Update: Slowly cutting fat, waiting for the abs to show

At the beginning of this year I challenged myself to reach 90kg and then cut to a size where I would still look big but be lean. I did not reach 90kg but I reached 87kg from about  75kg which meant it was my biggest weight gain since 2011 when I started working out and gained 15kg in under a year. This gain in mass was due to the fact that I was able to consistently go to gym and I was able to consistantly eat above maintenance calories for a prolonged period with the aid of whey protein and mass gainer. I have been cutting now for the past few months, I started cutting when I reached a weight of 87kg (191 lbs). For a while my body seemed to want to stay around 84-85kg but since October I have drastically reduced the amount of food I eat and I do a lot of walking in and inclined environment.

Current weight and look

slow cutting waiting for 6 pack to show

working on our summer bodies
enjoying the perfect weather before the sun set in Camps Bay 

I am currently weighing 81kg (178lbs) but I do not look great yet, I was expecting to have visible abs at this point but abs have not come in yet. I have been doing a few abs exercises after every workout session. I do not like cardio but I am planning to add some steady state cardio probably 15-30min on a bicycle to see the effects. I plan to lean out and then start doing a slow bulk next year. The goal is to look as lean as the picture below then start slow bulking from that point, am hoping I do not have to lose that much more weight before I look like that again. I have not been drinking water aside from when I am in the gym so I should probably start drinking more water so that my body does not feel the need to retain so much water which is another contributing factor to how I currently look.

working on getting 6 pack abs
goal is to be this lean at a higher body weight

It's getting more difficult to lose weight now ( only lost 3kg in about 3 months) which is why I must add some cardio, because walking is not enough even if its more than 5km daily. I am not using any supplements at the moment and I am lifting the same weights I was when I was bulking, even making improvements with some exercises. My gym partner and I decided that for each exercise we do we must complete at least 30 reps and we usually start with a warm up set which we don't count towards the 30 reps then followed by our heaviest set and we decrease the weight per set as fatigue sets in e.g for the flat bench we would start with a 60kg warm up set followed by sets of 100kg, 90kg, & 80kg. It's up to you if you want to do 5 reps of 100kg, 12 reps of 90kg & 13 reps of 80kg or 10 reps for each of the weights as long as the total is 30 reps, and we always train a large muscle with a smaller muscle because of time constraints e.g. chest and triceps, back and biceps etc. We have noticed that training this way has enabled us to improve our lifts than training the way we did before where we would do 3 sets and on the heavy weight stop before getting to 10 which would lead to us not getting 30 reps in total for that specific exercise and we used to count the warm up set as part of our set even though lifting weights that you can easily lift without struggle shouldn't really count as part of your workout.

Hiking up Lions head in Cape Town for some weekend cardio

In the previous post I mentioned I was a bit out of shape and was in need of a cut, but I did not post any pics as I had not taken any. I will post pics of how I look currently in this post. I have been doing a lot of walking of late 4km+ everyday but that has no effect even though its at an incline. My friends and I have made it our mission to do something fun each weekend and explore different parts of the city we call home. We are all trying into shape even though we have different fitness goals so most of the activities we plan include some form of cardio.

This past weekend we decided to go hiking up lions head, which was really fun and worth it because the view at the top is amazing. People travel from all over the world for that view, it seems unreal like a painting, the ocean looks so calm as if its not dangerous and there are no great white sharks circling around under the water.

cape town from lions head

flexing on lions head cape town

the bras and I goofing around on lions head cape town

We are planning to hike up devils peak next month and then table mountain after that, which I am really looking forward to. I may be running a 10K in a months time which will help my cutting process as training for that will require me to do cardio so that I can get back into shape. The cardio and regular gym attendance will have me in shape in no time.

5 reasons why I stopped bulking at 87kg (192lbs)

So the last time I posted I was weighing 84kg (185lbs) and had just gotten mass gainer to help me reach my goal of reaching 90kg (198lbs) for my bulk before I started cutting. The short story is that in August I reached my highest weight ever of 87kg (192lbs) but could not continue beyond that point. The long story as to why I could not bulk beyond that point I shall explain below.

5 reasons why I stopped bulking at 87kg (192lbs)

Reasons I stopped bulking at 87kg

1. I was eating a tonne of food and protein powder in the form of mass gainer and I felt like it was not worth it to eat even more as I would only get fatter and not more muscular just to gain an extra 3kg.

2. Related to 1 above I was getting way too fat and not feeling like myself, putting on 12kg (26lbs) of weight in a short span of time will do that to you. I had not really been training abs since I was bulking even though I had planned to it din't happen so I was starting to get a bit of a pot belly which I did not like. 

3. My deadline for my bulk was up and even though I did not reach 90kg (198lbs) I was only 3kg (7lbs)short so I felt that mass gain was enough for now.

4. I started getting busy and did not have as much time to prep food and go to gym (which is also why I have been kind of quiet on the blog).

5. All my clothes were beginning not to fit me especially my pants most of which became skinny jeans, my slim fit stuff became tights. Some pants stopped fitting me altogether and some got torn. I had not budgeted for an increase in spending on food and getting a new set of clothes since I was not planning to stay that big for a long time. The only stuff that fit me properly were track suit pants and shorts.

After August I was not training as often as before and no longer using mass gainer so my caloric intake decreased as I was no longer officially bulking so my weight went down to a steady 85kg (187lbs) which has been consistent ever since but now I want to do cut, preferably a slow cut so I am reasonably defined with a proper six pack without being too lean.

I am using mass gainer and creatine monohydrate to help me gain 6kg in 5 weeks

I have been bulking seriously now for just over 3 months and I have gained 9kg so far, I had set a deadline for myself to reach 90kg by August of 2016, there is just over 4 weeks left till August and I still have 6kg to go before I reach my goal. So in this final stretch I have bought USN Hyperbolic Mass Gainer to help me bulk up, to increase my caloric intake from 3000 to 4000 and above. I also bought some USN Creatine Monohydrate to help me with strength and stamina, and for muscle gains. I know that a small amount of the weight I gain will be actual muscle but I want to maximize the muscle gains by making sure I have effective workouts at gym, lifting as heavy as I can, breaking down those muscle fibers and growing bigger and stronger. As I said in the previous post I am also getting enough rest. I want to create the optimal conditions for my body to build muscle and to recover.

mass gaining supplements

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How 6 celebrities got into top shape for movies

I was scouring the internet and I stumbled into this awesome YouTube video, sharing the fitspirational stories of 6 celebrities who got into tip top shape for their movies. I could write an entire article sharing their workout secrets but I reckon watching a video and actually hearing the workout secrets from the horses mouth is even better. The video shares the workout secrets of Jake Gyllenhaal, Mark Wahlberg, Michael B. Jordan, Zac Efron, Gerard Butler, Will Smith.

Jake Gyllenhaal buff
Jake Gyllenhaal

mark wahlberg buff
Mark Wahlberg 

michael b jordan buff
Michael B. Jordan 

zac efron buff
Zac Efron 

gerard butler buff
Gerard Butler

will smith buff
will smith