 (08/05/20) Today’s thoughts: “Fuck working out”.

I’ve come to realise that I will only manage 3 workouts per week. Any more than 4 and the motivation is just not there.

Forgot to weigh myself this morning.

Day 70 (10/05/20) My own thoughts are dragging me down. Starting to question this diet and purpose. The end result will not bring me happiness or proper me to a better position than I currently in.

Quarantine is currently kicking my ass. I’ll be healing my wounds while hunched in the corner.

Weekly recap: (I’m going to start doing these to reflect) Overall this week has been full of up’s and downs primarily with my motivation and with my own attitude. Would this be different under non-quarantine conditions, who knows? The week started well and finished shitty. Last 3 days I missed my protein target. Overall the steps are still low (according to the tracking app) this will need to improve – Considering if my foot heals. Weight on average has moved up from last week (13st. 12lbs > 13st. 13lbs), but on the plus side Fridays weight was the lowest I’ve recorded during this diet (13st 11lbs). I suspect this is down to a slow bounce back from the diet break week and my drastic salt increase. This week I used salt to season most of my meals due to no sriracha or barbeque sauce. I wouldn’t recommend this to my clients.

To do: Keep to calories and consistently hit my protein target. Improve my activity/steps on average. Maintain or improve current number of workouts (if I move up to 4 I will need to continue with that throughout). Keep the sleep at 7 hours p/average night or improve to 8.

Week 11: 11/05
Target   Calories: 2483   Steps: 4000+      Gym: 3/4 days   Cardio: 0 mins
Actual   Calories: 2398   Steps: 5749        Gym: 3 days      Cardio: 0 mins  

Day 71 (12/05/20) I have officially stopped taking creating this week. I have been increasingly more inconsistent with the supplement and I have decided to drop it.

Salt has replaced sriracha as the new sauce this week. Quite nice actually as I never add salt to my meals (if you know me, I’m highly against this). However my attitude to salt has changed over the years and I’ve considered adding this condiment (is it a condiment?) to my meals to track it better. By adding it in I can make a conscious and estimated effort to reduce salt more accurately come peak week when I will need to manipulate salt and food to accentuate my body.

Starting to see more definition in my physique. Lines are visibly coming in through my serratus and abdomen, deeper separation can also be seen in my chest, back and delts. Legs look like they have downsized, unfortunately. Pretty upset about this as I consider leg workouts as my most brutal and challenging and would have liked them to become a standout for my physique. This view could also just be body dysphoria, so I’m not draining my energy too heavily on this.

Day 72 (12/05/20) Yesterday I re-discovered the podcast app. This is making today’s walk wayyy more enjoyable, the time has started to fly past on the walk. However, a sore foot has made an appearance after an hour and a half. The pattern of pain is apparent –30mins or more and the pain reveals itself. This gave me the great idea of spacing out my walks. I have read, through a study paper, that multiple walks per day tended to result in higher overall steps compared to one – primarily this is due to the greater enthusiasm provided at each walk. I will trial this in 2 days with shorter walk increments (<30mins) to test the theory and evaluate pain.

Good workout today for chest and back. Actually it was a naked workout…you read that right. The increasing heat during the day has been making me uncomfortable and I just let it all hang out (you can thank me for that mental picture later hahah). It felt great! Might not bring this trend into the gyms…

Day 74 (14/05/20) I have tested out the short walk study. Pain free and enjoyable. I went out at 3 separate occasions today and I did notice that, after the first walk, each subsequent walk improved in length of time. Pain free and 6000 steps calculate – overall a success. The podcasts definitely provided help on this one.

The workout today (clothed lol) was very positive and visual appealing to me, for my upper body. A biceps and triceps workout that really gave me an awesome pump. I know I sound like such a dick but it but felt great, I felt hard and really starting to see some great detail on my body – certain areas are trimming down to give me a more aesthetically pleasing physique (arms, chest and shoulders looking more pronounces and full – providing a v-taper look to my physique).

Day 75 (15/05/20) Slightly up from yesterday but overall on track and not worrying.

Current podcasts that are educating me on contest prep, helping me move and just generally interesting:
-Physique Science (by Layne Norton and Sohee Lee – Focus is on Physique science)
-Peak Human Project (by Andres Vargas – Focus is on Strength and personal development)
-The Competitive Edge (by The Pro Coaches – focus is on WBFF contests)
-Ted Radio Hour (by NPR – Focus is on short stories and personal development/thinking)
-Under The Skin (by Russell Brand – focus is on special guests’ stories and lessons learnt)
-After Hours Radio (by RxMuscle – focus is on old school bodybuilding stories and banter)
-Fitness, Fame & Fortune (by Rich Gaspari & John Romano – focus is on business/history)

Weekly recap: (I’m going to start doing these to reflect) Overall this week has been full of up’s and downs primarily with my motivation and with my own attitude. Would this be different under non-quarantine conditions, who knows? The week started well and finished shitty. Last 3 days I missed my protein target. Overall the steps are still low (according to the tracking app) this will need to improve – Considering if my foot heals. Weight on average has moved up from last week (13st. 12lbs > 13st. 13lbs), but on the plus side Fridays weight was the lowest I’ve recorded during this diet (13st 11lbs). I suspect this is down to a slow bounce back from the diet break week and my drastic salt increase. This week I used salt to season most of my meals due to no sriracha or barbeque sauce. I wouldn’t recommend this to my clients.

To do: Keep to calories and consistently hit my protein target. Improve my activity/steps on average. Maintain or improve current number of workouts (if I move up to 4 I will need to continue with that throughout). Keep the sleep at 7 hours p/average night or improve to 8.

Week 12: 18/05
Target   Calories: 2400   Steps: 6000+      Gym: 3/4 days   Cardio: 0 mins
Actual   Calories: 2287   Steps: 7065        Gym: 3 days      Cardio: 0 mins  

Day 78 (18/05/20) Really motivated today after finishing an excellent book on leadership, The Essential Wooden by John Wooden and Steve Jamieson. Throwing myself back into a bit of work to capitalise on this burst of energy.

Day 79 (19/05/20) Today I have realised that I have lost 1stone (14lbs or 6.3kg) from day 1 of my diet. I started on Day 1 at 14st 10lbs and last week my average was 13stone 10lbs. That took 11 weeks. I am quite proud of the 1.2lbs lost per week on average. This rate of loss is a little behind my expectations at the start of prep (1.6lbs per week) but I guess this is the reality, plus I haven’t introduced cardio consistently or maintained a consistent step count.

