When I sit down to look at my journey and think that it has taken me three years to just get here, I feel proud. Here’s why;
Three years ago I was quite skinny after losing three and a half stone of fat. During the loss of my fat I just dieted and didn’t do any exercise, therefore I was left just thin with no shape at all.
I asked myself once, the following questions. Why has it taken me three years to get to where I am now? Why have I made so little gains when that chap looks ready for Mr Olympia in just three years? What have I been doing?
My simple answer is that I have started with no knowledge at all, nothing. I understood that lifting a weight up and down in different movements would make me muscular. I thought that eating a small breakfast, a massive pasta dinner and a small meal before bed would make me grow. Clearly it didn’t work.
It took me at least a year to figure out that I was getting absolutely nowhere at all. I don’t think I made any progress at home in the year I was training. I had very basic facilities, no nutritional knowledge and a pregnant wife. Also two young daughters that made life that much more harder when I was lifting weights on the evening.
I know I made no gains in the first year, BUT and here’s the main thing. At the time, I ‘thought’ I was making gains and progressing. Thinking this gave me the confidence to find a gym. I know for a fact I would never have walked in a Welsh community gym the year before and so that’s why I think my first year was a good feel for what I had to come.
My first year at the gym.
This year was about throwing away everything I had picked up working out at home and learning new techniques with real weights, as well as also discovering that I need a good diet to build muscle. I was still yet to understand how this worked for the first six months and more importantly, I had never eaten healthy in my life. Snacks and junk food is what I had lived on all my life.
Very slowly I started to pick up on nutrition, a good training routine and enough fellow members to support me. I made a lot of gains in the first year and was really into powerlifting and loved beating my personal bests. This was my way of progressing and keeping note of how my journey is going. I didn’t understand back then that powerlifting and bodybuilding are very different.
The last 6 months I feel that I have gained a phenomenal amount of knowledge with the human body and what it takes to build muscle, the best way for me to train to build muscle and I have found many valuable sources for information that is vitally important to me. I know feel that I can make my muscles grow individually and I can picture what they are doing when I am performing each exercise. In the past I had no clue what muscles looked like or where they linked to. Not knowing this was a big mistake as you can’t build something that you can’t see or understand.
*Ok, I’ve hit that point of my blog again where I need to stress that I am still learning and I have a lot of knowledge to discover. I am just typing as I feel and explaining what works for me and trying to make others realise there are many parts to building muscle*
I know that I am progressing when it comes to knowledge with bodybuilding. I am currently studying the human anatomy books to find out exactly what muscles are, what they are called and what movements they are used for. I now have a good high protein diet and understand how vitally important nutrition is to my health and building muscle whilst maintaining body fat. (Previously I was told to eat as much food as possible to get as strong as possible)
I eat every 2-3 hours and I make sure the meal has a good source of protein. Sometime It is difficult to eat a meal and that’s why I carry a protein shake around with me if I know I may find a meal difficult to eat.
I also need to remind myself that my son was born two weeks after joining the gym and that has meant quite literally no sleep for well over a year. On the other hand though, the wife loves working out and that makes all the difference to both of us. Without her working out, we wouldn’t be so close with encouraging each other and pushing each other to reach new goals. If she smoked, drunk beer and ate junk food, then I wouldn’t be here and that’s that.
Time to finish this post off as I often start typing with a subject in mind and completely vere off to something different.
It’s taken me three years to just get here. Three years is a very long time, but let’s look at it like this. In those three years I have been trying to do everything I can do to get fit and build muscle. I have never sat back and regretted any of it, NEVER! I have gathered a lot of information from reading books, watching dvds and looking how the human body works. I have given up alcohol, junk food, smoking and all that other stuff that was killing me and making me ill. My progress visually may be little on the outside, but what I have given up to be here and what I have learnt, I will never regret! In my opinion, I have provided a better life for my family by simply changing my ways.
These three years whilst I have been slowly crawling along this never ending road, I have been moving forward. I’m typing this and looking back to how I was, those memories are so far back now that I actually realise just how far I have travelled, even if it has been slow. I urge anyone that wants to get fit to just do it. Don’t make excuses up and don’t look in the mirror every day. You either want it or you don’t! If you are sitting there wishing you could do it and you are still there now, then something is wrong. Go and do some press ups now, go and eat a healthy meal, quit smoking, go for a walk, just do something to start. GO!!!
Slow progress is better than no progress…