Bodybuilding challenge 2018

2018, Day 4 (72.9kg)

I woke up at the crack of dawn as my flight was at 8am. I had my breakfast smoothie and had my airplane snacks with me. I was quite hungry at 9am and was surprised that a protein bar was actually enough for me. When I landed I had a protein shake and blueberries, and then that was pretty much it for healthy or nutritious food as I had nothing in the fridge and had to go straight to work. I snacked on 2 protein truffles and 3 chocolate covered rice cakes as that was all I had in my locker. My body was literally screaming for a salad for dinner when I got home at 10pm.


I had my first training session this afternoon and it was shocking. It was more than just not having trained properly for 10 days. My energy levels were incredibly low. I was out of breath and struggling to lift even just an unloaded bar.



What did lift my energy, however, was training my clients. I love my job and I love my clients, so the positivity bounced off me and made me enjoy my afternoon and evening, despite being really hungry.

I did my Boditrax. I’m not too pleased with the results, but that’s the whole reason for doing this!

Bodybuilding challenge 2018

2018, Day 3 (73.1kg)


I woke up with a splitting headache and hungry again. My morning smoothie usually lasts 3 hours but it was gone in 30 minutes today. I Googled what may be causing my headaches (I assume my blood sugar may be quite low) and according to the internet I have a brain tumour or another host of terrible diseases. Great… I am putting it down to low blood sugar. Sugar is as addictive as some drugs, so my body might also simply be going through withdrawals and a detox, especially after rich food during the Christmas period.

I am quite surprised that I have lost so much weight. With any rapid weight loss like that, it is most likely water and glycogen in the muscles, as opposed to fat loss. Once I am back at the gym I will be able to do a body scan and use a Boditrax machine that will give me a breakdown of my muscle mass and body fat.

It’s only day 3 and I am finding it a little hard as I had my headache the entire day, as well as lots of hunger pangs. I had 6 small meals throughout the day and again drank some psyllium husks when I was two seconds away from stealing an ice-cream from a child.

I went out for lunch and it was quite easy to find a healthy option: grilled squid (which is naturally low in fat/carbs and high in protein), boiled veg, salad and white rice.

I am finding that it is important to have a little something to look forward to during the day – my treat today was some rice pudding. Once I have got used to this new way of eating, I am going to change my macros so that I can have 1 cheat meal during the week. That used to work very well for me before I started this same journey in 2015. It is when I moved to having a little treat everyday that I was on the slippery slope of having a little piece of chocolate or spoonful of ice-cream and then eating the whole bar/tub. I find it easier to compartmentalise and have a clean diet the entire week and then have 1 cheat meal.

I spent some time this evening prepping my food for my trip back to London. I never eat plane food, but as I am macro-counting now, I can’t dip into a packet of cashew nuts and dried mango, as I did on the way here. I have a portion of protein powder, a protein bar, blueberries, dried apple, dried pear and pumpkin seeds.

I will be having my first proper training session tomorrow afternoon, and I can’t wait! I have missed training these past 2 weeks, but my body has also welcomed the break as I was training and working a lot. My body and mind are refreshed and ready to go tomorrow!

Bodybuilding challenge 2018

2018, Day 2 (74.5kg)

I woke up with a splitting headache. I got to the end of yesterday and had only consumed 1400kcals, which is far too little for someone whose Total Daily Energy Expenditure is 2200kcals (on a day with no exercise); I was also hungry and knew that I would be focusing on that when trying to get to sleep, so I had a very light snack of 15gr oats, 5 gr pumpkin seeds and 50ml almond milk to tide me over.


Today I have been able to plan my meals a little better. I slept through my alarm this morning and felt like I had actually slept better/deeper than I usually do. I had 2 yoga classes at 9am and 11am, so by the time I got back home for lunch I was quite hungry – I usually have emergency snacks in my bag but for some reason had none with me today.


As with yesterday, I experienced a mid-afternoon hunger pang, despite having 2 rounds of afternoon snacks. I was really hungry by dinner time so I downed a glass of psyllium husks in water to fill my stomach whilst waiting for dinner to cook. It also helps that it is good for the digestive system.



I went to bed feeling hungry again, but, I just need to get used to it. I have had enough macros. My body is just getting used to eating less after consuming a lot over the Christmas and New Year period.

Bodybuilding challenge 2018

2018, Day 1 (74.9kg)

Today was the first day of 2018, which meant it was the first day of my new diet. I don’t like to use the word diet as this is not a diet; this is a way of eating that will better suit my training and fitness goals.

Progress pic 1:1:18

I haven’t weighed myself for months, and I must say I was a little horrified this morning when setting my base line on the scales. Granted this comes after a week on holiday and a month in the presence of sugary food. Whilst I was able to avoid this food during the whole month, I was unsuccessful this past week. I am a Personal Trainer and have simply used exercise as a way of burning more calories on a higher calorie day. Well, not so much when on holiday. I went from exercising every day to sleeping and resting, with little exercise in sight. Being an endomorph, I put weight on very easily. I just need to look at a biscuit and it goes straight to my thighs and backside. Not that I am making excuses, but I know that the first pics of the year and the weight on the scales this morning are not the true me. However, it was still a massive reality check.

Breakfast 1:1:18So, out came the food scales this morning as I started to weigh my food again. I tried in 2015, unsuccessfully, to follow a bodybuilding lifestyle for 9 months. This was during the recovery period after having both shoulders and both hips operated on. Not being able to do Olympic lifting, powerlifting or strongman training any longer, I needed to find something to allow me to keep training, but with very little impact on my joints. Whilst the bodybuilding training was great, the food wasn’t. I really struggled going from the type of training that required more energy to be consumed, where my size was on my side for my chosen sport, to having to count every single thing that passed my lips. I disliked dieting. I had always had a very delicate relationship with food and my body image. I started to have bulimia in the last 2 years of school and I had bulimia at University. From a young adolescent, I was always conscious of the way that I looked, and it is only in the last couple of years that I have felt truly comfortable with my body and how I feel. I love my curves and I would not want my body shape to change too much.

Snack 1:1:18I am quite competitive with myself and the fact that I failed at the bodybuilding a couple of years ago is what inspired me to make the decision last month to try again. Whilst I was previously trying to do it when I had an office job and very little support around me, I am now lucky enough to be in the fitness industry where I live in the gym, I have the support of everyone around me (I am doing this alongside one of my colleagues) and I have the benefit of being extremely active, moving around the whole time, going from client to client and getting to the end of the day wondering where the day has gone, as opposed to sitting at a desk all day watching the clock and thinking about food out of boredom.

lumch-1118.jpgSo, this is me now. Whilst I am happy with my overall body size, I would like to shed a little bit of body fat and increase my muscle mass just a little. This is not with a view to competing (anyone who knows me knows that I would most likely fall flat on my face in heels on a stage), but this is just to see if I can do it. I have tremendous amounts of respect for anyone who has the dedication and mental stamina to stick to a bodybuilding diet and lifestyle. This is my attempt to do it for a few months.

dinner-1118.jpgToday, day 1, was a little bit of a disaster as I hadn’t planned my meals well enough, so I have got to the end of the day not having eaten enough protein and having had an energy slump mid-afternoon, which brought out the dragon in me. My apologies to my family! So, tomorrow is a new day and I will make sure that I am better prepared.

Happy new-food-regiming!