Protein shakes have been added back in after a few days of no protein (I ran out and didn’t plan ahead, probably just call it laziness)

Day 80 (20/05/20) I have noticed a loss in libido. This shift was noticed last week and I wonder if it is tied with my loss in weight. This is somewhat expected as I was prepared from others’ experiences and readings. With quarantine lockdown and my ability to repel girls at a Fonz wink this is proving exceptionally easy, I’m like Buddha or Ghandi mastering my self-control.

Day 82 (22/05/20) Today was a harrowing wake up call. The scales registered higher than expected this morning (only 2 lbs up) but upon reflection the change affected my eating for the rest of the day. I wish I could say that it had no bearing on my decision and that I am better than any eating disorder but today I got a glimpse of the reality for many individuals. I ate more conservatively and ate 300 calories under my daily target (that’s 12% of my daily allowance I didn’t eat). This is quite powerful and scary. I never expected this to slightly affect me as I believe I have quite a strong grasp on my relationship with food but perhaps my view on food and my diet is getting a little warped.

Weekly recap: Overall it’s been a good week despite fear of stagnation and a potential eating disorder on Tuesday. The scale increase on Tuesday did affect my eating and my routine and I am thankful that the scales adjusted on the following morning. If, however, the scales did not adjust in my favour I am not completely certain that I would have the mind power to stick to the plan – this is worrying. Definitely a week to reflect on my prep and specifically how it is affecting my mental state for better or for worse. The protein shakes have been helpful return as they reduce eating time (I know this sounds mad but I just can’t eat a lot right now – signs of my metabolism adapting perhaps?). Veggies have increased slightly, though not a lot. Foot has felt great this week and steps were up again this week – tickety boo!

To do: Keep to calories and consistently hit my protein target. This week I hit 4 out of 7 days (AGAIN) for protein target, this needs to improve. Try to increase veggies for next week. Improve my activity/steps slightly for next week. Maintain or improve current number of workouts. Keep the sleep at 7 hours p/average night (which I’m happy with) or improve to 8. Monitor eating patterns and habits.

Week 13: 25/05 – DIET BREAK WEEK
Target   Calories: 2997   Steps: 7000+      Gym: 3/4 days   Cardio: 0 mins
Actual   Calories: 2988   Steps: 7019        Gym: 3 days      Cardio: 0 mins  

Day 87 (27/05/20) Today I realised how very happy I am with this diet. As it is a Diet Break Week, I am enjoying the food this week and all the extra calories that I can afford. I have pretty much had a pizza every single day and I’m loving it! Ice cream, chocolate, fruit, muesli, peanutbutter etc. etc. I believe this week is pivotal in preventing cravings and breakdowns in my diet, plus it feels natual and effortless to continue the diet making the previous 3 weeks fly by.

Day 89 (29/05/20) Alcohol is back in for the facetime quiz with the boys. As the date has fallen on my indulgence week I have accounted for the beers and still hit within my protein and calorie target. Happy days.

Weekly recap: Great week to refeed the soul and body – a bit of a turnaround from an eating scare of last week. The weight managed to stay exactly the same, on average, from the previous week and so no weight gained is a bonus. This is probably the only week so far that I have been within 10 calories of my average daily target so it’s great to see the science of the numbers match the response of my body (because I didn’t put on any weight). Steps were on target and protein intake, on a hole, was improved as I hit my daily targets on 6 out of 7 days. The only downside was that the Carb intake was a bit inconsistent and did not hit my daily goal of 350g (this is 4x my bodyweight in kg, as per Mark Carroll’s principle).

To do: Keep to calories and consistently hit my protein target. This week I hit 6 out of 7 days for protein target, but this needs to improve again. Try to increase veggies for next week. Improve my activity/steps slightly for next week to 7500. Maintain or improve current number of workouts. Increase the sleep from sub 7 to 7 hours + p/average night.

Week 14: 01/06
Target   Calories: 2150   Steps: 7500+      Gym: 3/4 days   Cardio: 0 mins
Actual   Calories: 2057   Steps: 7641        Gym: 2 days       Cardio: 0 mins  

Day 92 (01/06/20) Salt is back in as a sauce lol! After a good week last week I am determined to get everything on the checklist complete for this week, including the protein targets that I keep missing.

Day 94 (03/06/20) This day has just felt like waste. All food that I am eating is currently tasting horrible and I am fed up of watching the clock planning my day around eating and judging how to get the protein in. I try to keep food intake to every 3 hours of around 35g of protein via a meal but recently it’s just been dragggggggging me down.

In addition, I have lost the will to exercise so far this week. However, I did drag my body through a workout today.

Day 95 (04/06/20) This week is getting better and better. Number 2’s are currently feeling like number 3’s, due to the size of them. I felt like I gave birth today and although I didn’t labour life, I did birth a new found respect for woman during childbirth. Yeh, it was that bad!

After watching a great video (LINK HERE) from Scottish Oats I have come to the conclusion that I am most likely constipated and lacking fibre and adequate water intake in my diet.

Day 98 (07/06/20) Mind is all over the place this week and mood is low. Restless sleep last night and the night before. Overall a poor week on review for exercise (only twice this week), food and sleep.

Weekly recap: Not a good week. The week started terrible and so was the theme for the week. Exercise was only completed twice due to lack in motivation. Sleep was down from 7hours on average. Calories were about 100 less on average. Steps were at least consistent as was the daily protein intake average (I hit 6 out of 7 days).

To do: A lot of improvements needed but this to do list was not completed on Sunday. Truth was I was feeling quite depressed and low after a terrible week and couldn’t shift the low motivation. The sleep deprivation and restlessness was really affecting daily routine. By the end of the week the slump did not stop and the lows continued to roll over to the following week.

Week 15: 08/06
Target   Calories: 2150   Steps: 7500+      Gym: 3/4 days   Cardio: 0 mins
Actual   Calories: 1909   Steps: 6876        Gym: 0 days       Cardio: 0 mins  

Day 99-102 (08-11/06/20) I write in review from the week following. The 4 days that started this week were terrible, to say the least. I did not stick to the plan in any form and quite frankly felt like giving up. I think it was definitely a bit of depression and exhaustion with my current situation and generally loneliness with quarantine. The only notes I have of the 4 days are ‘No tracking – terrible. Felt terrible, shit, depressed, lost etc etc.’

Day 103 (12/06/20) Today I analysed my body image and progress made and it didn’t inspire me, it did the complete opposite and made me feel sad. I realised that I’m not the hulking Arnold Schwarzenegger that I perceive myself (and I think every male that goes to the gym perceives himself with aspirational eyes, not realistic ones). I realised today that I lost track of my diet because I had unreal expectations of myself.

Food this week has been out the window in terms of hitting the minimum requirements I set (protein and calories). Surprisingly, I am still limiting myself to excess junk food and treats which means I have not completely committed to giving up.

