Friday, January 1, 2021

Cutting and the Holidays

When I chose the competition I did, knowing how long of a cut we were planning on, it meant I would start my cut right before Christmas.  It may sound horrible to do such a thing but when you are starting off in a great place with calories and nutrition the first few weeks really aren't too bad.

My calories were cut down a bit and the biggest challenge was beginning carb cycling.  I was eating over 200g of carbs a day and my carbs were dropped to 104g on high days and 83g on low days.  It is very easy to get that many carbs in per day and can happen quickly.

There are many tips and tricks when it comes to going through a cut for competition.  The best one I can give is to focus on your protein first, I pre log my protein nearly every night for the next day, especially on days like Christmas.  I did get to have some freedom on Christmas, with so much time before competition and where I am starting at this cut.  

I made sure I hit my protein number on Christmas and had my special treats picked out for the day.  The first time I cut for competition let me tell you, it was different.  I had such a hard time because I chose to cut out everything I loved and went pretty extreme with my nutrition, it was more of the "bro" bodybuilding approach and I absolutely hated it.  Chicken, broccoli, some rice, not much variety because at the time I believed it was the "way" to cut down.

Thankfully over the years Kyle and I have both learned so much about competition prep from different coaches and changing approaches.  A carb is a carb, it can come from broccoli or rice or Sour Patch Kids or wine, whatever I choose!  That is how you go through a cut successfully, you do not have to cut out everything you love and make the experience miserable.  I LOVE our approach and I allow myself treats that feed not only my body but also my soul.

As always, proof is in the pictures.  These photos show my 2nd week of prep at the end of 2019 and my current 2nd week of prep.  

In 2019 I wasn't super consistent with my nutrition, after stopping that prep I knew in 2020 I needed to get consistent with my nutrition by hitting my caloric and macro goals every day.  I did just that and finding my happy place was the best thing I could have done along with being consistent with workouts and doing things my own way.  I released some of the pressure on myself and did workouts I would enjoy, even if they had more cardio in them than I was used to.

So I made it through the holidays while cutting and it wasn't difficult at all.  On New Year's Eve Bella and I had dinner with my friends Brenda and Ryan.  We enjoyed delicious pork loin, veggies, sweet pepper poppers and it was so amazing!  Brenda is my dear friend who also competes so it's nice Ryan knows we need our protein and doesn't tease us too much for it.

Bella and I finished the night out at home with cards and Rummikub, it was a wonderful New Year's Eve with her.  I did make room for mimosas, not your typical mimosa but rather some Prosecco with Bai and it was delicious.  You really do find ways to make things fit in with your macros and it just gets easier the more used to the process you get.

As the cut continues and calories do drop it does get more challenging but that is all part of this sport.  You must know what you are getting into, there is sacrifice but that is just part of the process.  Thankfully I am surrounded by supportive people who understand why I do this and why I might not want to go out for dinner or go out drinking.  It's all my choice to be the best ME I can be in a sport that I truly LOVE.

I was happy to wave goodbye to 2020.  No things don't magically change just because the calendar moved forward into a new year but there is something to be said for feeling like you are beginning anew.  2021 is going to be an epic year, I am more than ready for it and know that I am in control of my own life, my dreams and I am thrilled to be moving into this new year truly knowing myself and loving myself.