|Image 1: Some people just know how to improve their physique even when pigging out on thanksgiving. Or can you see any collateral damage the turkey, the pie and the pie and the turkey from last week have done?|
Time flies by! 16 weeks out and keepin' it rollin'!
I am 16 weeks out from my show. Man! Am I glad that I started my prep 2 months ago, because it feels like the next 16 weeks are going to fly by. Today is the first of December and, as I mentioned in my last blogpost, I have cut back another 200kcals from my diet and am now at daily caloric intake of only 1600 kcal. I actually have already the first day with 1600kcal under my belt, and it felt.... it felt like this is going to be a walk in the park! Although my carb-, and with the latest cut, even my fat-intake are pretty low, now (160g protein/ 50g CHO/ 75g fat per day), I still manage to get my schoolwork done, help my clients throughout the early part of the day and still have tons of energy to burn when I train later in the afternoon. Two years ago I would’ve been dead tired by the time 4 o’clock pm came around and would have just gone through the motions at the gym.
|Figure 1: Adelfo's current macronutrient breakdown. Since December 1st, he is at a 1600kcal/day level.|
Intermittent fasting gives me balance - physiologically and psychologically
In that, I am convinced that the high(er) fat approach aside, my decision to switch to an intermittent fasting protocol also has a lot to do with how smooth my prep and dieting has been going so far. I honestly can say, that I rarely feel hunger pangs, if any at all. I’m not pre-occupied with what I’m going to cook or eat next. My mind is not distracted with thoughts of food. I can even go a whole day without eating and I feel fine. When I take a look back, it’s amazing how much my diet controlled my everyday life. Don’t get me wrong, I love the science of nutrition, eating smart, making healthy food decisions and preparing for bodybuilding shows, but when you start getting OCD and letting the diet determine and control how you live your life. Dieting sometimes even goes so far that it starts to alter your personality! And this is, when you should now: It's time to make a change!
Natural hormone optimization - a new asset in my portfolio!?
|Video 1: Mike Mahler's "Hormone Optimization" seminar on YouToube (click on the navigation on the right to see all parts). Big kudos to Mike for sharing so much great information for free!|
Eventually I found myself digging deeper into this subject of hormones and hormone optimization trying to learn and educate myself on a topic I know nothing about, but yeah… anyway, I think I’ve found a subject that peaks my curiosity and will probably keep me busy for a couple of weeks trying to learn as much as I can and will most likely distract me from my school work ;-)
End of November: 4 weeks paying off...
A pros pos work, it's also time to evaluate where a hell lot of hard work in the gym has gotten me in the past couple of week. So here are some recent progress pictures that I took yesterday, as well as comparisons from the beginning of the month.
|Image 2: Picture on the left hand side was taken on November 15, 2011, and the picture on the right hand side was taken yesterday on November 30, 2011 (photos by Adelfo Cerame, 2011).|
... yet a still not at my short-term goal of outperforming my friend Duong ;-)
To be honest from looking at the comparisons, I feel that I certainly could afford to stay at 1800 calories and still make some good progress by the end of December. In fact, I was tempted for about 5 minutes, but then I reminded myself of the short-term goal that I set for myself, which is to achieve or better outperform Duong's already phenomenal physique by Christmas, which also happens to be the 12-week mark in my contest prep (sorry Duong, just my competitive nature ;-)
Supplement reviews: Since this past weekend there was a black Friday/Cyber Monday sale online @ TFSupplements (by the way, although I do not even get a discount there, I still want to mention that this is a very cheap place to shop for supps ;-) I picked up a bottle of Liquid Clenbutrx by VPX (yeah I know… the name sounded pretty sketchy to me also!), and a tub of Anadraulic State by LG Sciences. Both were at a very affordable price compared to retail.
Clenbutrx: My initial thoughts were… name and bottle alone of the
VPX product (with the little injection dispenser) looked and sounded
suspect to me. I mean look at the name… rhymes with clenbuterol right?
And look how they make the bottle look all-pharmaceutical like with the
injection dispenser to the side… "It looks like it can be illegal, so I
guess it must work!" *rofl* Even with all the signs directing me to stay
clear, the price was right, the majority of the reviews were positive
(on a side note… when I read supp reviews I take into consideration the
physique of the one making the review. You usually can find their
profile picture on the left hand side of reviews), and even Mr super-critic Dr. Andro considers VPX among the most reputable companies in a business, where shady names of obviously have become part of the game...
Anadraulic State: My initial
thoughts… Another pre- workout supplement that’s worth a try because
720g for $14 and a really sound ingredient profile, this was obviously a bargain!
Note: I just started on both supplements this week,
so you’ll have to wait until I finish them for a full review.
so you’ll have to wait until I finish them for a full review.
|Image 3: VPX Clenbutrx, a solid product with a more than questionable name, which will yet have to showcase its fat burning magic in the weeks to come.|
- Taste: Tastes like shit and Nyquil mixed together! It’s gotta work if it tastes this bad right?
- Energy: So far for the past 3 days since I’ve been taking it… my energy is literally through the roof. In fact this elixir kept me up all night for the first day, because I took the 2nd dose to late in the afternoon… and I guess taking anadraulic state 30 minutes after does not help either - though this is actually a "non-stim" pre-workout product. I am, by the way, curious on how long these potent effects are going to last and whether they will have worn off before I will have gone through the whole bottle. Keep checking back for more info in the posts to come.
- Fat Loss: Don’t know yet, until I finish the bottle, but I get a good sweat in the gym.
- Side notes: So far no jitters throughout the day or while I workout. And so far it hasn’t ramped up my metabolism in the Ferrari-like way it claims to do. But hey - should I really have believed that? I guess no. So, not a bad product, so far.
|Image 4: LG Sciences' Anadraulic State GT - for the 14$ I would hardly have gotten the 720g of ingredients in bulk.|
- Taste: Strawberry lemonade, well at least that is what the label says. I guess it's a good thing that it does not taste as if it was mixed with battery acid, though ;-)
- Energy: I did not buy it for the energy factor. It's a non-stim and with the potent effects of the Clenbutrx I really can't tell if you would feel some kind of energy rush from Anadraulic State, as well.
- Pump/ vascularity: I can’t really tell either because my body gets a good pump or gets pretty vascular even when I don’t take pre-workout supplements.
- Strength/ performance: So far it’s all me. But given the fact that the ingredients are meant to do their magic over time, I did not expect to notice it until being on it for at least 2-3 weeks.
- Side notes: Nothing to really report or rave about yet.
I usually like to track my macros and actually don’t mind doing it, but since my last meal before I start my fast and hit the sack are P+F meals. It’s usually pretty easy for me to eye it and guesstimate my macros. My macro meal split for my protein and fat are around 50g protein, and 25g fat. I’m guessing these 2 turkey legs are a bit under my protein and fat, but I’m not too worried about it... buon appetito!