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Buster's Girlfriend Challenge Journal

Discussion in 'Fitness Journals' started by Buster, Apr 4, 2007.

  1. Buster

    Buster Active Member

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    ~Buster's 9 month 'Girlfriend Challenge' journal~


    HERE'S THE DEAL

    I don't know about you guys, but I find it extremely uplifting when someone you haven't seen in a while comments positively on your progress. My girlfriend is going traveling around the world for over 6 months (mid-June to end of December). I started this challenge at the end of March to give myself 9 months to bulk up. Hopefully when she gets back, she'll love the improved physique - and so will I! :claphigh:

    This is my first journal. I aim to post new pics at the end of every month, and post an update of my weight every week. I'm hoping this journal will help keep me motivated, as I know I'll be letting you guys down too if I fall off the wagon! I think instigating a change my girlfriend will notice is a big source of motivation for me, and I now have a 1 month Easter break from college, so there's no better time to start. I can hopefully get into the habit of regular, good eating over this period. :eat:


    STATS

    Height: 5'9"
    Starting weight: 62.5kg (26th March 2007)
    Naturally lean ectomorph.
    Low bodyfat.
    Big troubles putting on weight!


    GOALS

    My basic goal is to bulk up. I'm not worried about putting on fat, as I know I'll shed it later. I need to pack on some serious mass at the moment, because I play club level (field) hockey, and the season has just finished. When the season starts up again in September/October, training and matches etc. will mean burning a load of calories on the pitch. So fat is not much of an issue for the time being.

    Short-term goal is to get up to 75kg.

    I need to stick to a meal plan consistently. In the past, I've kept up weeks of perfect eating, then had a bad day and fallen off the wagon. My metabolism is so quick that if I have just a few days off or a week of not eating big, my weight drops right back down to square one. It's crazy!


    WORKOUT

    Despite having very, very little to show for it, I've been going to the gym for about 4 years (sometimes consistently, at other times not). I've tried 3-day-splits, and full body workouts 3x/week. My body normally feels tired and aches last a while. Results have never been great.

    So, I've taken this 2x/week workout largely from the book 'Beyond Brawn', with a little adjustment. It basically involves getting in and out of the gym in under an hour, doing the big compound movements, low volume and very high intensity. The aim is to increase weight very slowly every workout. Most of the work is done in the kitchen - stuffing my face :lol:

    I plan to cycle the below workout, doing approx 6 weeks to failure, and then 3 weeks working at 80%. I'm keeping cardio to a minimum too.

    MONDAY

    Squats
    Warm up + 2x12
    Dumbell bench press
    Warm up + 2x6
    Military press
    2x6
    French press
    1x6

    THURSDAY

    Deadlifts
    Warm up + 2x12
    Pull ups
    2x8
    Hammer curls
    1x6
    Calf extensions
    3x15


    MEAL PLAN

    I've formed a meal plan around my college schedule, so I can realistically keep it going.

    Note: all meals consist of at least 20g protein. Some are more carbs heavy, some aren't. I'm eating clean, and thanks to the advice of JSFers am now incorporating healthy fats into my diet (natural peanut butter, almonds etc.) Foods that form the bulk of my diet are: chicken breast, potatoes, rice, beef steak, tuna, pasta, nuts, milk, cheese, salad, veg, PB.

    NON-WORKOUT DAY

    8/9am - Protein shake (50g protein, 85g carbs)
    12noon - Meal
    3.30pm - Protein shake
    5.30pm - Meal
    7pm - Meal
    9pm - Meal
    11pm - Protein shake
    Bedtime - Milk (approx 400/500ml)

    WORKOUT DAY

    8/9am - Protein shake (50g protein, 85g carbs)
    12noon - Meal
    3.30pm - Meal
    5.30pm - Gym
    7pm - Protein shake
    9pm - Meal
    11pm - Protein shake
    Bedtime - Milk (approx 400/500ml)


    BASE PHOTOS

    Here are my starting photos, taken in the most unflattering light possible. I'll try to take photos in the same place and light each month. I need to get some muscle on my skinny ass! :lol: :bb:

    25th March 2007

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
    #1 Buster, Apr 4, 2007
    Last edited: Apr 4, 2007
  2. Buster

    Buster Active Member

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  3. Black-Dawn

    Black-Dawn Well-Known Member

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    Good luck. :)
     
  4. betastas

    betastas Well-Known Member

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    Some of the big name powerlifters eat 12,000+ calories a day.

