Tag Archives: exercise

The End… And the Beginning!

1 Aug

After an extremely long hiatus it is time to announce the closing of this blog (and chapter in my life) and birth of my new blog for my business, Daily Dose Fitness & Coaching.  Me Vs the Bulge will be kept live but no more posts will be added.

I wish to thank each and every one of you for following me over the last couple of years and being so supportive and encouraging.  Without you all I don’t know if I would be the person that I am today and I can’t express my gratitude enough.

So, this is not the end, but a new beginning!  A new life, a new vision, a new meaning and purpose.  A brand new me that I wish to share with you all in my true warts and all fashion. 🙂

Please come on over and read the new blog at Daily Dose Fitness & Coaching!  Can’t wait to see you over there!

Much love,

Amanda Marie

xoxo

Your Questions Answered, Part 1

15 Jan

The other day I sent out a tweet and a Facebook status asking people to send me any questions that they might have in regards to my weight loss journey over the last 2 years and I was blown away by all the questions that came flooding through!  So, I will answer as many as possible over the next few blog posts and you are definitely welcome to keep sending them through!

@enzee17 asked:

I’d love to see an example of a food diary for a day from your old life compared to your new life.

I’ve been thinking about doing a post on this for a while now!  So here it is:

Old me:

Breakfast – would usually be toast with vegemite and margarine or 3 weet-bix with a teaspoon of sugar and milk.

Morning tea – cup of tea with milk and 2 sugars and biscuits from the biscuit jar at work.

Lunch – I used to buy my lunch a lot so I would either get a sandwich, sushi, salad… whatever I could grab really.  I tried to eat healthy where I could but I didn’t really understand nutrition the way that I do now so often my food choices were not the best but I rarely ate fast food so I thought that I was being good!

Afternoon tea – muesli bar, diet yoghurt or a piece of fruit always followed by… more biscuits. 😐

Dinner – I used to use those Masterfoods meal bases a lot or jars of sauces like Kang Tong or Chicken Tonight to make casseroles, pasta dishes and stir fries.  I used to think I was a really good cook when using these things!  A regular Martha Stewart!  I didn’t realise how full of sugar, salt and preservatives they are… Also, my dinner servings would be HUGE and were always washed down with soft drink.  I’d also make buttery mashed potatoes and fatty cuts of meat (pork chops, sausages, lamb cutlets etc) but I would always serve them with salad or vegetables and this made me think that I was being “healthy”.

Dessert – I’d generally always have something sweet after dinner like ice-cream or chocolate.

New me:

I’m not really able to give out my full diet in its exact entirety as my coach has devised it for me and it is her intellectual property but I can say the basics!

I eat a lot of oats, eggs, low fat natural yoghurt, berries, tuna, brown rice, fresh vegetables, fresh salads, fish, chicken, lean cuts of red meat, sweet potato, whey protein, rice cakes, low fat cottage cheese, natural peanut butter, fruit (one piece of low sugar fruit daily)… It’s very varied at the moment!  I don’t know exact calories, I just eat as clean as possible.

I do not have artificial foods or diet soft drinks – everything I eat is as close to its natural state as possible (except cheat meals where anything is fair game)!  This is the way I have been eating for a good 6 months or more now and have gotten great results.

I use flavourings like herbs, spices, chilli, garlic, ginger, tamari and stevia.  Essentially it’s pretty much a typical body builders diet.  In the next week or so it will tighten up A LOT and I will go into a strict comp prep diet that isn’t reasonable for anyone to follow, except if you are competing!

Progress Pic, January 2012

@Addicted_Cloth asked:

I would like to know how you conquered seeing food as a fuel and not pleasure – my BIGGEST problem.

Some time ago I wrote a blog post on this called It’s Time to Disconnect.  I just read it then and I still feel the same way.  Actually, I feel even MORE comfortable with seeing food as fuel because of the results I have gotten from eating clean and the close proximity of my comps!

I guess when you want something SO BADLY all temptation falls away.  I am so intently focused on my goal of rocking it on stage and achieving the best physique that my body is able to give me that I find it easy to switch off the little voice in my head that is begging me for tasty treats when I need to. You just have to make your goal THAT important to you.

But I will be honest here, over the last week or so I have been having more cheat meals scattered throughout the week because I know that in a weeks time I will be going 100% clean so I’m getting any last bits of cravings out of the way now so I can totally switch into machine mode when I need to without feeling like I’ve missed out on something.

I also thrive on routine and repetition.  Knowing that I have all my meals set out for me and ready to grab when I need them is extremely comforting to me and makes me feel really at ease, even if it is the same meals over and over again.  I don’t know exactly why, but I guess it’s because I just don’t have to worry about it and I can focus my mental energy into my training and getting through my day-to-day life.  It’s just one less thing to worry about.  If you make it not an issue, it won’t be an issue.  It really is a mental thing that takes quite some time to figure out, I won’t lie!

