Thursday, 7 June 2012

Women in the Weight Room

          Being a personal trainer I come across many different people with different goals. Some want to gain muscle, some want to loose fat, some want to reduce pain. One in particular that I have been hearing a lot that is from women who say they want to "tone up" so they do hours of cardio and sometimes wonder onto the weight room floor but will never lift heavy or with intensity with fear of getting too much muscle. I am amazed every time I hear this. 

          First of all, gaining muscle is definitely not that easy. I lift extremely heavy, follow a strict diet that is aimed towards gaining muscle and it still takes me a long time to put muscle on my frame. So lifting weight that weighs more than you're water bottle is definitely okay! I do understand that not everyone wants or likes the same look and therefore different training programs are designed for different people focusing on ones specific goals. But in order for one to make progress you have to stimulate the muscles and challenge the body with something that it hasn't already adapted to.

          Secondly, women have about 15 to 20 times less testosterone than men therefore men have the ability to gain a lot more muscle than women. Many times women will see female bodybuilders on the covers of magazines and think they will look like them if they lift weights. This is not the case. A woman who is natural and starts a strength training program will not wake up looking like a female bodybuilder but instead will have improved muscular development and a leaner athletic appearance following they have a clean diet as well.

           So ladies, instead of doing a set of 10 with a weight that you could do 20 or 30 reps with try going up in weight that you fail out at 10-15 with. When that weight becomes easy, add more resistance. If you follow the same training regime without ever changing up the sets, reps, weight or intensity you will plateau and fail to see results. So get in there and don't be afraid of the weight room! :)


Sunday, 13 May 2012

Road to Nationals

Hey guys!

Just starting to settle down after doing two shows back to back. Finished second at NSABBA Provincials and first at the Atlantic Classic the week after. I was really happy with how I looked in both shows. After placing second at provincials I asked a few of the judges for feedback to help me see what I could improve on for the show the following week. Their feedback was mostly that I came in too lean and try for physique. Because physique is such a new division it's still hard to know what look they are going for. Because posing and presenting femininity is so important especially in physique, I worked a bit with fellow Nutrabolics Athlete Adrian Veinot who helped me a lot with my posing before Atlantic's. I didn't really want to soften up any because I liked the lean look I worked so hard to get, so I actually came in leaner and drier for Atlantic's where they actually liked the lean, drier look. 

I am now 14 weeks out from the CBBF Canadian Nationals which is in Edmonton on August 18th. I weighed 118lbs on stage this year and am aiming to be about 123 on stage for Nationals. It's feels amazing to be back in the gym feeling good and strong again. Right now I am on a 5 day split:

Monday: Glutes & Hams
Tuesday: Chest & Biceps
Wednesday: Back & abs
Thursday: Quads & Calves
Friday: Shoulders & Triceps
Saturday: Rest day
Sunday: I sometimes throw in another training day for a lagging body part. If I trained back more for width Wednesday, I'd train more for thickness and focus in more on lower lats on this day.

Right now I start with a really heavy compound exercise and train high volume then do a few isolation afterwards. My supplementation as also changed up a bit in order to increase my calories and carbs to gain some muscle. My supplement regime currently looks like:

-1 scoop Nutrabolics Isobolic and 1/2 cup oats for breakfast, 4 L-Carnitine 1000 capsels, 1 vitabolic & 3 Superfat
- Pre workout: swollen & Hemotest
-  Intraworkout: Anabolic State (new blue raz flavour just came out, that's the flav I'm currently hooked on! So good)
- Post Workout: 2 Scoops Anabolic window (this is going to be hard to drop as I get closer to the show, best tasting post workout I have tried yet)

It's my first time dieting for a show over the summer so it'll be different! I'll be keeping really busy anyways. Just have to stay focused. I am going to watch the Toronto Pro june 1st-3rd weekend which I am really looking forward to! It'll be sometime to keep me on track and focused! 

Thursday, 29 March 2012

Crunch Time

So, this Saturday marks two weeks out until I represent Nutrabolics at the NSABBA provincials in Halifax. Last month I was unsure about doing physique or figure and I finally made the decision to go ahead with physique which I am extremely excited about! Since it is a completely new division it will be interesting to see how it is judged. Women's Physique was supposed to be a division that was in between figure and bodybuilding but it seems figure girls moving up are doing better than bodybuilding girls moving down. In other words looking at the last couple IFBB competitions such as the Desert Muscle Classic the top three seem softer than I thought they would. I would have thought that Dana Linn Baily would have been the criteria for this new division. But either way I guess it depends on who they have to look at on stage, maybe they were sending a message that they don't want the girls to come in too "ripped" or too hard. I'm just going to bring the best package I can and hope for the best !