Weekly recap: The worst week of the diet so far and real blow for my confidence and mental health. Zero exercise, irregular steps, poor food, lacking protein, lacking adequate calories. Definitely signs of Body Dysmorphia that has been the elephant in the room the past few weeks. Sleep was also irregularly high on a few days, probably due to sleep being a main coping mechanism I was using. I wish I could say that I analysed the situation, took note and made the positive steps to improving my circumstances but that didn’t happen till Tuesday the week following. I kind of just rode this wave out and let it take its course. One really bad week and the first that excluded exercise. On the plus side, I did snap out of this funk and adjusted my expectations next week. As I write this (19/06/20) I am in much higher spirits and back the ol’ me!

To do: Everything needed improvement for next week but I didn’t review this at the time. What I did do, however, was bring my diet break week forward and that took one less worry off my mind.

Week 16: 15/06
Target   Calories: 2718   Steps: 7500+      Gym: 3/4 days   Cardio: 0 mins
Actual   Calories: 2681   Steps: 3324        Gym: 3 days       Cardio: 40 mins

Day 106 (15/06/20) Today feels like I have really given up.

No energy and motivation to continue with the diet and exercise. The past few days have been a complete write off. I have stopped tracking and I have stopped caring.

That old lurking chestnut of body dysmorphia dropped in today as I looked at my legs in the mirror. They looked so skinny to me and unrecognisable. This completely brought my mood down. My legs have somewhat represented my effort for the last few years. The past two years I’ve been working very hard on developing my legs pouring every ounce of energy, sweat and determination into making them grow. I was quite happy with the result prior to the diet. Yes, it was probably fat that helped plump them up but it gave me the acknowledgement that I was doing the right thing. The hard work was worth the pain.

Food that I normally consume, with no thought, is tasting horrible of late.

Outside factors are affecting my mental state at the moment. This is now my top priority.

Day 107 (16/06/20) Feeling a bit better today. I am trying to not overthink every little detail. The refeed of calories has helped massively, specifically being one less worry.

Today I bought a second-hand bike. I think it will be the motivation I need to get back outside and work some more cardio into my routine. Plus, I love the bike. Cycling has always been fun for me and, opposed to other forms of cardio exercise, I take pride on the fact that I can push myself further to exhaustion.

Day 108 (17/06/20) Today’s an improvement again. Feeling excellent today, especially more productive and energized. I can feel a wave of good energy and anticipation across my body. I am ready to cycle, eat calories on target start on my to-do-lists.

Today I counted the calories for the past 2 weeks and input them into my food journal – luckily nothing too extreme or damaging. I have accepted last week and let all of my anxieties and perceived disappointments go (it’s felt great!). I have readjusted my expectations and begun to take control of my manageable actions again. I have put too much emphasis on my body and how it relates to me as a person – and I hate that. My body is not me.

40 minutes cycle of giving it full gas today – felt great!

Day 109-11 (18-20/06/20) 3 days of gym in the row. Chest and shoulders on Thurs, Arms on Friday and Legs on Saturday at Matt’s home gym.

Matt’s gym is very tidy – squat rack, awesome plates, bench and changeable dumbbells. Today was probably the first week I felt comfortable going over to use his gym (due to easing of restrictions for the virus). Just what I needed to bring motivation back for legs, even if it was a ½ session for me. DOMS kicked in on the third set of squats – the body was telling me to take it easy.

Day 112 (21/06/20) The last day of the diet break. The relief and support that this week has provided, not just for my appetite but specifically my mental fortitude, has been wonderful and I have decided to reduce the 3:1 ration of diet and diet-break weeks to now 2:1. I know that this will significantly help me maintain focus and if it improves my happiness then that’s a no brainer!

Weekly recap: From ‘The worst week of the diet so far’ to one of the best. Specifically I took time to focus on the issues outside of my diet and get my head straight. From Wednesday onwards the mojo was back and I hit my Protein targets on each day. Exercise came back into the fray with a little extra sprinkle of cardio thanks to my new (old) bicycle. This week I also got to catch up with friends which I think was really important for me and I’m so thankful for the great people in my life.

The signs of Body Dysmorphia peaked on Monday after a steady build up. This was definitely a wakeup call. It’s funny how you don’t expect it to be you. Now, I understand I don’t have a severe case like many others have had and I know that going forward it will not impact my life to serious degree. I can’t explain how, but I feel in control. After addressing this issue, and documenting said experience on my blog, I feel like I’ve gone 15 rounds with this elephant that was taking refuge in a corner of my mind. It’s horrible for anyone to go through and it definitely isn’t an easy fix, it takes brutal honesty and a willingness to address the issue with yourself (even admitting what you’re doing isn’t healthy – giving your ego a bit of a kick). If anyone is going through something similar, regardless of how severe or un-important you think it affects you, I am here for you. I don’t expect my situation to be completely finished but I am working through it now more consciously and honestly than ever.

To do: Not expect so much of myself.  I will take this week and bring it into next week. Specifically focus on each day at a time. I will do this by making sure I exercise at least 3 times next week, include some cardio (not setting myself limits), make sure I sleep at least 7.5 hours on average, hit at least 7000 steps on average.

Week 17: 22/06
Target   Calories: 1909   Steps: 7000+      Gym: 3/4 days   Cardio: 0 mins
Actual   Calories: 1911   Steps: 5362        Gym: 4 days       Cardio: 50 mins

Day 113 (22/06/20) Today I have run out of Omega-3 (same old story as before). I don’t think I will purchase anymore at the moment due to the whole no working scenario but I will reinvest once work picks up after quarantine. I did however buy the generic multivitamins from the store – cheap and plentiful. I figured it was a necessary purchase due to the lack of calories I have been eating.

Gym today for arms but extremely low steps. I will pick up the steps again tomorrow with a nice big walk.

Day 114 (23/06/20) Today I have actually noticed that my motivation is back up to 100% and I’m feeling ‘pure braw’! I am making a conscious effort to do better in all aspects and hit my targets. I am determined to nail my food and exercise this week!!

The long was great today – sunny day, comfy shoes, little birds handing me a crown of daisy’s as I sing to the local critters.

Day 115 (24/06/20) It’s all about the outlook – a great quote I have read recently “You are confined by the walls you build yourself”. This is similar to my all-time fav “We suffer more in imagination than reality” by Seneca. It always helps me to realise the true barriers and fears.

I am, however, exhausted after today. Gym and cycle today. Feeling like I need a couple of days to recover, but it feels well earned. On a side note, I did notice that fiber has been good today and this week. Win!