    Something to think about. :)
     
  5. Buster

    Buster Active Member

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    Thanks!

    :eek: Ah well, I think I'm getting about 3000+ calories (at a guess). Is this ok for my weight? To be honest, I've never really dealt with calories - only with grammes of protein/carbs/fat. Consuming about 250-300g protein a day. Maybe I should educate myself more on calorie intake.
     
  6. Jedi

    Jedi Well-Known Member

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    Hi and good luck :) By the way you don't look like an ectomorph to me:)
     
  7. Buster

    Buster Active Member

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    Hey, thanks :) Why do you say that? I have more belly fat in those photos than usual because I'd taken a week or two to build up my eating.
     
  8. Jedi

    Jedi Well-Known Member

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    Nope it wasn't the "gut" :) i just thought that your legs had great shape, not skinny, and look as though you will be able to add quite a bit of muscle to them.
     
  9. bballer143

    bballer143 Well-Known Member

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    Hi there Buster :)
    Just wanted to say welcome and good luck on your bulk! :D
     
  10. Buster

    Buster Active Member

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    Thanks. That's the plan!

    Thanks buddy! Fingers crossed!!
     
  11. Buster

    Buster Active Member

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    10th April 2007
    Weight: 65kg (same as last week)

    Well to be honest, I half expected to be down in weight. The last few days haven't been good eating-wise -- not been near hitting the 7/8 meal target. And it only takes a few days for me to lose a tonne of weight!

    Gladly in the gym today I was lifting a teeny bit more on each exercise.

    I think I may try to cook most of my meals on a Sunday and pack them into lunchboxes. Otherwise, I find the washing up from cooking so many meals consumes my life!!
     
  12. Buster

    Buster Active Member

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    Eating has been good for the last few days. I've found a good way of being strict with myself that I thought I'd share with other users...I have a wall-calendar, with various dates and appointments written on it. I've started circling the days where I've had 6+ meals and half-circling where I had, say, 5. The rest get crossed out. Gives you a good overview of a week. Looking to see how it'll appear at the end of the 9 months!
     
  13. Buster

    Buster Active Member

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    16th April 2007
    Weight 65kg (same for the last 2 weeks!)

    Okay! I wasn't sure how to take the fact that my weight hasn't shifted in the last 2 weeks. The last week has been good in terms of diet, and I've largely stuck to 6-8 good, clean meals per day. So I'm a little puzzled as to how my weight is the same? :confused:

    But, there is some hope. I hope this isn't just in my head, but I think I'm carrying a little less fat than I was 2 weeks ago. Also, all of my lifts have gone up a little (I'm hoping this isn't just the "newbie" gains that come when re-starting training after an off-spell). More still, during the last 3 weeks, I haven't been able to train quite twice per week -- my DOMs were that bad! But they're much less now, so twice per week it shall be from now on. 1 month progress pics coming up next week...

    EDIT: I'm reducing my short-term target to 70kg (was 75kg), and hoping to get there within 1 1/2 - 2 months.
     
  14. betastas

    betastas Well-Known Member

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    :lol:

    I was looking at what I posted and went "What the hell?". Then I remembered. I just wanted to put in perspective that food quantities are relative. :nod:

    Anyways, I think you should be fine starting at 3000. See how it goes, then increase it slowly. Don't go all out off the bat. If you gain three or four pounds in a month, chances are most of it will be lean mass. If you put on three pounds a week, chances are most of it will be fat. So long as your scale weight is going up slowly and your lifts are also increasing, you should be doing fine. :tucool:
     
  15. Buster

    Buster Active Member

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    Thanks for the reply :) To be totally honest, I have no idea about calories! I know there are more calories in a gram of fat than protein etc but wouldn't really know where to start on counting them. For example, my protein shake doesn't state calories per serving on the label :nope:

    Maybe if I post a normal day's eating you could tell me if I'm on the right lines for my height (5'9") and weight (143lbs). Here's an example of what exactly I ate the other day...

