Thursday, 2 February 2012

The lean bulk (wrap-up)

Fitness riddle - I’ve just gained 2.1KG of lean muscle mass in 10 weeks and kept my body fat in single digits whilst doing it. What I’ve used to do this isn’t a massive secret. It’s not a magic supplement everyone in the fitness industry is in on. It’s not a steroid or pro-hormone and it certainly won’t show up on a drugs test. In fact I didn’t even have to purchase it. What have I used? Read on to find out…
So week 10 of 10 is here, which can only mean phase 1, 2, 3 and 4 are all complete! This week it’s been nice to take a step away from heavy lifting, but I can guarantee by the end of the week I’m going to be itching to get back in the gym training hard again. In this post I plan to just basically bring my lean bulk to an end and give a final progress check. Before I begin I just want to say a massive thanks to you if you have been reading my progress and following my workouts etc. It means a lot to me and I hope you’ve taken something useful away from reading my posts.

So let’s have a look at my goals I set out 10 weeks ago:

1.       Add 2.5kg’s of lean muscle mass over the 10 week period. Without letting my body fat get into double figures.
Achieved? No, not quite. But I did gain 2.1KG which is very close and a figure which I am still very pleased with. My body fat % is also still in single figures which is great news. Sometimes its good to aim high. You may not make it, but at least I can look at it and accept I’m better off than I was 10 weeks ago. The only way is up!
2.       Power clean 80kg’s for 3 consecutive reps
Achieved? Yes. However the 3rd rep was sloppy, which means I can now work to improve this and finish with 3 solid reps.
3.       Complete 2 consecutive sets of 12 reps of ‘Fat Gripz’ pull-ups
Achieved? Yes. I progressed the reps on this exercise each week working up to two sets of 12. It wasn’t easy, but I got there in the end. My forearm size and strength benefited greatly from this exercise.

So overall I completed 2/3 of my goals I set out. Which is better than 0/3 right? Despite missing a few workouts (hey, it was Christmas, New Year and my birthday!) I’ve really enjoyed the last 10 weeks I will definitely be trying something similar again in the future. I tried various exercises that I’ve never used before which challenged my mind and body in new ways. As far as noticeable changes go I’ve noticed improvements in the thickness of my thighs and my upper chest and I’ve got stronger.
 I think the last 10 weeks really did prove that if you practise what I, and so many other fitness professionals preach you will see the results you deserve. If I could do this programme again? I certainly think I could lift more weight for more reps! Or maybe that’s just my ‘constant desire to improve’ attitude showing!

Where to now?

Well first things first I’m going to indulge in one of my favourite chocolate treats – dark chocolate snickers! I think I’ve earned it. As far as training goes, I recently received Arnold Schwarzenegger’s “encyclopaedia of modern bodybuilding” as a gift and there’s some great back to basics weight training plans in there which I’m going to follow. I’ll be back as usual on my blog posting various articles or topics summed up in 500 words. And remember any questions please don’t hesitate to contact me by email, Facebook and twitter etc.

oh, and the answer to my fitness riddle?....HARD WORK