Day 116 (25/06/20) Don’t know where it’s come from but I’ve been all jazzed about updating my website. Most of today was spent on my efforts and planning. Resting the body is still the priority today but the ol’ noggin was getting jealous and, as it turned out, today turned out to be a great brain workout. Energy has been low.

Day 117 (26/06/20) Today I woke up in panic mode thinking I had contracted the ‘Rona! Chest was extremely heavy like someone was sitting on it all night. Of course, the brain starts running and preparing for the hospital ahaha. However, after a body temperature check, blood oxygen level check and symptom revision, I think it was probably just a bad night’s sleep hahh. No doubt it was sleep apnoea. My father has it and I have been told that I sleep in unusual breathing patterns, a typical sign. Probably just my subconscious trying to asphyxiate itself in my sleep – jeez what does it all mean, Freud!?

Day 118 (27/06/20) Today I noticed that I have stopped posing. I think I will bring this back into the bed time routine (5-10 mins before bed). Since the competition was cancelled I was just focusing purely on the body and not the art.

Leg day today with Playboy Matt Heffner! Back in his basement squatting, lunging, Romanian deadlifting and calf raising. Great session!

Day 119 (28/06/20) Today I received a really uplifting and encouraging message from my mate (and PT), Thom. He found out that I was dieting down and offered a lot of advice and support that I think can only form someone who has experienced the same situation. Very grateful for his support and kindness – the motivation I needed to keep going. Sometimes your ego and self-start motivation hits Empty and we need other to help jump start it.

Working on the business side of things today on a relaxed Sunday. Trying to fit in new processes to make my life easier come work-day.

Food has been pretty tame this week and caused no issues (boosted, no doubt, by my new elevated motivation from last week). Mood for this week, in fact, has been about an 8 out of 10.

Weekly recap: A good week. I came into this week with a strong drive to make the best of it. 8 out of 10 on the mood factor, 4 days exercise (a new high for the diet), 50 mins cardio, 7.8 hours sleep average and a, “can you finally believe it”, a 7 out of 7 days met for my protein target. The lack of restrictions and positive output has had a great affect – it’s easy to see why too many restrictions/objectives can dampen the spirit (as seen previously). The negatives for the week, Steps were slightly less than the target and for the first week ever the calories were up! Not by much but still. I’m not too worried, there is still a deficit to elicit a response and 2 extra calories a day on average is not going to make a difference.

Feeling good about my body and looking at the positives. Overall mood this week was an 8/10.

To do: Again, to not expect so much of myself.  I want to bring the mind-set from the past two weeks into the rest of my diet. I will do this by making sure I exercise at least 3 times next week, include some cardio (not setting myself limits), make sure I sleep at least 7.5 hours on average and actually hit at least 7000 steps on average.

Week 18: 29/06
Target   Calories: 1910   Steps: 6000+      Gym: 3/4 days   Cardio: 60 mins
Actual   Calories: 1910   Steps: 2974        Gym: 3 days       Cardio: 60 mins

Day 120 (29/06/20) So, as you’ve probably picked up, on this blog, the past few weeks have been tough on the ‘regulation’ front. Hahah Yes, I know. It’s disgusting. But, it’s what’s happening! haha. So last week I purchased Psyllium Husk powder, known for its high soluble fiber intake. I will start trialing the product this week and test it out. So far my thoughts are ‘good’ and ‘tastes relatively plain’. That’s a win for anything that mixes with water and looks brown. Let’s hope I’m as regular as the 37 bus! Ding Ding. Big thanks to Tony, for the push to finally commit to the supplement. I was on the fence for a while and, out of the blue, like divine intervention, Tony blessed my IG with talk of Psyllium Husk powder– this was all the motivation I needed to finally buy and try it out.

Motivation was quite low upon waking up today but it started to pick up. Walking today felt great to get things moving and energy is high for another potential 4 days a week exercise – here’s hoping.

Day 121 (30/06/20) Today was a good morning workout. Suns out guns out so, it was only right my pasty white body get a little colour (red is the shade for most Scot’s hahha). I was nominated today for the 25 day’s of 25 push-up’s challenge to help raise awareness for PTSD, Depression and Anxiety – thanks for the nomination Trevor! As the hair is a right mess (no haircut in months) I will wear a different hat in each video – see who notices first hahaha.

For some reason I got the idea into my head that I was anaemic haha. You will remember last week I had deep chest pressure affecting me, along with fatigue. Well, today I felt all of the above with shortness of breath and weak. I think I need to stop worrying so much haha. Either way, Vitamin C is back in – along with iron rich foods (you know, to be sure)

On a side note, today I thought I could just spoon the psyllium husk into my mouth like a shot …BAD IDEA. Think wheat or a thickening agent in your mouth. It got stuck to my teeth and the roof of my mouth for about an hour. If anyone would have seen me, as I fish the stuff out with my tongue, they would have thought I was on meth or something by the way the jaw and facial expressions were swinging haha. Oh well, lesson learned. Good arm session today though!

Day 121 (01/07/20) JULY! I can’t believe it! Time has flown by. Today also symbolises the start of the end of summer (in my mind). Usually Autumn hits and I’m still clinging on to hopes of sunny days – this time I decided the start of the end for summer is July haha.

Today I noticed that my face has slimmed in a little. I wouldn’t say sunken in and chiselled but definitely leaner. Nice.

Day 123 (03/07/20) Awful weather today and all I want to do is ride me bike! Aww well. Scotland at the beginning of the end of summer, am I right? Haha. Late walk tonight with no rain was good. Thankfully the walks have been consistent this week, Seeing as it was one of the few areas I needed to improve on from last week – it’s been good going so far. Mood is still high and determination is strong to complete a lot of my to-do’s at home.

Pop Tarts and peanut butter have been a welcome return into the diet. I have the spare calories and it tastes AMAZING!! And you may have thought separately. No, my friend. Pop Tart and peanut butter together!!! Game changer.

Day 124 (04/07/20) Sleep was terrible last night and today I woke up with a pulled muscle on the right side of my neck (probably my Levator Scapulae). The past few days I’ve been sleeping with two pillows instead of one, almost vertical haha.

I do suffer with very mild chest acne – no idea why but it appears at random and sometimes comes on stronger than normal. Nothing mental like a pubating teen (don’t think that’s a word but it should be) but pretty mild, as I said. However, today I noticed that the acne has started to clear up. I would expect this to be a diet as my hygiene has remained pretty consistent. I believe it is down to a more consistent diet – my macros are nearly identical to each other so far. I think the consistency has helped regulate the body a little better. Or, it could be the increased water intake due to the psyllium husk supplement and a conscious effort to drink more. Either way, its welcome!

