I have been wanting to write a post about my 12 week Bodybuilding.com and my #100days challenge since I started the two just over 9 weeks ago. Why was this so important to me- well the last thing I want to promote on my page is an unhealthy relationship with food or exercise. Over the last 9 weeks I have trained every day and watched my diet quite closely, BUT having said that my training has not been strenuous and my nutrition has not be obsessive. I have not stood on scales or taken measurements since I started and I have focussed on my goal without developing any unhealthy obsessions. Two years ago when I first started this new lifestyle, I obsessed over calories for my first 12 week challenge, and this resulted in serious binge eating and subsequent self loathing at the end of the 12 weeks. It took me some time after this to develop a healthy relationship with food, and as soon as I found that balance I was able to keep the weight off and resist gorging myself on whatever caught my eye. I am also cognisant of the fact that my recent selfie posts have focussed more on the absence of that elusive ‘six pack’ than acknowledgement of the amazing changes I have seen in my body in the last 9 weeks. As a page that strives not to promote one particularly body type as any ‘ideal’ for what is fit/healthy/strong etc, I also want to acknowledge that I am extremely happy with my body how it is right this second. I have put in the hard work and I have been rewarded with a leaner figure than I have ever had in my life and I am proud of it. It has taken sacrifices and a change in my training regime, but I am 100% comfortable in my own skin. This pursuit of defined abs is solely to prove to myself that I can achieve them, and for the sake of the $50000 prize money at the end of the challenge. Do I believe that I currently have enough abdominal musculature to maintain defined abs at a sustainable body fat percentage- no! So after this challenge my focus will return to building core muscle mass rather than dropping body fat. Another sacrifice I have made is that of my cardiovascular fitness. Cardio training has been almost no existent in the last 9 weeks until the start of last week when I started 20-30 mins of fasted cardio in the morning. This is definitely a downside of this process, and has left me worried for my upcoming triathlon on Sunday. I knew when I started this transformation challenge that I had to change the way I trained if I was to change the way I looked…but at the end of the day I am a triathlete (well at heart anyway) and I have had to sacrifice that for the sake of muscle mass. My justification for that has been that at the end of the day, increase strength was ultimately going to help with my performance and reduce my risk of injury once I return to regular triathlon training (and having battled with various injuries over the last 12-24 months this was completely worth it t me). Whilst I LOVE lifting weights, I cannot wait to start training for my 70.3 in 3 weeks time- bring on the swim/bike/run!
As for my 100 days challenge- this was borne out of a video I posted at the start of the year of an inspirational woman who was determined to change her life and her attitude to exercise. She embarked on a goal to work out every day for 100 days- and the change in her appearance and attitude was extraordinary! I was inspired by this woman and I wanted to prove that there is always time to exercise..you just have to find it. Do I think we should work out every day- absolutely not! Rest days (as frustrating and boring as they may be) are very important. But do I think we should repeatedly use the excuse that we do not have time- definitely not! If I can find some time every day for 100 days- it proves there is time in our days to fit in something that will improve us physically and mentally.
I hope this helps explain where my focus has been, and allay any views that I was promoting an unhealthy and unsustainable lifestyle and body image.