Welcome to the Gun Show!

Well, there’s 2 questions answered!  I’ve got a whole heap more coming up!  This has been fun actually and has helped me get my blogging mojo back!  Looking forward to what else you guys come up with and I hope this helps.  🙂

Dexa Scan – Follow Up

28 Dec

Way back in August I went for my first dexa scan.  When I left Jarrod at MeaureUp that first time I vowed that I would reach my goals of achieving 23% body fat and having between 10kg and 15kg of fat mass in 12 weeks.  I went back to Jarrod recently, about 16 weeks later, and here is how I went!

August Results

Body fat percentage: 27.6%

Fat mass: 18.5kg

Lean muscle mass: 45.8kg

Body Part Breakdown:

Each arm: approx 1kg fat mass; 2.2kg muscle mass
Trunk: approx 6kg fat mass; 23kg muscle mass
Each leg: approx 4.5kg fat mass; 7.8kg muscle mass

December Results

Body fat percentage: 21.9% (5.7% drop GOAL REACHED)

Fat mass: 13.8kg (4.7kg drop GOAL REACHED)

Lean muscle mass: 46.4kg (600g gain)

Body Part Breakdown:

Each arm: approx 700g fat mass; 2.4kg muscle mass (a drop of 200g in fat and a gain of 200g in muscle in each arm)
Trunk: approx 4kg fat mass; 23kg muscle mass (a drop of 2kg in fat and a small increase in muscle)
Each leg: approx 3.5kg fat mass; 7.5kg muscle mass (a drop of 1kg in fat and a small decrease in muscle in each leg)

December Scan

I’m extremely pleased with my results!  I now have no doubt in my mind that I will be stage ready in 4 months (YES!  4 months!  More on my comp in an upcoming post!).

To be in a good position for comp I need to lose another 4kg of fat.  I think that is very doable seeing that I just lost that amount in 4 months and I wasn’t even on a hard cutting diet!  Nor was I very strict with my cardio either.

I am extremely excited to see what changes my body is going to make over the next few months and can’t wait to share it all with you guys!  Stay tuned! 🙂

Blackmores Product Trial

12 Dec

As per my last post, I mentioned that Blackmores had kindly sent me some products to trial.   I’m not even going to exaggerate here, but a couple of these products literally have changed my life and I now SWEAR by them.

It all started with a phone call to the wonderful Kate Ferguson, an advisory naturopath for Blackmores.   I’d never consulted with a naturopath before and I knew from my Health Assessment that I had some issues that I needed to resolve, so I was very much looking forward to hearing what she had to say!

I outlined to Kate my current diet and exercise regime and then we spoke about some of the issues I was experiencing around digestion, recovery and sleep.

We addressed digestion first.   So, for a while I had been experiencing severe bloatedness and adverse reactions to certain foods (oats being the main culprit).  My high protein diet was starting to wreak havoc with my insides and I was feeling uncomfortable for much of the day.  Look, I won’t go into too much gory detail here, but I think you’re catching my drift.  Please tell me you are because I am not going THERE.   Okay?  Good.  Moving along then (awwwwkwaaaarddd).

Kate assessed my symptoms and diet thought I would really benefit from using a digestive enzyme supplement. Blackmores Origins Digestive Enzymesis a broad spectrum enzyme to help improve digestion and relieve symptoms of bloating and heart burn.

The following article provides some additional information on how digestive enzymes work:  http://www.blackmores.com.au/learning-centre/article/digestive-enzyme-your-way-to-good-health

This product has changed my life.  I can now eat oats without discomfort and I have not experienced any of the symptoms I had prior to using this product!   She also recommended that I keep drinking my T2 Detox tea and peppermint tea as it’s great for digestion, bloating and cramping.

Next we addressed fatigue.  Important nutrients to help support energy levels are magnesium (helps with muscular aches, pains and cramping) and the B group vitamins.  I was using Blackmore’s Bio Magnesium in tablet form but I must admit I had been a bit slack in remembering to take it everyday.  Kate recommended I try Blackmores Magnesium Powder which contains magnesium and B vitamins and that I should take it in conjunction with my multi vitamin.

I am now loving my magnesium powder.  I have noticed a considerable improvement in energy levels since taking it and recovery has been better too (come on!  More energy!).

Lastly, we spoke about sleep.   I’d been finding it hard to drift off to sleep and when I’d finally GET to sleep, I would find myself waking up in intervals throughout the night.  Kate said that the essential oils roman chamomile and lavender applied to the back of the neck are great to help relax you and support a good night’s sleep.  A lavender pillow or lavender eye mask also works well too.

Kate said that having my energy levels properly supported during the day with B vitamins and having magnesium will help to improve my sleep (which they have) and she also suggested I have a look at Blackmores Sleep Sound Formula  or Tranquil Night.  She sent me some Sleep Sound Formula to try and I will report that I am now a valerian junkie.  This stuff REALLY works and I have found myself drifting off to sleep easier and staying asleep for longer.  It takes a week or so to start working but it’s well worth the wait.