Back in the gas chamber (gym) with Playboy Matt tonight for legs. Weight is up and body has responded pretty well from the past few weeks. The leg pump following tonight’s session felt great and lasted for ever! Unfortunately, my groin has been giving me a little bother on the left side of my body on every leg day. As if it’s tight and been pulled. This has been regular at every leg session at Matt’s gym. I think a little stretching and TLC is in order to heal and strengthen it. If not I may have to look at Physio or Chiropractor.

Hugh Heffner and I, squatting in the Playboy Mansion. I’m in the hat.

I decided to take pictures of the physique tonight to update the blog. I will insert below. Initial thoughts “that posing is whack!” and “really, that’s it? I could have sworn you looked bigger, Scott”. Not disheartened or worried. Definitely more relaxed with the diet approach and accepting. Happy to see progress I’ve made!

Also, Max (the Preacher of Presses) Kerr was the first to notice my variety of hats for the push-up challenge hahah! Nothing gets by the Curler of Kolkata! Ill upload a mix of the videos after the 25 days lol

Day 125 (05/07/20) Relaxed Sunday, bless thee child of sabboth! A little bit of gardening work – tidying, cutting, trimming, etc plus an hour on the bike later (felt great). Very excited about the diet break next week (starting tomorrow). Pizza is all I’ve been dreaming about today and pizza I will eat!

Unfortunately, the emotions have been a little up and down the past two days. I think it’s just a natural reaction to the diet and lack of food. Almost as if I’m eating grey things and my view point turns grey. Definitely not a healthy state to live in, thank god for the diet breaks. Overall though, I’m excited to see where the body can get to for the next pictures. I have really been slacking with measurements. I will take tomorrow night.

Weekly recap: Another good week! This one did have minor setbacks – the weather, my neck strain, groin pain and mood (up and down). Regardless, it was very successful in many other factors and my optimism is still high. Upon review, the past 2 weeks have made me very happy. I reckon I have found my groove with 2 weeks on, 1 week off dieting.

Protein and Macros were excellent this week, the best they have been all prep. Nearly identical numbers each day and the protein target met continuously. It’s only taken 18 weeks to hit the groove hahah!! The body has felt great with week, regardless of minor injuries, and I can confirm. The Psyllium Husk has been a regular and welcomed supplement – it’s been so helpful! Sleep has been up and down this week but generally 7.5 hours average is good and nothing to fret over. Body image is good

Upon review, I wonder if the injuries are a result of the lower body fat%. I’m not doing anything ridiculous or going out of my way to push myself beyond my capabilities but just some food for thought. In addition, I think I will consider a wrap of the diet within 3 weeks. This is just an idea at the moment but considering it the end goal (in contemplation stage). Overall mood this week was a 7/10

To do: Again, I’m trying to not expect so much of myself and take each day as it comes, one at a time.  Macros were excellent this week and I will try to keep consistency up (which means regular food on each day – I’m happy with this). I will aim to exercise at 4 times next week for the diet break, include some cardio (not setting myself limits but maybe 60 mins again. The last one was great exploring the Barnhill area), make sure I sleep at least 7.5 hours on average again and keep the 7000 steps on average.

Week 19: 06/07
Target   Calories: 2974   Steps: 7000+      Gym: 3/4 days   Cardio: 60 mins
Actual   Calories: 2872   Steps: 4360        Gym: 4 days       Cardio: 0 mins

Day 126 (06/07/20) I was quite surprised, after calculating my maintenance calories, that I could afford so many calories this diet break. This is due to the addition of only 1 hour of cardio and increased steps – as a personal trainer this is still a shock to me. I’m definitely not complaining. This number has increased from my previous diet break, but it’s worth noting that I did lose weight that time around.

Determined for 4 days gym this week, motivation is high. The workouts are no longer an hour+, more manageable and enjoyable at around 30-45 mins.

Day 127 (07/07/20) Upon waking today I have noticed a change in my physique, the collar bone specifically is more noticeable as is a slimmer waist. I have been enjoying the extra calories so far, and again, it almost feels like too much. I am quite impressed with how my metabolism has adapted, as I am fortunate to not suffer insatiable hunger bouts.

Trying to work on the on tan today. What’s the saying, “life’s better with a tan”?

Day 129 (09/07/20) Work ethic has been excellent this week. This is no doubt thanks to the food increase. I have visibly noticed the strength increase through my regular workouts, I’ve just been blasting the previous numbers. I’m like Popeye with a tin of spinach, except my tin of spinach is a Goodfellows deep dish peperoni pizza! The 25-day push-up challenge has been going well, except for the fact that I am 0/11 for successful nomination-to-action. Running out of people to nominate. At this point I might start nominating imaginary people, or dead historians – I’m certain no one is watching the videos at all! On the plus, an extra juicy workout today for the arms, great pump and fullness. Feels great!

More definition coming through on my body, especially on the obliques. However, food is still a struggle. I am not meeting the calorie target. I will aim to make up in the coming days. You wouldn’t think this would be a problem when your dieting, only me haha.

Day 130 (10/07/20) Slight concern today, after visiting the pits of Hugh Hefner’s Monifieth Playboy mansion tonight. I decided to increase the weight on the squat rack, after all I’ve been feeling strong all week! Jumped up the weight and my adductors decided to struggle along. I can only imagine it was my left Gracilis or even my left Hamstring, Semimembranosus, giving me a signal to stop immediately. Not a pull or a tear but a deep deep burn. A bit worried but I’ll keep an eye on it, ice and rest up.

Day 131 (11/07/20) Thankfully the leg has healed up today. Sore, but not painful, which is a great sign. I will continue to ice the area out of precaution, but no damage done thankfully. Perhaps the injury was due to the prolonged diet or just reckless behaviour through increasing the weight, either way it’s a lesson learnt…again hahah. Each week I have increased the numbers on all of my workouts and this little incident has forced me to retrospectively review that decision. I’m getting closer to the end here and I think it will be foolish to keep pushing and pushing.

Day 132 (12/07/20) Super chilled out day today. I was quite surprised this morning as striations were seen on my delts (shoulders). This is a good sign! Leg feels better today, and I’m so happy about this, I think an injury would put my right off the diet.

Food has been all over the place today, mostly because I’m running out of my staples. Still I’ll make it work and hit those macros and protein target.

Weekly recap: A great week! Strength was up, mood was consistent and calories ended within 100 +/- of the target. This week did have a similar setback to the previous week – an injury. My adductor/hamstring this week, neck the last week. In addition, the groin has still caused me issues. Regardless, it was very successful in many other factors and my optimism is still high.

