Posts Tagged ‘cuts’

I firmly believe that if you are a natural lifter, you need to lose weight.  There is just no other way to burn the fat off.

The best part about losing weight is that it is very easy in the beginning.

If you have never been on a bodybuilding diet, the first couple weeks of dieting are a piece of cake.

From just adding some basic cardio routines and changing your diet, you should be able to cut some easy weight.

The real challenge is several weeks later when your body fat percentage is low.

When you start going from slightly ripped to very ripped, it gets really hard to burn off any body fat.

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I am already working out in the gym 4 days a week and running for 4-5.  Even with all of that hard training, I am going to have to start upping my effort if I want to get ripped.

I have gotten my bodyfat percentage to an insanely low-level several times in my life and each time there was a familiar pattern.

I was training like a lunatic.

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This year has been a little bit hard.  I been working two jobs, which isn’t too bad, but then my first son was born in April.

I am still making it to the workouts, but I don’t have the time to put in the crazy insane effort like I used to.

The good news is that he is starting to finally sleep better and I am increasing my efforts.

Today I weighed in at 157 lbs and I am in decent shape, but I still want to cut down to 150.  I think because I got a late start this year, I should peak around mid August.

For July 4th, I want to at least touch the 155’s.  Tomorrow I am going to work out legs at lunch and then I am going to try to kill it with some cardio after work.

A double session tomorrow and I should have a solid chance of getting into the 155lb range.

After July 4th, it is just super hard training up until October.

How is everyone else’s training going?

-John

During the last couple years I have noticed an interesting pattern.  When I start cutting up for the year, it generally takes me 2 and 1/2 months to get cut.

This year, I am about 2 weeks behind schedule.  My son was born in mid April and I ended up missing about 10 days of hard lifting and dieting.

Just recently have I finally started to see my abs pop out. I think another week or two of hard training and I should start looking pretty good.

The other problem is that I am missing a sun tan.  This year I am whiter than a glass of skim milk.

No matter what anyone tells you, a good sun tan is really important for bodybuilding.  Not only does it shrink the skin, making you appear more cut, but it also brings out the veins.

Now that I am getting older (37), I am slightly concerned about skin cancer.  I might try a spray tan and see how it looks.  It’s probably not the same, but I’m not a professional bodybuilder and I don’t need the health risks.

How is everyone else doing?

-John

I have to be honest, this year’s cut up is going slow.

Most recently I have been weighing in around 163 lbs.  Although I have cut 15 lbs from my peak in late February, I still have noticeable body fat.

I am starting to work a little bit harder on my cardio and I am hoping to look decent by Memorial Day.  For me to look cut, I HAVE to get my bodyweight under 160.

But, that is not the only problem.

I am running like a snail.

In the last several years I have noticed that I could get pretty fast in long distance running, with times in the 3-mile run under 20 minutes, but my sprinting times are horrible.

When you get older, you need to focus on SPEED.  Strength and stamina does not go away as fast as speed.

My goal this summer was to run one lap (400 meters) in one minute flat.  That is a time I havent ran since I was 17.

Yesterday I went down to the track and I had my wife time me in a couple runs.

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Pre marriage

Although, it is still really early and the first time I have run on the track this year.

I ran three 400 meter sprints at a decent effort and my times were HORRIBLE.

I ran the first lap in 1:14, 2nd attempt I ran 1:21 and the last one in 1:25.

Those times are horrible, but the good news is that I realized how far I need to go.

For the next several weeks I need to focus on hard sets in the gym, intense cardio and most importantly, I need to be strict on my diet.

Good luck!

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Today officially ended my bulk up for the season.  I went from a summer low of 149 lbs in the winter to up to 178 lbs in early February.

Recently, I have been eating like crazy so I am actually surprised that I didn’t get up to the mid 180’s.  Either way, I am satisfied with a 28 lb weight gain this winter.

With the end of my bulk up season, I have slowly cut down on the calories and started to reintroduce my cardio workouts.

Today I went for a hard one-mile run to see how fast I am after missing 5 months in a row.

Results: I ran a mile in 7 minutes flat and felt like I was going to die.

Let’s put that into perspective for one minute.

Several months ago I could run 5 miles at a 6:50 per mile pace and only 5 and half months later, I almost died running a 7 minute mile.

Now, of course you can say that I gained some weight.  But even with the weight gain, that is still a ridiculous decrease in cardiovascular endurance.

Running DOES NOT PRODUCE MUSCLE MEMORY.

If you can bench press 315 lbs for 4 reps and then you take off 5 months of weight lifting,  you will still probably be pretty strong.  You could also probably get strong again pretty fast.

Not so for running.  Weight training memory carries on way longer than any type of cardio.  Some heavy weight lifting muscle may even carry on for the rest of your life, such is the case with many retired football players.

Cardio workouts are only beneficial when you use them and for that moment only.

Even taking off 10 days in a row can kill your cardiovascular conditioning.  In July I bruised my head and ended up in the hospital, missing 2 full weeks of workouts.

When I started training again, I couldn’t believe how slow I got.

Overall, there are 3 lessons to be learned by this.

A) You need to always lift weights and weight lifting is the primary way to stay in shape

B) You need to continue some form of cardio, even if light cardio, for the rest of your life.

C) What you did in the past regarding your cardiovascular workouts has no baring on your condition today.

My goal for the end of winter and beginning of Spring is to slowly start losing some body weight, continue lifting heavy weights and begin to add my cardio back in.

Good luck!

-John

I’m sad to admit it, but my season is over.  My legs are killing me, I’m burnt out from all of the cardio and I am starting to loosen up on my diet.

Tomorrow I am reluctantly doing a 5-mile race in Brooklyn and then its over.

This summer was really good for me, probably my 2nd or 3rd best shape ever, but I still  could have been a little bit better.

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2 things stood in my way:

A) I had an accident in late July and ended up in the hospital with stitches.  This completely killed my training right at the peak time.  I missed about 10 days of diet, cardio and heavy lifting.

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B) I got married in early August:  Of course I am glad that I got married, but it killed about 2 weeks of hard training.

Overall, a really good year, but It still could have been a little bit better.

There are a couple of things I need to change for 2017:

A) I need to get back into serious heavy lifting.  My body just doesn’t respond as well without the heavy-duty lifting.  I miss the solid dense muscle that I have built up in the past.

B) Less long-distance running, more sprinting.   I ran pretty hard for 8 months straight and now I am so burnt out that it hurts to walk.  I want to train for a sprinting race next year.  I haven’t run a sprinting race since I was 18-years old.

C) Less Pizza:  My diet is usually pretty good, but when I moved from Queens to Staten Island I started eating a ton of pizza.

Tomorrow I am going to run one of my favorite 5-mile races.  I am not expecting any type of good time since my training has been going horrible.  After the race, I am ready to shut down my season and slowly start my winter bulk up.

Full review of the race coming soon!

-John

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