I wanted to offer an opportunity for people to view a real-life case as to how I approach building a plan suited for my clients that revolves around their lifestyles, foods they enjoy, eating habits etc. As I always bang on about how plans must be sustainable hopefully this will give you an insight as to how I build a sustainable plan that my clients can stick to long term & with a degree of ease.
Thanks to Kelley for allowing me to share this info!
Kelley first approached me after hitting a plateau with her training and nutrition. She felt like her progress had stopped, she was over trained, was under eating & generally felt like the gym had become a chore (no longer sustainable).
I knew I had to introduce something that would get her enjoying the process again, therefore new goals, a new nutrition plan & a new training methodology was put in place to shake things up for her.
At the time, Kelley was on a pretty harsh low calorie (and carb) diet as well as training 6 days a week. I explained to Kelley that with her having such a small amount of total calories in her plan (with the addition of expending calories from over training) she was in a significant calorie deficit which I suspected in her having an under acting thyroid – in other words her metabolism had slowed down.
This meant she become more carb intolerant; when she had cheat meals, it took days and days to drop the weight again, she begrudged going to the gym as her CNS (central nervous system) was down and she was holding onto small, stubborn amounts of body fat in certain areas.
I explained we needed to increase calories to reverse these negative implications on her body & justified how not only physically, but mentally it would help her get back on track.
Kelley was happy with the proposition after I provided the rationale, so we started to slowly introduce carbs from sources she enjoyed – pasta, rice & CAKE! Yes, that’s Cake!
I explained that in my eyes, there is no such thing as “cheat foods” – all foods contain a balance of the 3 main macro nutrients – Proteins, Carbs and Fats – it’s when & in what quantity we use them which dictates whether or not it is to our advantage. Therefore timing these intakes was strategic & enabled Kelley to eat foods she enjoyed to her advantage!
Now; although we started to increase her calories, weight actually remained pretty consistent, this assured me of my suspicions that Kelleys metabolism wasn’t working optimally. This in essence meant her body had started to metabolise things quicker & the thyroid had become more active. This delivers a whole host of benefits with fat loss only being one them! We were onto a winning formula.
Over time, Kelley had noticed her stubborn fat had started to drop. Her body had slowly become less resilient to holding onto it. We had literally ensured her body that it was okay to drop body fat as now the deficit had become sustainable and gradual – not drastic.
Because we timed her food intakes more strategically she had started to “fill out” in the areas she wanted to build on (Glutes & Hamstrings). In conjunction with a better structured nutrition plan we had also slowly brought down the volume of cardio she was doing & increased weight/ resistance training to encourage the muscles she was targeting to become more efficient at up taking glycogen/ carbs into the muscle cells.
Over the duration we saw Kelley build the quality muscle tissue he desired in the targeted areas and dropped the stubborn body fat she wanted rid of.
We’re still working together to this day on new goals & Kelley is still enjoying the process, it’s all about sustainability!