Sam’s Fitness Journey: Week 3 – The Menstrual Cycle

Last week, I talked cake, motivation and lemons which all sounds super positive, a little bit cute and well, random. It's safe to say that week 3 of training wasn't quite as pleasant, no thanks to the good old menstrual cycle and birthdays. After two weeks of getting back into the swing of lifting the heavy stuff and starting to feel a little more 'Sam' again, the obstacles started to appear and the first '12 week tests' have begun.

Not all of these challenges will be relatable for both sexes, but I can guarantee that what seems to be cropping up during my fitness journey will be the kind of everyday obstacles we all go through when trying to get fit. I'm hoping this transformation of mine will mean you get to read, first hand, exactly what to expect when trying to get into shape and how to overcome all of it. Brownie's honour, I will do my best.

Day 15: Training with The Menstrual Cycle

First of all, guys, you may not want to read this but I suggest you do as you will appreciate how much harder it can be for women to lose weight and build muscle.

Yes, being 'on' can have a huge impact on your training and your food, more than you've probably ever been told but this, of course is where your PT should step in to monitor everything, from your hormones, your mood and of course, your cycle.

After just starting to feel a little prouder of my body shape…it changed. My body threw a tantrum, decided that it wasn't hungry but it was however going to make me look and feel like I'd been eating whales for the last few days. I didn't feel too great and training hard was proving to be difficult, so I spoke to Mark (gym manager at UP Manchester). Mark told me to take note of exactly how I was feeling, when I was and wasn't hungry and the dates of my cycle so the next time around, we'll be prepared for it.

Day 17: Tracking Progress & Training

I know I haven't talked much about the training side of my transformation just yet, mainly because I thought I'd try and steer away from the obvious stuff. That said, the trainers at UP are constantly studying, researching and developing their methods to make sure that every single exercise, movement and programme you do is vital to ensuring the best result possible…in other words, training is hard-core and to the highest of standards.

There used to be a time where I would refuse to train in a gym; I never enjoyed it, thought it was boring and didn't have a clue what to do even if I did show up.

I probably wouldn't have admitted that when I applied for the job at UP but I did say I would be honest. Now I realise why I didn't enjoy it…I didn't know what I was doing.

Now thanks to my trainers at UP I have a plan, specifically designed for my body and my goals, I have an absolute pro who will make sure I follow my programme, motivate me and make sure I don't feel like an idiot because I'm doing it all wrong. I know what I'm doing because of them, and I have 100% confidence that they know exactly what they're doing too. Tracking my progress and seeing that I've gone from lifting next to nothing to (what I believe) are the 'big guns' actually feels brilliant. And that is why I love it.

Day 20: Birthdays & Doughnuts

This is when your 12-week transformation is going to get tough and something that all UP clients have had to experience to achieve such incredible results.

What we don't think about is all of the outside factors that are going to impact you sticking to your diet and fitting in your training.

Day 20 was a day for celebrating and this, of course, would involve Krispy Kreme doughnuts which also means torture. I've never wanted to ram my face into a box of doughnuts, until day 20…day 20, I wanted to do exactly that. I asked my nutrition guy if I could have a piece, and I got this.

There are going to be times (more than you can imagine) when it's someone's birthday, when your colleague decides to buy everyone an ice cream or it could just be that it's Friday and everyone around you has gone calorie mad but those times are the times you really do have to say no.

Those times you said no, you'll appreciate on your 12th week.

Until next time.

Sam

Social Media Manager at Ultimate Performance.

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