This week I am much more cheerful! Getting back to normal at the gym after taking it easy last week has actually been a relief, much to my surprise! It is so much easier to stay motivated and stick to my diet plan when I am training harder. I have always been a very ‘all or nothing’ type of person, and I think this is starting to come out across in my 12-week challenge. I have certainly learned some good lessons to take into my next deload period in three weeks’ time, namely don’t take your eye off the prize, pausing doesn’t mean you can stop.
My training has definitely upped in intensity this week and boy can I feel it. Today is the first day since Tuesday that I actually feel like I can walk again. My hamstrings have been so sore, and I also gave myself shin splints thanks to relying on the cross trainer a bit too much for my cardio. I’ve been forced to use the static bike to try and ease the work on my legs. Another lesson for this week: nothing is more boring than steady state cardio, but you can get through it if you’ve downloaded yourself a great playlist or audio book.
I had some good news on Monday: my body fat dropped another percent this week – I’m on a roll! Thankfully that meant that my calories have stayed consistent and didn’t need to drop, and that I have also maintained the same amount of cardio. So the only thing that’s changed this week is the one extra weights session. Considering how much I’ve been going to the gym, one extra hour doesn’t feel too bad. Bar the aches and DOMS I’ve hardly noticed it!
It hasn’t all been plain sailing. The dark, cold, early mornings are getting harder, and my mood has dropped on a few days. My caffeine consumption is definitely going up and funnily enough, other people’s positive reactions are also starting to dwindle. Where they started off with full support, some friends are now starting to get annoyed with my fussiness around meal times and obsessive planning in advance. I totally understand, and luckily the vast majority still think I’m doing a great thing, but it does hammer home just how self-obsessed and shallow you have to become to complete this process. Getting annoyed when other people eat a takeaway or making other people worry about what they eat in front of you is not sustainable, and I am starting to become more aware that the support I am relying on from other people is costing them as well. It’s an important consideration, but I’ve gone too far to worry too much – I’m just going to keep doing what I need to do to get to where I want to be!
My motivation is sky high at the moment and I genuinely think it comes from seeing consistent progress and having such great support. Towards the end of this week I’ve noticed my top two abs start to make an appearance – an incredibly shy appearance, but I hope they will be here before too long! I have ordered myself some new trainers, and I’m going to let myself wear them when I get to 15% body fat. New trainers for me are about as exciting as birthdays, so I am hoping that this promise to myself will keep me on track! They are currently in the back of my car and I’ve not even opened the box; I’m being good as gold.
Hopefully over the next week my motivation stays, my abs become more obvious (i.e. I get leaner still) and my strength doesn’t drop off. By the time I write my next blog post I will be half way through, so it’s getting exciting, but the pressure is on!