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The Confidential Challenge: for him (Part 2)

Base training over, and the temptation of a tipple or ten

Published on July 2nd 2010.

The Confidential Challenge: for him (Part 2)

Week 5
Dedication, focus, hard work, knowledge, sacrifice and planning. These are words which my personal trainer Darren spoke to me about after my four week base training had finished and the initial excitement of the challenge had begun to fade. Originally I only wanted to do this challenge for three months so I could get in some summer drinking and of course World Cup parties. How wrong was I.

This was a lifestyle change and it’s a good job I had Darren if not I would already be drinking pints of Stella and eating chocolate, curries and kebabs like I had done before.

With the base training done Darren broke the news that I would need to add an additional month if I wanted to achieve my goals based on his expert calculations. I had to take a deep breath and weigh up my options. It's not often you get the chance to use a personal trainer of Darren’s expertise so I decided to put my money where my mouth is.

A Step Up
On with week five and training has really stepped up. My half an hour gym has turned into nearly an hour and we are now doing 8 kettle bell exercises x3 sets instead of 4x3 sets. We also added in some bouts of sprints and skipping. I’m out of breath just writing it. To top it all off we are now training 6 days a week instead of five see below. My week consists of two kettlebell sessions, two gym based sessions, a 40 minute jog, and a circuit session outside in the sun. Oh and one rest day.

Meal Overview

I’m really enjoying learning about different foods and to be honest the food side of things hasn’t bothered me at all. This diet is not restrictive at the moment and is helped by a 'treat day' once a week so I can have a curry or fish and chips if like, so long as I keep my portion control correct. See what I ate on Wednesday below:

- Breakfast - Bran Flakes with banana

- Mid Morning – Cottage cheese on Ryvita

- Lunch – Tuna, green beans, pickled onion, cous cous, cucumber with a light dressing

- Mid Afternoon – Strawberry protein shake (more on supplements in later weeks)

- Evening Meal – Steak with sweet potatoes and salad

Darren said: “Lets be clear about something. If you're not eating correctly – and we all seem to think we know what a healthy diet is (and no that’s not salad and pasta) then you will be missing out on your potential to look better naked. Sure, you will improve somewhat if you train and eat and drink what you like – (although this can be quite dangerous to your health). Food to focus on are lean meats, fish, mix beans, pulses, vegetables, wholemeal, higher fibre, vitamins, fruit, seeds, good fats and minerals.

Eating healthy for a week or so won’t make much difference. Aim for 6 week periods of time where your diet is consistent. Then have a few days where you don’t watch it so much”

I feel great at the moment. I'm training hard, eating well and sleeping like baby. In fact my wife said I don’t snore any more hence the bruises on my back have gone. However there is a little devil in me that just wants to go out and get pissed. Luckily, Darren is there to keep me on track with the plan and makes sure I'm completing everything.

I have been Gordo’s drinking pal since I started at Confidential, to the point even he has told me to fuck off on a rare occasion when I have badgered him to go for a beer after work. But all this is in the past. It’s Friday afternoon and Gordo is pacing up and down the office after a good sales day, looking to go for a well deserved drink.

He bellows at me and Helen Ramsbottom to go for a pint as Jonathan Schofield is in a tunnel somewhere.

Gordo - “Come on we are of to RBG, the drinks are on me.”

Me and Helen – “Sorry can’t- got Kettle bells today and we are not drinking remember?”

Gordo: “Are you two still on this silly training thing. Bloody hell forget the gym we are going for a drink. Do the gym tomorrow?”

In a moment of weakness I nearly got up off my chair and followed my little devil voice with Gordo to the RBG, but I didn’t. I have committed to not drinking for four months apart from planned treats days (only allowed two drinks so not really worth it) and stag parties that I planned in at the start.

The point is everyone in the office sniggered at me when I told them I was going to do this challenge. Plus my wife uttered the words “God not another diet”

Nobody thought I would keep it up. Well I have and I feel proud so far....

As I said last week I’m not just doing this for me but to help a Manchester Charity called Forever Manchester so please donate to my charity challenge below.


Hot Topic: Alcohol
This topic is quite apt this week considering my experience on Friday. I have been doing this five weeks and not drinking has been a bone of contention every time I go out, regardless if it's with work or my social friends. Everyone tries to get you to have a drink no matter how many times you tell them that you’re not drinking. I don’t blame them really, as I was always up for a party and would go to the opening of an envelope if it meant a few pints and a good old chin wag.

The fact is nobody can get their heads round why you’re not drinking and finds it quite boring that you’re not partaking in this very British tradition. In my first few nights out this made me feel both boring and uncomfortable.

Let me tell you I would like nothing more that to have 10 pints but the training I have done over the last three days might as well have not happened if I did.

Darren has been clever here in slowly getting us used to a gradual drop in alcohol consumption. He explained: “Alcohol is bad for fat loss as you're consuming a lot of sugar – usually in the evening when you're not doing much, one drink can have the same sugar as a piece of cake so imagine eating 5 or 6 pieces of cake, which is like having 5/6 drinks, and trying to loose body fat – its not going to happen.”

You see its okay to drink if you’re not a fat lad like I am and already go to the gym. If you already have a good body or indeed, if you’re not bothered about your weight at all, then its okay.

Social pressure is a nightmare but I can't stop going out I just had to deal with it. I’m sure this will get easier as the challenge carries on as I now appreciate drinking and food a lot more, even in this short period.

If you’ve got any queries on any of this, feel free to rant and we’ll get back to you. If you’d like to be added to a list for regular updates on the body challenge, for health and fitness tips or have a specific query you’d rather not post to the world, drop us an email on challenge@manchesterconfidential.com . We’re looking to cover a wealth of health topics over the next twelve weeks and we’d love to hear your thoughts and answer any queries.

Darren Casey is Master Personal Trainer and Director at Elite Fitness Training www.eft-gb.com You can follow this 3 month plan designed for you online via his web site. Enrol via email waiting list. The next course launches on 21 June 2010.


Confidential Challenge for him (Part 1)Confidential Challenge for her (Part 1)Confidential Challenge for her (Part 2)

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