Because I am at the final stages of my contest prep this is when it really helps to have positive and supportive people surrounding me. One negative comment can effect a person more than the 20 positive ones. Overall I have really come to appreciate the people who just take that extra 5 minutes to be supportive and keep me focused, motivated and on track! It means a lot in the long and the short run.

Speaking of being on track, my diet and training is spot on but after so long of eating the same foods you have to sometimes look for ways to add some variety while still eating clean. My favorite meal is my oatmeal and Nutrabolics Isobolic protein. I eat 1/2 cup of oats and 1 scoop of isobolic protein for breakfast every morning and 1/4 cup oats and Isobolic post workout. I always switch between my three favorite flavors (cinnamon oatmeal, chocolate, and banana) but I change the way I eat it as well. My current number one way is: 

1/2 cup oats
1 scoop chocolate Isobolic 

Put these three simple ingredients into a frying pan for as little as 30 seconds each side and take it out and let cool! Tastes and has the same kind of texture as a spider cookie or a soft chew granola bar. So good and keeps it interesting! 

As I clearly do still have some carbohydrates in my diet, I am really starting to feel low energy and therefore harder to keep my intensity as high during my workouts. I found Nutrabolics Swollen to be a major aid especially lately for increasing my energy and focus in the gym. If any time, now is when I need it most. As I do come into my last final weeks I will also have to start water and carb loading soon, this is where the fun begins. In my next blog I will inform you guys of how I do this and the purpose behind it.

Thanks for reading, you can also check out updated progress by following me on facebook or on Twitter @ __danielleMAC


Tuesday, 28 February 2012

February Updates!!

Hey guys !

In my first blog I'd like to say there so much that changed recently. First of all I am extremely proud and excited to be apart of Nutrabolics. I'm currently prepping for the NSABBA provincials April 14th here in Halifax which Nutrabolics signed on as the title sponsor for. It will be such an amazing opportunity to be representing them there! All the more motivation for me to bring my absolute best package to the stage!

I started out competing for my first time last year out of Ascendo Fitness in Sydney (where I am from) in 2011 at the NSABBA show. I just moved to Halifax at the end of September and thought it'd be a lot harder since I didn't really know anyone from here but I've never felt like I've had as much support than I do now by my coach, Laura Boudreau, fellow trainers at the GoodLife I work at, friends at Ascendo, other competitors I've became friends with up here in Halifax and of course Nutrabolics! It definitely makes things a hundred times easier with so many positive people around me.

This year I didn't take any kind off off season, I trained hard and heavy 6 days a week and was eating a lot more then I was used to in order to gain some muscle as I feel like I was a bit smaller than most of the other figure girls last year. Last year on stage I weighed around 105lbs and right now I am currently sitting at 129 and lean.
Last year: 2011 nsabba

Lately I've been hearing I might be getting a little bit too muscular for figure and started lifting lighter the last month with higher reps with more off days which is the total opposite of how I like to train. Laura then brought up the new women's physique division to me which kind of got me thinking. I could then train heavy, hard and full out for the next 6.5 weeks and not have to worry about bringing down my muscle which would have been going against what I worked hard for all year.
Feb. 25 2012:

Laura sent me a new meal plan and new training split which I am super excited about ! So for the next few weeks up until the show I'm going to put everything I have into my training and see what I look like come show time ! :) I will also be attending a posing seminar in Truro this coming Sunday so I'll get to see what it's all about then.

As for my diet lately, carbs got decreased this week..time to get lean! Macros are currently 55/25/20. Only second day of it so far, so i'm sure my energy levels are going to change up pretty soon. Supplementation is pretty well the same with the addition of Hemotest and L-carnitine to harden up and lean out especially if I'm leaning towards physique. My supplements currently look like this:

-Nutrabolics L-Carnitine and Thermal XTC for morning cardio
-Isobolic post cardio
-Hemotest and Swollen pre workout
-Anabolic State intra workout
-Isobolic post workout
-Hemotrophin before bed

Amazing contest prep stack ! I am excited to see how I progress now that there has been some changes made to my training. You can follow me on twitter @ __danielleMAC and on facebook for updates and progress pictures! Happy training nutra friends :)