Tag Archives: exercise options

12 Week LeanBody challenge: complete! Overview Part01

A little over 12 weeks ago…

Obligatory comparison shot

Obligatory comparison shot

Well, it was actually closer to 13 weeks as I had to take a weeks break, due to some nasty food poisoning.

I set out at the start of this year like most. I told myself that I am going to continue on my path to living a healthy lifestyle, go to the gym, eat right… The usual promises.
However, this year I really wanted to see the differences.

The last week of the challenge was actually the hardest for me. (Other than the food poisoning!) I was quite fatigued and I was even finding it hard to motivate myself to go to the gym.  Which was surprising as I have built up a good routine of going to the gym 2 days, having an active rest day, then 2 days on again and so on.
Anyway, I managed to push through and finish off absolutely every single work out. All 84 days!!!

There are parts of my blog where I have missed a day or two, and a few workouts here and there. I even missed out writing up the majority of last week.
I am going to write it all up.

Before I do that though, I am going to write up my general overview of the entire challenge. As it all comes back to me, this evening.

Monday 22 Jul. 13
8.19pm

The main points that I will be going over for this entry will be divided up. Depending on the size, I might have to split it over two or three posts, too.

Pre-training / Research

When I first decided to start going to the gym again, I knew that if I was to see any sort of results, I had to do a bit of study.

I have been in and out of gyms for years now. On and off with sport, I was usually in average shape, being fit enough, but not super fit. I had always had a bit of extra belly flab, too, so I was considering losing a little weight.

The hardest part is always getting started but once you decide on something, eg: “I am going to join a gym.” Everything else starts to fall in to place.

So I joined the gym.

This time I didn’t want to go in there and do full body workouts for hours on end. I didn’t want to waste my precious time sweating away. Not only is that extremely boring, it’s pointless because it just doesn’t work.

One of the best research tools for me of course, is the internet. One resource where I spent a lot of time was on BodyBuilding.com.
I found the site very useful because it offers a range of exercise plans, with full video tutorials. They cover everything from the exercises you can do, the meals you can eat, basically it has everything that you need, for the goals that you want to achieve.

I decided that rather than being massively bulky and getting myself in to shape like some of those extremely talented and dedicated people in the Bodybuilding community, I could still learn from some of their principles, and take those to apply to my own philosophies.

Setting your own goals

Just like the research stage, it’s important that you don’t get too bogged down here.
When starting out with something fresh, I like to set myself goals that I know I can achieve, as long as I am willing to work hard for it.
The options from the workout plans that I was looking at were:

A 12 week trainer – hardcore bodybuilding
A 365 day workout plan – I’m not ready to commit to that (just yet!)
A 3 week shredding diet – f*ck that!
And a few other trimming down options.

The one I chose was the 12 week Lee Lebrada LeanBody Trainer.
My reasons for choosing this came down to sitting through and watching all of thie overview and introductory videos from this, and all the other programs.
Kris Gethin’s 12 week Trainer looks like a really good option for those looking to increase in size (something that I will consider soon). It’s also a really good series to sit through because he takes you to gym every day, so he offers pretty good advice and tips along the way. However, as I was looking to start off simple, the LeanBody program was more suited to my goals.

Basically, my knowledge of the weights and exercises inside of a gym was moderate – I know my way around.
The only problem in the past was that I never really set goals, and never gained the desired results…because I didn’t know what I wanted.

This time, I made the decision to lose some belly flab, tone up, and lay the solid foundation for building upon. By that I mean that I wanted to focus a lot more on form rather than lifting heavy weights. The main reason for this is to ease in to things a bit more.

This is about paving the way for some long term changes. I really wanted to make sure that I was not setting myself up for failure. So rather that saying “I want to gain 15kg’s of lean body mass and be benching 100 in 12 weeks and a 6 pack and run 5k’s in under 20 minutes and this and that…” – I decided to take it slow.
I set myself a goal of completing a 12 week fitness challenge. And that’s it!

 

Making a start – committing to the decision

Once I made that decision that I wanted to make some long term changes, that I wanted to ease in to it, rather than rushing in to it and potentially injuring myself which might lead to giving up.
The plan for me was simple – follow along a workout plan and continue to eat healthy and nutritious meals.
One aspect of the diet which I was sort of doing yet hadn’t made the conscious decision to, was to commit to 5 – 6 meals a day. Every day I make sure that I eat breakfast, lunch, and dinner, plus a few smaller snacks every two to three hours/in between. By doing this, it really fired up my metabolism and made sure that I was in a fat burning mode.

After the decision to start a 12 week plan, of course I needed to set a start date. I’m sure the temptation is there to go out and get started right away, and that method might work for some people, but it doesn’t for me. As you can probably tell with all my harping on about research!

