I sent my progress pictures to my trainer last night, including my current weight, waist circumference, and how I’m doing with my training. I am very happy to report that he is very happy with my progress since I lost 4.5″ off my waist in about 2 weeks. My nice dress slacks that I wear for professional presentations definitely don’t fit anymore; I’ll have to have the waist and thighs taken in, but I’m debating with myself on whether or not I should since I’m going to continue to change in size and shape over the next few months. Keith reassured me that I’m still on track to compete this fall, and he asked if I had picked a show (even though we discussed the November 14th show previously). It sounds like he has doubts about me being ready in time, which surprisingly is driving me to be even more disciplined with my diet, water intake, and work outs. He also wants me to add an “anti-catabolic” supplement to my daily routine, and recommended I take the one sold by IDLife ($50). AdvoCare sells a similar product with ALMOST identical ingredients for $25 (for distributors). Anti-catabolics are used to prevent the breakdown of newly formed muscle while you’re attempting to lose weight. It’s a complex of magnesium, potassium, and multiple L conformation amino acids used in muscle building. Considering Keith wants me to add about 10 lbs of muscle over the course of the next year, I’d say this product would be a good investment.

Unfortunately, with the school workload I’ve had the past few weeks my sleep patterns are all wonky. Last night I got 3 hours of sleep; tonight will probably be similar because I have an exam tomorrow evening. With all of this lack of sleep, I am leaving myself more susceptible to fatigue and possible injury. Speaking of which…

Yesterday was my usual chest day and I started out with incline bench with dumbbells (30s) and on my fourth set third rep about halfway up my left hand began to rotate backwards so that my elbow was out in front of me. I knew there was no getting it back under control without hurting myself so I stopped and let the dumbbell down the best I could without causing excessive pain. I listened to my body, and I was able to finish the rest of my workout without too much pain or discomfort. My shoulder just felt off for a while. Today, it kind of aches, not going to lie. It ached through my back workout, as well. Yes, I know shoulders are very sensitive joints, even more so than knees. I’m usually very careful with chest work outs, but I don’t think I had my shoulder blades pinched back hard enough to reduce the use of my shoulders when I was lifting. I think I’ve decided to take tomorrow (arms day) off from lifting to rest my shoulder and de-stress before my exam. As for Thursday, my leg day will have to be short because I have a working interview beginning at 1 pm.

I feel like I haven’t stopped moving for the past four weeks. Today, all of my meals ALL OF THEM) came with me in my gorgeous, monstrous new 6 Pack Bag so that I wouldn’t have to run back and forth between school and class to eat and stress myself out even further. You get the idea. It’s a vicious cycle.

Here’s my moment of bravery: I’m including my progress pics (eep!). Be proud of whatever progress you’ve made, no matter how little! It’s always bigger than you think, I promise!

Weeks 1, 3, 5, and 7 from left to right.
Weeks 1, 3, 5, and 7 from left to right.

IMG_8458 IMG_8459 IMG_8460

I’ve repeatedly had to tighten my swim suit to accommodate changes. I’m looking forward to greater improvements over the next 7+ weeks!

Happy lifting!