    Meal 1: Protein shake (52g protein, 78g carbs, 6g fat)
    Meal 2: 100g chicken breast, potatoes, broccoli, carrots
    Meal 3: Protein shake
    Meal 4: 2x 50g beef burgers, 100g cottage cheese
    Meal 5: 150g sirloin steak, lettuce, peppers, tomatoes
    Meal 6: 100g chicken breast, potatoes, broccoli, carrots
    Meal 7: Protein shake
    Before bed: 300ml semi-skimmed milk

    I sometimes miss 1 or 2 meals, but try and stick to the meal plan as much as poss. I realise my protein shake is a weight gainer but I'm not too concerned about fat at the moment -- just want to add mass.

    Any idea how many calories I might be consuming? :confused:
     
  16. john0087

    john0087 Active Member

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    Great idea about making a change while your girl is away...:tu:

    Good luck to you buddy, I'll be watching this thread.

    As far as cal estimates, I use this website to search for nutritional information. I am sure that there are other sites out there.

    http://www.nutritiondata.com/

    You can also estimate the protein shake.

    4 cals for Protein and Carbs
    9 cals for fat.

    So the protien shake you consume should be about

    (52*4) + (78*4) + (6*9) = 574

    Hope this helps.

    John
     
  17. Buster

    Buster Active Member

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    Thanks! Yeah hopefully it'll be a good surprise. It's been pushing me that little bit harder so far!

    Thanks! That gives me a rough idea. I think now that counting calories each day is a bit full on for me at the moment. I'll stick with my meal plan as above for a bit, counting grammes of protein, and if I haven't gained more weight by this time next month I'll up the ante and count every calorie :)

    Legs/chest/tris session coming up later today. If I can up the weight a tiny bit this time, I'll be a fair bit up from where I started strength-wise!
     
  18. Buster

    Buster Active Member

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    Back from the gym...upped the weights a tiny bit on each exercise :) One thing I noticed after my workout was that my pump in the gym was bigger than normal. I always used the pump as an indication of where I could be in the next month or 2, so that's good news :D

    I'll post my monthly update pics next week. Meanwhile, I took these today after my session...I think some improvement can be seen compared to my base photos (first post). But I'm not reading much into them, as they're pumped pics ;) Will have to wait for next weeks photos!

    19th April 2007

    NB: Pumped
     

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  19. Buster

    Buster Active Member

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    ~1 month comparison~


    Last week was a 100% week for diet and exercise! Not a meal or workout missed! :D

    I took some pics today of me one month down the line. In some, I think the lighting is a bit different because of discrepancies in the flash (especially re the pics of my calves).

    I'm happy :) In weeks one and two, I only did one workout a week (instead of two) to allow extra time for recovery -- I hadn't been to the gym for a while. Discipline has been pretty good. Hopefully, next month will be bigger and better, although my holidays are over so I'll have a busier schedule to contend with...
     

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  20. Buster

    Buster Active Member

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    24th April 2007
    Weight: 65kg (same for the last 3 weeks!) :confused: :confused: :confused: :confused: :confused:

    I am totally stumped as to why my weight's not going up! I think my 1 month comparison pics (see post above) show some improvement over the month, but I'm not gaining weight, so... :confused:

    My gym weighing scale doesn't measure pounds, only kg/stone. But not shifting even a kg in 3 weeks?! I was quite upset, seeing as I hadn't missed a single meal or workout last week, and the week before had been quite good too. I'm a light guy, so I was positive I was taking in more than enough protein and cals. Here's a standard day's meal plan quoted from a post above:

    I must be the world's hardest weight gainer!

    On another note, my left calf was seizing up last night (had done calf extensions in the gym that day). Feels sore now so I guess I'll have to leave leg training for a week. Strange though...I warmed up both with stretches and on the treadmill for a few mins before working them.
     

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