I knew that I had a 2 week holiday in March, and another 3 day convention coming up for work. So I decided to set my start date for early April.
Rather than sitting around and thinking about the start date, I decided that I would in fact start hitting the gym – albeit rather lightly. By building up pace slowly I was able to get my body prepped and ready for the challenge when I was ready to start.

Next post is going to be all about that important day:

 

Ready, Set GO ! ! !

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Week 11 Roundup: Days 73 – 77

To say that this week has been absolutely manic, that I can’t remember  a busier week aside from end of semester at uni, running around trying to get everything done…even that would be an understatement. While I am typing this late on a Sunday night, I am doing my best to hold my head up and make sure I don’t fall asleep on the keyCZiouczxklj .. . . z z z

Haar har! A Joke!
I am tired though, and as this week comes to a close I want to reiterate the importance of proper rest and hydration.
The last few days have gotten quite hot (surprisingly for London) and I made sure to drink plenty of water.
So in order to get plenty of rest, and be sure I’m at 100% to finish off strong, and record our second session of the podcast tomorrow – I am just doing a weekly wrap up of the workouts. With intentions to returning and elaborating a bit more comprehensively about the week that was. Until then…

Wednesday 10

The Workout (Back & Biceps)

  • One-arm row
  • Lat pull down
  • Barbell deadlift
  • Alternating dumbbell curl
  • Hammer curl

-AC.

Thursday 11

The Workout (Shoulders, Chest & Triceps)

  • Dumbbell Bench Press
  • Flat bench dumbbell flyes
  • Dumbbell Side Lateral raises
  • Seated barbell press
  • Triceps Pushdown
  • Lying triceps press/skull crushers

-AC.

Friday 12

Active rest day

Saturday 13

The Workout (Legs & Abs)

  • Machine leg press
  • Machine leg extension
  • Machine leg curls
  • Straight leg barbell dead lift
  • Single leg dumbbell calf raise
  • Lying bench curl
  • Crunches
  • Hanging leg raises

-AC.

Sunday 14

Then today had to be switched for tomorrows workout as I decided to go out and enjoy the sun with my girlfriend and some friends. S owe made sure to get in some fast paced walking, then the next 3 days will be spent in the gym.
So I best be off as it’s another big week ahead.

Tomorrow already is quite exciting, it marks:

-The final week of my 12 week lean body fitness challenge
-Final week of my goal to cycle 650km in 4 weeks
-Recording of session 02 of the SuperHueMen podcast!!!

I will be posting the link up on Tuesday.

-Adam.

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Week 11: Day 72 – Active rest day, Boris ‘bikes’ Johnson, & my 1st Krav Maga lesson

I seriously think yesterday was one of the best days of my life!
Then, today I spotted Boris Johnson at the red lights on the ride home from work and he was happy to pose for a picture. And that totally made my day today, too!

Mr. Bikes himself, Boris Johnson and I
Mr. Bikes himself, Boris Johnson and I

There was just so much going on yesterday, contacting people I haven’t spoken to in ages, creating totally new connections, recording my very first podcast [!!!], getting a discount at Starbucks… And all of this on a Monday!

Who would’ve thought that MONDAY could be called one of the best days of your life?

Then today happened.

Grabbing life by the Cojones!

It just felt even more exciting. Knowing that I achieved something that I planned. I came up with an idea and manifested that in to reality and it was awesome! Hopefully that means tomorrow and every day after is just  going to get better and better.

The fact that I actually put a plan in to action and recorded a pilot episode is amazingly rewarding – it’s one of those things that when you think about it and try and plan for it and research and prepare…before realising, I started to become overwhelmed and distracted and it becomes easier to make up excuse why not to do it.

So instead, by just doing it and not worry about what’s going to happen – it turned out better than I could have planned for.

Looking externally for feedback

Today was a rush too, because I sent the Pilot episode around to some friends and family and have started getting back some really, really helpful feedback which is going to be great for the development of the series when we go to launch for real next month.

Tonight I finally managed to try my first lesson of Krav Maga which was meant to be last Tuesday but I had to postpone.
Krav was really enjoyable and something that I will consider adding in to my fitness routine. It’s good to mix things up a bit which is why I really enjoy doing the occasional yoga sesesion, too.

Also, I’m well and truly on the way to hitting my target of riding 650km’s by the end of this challenge, too.

Week 3 progress
Week 3 progress

It’s really coming down to the wire now so I’m just going to keep on focussing on doing the little things that have gotten me this far.
Tracking my food intake in my journal, take weekly progress photos, measurements and doing daily (or almost every day) posts on here.

-AC.

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Week 10 Day 66: Active rest day and thoughts about starting a podcast

Screw it. Let’s do it! – Richard Branson

So after having a few chats with a mate, we have decided that we’re going to launch a podcast next month! I pushed for next month because I think we may as well get started and see how it goes.