Protein and Macros were good this week, protein has been consistent the past few weeks now which is a great sign. Sleep has been, on average, 7 hours every day. This is still within my threshold (7-9) so nothing to dwell on. Body image has been great this week and happy with the visible progress. Psyllium Husk has increased from 3 to 4g per day however, this was not consistent due to an increase on food (I was getting plenty of fiber from food on most days).No cardio completed this week, which has proven a change from the past 3 weeks, but its fine. I was looking to preserve as much energy as possible for the diet break week.

To do: Keep the momentum and high energy levels up. I’ve gotten into a routine and would like to see it continue. I would like to zone in on the calories and get back to the success of week 18 regarding my consistent macros and calories. With excellent energy this week I will aim to get another 4 days exercise for the week coming and make 4 the the new norm. Sleep target will be 7-9 hours. Steps target back up 7500.

This week I just finished a great post on the importance of steps (NEAT), you can check it out here if you’d like to know more.

Week 20: 13/07
Target   Calories: 2036   Steps: 7500+      Gym: 3/4 days   Cardio: 60 mins
Actual   Calories: 2046   Steps: 7671        Gym: 4 days       Cardio: 0 mins

Day 133 (13/07/20) Today my lower back has been giving me some slight discomfort. I can only presume this is from sitting too much or a result of discomfort from the leg workout/injury scare from last week. I will try to walk more often this week to get a regular moving routine in. I have included a little stretching for my hip flexor muscles and it feels great as a result. Last year I was plagued with a tight Psoas that required professional attention. I will work on the stretches to relieve the Psoas tension.

Day 134 (14/07/20) Steps so far have been great this week. The smaller walking blocks (20 mins a time) have helped. Plus, it almost seems too short for a walk, so I’m excited to get out again later.

Great workout today, feeling excellent in the workout and impressive signs of healing from last week’s leg incident. Almost no remnants of pain from Saturday’s leg session. I’m so glad that I was able to listen to my body and stop. The past year or two I’ve been focusing on working the muscle and not my ego haha. Glad to see I have some self-control. Very thankful today that I did not get an injury.

Day 137 (17/07/20) Long lie in today. I feel like I needed the rest from Tuesday and Wednesday’s workout. Recovery is taking longer than expected. Yesterday was a rest day, but still today I needed the extra rest and felt physically exhausted. Well, I guess I was supposed to expect this (But I didn’t account for it). I’m eating less food, of course my recovery time is going to be shortened. Wow! Feels like I’m carrying a person everywhere I go today – like gravity has doubled down its pressure on me.

Today I received a new book (for learning purposes) – Essentials of Strength Training and Conditioning. Excited to get into it and develop my strength and conditioning skills. Additionally, I picked up some studio lights to help with YouTube videos (coming soon) and any check in photos. In the next check in photos I better look pretty! Side note: steps were short today, but I’ll make up for it. Determined this week to get everything right.

Day 138 (18/07/20) I AM PURE STARVING TODAY!!!!! What the heck!? Like a flip, 180, and my appetite has become ravenous. I can only link this to a change in protein and veg – I swapped chicken form Haddock and sauce with rice. Obviously my body responds better to the vegetables and toast, than to rice. Interesting what a small difference makes.

Still struggling to heal, not feeling 100% either. Gym session today was tough tittys – tough, rough, but enjoyable. The recovery rate is definitely a factor.

Day 139 (19/07/20) The number on the scales have hit an all-time personal best – 12St. 12lbs. This is encouraging, especially as I did increase the calories from the last diet week. I must say, it feels more natural for my body at this weight but I do feel exceptionally light.

Regular steps today thanks to multiple intervals. I was able to get in all the steps for this week as I was quite consistent all week round. Very happy to hit the step target!

Sunday Is my chilled out, reading and relaxing day. I was reading up on reverse dieting and it brought to my attention the rate of atrophy (muscle breakdown) during intense periods of dieting. I am curious, for future reference, if I should increase the protein as the diet progresses. Although the metabolic adaptions occur during diet I can’t help but think that I have lost more muscle than what was originally anticipated. Food for thought anyway. I think an incremental increase of protein during a diet phase would not hinder any progress (in fact, probably the opposite, due to thermal effect of food). I will look to increase protein intake to 185g next week.

Also – DOM city. I am living in DOM city as the president and mayor. Yesterday’s leg session with Matt turned out to be one of the best yet. Quads are feeling the punishment, I will definitely be feeling like this for the next two days. Compared to last week, I didn’t use the same heavy weight but I was able to control the reps at a slower tempo – definitely more effective for me.

Weekly recap: On target for everything this week, except Cals – I overshot on average by 10 Cal. But this is negligible. I was still able to lose weight on the increased calorie average. Strength was up and down, especially recovery, mood was consistent and sleep was good (7.4 hrs average) No injuries this week – win!! Groin was still causing issues for my squat but not as bad as last week. Lower back caused a little nuisance throughout the week, I just need to stretch more.

Protein and Macros were good this week, consistent 30/30/40 split for 5 days. Protein target was met every single day. Hunger was up this week, probably due to the swap from veggies and toast to rice and veggies. Surprising how this swap caused so much hunger! Body image has also been great this past week. I’m happy with the visible progress and, although I feel lighter, feel comfortable with the level of definition coming through. Psyllium Husk has increased to 5g this week, and I’m happy to confirm regularity is not an issue no mo’. No cardio completed this week, again, but its fine – it’s not essential if progress is still made.  Considering the end of the diet by the end of next week. Overall the mood this week has been about a 7.5/10

To do: Keep the macro ratio the same from day to day. Although not essential for me, I would like to bring the cardio back into my routine. I will increase steps by a small increment of 500 to 8000 daily average. I will keep rice in my diet but I want to add more veggies – I thought they were too low for this week. Keep exercise frequency, sleep and calories consistent.

Week 21: 20/07
Target   Calories: 2036   Steps: 8000+      Gym: 4 days       Cardio: 60 mins
Actual   Calories: 2036   Steps: 7614        Gym: 4 days       Cardio: 0 mins

Day 140 (20/07/20) Send me to Africa, because my body looks like a diamond that’s been carved out and cut up! Really happy with how the body looked this morning. Full and lean. This week I am completely jazzed to nail all of my food target – keeping the food identical on each day. This won’t be my last week but I’m preparing for next week to finish up (Saturday 1st August to be exact).

No gym today, still in need of rest from Saturday.

Day 141 (21/07/20) This morning my battery died in my electronic food scales. The past few weeks it’s been jumping numbers on the scale very frequently and fast meaning I had to add the food pretty quick before it gave an incorrect reading. All sorted now after picking up a few button battery’s today. Also, on the topic of counting, I have been regularly counting down the minutes to my next meal. The hunger bug has definitely grown in size this week. Still, I know I can beat it – bring it on!