I definitely recommend the experience of consulting with a naturopath.  Just a few small additions to my regime and the improvements are something I would DEFINITELY write home about.  Mum?  Are you reading this?  Expect a hand written letter soon!

Have you ever consulted a naturopath or tried any of the products mentioned above?  Share your experiences below!

Giveaway: Balancing Health and Wellbeing with Blackmores!

2 Dec

I was recently contacted by Blackmore’s to do a review of their new “Personal Health System”.  At first, I was a bit wary.  I get asked to do a lot of product reviews and I like to align myself only with things that I truly believe in and things that I think are relevant to mine and my reader’s interests.  So I had a quick squiz (yes, squiz, I’m standing by that word!) at the site and I was actually pleasantly surprised by what I saw!

Developed specifically for time-poor Australians, The Blackmores Personal Health System (PHS) takes Blackmores’ expert understanding of nature and science a step further, providing an individually tailored online health program which combines the latest interactive technology with personal support from Blackmores’ team of naturopaths.

Basically, it is a 360 degree holistic approach to health including menu plans, nutrition advice, fitness suggestions, and a community of support as well as a lot more. It gives time-poor people the opportunity to stay fit and healthy wherever they are, whenever they want, with the support they need.  Blackmores has also welcomed Asher Keddie (Australian actress and star of TV show OffSpring) as their inaugural PHS member and ambassador.

I decided to trial the Sport & Fitness Program as it was most relevant to my goals.   The first thing I did was get stuck into the Health Assessment which was VERY thorough!  I may have giggled at how many questions about pooh it asks but hey, a healthy pooh is very important!  😉  My overall score was 82/100 which is 14 points above the average of all females.   It went on to show the areas that are letting me down – vitality and digestive health being the main culprits.  But after having a chat to one of their wonderful naturopaths and being sent some awesome supplements to try, I’m pleased to report that these issues are no longer such a problem for me!  I’ll provide a review on these products in another post!

Once I had completed the assessment I started browsing the other areas of the program.  There was really nothing that it didn’t cover – it has everything!  It provides you with a menu plan, a workout plan, a food and workout diary, a My Body tracking system (where you can record PBs, your weight and measurements – SO motivating!), access to email your assigned naturopath whenever you see fit (my FAVOURITE feature) as well as an awesome resource library that has great articles on nutrition, exercise and healthy living.   There is also a great forum with over 308,000 members and growing!  I personally think that being a part of a community is highly beneficial to reaching your goals as it provides an invaluable amount of support and motivation.

I honestly can not speak highly enough about this system!  I have only covered the basics of it too, it offers so much more!  And lucky for you guys I have TWO FREE one-month passes to giveaway (valued at $49.95 each)!

To win just leave a comment below on why you think you are deserving to win this prize!  A winner will be drawn at random on Monday the 12th of December at approximately 9:00am EST.

Get in quick guys!  This is a great way to help you start your new year (and new you!) with a bang!

Pushing Weights

15 Nov

20111115-174521.jpg

Some people have been enquiring about what kind of weight I’m pushing at the moment so I thought I would share with y’all some examples of my workouts!

Keep in mind, it took be some time to work up to these weights!

I also like to switch it up often and throw in high rep days (20 reps) and drop sets etc. Keeps the body guessing!

I keep a log of my weights so that I can make an effort to increase weights every few weeks or so.

Upper Body Sample Workout

2 x 15 pushups
3 x 12 25kg BB bench press
3 x 12 12.5kg DB pullovers
3 x 12 20kg push press
3 x 12 6kg DBs lateral raise
3 x 6 pull ups (7th plate)
3 x 8 40kg BB rows
3 x 8 OH cable ext (2nd plate + 2 blocks)
3 x 12 cable tri pushdowns (3rd plate + 1 block)
3 x 12 cable bi curls (3rd plate + 1 block)
3 x 15 hanging knee raises
3 x 15 swissball prone roll out
3 x 20 medicine ball twists

Lower Body Sample Workout

Note: My gym doesn’t have a squat rack, and I don’t like to squat in the smith, so my squatting weight isn’t very heavy at current!

3 x 15 20kg plate weighted hip extension
3 x 12 30kg BB speed squats, bum to bench
3 x 8 17.5kg DBs walking lunges
3 x 12 40kg DB sumo squats
3 x 12 30kg BB single leg deadlifts
3 x 8 leg press (9th plate)

Then I will usually throw in a couple of ab exercises at the end of leg day too.

What do you enjoy training more, upper body or lower body?

Video Update – Progress & Exciting News!

10 Nov

I’ll TRY to get better at these… I promise.  But for now you will have to endure my akward rambling, hair touching and sweaty appearance.  Enjoy!