I am now on week 13 of my “new” weight lifting gym plan. Damn time has gone by so fast, but I swear i’m still not bored of it. I’m still excited every single day to hit the gym, make some gains, lift heavy things, squint in pain, waddle around the following day etc. This is my idea of fun, is that weird? In any case I’ve been pairing this workout plan with goal diet of 2, 100 cals with 50% carbs, 20% fat, 30% protein macros. However I usually end up eating about 1, 900 calories with a 45% carbs, 27% fat, 28% protein. I’ve been pretty lenient with my diet, so as long as I hit a minimum of 1, 900 cal and 25% protein, I’m good. The ultimate goal of this plan was to really gain some muscle and finally get STRONG (no matter how much I’ve worked out in the past I seemed to stay a weak lil shrimp). So 13 weeks later, here’s my full update.
I write down in “notes” on my phone the amount I lift every week. I usually try increase (even just slightly) the weight week on week, so I’d say I’ve made some progress. Nothing crazy, and really not that much considering it’s been over 2 months now, but this stuff takes a while. I’m kind of a huge wuss and am constantly scared of hurting myself, so I hate pushing myself to the point of potentially sacrificing my form. Of course it’s only when you push yourself out of your comfort zone that you progress, so I’m forever in between thinking “push yourself to the max” and “take it easy, an injury is not worth it.” Surprisingly I’ve managed to make a decent amount of progress in terms of how much I can lift without actually hurting myself, until this week where I’ve started getting back pain. But my brother told me “welcome to the world of weight lifting” AKA when you put your body through that much strain you’ll probably end up hurting yourself a bit, but simply gotta stop, take a step back, rest, and pick back up when you’re ready. Despite all of this however, I’ve gained quite a bit of strength in my legs progressing from a 160lb leg press to 195lb, and in my chest moving from 25kg bench press to 32.5kg. I know for over 2 months it’s nothing wild, but I believe that slow and steady wins the race. I may be turtle-ing it now, but I’ll get there one day.
Alright now this is the tricky part. I’m so completely conflicted when it comes to my physical changes over the past 2 months. On one hand, I feel like I’ve changed so much. Although my clothes still fit, they look completely different on me now. Things are tight, proving that along with extra muscle I’ve definitely increase body fat, which is part of the deal; it’s a normal part of bulking and this is how it goes. You can’t build muscle without increasing your body fat at the same time, and considering I was pretty fat deficient at the start (bf% of about 13%, I definitely had to up this). I’ve somewhat made my peace with this, but as a girl, bulking is more of a mental challenge than a physical one.
After being told your whole life that gaining weight is negative, you have to not only watch yourself gain fat and be okay with it, but actually encourage it.
My emotions regarding this have kind of been on a whack. There are days where I’m like Daaamn look at me getting those curves on, WAAOW am I Nikki Blackketter or something?! Like I looked cute before but booty gains on ppppooooint. And then there are days where I actually catch myself saying: wow I got chubs. This is super weird for me since I’ve always been extremely confident in my body, and for the first time I’ve actually been shying away from wear crop tops, tight pants etc. cuz I feel like I don’t look fit enough to pull it off. It’s weird for me to even admit that cuz I have never ever been one of those girls to do “body shaming” or whatever it’s called, but lately it’s been happening. I’ve had a few rants to Stef and my brother about wanting to stop my bulk and get back to into some cardio, but thank god for them being so incredibly supportive and reminded me why I started. I always try remind myself that nothing is forever. I’m trying this for now, but I will change plan in the future and my body will change with it.
On the other hand, I took progress pictures, and gonna be honest and say there is freaking ZERO. DIFFERENCE. No joke. It kinda makes me want to cry cuz over 2 months of whipping my own ass daily following my gym plan to the effing dot andddddd got nothing to show for it?! So is this whole “I’ve gained a lot” thing in my mind?
Alright so what’s next? I had initially hoped to starting a mini-cut before leaving for Australia at the end of June, but I’ve realized
a) I’ve gained nowhere near enough muscle to actually justify “cutting”
b) With only 3 weeks until I leave it’s not worth starting a whole new program
c) When in Australia I’m going to take advantage of the heat and sun to do lots of HIIT training outside instead of lifting weights inside in a gym
Sooo all in all, I’m gonna keep up the weights for the next few weeks until I get to Australia and then inshallah; life will change, so will my routine, and I’ll be keeping y’all up to date via Instagram, YouTube, Twitter & Facebook so stay tuned 😉