Today I realised how truly desperate I have become in this diet, I had to laugh at my resemblance to a junky lol. There has never been a better metaphor for the similarities of hunger and addiction to the story I’m about to tell you. So I’ve been exceptionally hungry at night and I tend to give myself a more relaxed last meal for the day. The last meal is my saving grace, I look forward to it. It consists of a small meal with plenty of protein and fat, like chicken and rice, an apple, a carrot cake bar, peanut butter and, this amazing, peanut butter bar. As I was chowing down on the last meal for the day I was also watching a show on Netflix. On this show (I forget the show) one of the main characters was par-taking in some nose clams (cocaine). After he was finished drugging he was also licking it up and rubbing it into his teeth with his finger like a toothbrush. Well, here I am watching the show doing the exact same thing! Simultaneously, I was watching the show while I was also spooning a finger amount of peanut butter into my mouth!! Never before had I looked at myself  through an out of body experience with such disgust hahha but tbh, that peanut butter was amazing, I’m not leaving a drop left…and I’ll do it again hahah. I’ve never taking any narcotics, or even smoked a cigarette for that matter, but I can only imagine cocaine is the peanut butter of the drug world. Don’t do drugs!

Day 142 (22/07/20) Elbow has been causing me some issues today. Nothing sharp or debilitating, simply a numb feeling. I will monitor this and try to relax. Today’s workout has been postponed.

Day 143 (23/07/20) Today the elbow has improved, though this only cleared up in the evening. Still, this didn’t deter a workout after the pain had subsided. The rest must have been a great blessing as I was provided with a surprising amount of high energy!

The body is showing signs of improvement on the daily now as I am starting to really lean out. Triceps are now showing more cuts and angles on the out heads, as is the quadriceps separation.

Day 144 (24/07/20) I don’t think I can express, clearly, how amazing these nut butter bars have been to me. I will include a picture for you. They have brought me joy. This is worrying, granted. However, I know this isn’t normal times and after the diet I am sure they will fall under the ‘Mehh, they’re alright’ category. Regardless, they are a tool to keep me focused until the end of the day. I hate the word ‘treat’. I’m not a dog (well, depends on who you ask hahah). But, I can’t deny it, it feels like a reward, or a treat, for good efficient dieting.

God’s gift in a wrapper

Day 145 (25/07/20) This week I may have went overboard with buying books. I starting buying and ordering a bunch of great second hand books (reuse, recycle people!) and I had forgot I ordered certain books. Still, I’ve been really excited about two of them that I have been thinking about for a long time. Specifically, Mike Mentzer’s High Intensity Training book. That will be my next read after I have finished the Tyson autobiography.

Recently I have started adding in half a piece of toast for 2 of my meals in the day. This has been a great addition to the regular meals and actually suppressed a lot of hunger. I simply toast the bread and add it into the chicken, rice and veggies. Hey, don’t knock it until you’ve tried it, you toast-ist.

Day 146 (26/07/20) I had a look at the step count this week and realised I have a lot of making up to do today. I started the week so well, too! Unfortunately, I didn’t manage to hit the 8000 step target for this week. However, it was near exact to last week’s numbers – so not worse, not better. I’m not dwelling on this especially as the weight loss was the greatest deficit it has been all prep (-2.5lbs). This is an improvement from last week (-1.0lbs). This is the power of averages, after those two weeks I have dropped 1.75lbs on average – right on target. Dieting is a long game, too many people get disheartened from the rate of progress because it’s not instant. This is where I firmly believe information/knowledge is the greatest tool to acquire for weight loss. If you understand the law of averages and the requirements of weight loss within a calorie deficit it becomes a matter of logic and not hope. It’s a process, not an instant reaction.

Weekly recap: A great week for my calories and macros. I finished the week on exact calorie target (2036) and the macros were very similar each day for 20F/40C/40P. Hunger was definitely up this week, especially at the start of the week. Near the end of the week I was able to better manage my hunger with the addition of half my usual rice and half a piece of toast per two of my main meals. Sounds so pathetic, but it works. A new found love for Nut butter bars was born, and I’m never turning my back on them. Injuries were down compared to the last two weeks. Yes, my elbow has been causing me bother but it has caused no issues and I expect this to settle in a few days. Leg day the party mansion on Friday was a success – minimal groin pain.

Cardio was non-existent, again, however this did not affect the fat loss production. Unfortunately, I did not meet the steps target. Regardless, they were near identical to last week, so no progress lost or gain. Mood overall this week was about 7/10. A gradual decline I have noticed. I think this is hunger related.

To do: Keep the macro ratio the same from day to day. Although I will adjust them this week the Layne Norton Peak week principles. Next week will be my last dieting week for the prep. That means I will need to get a tan, wax/shave hhaha, take pictures and measurements. Fingers crossed for me.

Week 22-23: 27/07 & 03/08  

Day 146-152 (26/07-02/08/20) So, this was the week I was supposed to be the end of the diet. On Monday I had calculated the next 10 days to the single gram and, specifically, what to eat at each meal, how much water to drink and how much salt to add to the day’s meals. But, it didn’t quite go to plan… oh, Scott. I wish I could give the old Scot a hug. The following is now written from a better head space, and currently I am writing this on 25th of August (nearly a month after the start of this week). To say I struggled would be an understatement.

On the Friday (31/07/20) I had given up on the 10 day strict plan – I was half way there. Upon reflection it was down to a number of reasons: work (stress of the future), living arrangements, loneliness, lack of motivation, and probably not taking a diet break (as this was supposed to be). Overall, it was my mental resilience that broke. Food has never been the issue, I can eat a can of soup a day and be totally fine. I’m quite fortunate in that respect that when I keep myself busy hunger doesn’t become an issue at all. In that regards, I know it was definitely my mental fortitude. I think it’s safe to say 22 weeks is just too long for me to strictly diet.

Day 153-159 Although I gave up on the previous Friday, my mood picked up the following Thursday (6/8/20) and I started to get back into an improvement mind-set. The 6 days in-between were just shite, let’s just say that. Specifically, my mood was lifted by the purchase and reading of a book ‘The High Intensity Training, the Mike Mentzer way’ by Mike Mentzer with John Little. The book really ignited my passion of exercise and bodybuilding, I highly recommend it to any exercise fanatic. In the book, Mike also recounts a (frighteningly) similar feeling to that of what I experienced. His description is better than mine,

“…I walked through June and much of July like a somnambulist. By the end of July, having forsaken any attention to diet, with little or no real training, I had slipped into the worst conditioning of my life…I found myself floundering aimlessly in a web of neurotic entanglements. Where the earlier part of the year saw me bounding out of bed at 5am, eager at the prospect of the day’s contest preparations, now I would languish in the sack until noon, hoping reality would somehow go away by virtue of my simply refusing to acknowledge it.”

