Hardcore Fitness Training in 7 Days

Getting Into Shape FastToday a coworker walked up to my desk and asked, “ok, so what pills are you taking?” When I first moved to Colorado it was tough getting adjusted. A little depressed, I put on weight and bumped up over 175lbs. Various factors in life, including the approaching riding season, encouraged me to get into shape. I wanted to lose the fat, build my cardio up, and tone some muscles. I started eating better sometime around August and started working out in early October. My last trip to the gym I weighed in at 154. That’s a 20+ lbs loss.

I really cranked it up starting on October 9th. In 7 days I went from 164lbs to 158lbs. I also went from a body fat percentage over 19 to 18.2. The attached photo shows the physical results. I’ve gotten a number of congrats followed by inquiries as to how I made such a rapid change. So much so, that I thought I would share it here. Simply put, I ate less food, I ate better food, and I exercised more.

Diet

I tracked my diet online for about a week. Unfortunately, now that my free trial has expired, I can’t log in and get actual samples of exactly what I consumed. Generally speaking, I did the following:

  • consumed around 1000 calories a day
  • ate a lot of veggies – and a wide variety of them
  • consumed as little fat as possible
  • ate only enough carbs to maintain my energy levels
  • drank a lot of water and only water, I even cut coffee out (don’t know if it affected anything)
  • reduced my meat portions a little
  • took a time release multi vitamin every day and a calcium supplement almost every day

That said, a typical day’s meal might look something like this:

  • Breakfast: Either Kashi cereal, Bare Naked cereal, or a granola bar. I would eat about a cup of cereal with just a splash of soy milk. Note: after the 7 day rush, I started to include a splash of orange juice. Vitamin C is a great metabolism booster.
  • Lunch: Sometimes nothing but raw veggies. Broccoli was common. I would also eat celery and carrots. Beware of carrots, they contain some sugar. I would continue to eat on a couple of cups of veggies through the day while drinking lots of water. This would easily sustain me through work. Other days I would have small meals such as fish tacos with lard free tortillas or a small helping of noodles. Still, I would eat them slowly over the course of a couple of hours.
  • Dinner: I usually grilled my dinners on the George Foreman grill. I would include a small portion of lean meat such as bison (very low in fat), salmon (good fats), or chicken breast. I would grill a wide variety of vegetables including zucchini squash, asparagus, onion, red bell pepper, broccoli, and egg plant. Finally, I would include a small helping carbs such as a half piece of pita bread or small helping of rice. A few nights I replaced the carbohydrtes with a salad consisting mostly of leafy plants with a light misting of sesame seed oil and balsamic vinegar.
  • Snacks: For the most part, I didn’t snack. My lunches felt like snacking all day. I went to bed early because I was getting up early for the gym. I did eat a few nuts and some beef jerky from time to time. Keep in mind, I was also drinking large amounts of water on a regular basis.

Exercise

I signed up at my nearest gym, which worked out well because I had an old membership on freeze. I got a special deal on 5 personal trainer sessions for $50. This wasn’t crucial, but the support and advice did help. During the rapid development phase, I hit the gym every day. On a couple of days, I went both in the morning and the evening. After the phase, I dropped down to about 3 times a week. A typical session at the gym would include:

  • Stretches: Some basic startup stretches to loosen my leg muscles. This was less than 5 minutes worth.
  • Cardio: I usually would run an average of 15 minutes on the tread mill to get my cardio up. When I started, 10 minutes was enough. Near the end of the week, I would run 25 minutes. If it was my second visit to the gym for the day, I would do about 10 minutes on the stair machine instead – just to mix things up.
  • Original Floor Routine: With my heart rate up, I would hit the floor routine for around 15 to 20 minutes. My original floor routine included:
    • 20 straight crunches plus 10 crunches to each side
    • 10 straight leg lifts plus 10 leg lifts to each side
    • 15 per side of these crunch like things propped up on my elbow (works your side, no idea what they’re called)
    • a fast count of 100 while holding myself up on my elbow and toes
    • the same fast count of 100 while resting on my hips and belly and keeping my feet and shoulders up off the floor
    • a 30 second back bend and 30 second side twists to stretch out my ab muscles
  • New Floor Routine: My trainer gave me a whole new and improved set of routines that included the use of a yoga ball. I integrated these new exercises into my routine – trying to change it up each day. These new routines included a mix of:
    • Holding the yoga ball between my feet for the leg lifts.
    • Placing my back on the floor, feet on the yoga ball and lifting my hips.
    • Lifting light free weights above my chest while laying with the back of my shoulders on the ball, knees bent, hips up, and my feet close together.
    • Squats while standing on a half ball (hard to balance) and holding light weights out in front of me.
    • Torso twists with those strechy elastic rubber things for resistance.
    • Most painful of all, holding myself up on my elbows and toes for 45 seconds – while squeezing my abs as hard as I could.
  • Weight Training: After my floor routine, I would hit weight machines for another 10 to 15 minutes. I generally picked 2 or 3 machines and did 20 to 60 reps at various weight levels. I focused on my core, but did spent time on my shoulders, arms, and legs.

In addition to this, I’ve also been taking the occational yoga class. I believe I took 2 1-hour yoga classes during the 7 day push. Before and after the 7 day push I did a bit of outdoor activity including biking, hiking, running, and – of course – snowboarding.

The results were rapid and impressive. It took being in the right frame of mind, but it didn’t take a lot of time. After my 7 day push, I still continued to burn fat and build muscle while going to the gym less and eating more. I figure that’s probably because of a boosted metabolism. I suspect that if I don’t maintain regular physical activity, I could easily relapse and see rapid weight gain. Thus far, that has not been an issue.

Most importantly, I feel a lot better both mentally and physically. It is more than worth it.

9 Comments

riomx

I’ve definitely noticed the change! Congratulations :) I’m currently running away all my fat from the past year and hope to start seeing results soon, especially after I begin lifting again in the coming weeks.

Brandon

Congrats on your change, but you should know this is not sustainable or healthy.

I always remember the moniker, “Easy come easy go.”

What is your daily caloric expenditure? There are several free online calculators that will help you determine this based on your height, weight, and physical activity. To lose fat, I would not restrict calories by any more than 500. More than that, and you will risk putting your body into starvation mode and become catabolic. The second you start to increase your caloric consumption (1,000 calories/day is not sustainable by any means) you will immediately start storing the excess as fat, and you will have a harder time losing it since your body has been eating your muscle for energy.

As far as weigh training goes, I would highly recommend getting off those machines and use free weights. Do some full body exercises, like squats, pull-ups, deadlifts, etc. You don’t need to go heavy if you aren’t looking to add muscle, but you could do 12-15 reps with a moderate weight, and notice some significant results.

Hope some of my advice helps- if not you, anyone else who may visit this page.

Cheers!

Autumn

Those side things you spoke of, My old phys ed teacher used to call them something similar to the effect of “the mermaid”

IrishPrincess

i’ve been doing the same thing. i went to the doctors in late december and tipped the scale at 175 (im 22..female…5’6…not a good weight) so i changed my eating habits to start, cut out sugar, most fats, processed food…lost 20 pounds in roughly 3 weeks. Its now mid feb and i have plateaued off at about 152. I dont have as much money to be able to go to the gym but i make dues with what i can at home.

I congratulate you on your progress :) i know how awesome it feels!! good luck with everything else!!

Zaskoda

Brandon – It’s been 4 months and 1 day since I hit 158. It’s been a couple of weeks since I did an official weigh in, but I’ve sustained the weight loss since the photo was taken.

Brook

You tried something new!! Good for you! I?m always afraid I?ll mess up when I try new stuff.

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