The truth is, the more that I listen to podcasts, the more time I spend thinking about actually doing one. To be perfectly honest, I’m thinking about it A LOT.

This 12 week fitness challenge that I’m currently doing is coming to an end. It’s got me thinking about what I should do next.

Sunday 21 July is the scheduled end date for this 12 week Lean Body Challenge.
I’m definitely going to move on to another 12 week program, I’m just not sure which one yet.

If anyone has some suggestions about workout plans, I would love to hear from you!

Also, if I was to do a podcast on fitness, what would you like to hear about?

Today’s active rest day was spent cycling to and from work. I also found out today that we are moving offices, so instead of a 13km ride to work, it’s going to be a bit over 19km’s. So it will be interesting to see how my body reacts to all of that extra cardio.

Anywho, thank you very much for stopping by and please feel free to leave a comment below.

-Adam.

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Week 10: Days 64 – 65

Monday was the first time that the workouts have reset to be the same breakdown as day one, that it’ll be Back & Bi’s, Shoulders, Chest, & Tri’s, followed by an active rest day and then a legs & abs day. Setting up then following through with that routine has been one of the factors to creating a successful habit. Also, the use of a workout journal has helped keep me on track. So that when I know what workouts are planned for which days, it makes it easier to plan activities throughout the week as well as meal preperation. Another big key to success.

As mentioned yesterday, I have been thinking a lot about doing a podcast with a friend. I’ve been listening to quite a lot, too.
So that has been taking up some of my spare time while I am still focussing on my fitness, I think I’m going to have to make sure I do continue doing daily entries becasue at the moment I’m feeling slightly behind.

Regardless, I hope that in the coming weeks i’ll have some exciting news!

-Adam.

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Weekly update on cycling goal

Just a quick post, following up from last week when I set a goal to cycle 650km in 4 weeks.

Over the last week I’ve clocked up 245km’s, which is just under 40% – I think I might have to readjust the total.

Week 2 of cycle goal

Week 2 of cycle goal

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Week 08 Days 55 – 56: Rounding up the third quarter

This weekend was a busy one with race day yesterday for the Royal Ascot and a going away party for a friend today.
I knew that it was going to be out of the question to workout yesterday so instead of the scheduled rest day Friday, I swapped it for yesterdays workout. Now that I have set up the routine of working out 2 days followed by an active rest day, I think it’s alright to re-schedule workouts when necessary. At the start of this challenge however, it was quite important to stick closer to the schedule to become familiar with the workouts and set up those habits.

The Workout (Shoulders, Chest & Triceps)

  • Barbell Bench Press
  • Incline dumbbell flyes
  • Dumbbell Side Lateral raises
  • Machine shoulder press
  • Triceps Pushdown
  • Lying triceps press/skull crushers

-AC.

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Week 07 Day 47 – Shoulders, Chest & Triceps

Got up nice and early today to make my way to the gym before work.

I was up at 630am, munched down some breakfast, a coffee and then I was out the door.
It felt good getting the workout out of the way nice and early as it freed up the rest of my day, and more importantly, it freed up my friday night.

Morning workouts are something that I might start doing more frequently as I heard that it’s also not a good idea to work out at night as it gets your heart rate up and core temperature, making it harder to sleep in the evenings. Something I will have to try out and compare for myself.

The Workout (Shoulders, Chest & Triceps)

  • Dumbbell Bench Press
  • Flat bench dumbbell flyes
  • Dumbbell Side Lateral raises
  • Seated barbell press
  • Triceps Pushdown
  • Lying triceps press/skull crushers

-AC

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Week 07 Day 44 – Legs & Abs

Just have to post the workout here as I’m a bit behind.

The Workout (Legs & Abs)

  • Back squat
  • Dumbbell lunge
  • Machine leg curls
  • Straight leg barbell dead lift
  • Single leg dumbbell calf raise
  • Bicycle kick
  • Medicine ball leg lift
  • Hanging leg raises

-AC.

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Week 07 Day 43 – Shoulders, Chest & Triceps

So today officially marks the halfway point in this challenge. Tomorrow I’ll do a special post with some photos of my week by week progress.

Overall I am happy with my dedication to the program. I have been trying my best to eat as healthy as possible, and other than the week I got food poisoning and had to postpone the entire week to start the following Monday, so far I have followed the workout plan to a tee.

Going to the gym for two days, then an active rest day.
Rotating through the three different workouts;
Back & biceps (+30 mins of cardio)
Shoulders, chest & triceps, and
Legs & Abs.

Today was another upper body workout.

The Workout (Shoulders, Chest & Triceps)

  • Dumbbell Bench Press
  • Flat bench dumbbell flyes
  • Dumbbell Side Lateral raises
  • Seated barbell press
  • Triceps Pushdown
  • Lying triceps press/skull crushers

-AC.

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