I finished the book on Sunday and was already motivated to exercise for 5 days straight. In terms of the body composition, the only good notes on how my body looked during this time were taken on the Friday (07/09/20) noting ‘Body looking good after 2hrs post Breakfast’. I presume this was from a week of excess Carbs and an increased salt intake. Basically, I was eating shite foods for the shite 6 days. During this burst in motivation I guess I felt tip top and proactive. I also purchased new supplements (of which I was slacking on), specifically Omega-3, Magnesium, Vitamin C and Glutamine. I have definitely noticed a little retail therapy does the trick to uplift the motivation– though this is worrying. I would definitely not consider myself materialistic (in fact I try the opposite). Plus, I’m not rich, I can’t afford this style therapy (retail) haha! Currently, I can only attribute this to a lack of happiness, or, rather, a lack of ‘wants’ (I usually only purchase necessary items over luxury items). I’m like an old man – “if it ain’t broke, why fix it”. My friends will know this as I rocked the Iphone 5 for far too long (in their opinion) hahah. I only gave it up because the battery only lasted 3 hours.

Surprisingly, I only put on 0.7lb during this time period (2 weeks), average steps were about 2200 with 0 gym sessions and 0mins of cardio. That gives you an idea of how the week went.

Review of the past two weeks: Hindsight is always 20/20 and looking back now I think to myself, ‘you were doing so great, Scott. You should have pushed through and stuck it out’. Yes I am kicking myself a little, as I know this is true, but overall it was clearly having a negative impact to a terrible situation/mind-set. I have learned one thing, that is certain, I need a solid grounding with a good support system to help me push through the last hurdle (maybe I need my own coach during this time – I am very swaying very favorably to this idea). Additionally, I think a more aggressive diet in the future is warranted. Primarily, to speed up the process but I think I was perhaps being a bit too conservative in the beginning (hoping it would save as much muscle mas as possible).

Now you are probably thinking, ‘that’s it, he’s done’….well, no. I kept a lower diet for the next two weeks, although less strict. I decided to throw out the 10 day peak week front loading principle and just get some pictures taken (at some point). I came too far to quit.

I know… my eyes are rolling too haha.

Week 24-25: 10/08 & 17/08  

Day 160-166 Average Cal: 2656
This week started off with great intentions. I had finished my 5 days of consisted exercise (finishing on Tuesday). These workouts were short, high intense workouts aimed at improving my adaptability for more intense exercise (for when the gyms reopen). I really enjoyed the short workouts and will look to use them when gyms reopen – mike Mentzers book really got me thinking about the duration of my workouts in relation to recovery. At this point the gyms could have been pushed forward to reopen any day, instead of the expected 14th of September.

As I was determined to finish this diet on a positive note I was preparing, if somewhat halfheartedly, to get the finishing touches complete. Ideally, I was considering the tan and hair removal. Now, I don’t exactly wear a hairy jumper when in my birthday suit, but it’s definitely more than I want. My legs especially are all hair from ankles to upper thigh (Don’t worry, i’m not a Yetti). Despite this, I decided I would tackle the hair removal. This is all in efforts to replicate the bodybuilding competition that was cancelled. The wax on the legs went quite well. Minus a few tender areas (below the waist… get your head out of the gutters), its was very manageable. The process definitely would have been easier with another person to get the blind sports (I was discovering weird hair patches for the following two weeks haha). I was using Veet wax strips for this process and I ran into one major downside – I decided to try and self-wax my chest hair. Let’s just say NEVER AGAIN!! The angle is horrible to do this on your own and the experience is made even worse when you don’t get a clean rip. Also, it turns out that chest hair is extremely deep….yup! Like Clubber Lang’s prediction, from Rocky III, “Pain”. It gets better, too. The aftermath of the legs were relatively negligible (a few stray hairs, minor itching) but the chest was atrocious. Turns out I may have had an allergic reaction to the strip (or perhaps it was a shock reaction?) but I turned out in a plethora of spots/rashes the next day. Luckily this didn’t get any worse as I was quite worried! I decided to hold off on any more waxing so I could monitor my chest (I also ran out of strips). After one day of waxing I was left with one waxed leg and a strip across the chest – shorts were definitely off the menu for the next few days hahaha.

I did, however, opt out of the fake tan. It’s just not necessary in my current situation, and I would look a right wally with a tan similar to that of Ross’s 8 from that Friends episode, especially if it was no specific purpose (holiday, competition, night out – but even then I wouldn’t get a fake tan for them). I did miss out on the experience, but I can test this at any time in my life, so no worries.

Regardless of my allergic reaction to wax strips, this week was a diet break week and, for the most part, went quite well.

Day 167-173 Average Cal: 2299
This week was relatively unimpressive, or uninteresting. During this week, including the last 4, counting has been consistent but with no real measurable target. I have been conscious as to not eat too much or too little however, it’s definitely been more relaxed. Specifically, I have been eating only when I’ve been hungry and reduced my meals from 4-6 down to 3. Protein was not as high and Macros were all over the place. Still, I managed to drop only 0.6lbs – so, still progress. 0 cardio, 0 gym, <1000 Steps on average for this week.

At this point in the diet, I was definitely ready for it to finish. The only factor stopping me was the fact I had not got the photos yet. The chest rash was starting to clear and so I felt better about the pictures. To get the photos I needed to remove the rest of the body hair and select a date. To prevent any further delay, I decided that the following Monday was D-day. On Monday I was to shave (not ideal because I don’t exactly want thicker chest hair) and get the pictures taken. And that’s exactly what happened.

Week 26: 24/08

Day 174 The end

I will add in the result of the photos below, along with comparison from the start and end. You can make your own judgement. Overall, I am happy with the result. Of course, I believe I could have looked better (dryer, more defined, made better use of the posing etc.) but I have to remind myself that this was an experiment – my first attempt. Learning and developing, learning and developing.

I will include a summary below to recap my whole experience, pro’s and con’s with my honest opinions. What I can say for certain, is that I have developed a greater understanding of my own abilities and gained a greater appreciation for those not just in the bodybuilding sport but anyone in a major diet attempt.

5 months: So a few differences, primarily the hair (on top and body), the shorts, and quality of potato for camera. There is no denying that the camera has made a difference along with lighting. Really interesting to see the difference in my legs, I definitely store most of my fat in that area – looking like a chonky boy at the start of the prep. Overall, I managed to dropped 12.79kg/28lbs/2stone in 24 weeks. The process was a great learning (and, when waxing, painful) experience. I rate my posing a 5/10.


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