My Relentless Transformation 5.0 experience is very nearly over, and it’s time for an updated batch of…
As we’ve discussed, there is no better way of evaluating progress than implementing and tracking a well-rounded results profile. My consistent recommendation is to use four metrics: circumference measurements, bodyfat calipers, scale weight, and pictures. None of these things requires expensive equipment, and only the calipers likely require you purchasing something not currently in your possession. Together these four metrics are unstoppable, and each metric you drop from the equation restricts your ability to track all-around progress.
With the above in mind, ironically the Relentless Fitness scale broke before the most recent set of measurements! We purchased a new one, only to find that it is waaaaay off the mark. Back to the scale store we go. For now a “?” will have to do, although I can guarantee you the number is down from last time (due to the shift in my muscle mass -> lean phase change).
The first numbers were taken on May 28th and the last on July 25th. Remember that I didn’t take the first measurements until 3 days after Memorial Day weekend eating/drinking. That means they aren’t artificially inflated. These are real alterations acquired in precisely 8 weeks and 2 days.
The magic duo has happened – an increase in muscle mass + a reduction in bodyfat. I didn’t drastically reduce calories, I didn’t drastically reduce food options (I ate plenty of grass-fed dairy, rice, rice pasta, and potatoes), and I worked out a very manageable 3x per week, with the occasional 4x thrown in. Much more on this later, but remember the theme – REAL people, REAL results, REAL world.
The official numbers:
- Weight: 191 -> 191 -> 193.2 -> 192.6 -> 193.4 -> 192.8 -> ?
- Circumference (in):
- Chest: 42 -> 41.5 -> 42 -> 42.5 -> 43 -> 43 -> 43 (+1)
- Waist: 33.25 -> 32.75 – 32.75 -> 32.5 -> 32.25 -> 32.5 -> 32 (-1.25)
- Abdomen: 35.5 -> 34.75 -> 34.5 -> 33.25 -> 33 -> 33.5 -> 33 (-2.5)
- Hips: 40.5 -> 42.5 -> 41 -> 40 -> 40.25 -> 40.5 -> 40 (-0.5)
- Thigh: 24 -> 24 -> 24 -> 24.75 -> 23.75 -> 24.5 -> 24.5 (+0.5)
- Calf: 15.5 -> 15.5 -> 15.5 -> 15.5 -> 15.5 -> 15.5 -> 15.5 (EVEN)
- Arm: 14.25 -> 14.25 -> 14.5 -> 14.5 -> 14.75 -> 15 -> 15 (+0.75)
- Bodyfat (mm):
- Back: 13 -> 12 -> 13 -> 14 -> 12 -> 12 -> 12 (-1)
- Chest: 10 -> 7 -> 8 -> 8 -> 8 -> 7 -> 7 (-3)
- Abdomen: 13 -> 14 -> 15 -> 13 -> 14 -> 12 -> 9 (-4)
- Thigh: 15 -> 12 -> 15 -> 14 -> 14 -> 14 -> 12 (-3)
- Bicep: 7 -> 6 -> 6 -> 6 -> 6 -> 5 -> 5 (-2)
- Triceps: 9 ->8 -> 7 -> 7 -> 7 -> 6 -> 6 (-3)
I know what you’re thinking.
Where has Roger been? Has he fallen off the Transformation wagon? Is he lying on a couch somewhere with empty pints of Ben & Jerry’s strewn around the crime scene?
Today I am thrilled to reassure you that rumors of my demise have been greatly exaggerated.
I am here. I am present. And I am still transforming like a bat out of hell.
Cause and Effect
So what happened? I’ll attribute the change in my posting frequency to three things: Continue Reading
You know you better than anyone else.
If that truth doesn’t immediately resonate, take some necessary steps. Learn to become more aware. Learn to listen. Learn to trust.
When your body and mind say go, let ‘er rip! When your body and mind say rest, pull it back! When your body and mind say eat, eat!
At the outset of a fitness journey, you may have to override these signals at times. After all, you are establishing new habits, and that is not an easy task.
When you hit your stride, however, these signals are your compass. If you cannot transition from do this, not that and eat this, not that plans to ultimately trusting your signals, you will ultimately fail. Harsh, I know. But I stand behind those words. Continue Reading
Have you ever kept a food log?
Self imposed accountability is tremendously powerful. The simple act of writing down what you eat – on a napkin, in a journal, or through a spreadsheet – forces you to think through what you consume. It is a tried and true way to get over a hump, get back on track, and/or assist various forms of self-experimentation.
Want to supercharge the food log process? Take pictures of your food before you eat it as a rule (sound familiar?) That is accountability on Raw Tea.
While I don’t believe in food logs as a long-haul activity, I wholeheartedly believe in their consistent use for beginners, their semi-regular use for the intermediate, and as periodic check-ins for the advanced. I’m obviously food logging daily at the moment, and I’m finding it useful in the context of an aggressive challenge. Once the Transformation ends, I’ll revert to my usual – logging a day every month or two.
Every single time I log my food, I learn something. That is not an exaggeration. Continue Reading
33% of my Relentless Transformation is complete. Done. Gone. Over.
I both can and can’t believe it. It feels blink-of-an-eye short and grind-your-nails-on-chalkboard long, all at the same time. I’m comfortable I have plenty more weeks to achieve my vision and terrified that they’re not even close to enough, all at the same time.
That is the transformation rollercoaster. Put more broadly, that is the positive change rollercoaster. It’s simple, but it ain’t easy!
I’ve written about the absolute importance of periodic reflection, so let’s reflect, shall we? Continue Reading
A new post-workout equation: Vitamin D + heat = ?
Pictured above is the post-workout scene at the apartment building, as well as the new laboratory for testing this proposed equation. I’ll use the laboratory after each and every strength workout, spending 30-minutes in the sun and summer heat.
Now what’s the equation all about?
For starters you’re likely familiar with Vitamin D, aka the sunshine vitamin. Bone, skin, heart, and immune health are all conditions for which Vitamin D is administered. Relevant to the Transformation at hand, I’m most concerned with its muscle promoting properties. This study supports a link. So does this one. And this one.
But why heat? What does that have to do with anything? Continue Reading
Boredom is a choice. Excitement is a choice. These emotions stem from your self-perception of a circumstance.
For example, I hear this a lot: “I could never eat that every day.” And this: “I need constant variety in my workouts.”
In these cases, the individual’s lens of perception is focused squarely on the food and the movement. Nothing else. All he or she sees is broccoli, broccoli, broccoli, instant death. Deadlift, deadlift, deadlift, eyes glaze over.
What if you expand your lens? What if you focus on more than just the food or the movement? Continue Reading
It’s a day of two Roger-isms. Get your pen ready.
#1: Action patterns dictate results.
No matter what anyone (you included) thinks of the action patterns at play – exercise, nutrition, sleep, stress management, etc. – results are the ultimate judge. Results are the barometer for success. Results display how your body is responding to what’s actually happening day-to-day.
That’s an incredibly important realization. It removes the importance of do’s and don’ts, should’s and shouldn’ts, and all external judgement. Your program will have its day in results court, and its change in look, feel, and perform will be the only relevant judge and jury.
Three positive actions make sense in light of this statement: Continue Reading