Friday, April 28, 2017

One-on-One Personal Training - The Beginning | Operation 健康アップ

Been 4 months since I left Genesis Gym and started one-on-one personal training with Superman. In the last 4 months, I've lost the 5kg I gained during my HK trip where I went crazy over 鸡蛋仔 hehe and nearly 3% body fat #yay

But not only that, I've made improvements in my upper body strength and the last time I tested in February, I was able to pull at least 15kg for my 1 rep max weighted pull-up ( ᐛ )و Maybe even more now since I managed to pull 5x2 13kg pull-ups on Tuesday..

It's pretty amazing because I haven't been able to train as intensely as I did last year due to old... and new injuries {I had a freak fall in March which hurt my left wrist & temporarily dislocated my already weak knee so I couldn't work out on my right leg for a while}. Also, my job's workload has increased and traveling to/from the new gym takes a longer time so I can't train as often too.

The recent results really just reinforce the fact that for any fitness-related goal, not just for fat loss, what you do outside the gym matters as much as what you do in the gym. Since I can't train as hard in the gym now, Superman has been making sure that I focus more on my nutritional diet and sleep to maximise my post-workout recovery and gains.

Gym Workouts
I haven't been following any of the popular strength training programs like Wendler's 5/3/1 or StrongLifts 5x5. Basically, I've been doing what Boon used to call my "hospital programs" where I train mainly my upper body because I can't do much lower body or compound exercises like deadlift or squat due to my lower back injury.

Actually my back got better for a while around February and we started doing really light Hybrid Deadlifts.. but then I injured my knee and we had to stop that. Again ( ˃̣̣̥ω˂̣̣̥ )

When that happened I was pretty sad and frustrated as we just started getting back on track with my deadlifts and Superman was coaching me on a new stance {slightly wider, more Sumo-ish}, which I was just getting the hang of. Sigh. But then, sh*t happens and if there's anything I've learnt from the past few months of being injured.. it's that we mustn't give up and we can train around our injuries to come back fiercer, stronger, better.

Over the past 4 months, I think I've changed my workout programmes 2-3 times before I even completed one full cycle {8 sessions per workout programme} whenever I couldn't follow-through with most of the exercises due to my injuries that came back on and off.

Thank goodness Superman is patient, thoughtful and professional enough to make constant adjustments and design new programs that are customised to my needs at those moments. He could always take the easy way out and make me finish the programs even if they weren't helping me to maximise my full potential... but he didn't. #thankyou

In the latest programme that I just completed, I was doing a 2-day workout rotation where I trained 3 times a week with Superman, and once on my own in the club gym or climbed stairs.

Workout A with the latest weights I lifted:
A1. Semi-Supinated Chin Up, 5 sets, 5 reps - 12.75kg
A2. Romanian Deadlift, 5 sets, 8 reps - 51kg
B1. Wide Grip Pull Up, 5 sets, 2 reps - 2.75kg
B2. DB Low Incline Bench Press {Pronated}, 4 sets, 6 reps - 19.3kg
C1. Seated Cable Row, 4 sets, 12 reps - 27kg
C2. BB Flat Bench Press, 4 sets, 12 reps - 25kg
D1. Pronated Lat Pulldown, 8 sets, 8 reps -  28kg

Workout B with the latest weights I lifted:
A1. DB Seated Supported Shoulder Press, 5 sets, 5 reps - 17kg
A2. Elevated Skater Squat, 4 sets, 8 reps - Body weight
B1. BB Shoulder Press, 4 sets, 8 reps - 12.7kg
B2. Glute Hip Thrust, 4 sets, 15 reps - 35kg
C1. Incline DB Supinated Bicep Curl, 4 sets, 12 reps - 6.1kg
C2. Banded Lateral Raise, 4 sets, 12 reps - 2 red
D1. Lying DB Neutral Tricep Extension, 4 sets, 10 reps - 7.8kg
D2. Lying Rear Delt Raise, 4 sets, 12 reps - 3kg

