As you well know now that you’re at the end of your 5th week on my 8-Week Fat-loss Figure Trainer your rest days are necessary and well earned. I want you to take advantage of them and really get the most from your rest days. I also want you to continue to put in the time and effort you need each day to reevaluating your progress as you head toward your final day of this Trainer.
That means you should attend to all of the following on every rest day. You should also be learning more about how your body responds to a calorie-cutting program to reduce body fat. At this time, you may find that some of my suggestions are helping you more than others. I really want you to emphasize what’s working best for you. With that said, I do want you to do the following:
YOUR DAY 35 TO-DO LIST
WEIGH YOURSELF: Remember to do this as soon as possible after you wake up. Do so before you take in any fluids, protein or food. The key is to see how much your weight has shifted not only since you began the program, but also to see if it has shifted since the mid-point on Day 28. You may have made some shifts to your nutrition program whether you were losing too much weight or you thought your body fat should be coming down more quickly than what you’ve seen.
As I said throughout Phase One, your weight isn’t the best measure of the success of your progress in terms of fat loss, but it is a key marker in determining how you should move forward. Don’t forget that multiple factors contribute to weight loss. These include how much water, body fat, and muscle mass you’ve dropped. And, please, don’t forget my main point about weight loss: The goal is NOT to lose weight, but to use it as a way to measure how well your fat-loss program is working.
Here are some tips to consider based on the changes you’ve seen since you began Phase Two:
* My weight has increased: It’s unlikely that you’ve added body fat if you’re adhering to your nutrition and training program. If you’re adding weight, then I’m going to assume that you’re increasing muscle mass. If this is the case then you should be seeing some shifts in your body proportions. Your butt should be firmer, and you should have a little more thickness and taper in your thighs. That’s from all the legs work we’ve done. We’re working those big muscles pretty intensely so they may be growing even though you aren’t consume a huge amount of calories. The key is how your waist and abs are coming in. Even if you’re weight is up, you should see a lot more crispness in your midsection, and more detail in the muscles of your legs and upper body. If this isn’t the case, then cut calories by a gram per pound of bodyweight per day. OR… just take a really close look at your nutrition program and make sure you’re compliant with all of the meals and amounts of the quality foods I recommend.
* I’ve lost a little bit of weight since I began Phase Two: That’s the most typical scenario—that almost surely means you’re on point. Still, I want you to take a close look at yourself in the mirror and make sure that you’re losing the right type of weight. If you’re starting to look stringy and depleted at this point, then you should not cut calories so much. You can add in just a bit more quality, slow-digesting carbs such as yams or brown rice, especially in the middle of the day or before your workouts. You can also bump protein a small amount (10-20g) per day. Try getting this additional amount in through a slow-digesting protein in the evening or right before bedtime. It’s possible that your body is breaking down muscle tissue while you sleep because you are on a calorie-restricted program. Getting in protein such as Kasein at this time of day may help combat this.
* I’ve lost more than 2 pounds over the following week: You may have cut calories a bit too low for Phase Two. I’d recommend that you go back to your Phase One intake levels for the upcoming week. You don’t want to get too depleted too soon. One exception to this if you’re happy with the way your physique looks if you’ve dropped more than 2 pounds. If that’s the case, then continue on with your current intake levels.
BOTTOM LINE: Remember that all of these specific details are highly individual, and I’m giving broad-based advice that will apply to many people following my Trainer. You may need to make some adjustments that are unique to you.
TAKE PHOTOS: As with Phase One, you’re going to continue to take photos of yourself on every Rest and Reevaluate Day to keep a clear record of your progress. You should take these photos the same way you did on each of your Rest and Reevaluate Days during Phase One. That means wearing the same clothes, using the same photographer (even if that’s you). Shoot yourself from the same angles in the same place with the same lighting. And position your body as you did for these previous photos. At this point, you should see some fairly impressive shifts from your before photos even if the week-by-week changes are considerably smaller, or even a little difficult to notice.
UPDATE YOUR JOURNAL: Continue to keep track of all your meals and all of your workouts. That includes your sets, reps, exercises and weights. Remember that we’ve made some changes to the following week as compared to Phase One. It’s critical that you keep a really good record of the previous week’s training to see what’s really working for you and, even, what is not. Remember not to force yourself to complete an exercise that is uncomfortable or working against your goals. There are plenty of substitutions, including some of the moves I have cut out of the Phase Two workouts that we performed in Phase One. You should also record all of the supplements you’re taking. Remember that this record is essential in helping you figure out what’s working best for you while you’re following my 8-Week Fat-loss Figure Trainer. You’ll also use this record the next time you follow this program or another similar fat-loss program. Trust me on that. My records from my previous Olympia preps have been remarkably helpful in my prep to retain my title.
You’ll continue to get in a cheat meal on your Rest and Reevaluate Days during Phase Two. I know this feels like a reward and that it may seem like it’s taking you away from your goal, but that’s not the case. I consider this meal to be essential for many reasons. Let me remind you:
1) It will make you feel better.
2) It will help your body re-load muscle glycogen that you’ll burn over the next few days.
3) It will help keep your metabolism revving, which better supports fat-loss over time.
For this meal during Phase Two, you can still take in about 5 calories for your target weight. That means, if you’re trying to get to 140 pounds as your end goal, you can go with up to about 700 calories for this meal (140 x 5 = 700). Trust me, you’re going to put those calories to good use tomorrow.
However, you should avoid sugar unless you’re really pleased with the results you’re seeing. My recommendation is to go with foods such as pizza, pasta or hamburgers that contain protein, dietary fats and starchy carbs. Just keep the sugar minimal.
You can also perform some activity today. Just because it’s a rest day, that doesn’t mean you need to sit at home on the couch. Take your kids to the park; enjoy the day or the evening with your significant other. It’s okay to make this an active family day or date night. The key is to give your body a break from your typical weight-training and cardio routines. You’ll be back to that tomorrow, so enjoy today.