Workout B {club} with the latest weights I lifted:
A1. DB Seated Supported Shoulder Press, 5 sets, 5 reps - 17.5kg
A2. Elevated Skater Squat, 4 sets, 15 reps - Body weight
B1. Seated Arnold Press, 4 sets, 11 reps - 12.5kg
B2. Hip Thrust, 4 sets, 12 reps - 60kg
C1. Inclined Dumbbell Neutral Bicep Curl, 4 sets, 12 reps - 7kg
C2. Dumbbell Lateral Raise, 4 sets, 14 reps - 5kg
D1. Lying Neutral Tricep Extension, 4 sets, 10 reps - 9kg
D2. Lying Rear Delt Raise, 4 sets, 12 reps, 5kg

Food Nutrition
Because I can't go as hard as I usually can in the gym, Superman has been anal about my food nutrition. Like, hardcore anal haha.. but of course, if I didn't believe in the process and want to work on this myself he can't make me do anything.. 

In Genesis Gym last time, although Jen checked every now and then that I kept to my recommended calorie intake, because I worked my butt off in the gym and still got results, he didn't keep that close an eye on my nutritional diet. I also thought that I was kinda ok in keeping to my recommended calorie intake most of the time too but boy oh boy... I know now that I must have been pretty off in eyeballing my portions and tracking calories haha.

Since training with Superman, I've made major changes to my food nutrition that has shocked even hubby hehe. For the past 4 months, I've been,
  • weighing my food with a scale {yes, I bring a cute Hello Kitty one around with me!}
  • paying more attention to food nutrition labels 
  • meal-planning and meal-prepping every week  
  • eating much more vegetables and fibre
  • tracking my calories on MyFitnessPal every day
  • hitting my protein count every day
I'm actually pretty proud of myself that I've managed to keep at it for the past few months *grins* Previously at Genesis, after a while, I'd kinda slack at my food tracking and meal-prepping as it was just too much effort haha.

Of course, there are days when I succumb to my inner foodie {usually happens 1-2x a week #oops} and eat wayyy over my daily calorie intake, but I dare say that I'm on track for 85-90% of the time.

It definitely helps when you have family support and a trainer that holds you accountable and checks to see what you're eating and what's your weight every freaking day. Yup, every day, Superman will ask me what's my weight and if it rises he'll then ask if I kept to my intake the day before haha.. there's no bluffing him!

Oh, I know I've mentioned before that we shouldn't be obsessed with the number on the scale, and I did ask Superman why I had to weigh myself daily. I mean, in Genesis I only weighed myself when it was measurement time. He explained that since it's not practical to measure my body fat composition daily, for now it's still useful to track body weight to regularly check that I'm losing fat and eating well as my body fat composition is still high-ish. 

Anyway, I know for a fact that he actually "friends" some of his clients on MyFitnessPal to check that they are tracking their food and eating properly. I refuse to do that because there are times when I sneak in a little too much unhealthy treats or rely a little too much on protein bars and supplements to help me stay within my limits and hit my protein count, and he frowns upon that. I know that isn't ideal as well but sometimes as a busy mum who can't prep food daily and need a fast, healthy snack.. you gotta do what you gotta do.

Thoughts of the Weeks
Even though I've trained with Superman for 1.5 years at Genesis Gym, at first when I started one-on-one training with him... it still needed a bit getting used to. At Genesis Gym {sorry if I keep comparing to my time there, but that's where I got my first taste of personal training..}, it is the norm for the trainers not to be around all the time, especially if you've been training for some time and know how to get your own weights and keep to your tempo/ rest times etc. They are there to guide and support you during the exercises, but they will also move about in the gym and keep an eye on a few clients at a go too. Also, since they work as a team, at different points in time of your workout session, you will probably get coached by a few different trainers.

However, now with my one-on-one training, Superman is constantly there.. not in a freaky, stalkish way haha but like by my side to coach, look at my form, make sure I'm really keeping to my rest time, helping me to change the weights, reminding me to breathe and drink water etc.

Even outside the gym, he takes his job seriously and is also constantly there {or seems like it} to monitor my nutrition, quality of sleep and injury conditions.

This is how I imagined a personal trainer to be when I first thought of having one. For someone committed to living a healthy lifestyle and keeping fit, it is great to have such constant and strong support from an experienced trainer who is easily reachable to talk to you and act as your guide as you transform your body, lose fat and build muscle. Especially when you're still a "noob" in getting yourself lean and strong.

Of course sometimes it can be a tad stressful too, and we have butted head over certain training issues, especially over me doing CrossFit & my poor sleep schedule, but I respect his experience and knowledge and appreciate his concern on my training and well-being. As time passed by, I do feel more and more confident that I made the right decision to leave Genesis Gym and start my training with Superman as I believe under his guidance, I can reach my fitness goals more efficiently and effectively.

I'll definitely try to update on my training progress more often so please stay tuned! 

P.S. I've been getting a number of enquiries over Superman's freelance PT services and rates. So glad that some of you are encouraged by my fitness journey and are keen to find out more! (^v^) I'm happy to provide his contact for you to discuss it in detail with him so just drop me an email at sakuraharuka {at} live {dot} com. All the best in your own fitness journey too!

One-on-On Personal Training Updates:

Genesis Gym Personal Training Updates:
The Beginning - Signing Up for Personal Training


Unknown said...

How did your trainer modify your workouts to accommodate your knee injury? Looking at the list, it all looks still very intense on the joints.

Stacy said...

I thought "Superman" referred to your hubby at first!

Keep at it, definitely nice to be in peak form.

--andy-- said...

#aifitnessdiary is POWER! Impressive workout, even more impressive fitness journal :)

I got used to running recently, and am making effort to get fitter, so I can eat more :)

cheers, Andy

Shub said...

Inspiring! Now a days I see a lot of moms finding time to get fitter. I need to embark on that journey soonest.

Theresa Mahoney said...

Those one leg squats are killing me right now! My trainer had me doing them all last Wednesday and here it is Sunday and I can hardly walk still. Kudos for you for keeping up your fitness goals even with the setbacks!

Pooja Kawatra said...

Brilliant to see you are following it rigorously from months now. Can see the difference now.

An Apel a Day said...

It looks like a hard and great workout!

Now that I feel like I can go up steps without loosing my breathe I should bump it up. I already started lifting weights. My nose is filled with polyps, I have the worst deviated septum the ENT has seen, and I had sickness that went into asthma. I just need surgery in the worst way. Lots of meds. At least I know I wasn't going crazy with the lack of breathing bit.

mail4rosey said...

The little nut cups are cute. Great way not to overindulge because it really is easy to do so with something so tasty. 3% body fat is awesome! And I'm sorry you had a freak fall. I had one too (hem came out of my pants, and down I went with nothing to hold my fall because my hands were full of graded school papers, tons of index cards, etc.). It was ugly. I'm pretty much healed up now too though, thank goodness. :)

Michelle said...

Those guns! You're so strong! I, on the other hand, has no upper body strength at all. My husband just told me about pistol squat the other day, I managed one time, haha!

Unknown said...

All I can say is "wow!" It's amazing how much details and effort you put into your training and your fitness journal. I am both inspired and intimidated at the same time. Great job with the fitness regime!!

Hello, Mrs Tan said...

Sometimes, when I feel too lazy to go for a run/swim, reading your entries kinda spur me on again to at least hit a few laps hahaha!

You've been so far since the day you decided you would hit the gym! I still remember you posting your before and after pictures... geez!

Indah Nuria Savitri said...

really admire your strength and perseverance! Even the injuries don't really stop you ...great job!