The Prep Diary: Week 5

Greetings all and welcome back to another edition of the Prep Diary.

This week’s entry is a little later than usual, due heavily to my Easter Weekend removing me from my normal routine (what’s normal anyway?) But more on that in a bit. Firstly, let’s review the week gone by in terms of training, nutrition and anything else.

Training has once again been absolutely on point, in terms of intensity, frequency and believe it or not, enjoyment! As you may recall from previous entries, I’ve switched my training routine to a fasted early morning session,¬† which has enabled me to get the day off to a flying start and also free up time in my evenings, generating a new found lease of life, so to speak.



Back and Arms – Fun and frantic

Within the training sessions themselves, the routines have gone from hitting one specific area (i.e. a full back session lasting 60-90 minutes) to a mixture of body parts, such as Back with Arms. This change has yielded some unexpected benefits. First of all, combining multiple body parts in a session means intensity has to increase, as in order to fit everything in (anywhere from 30-40 sets in total) there needs to be a certain amount of supersetting and minimal rest involved, which has been great for keeping the session fun, frantic and leaving me with a feeling of having really worked out, which hasn’t always been present in the past. I’m sure you’ve all been there; you hit a Chest session on Monday and go through the motions, leave the gym and have a lingering moment of doubt, thinking “I could have done more.” Well, try and mix things up a bit and add in another body part. For example, today (Tuesday) I completed a gigantic Chest and Shoulder session, topping out at 40 sets and in just over 90 minutes. It was a good pain, endorphins were firing and I felt truly “worked.”

Moving on, nutrition has been solid throughout the week with the “cheat” kept well at bay all the way until the weekend, where things did unravel somewhat. Yes, it’s true. I did indeed fall right off the wagon this Easter Bank Holiday.

Okay, in my defense, things started off great. Thursday morning I trained at 05:30 and had a great session. By 21:00 I was on a plane headed for Sofia, Bulgaria to catch another flight to eventually get me to Varna for 08:00. So, Good Friday was a write off in terms of training, but I keep the food clean and calories low. So far so good. Saturday came around and I hit a Back and Arm session at my regular gym in Varna; Monster Gym.



Getting the pump on at Monster Gym.

By the evening (17:50) we had another flight to catch, back to Sofia and then a transfer to Bankso (roughly 2 hours by car), where we would spend the rest of the weekend celebrating a wonderful wedding.

Here’s where things started to get tricky. Eating on the road is always tough; your choice is limited unless you’ve prepped, which I didn’t. So McDonald’s came calling and I managed to limit myself to some chicken nuggets. Not great, but not a disaster. We eventually rolled up to the lavish Premier Hotel in Bankso and settled in for the night. With a beautiful sunrise welcoming in the new day, Sunday had arrived and this was the day of the wedding. Before that, however, we had some downtime to check out the slopes, walk around Bansko and of course, eat. Again, at this stage I’m still doing well; lunch consisted of chicken breast and rice, whilst the earlier breakfast was scrambled eggs with a rasher of bacon. So, feeling pleased with my restraint, we proceeded to the wedding and enjoyed a lovely ceremony, meeting and greeting old and new friends alike.

Now anyone who’s been to a wedding knows that things really get going once you’re seated, eating and drinking. Pay attention to that last word. Oh boy, did I underestimate what was about to commence. Weddings involve a lot of toasts, glass raising and generally, any excuse to get some alcohol down your throat. So, here’s where things begin to take a turn.

Here’s a free tip; don’t mix drinks. Just don’t. I was lurching from champagne (I don’t even like champagne) to white wine, Vodka, and the traditional Bulgarian beverage; Rakia. Holy smokes, that stuff is lethal. It’s ingested with the starter course (a salad, typically) and needs to be sipped. The alcohol percentage is astronomical and when combined with a “generous” amount of Vodka, things soon become blurry.

So, skipping ahead to Monday and I was suffering. I don’t know about you, but when I’m hungover, I cannot eat for hours. So breakfast was a few mouthfuls of scrambled egg, followed by 20 minutes of staring into space. Perfect macros. However, things seemed to improve once we got out to the beautiful carpet of white powder and I got my skis on; all thoughts of a rumbling stomach were dispersed and it was nothing but a good time.



Heading up to a baby slope to see if I still had it. Can you spot me waving?


Sadly, this good feeling didn’t carry me too far and the taxi ride to the airport was nothing short of hellacious. I couldn’t tell if I was hungry, felt sick, or both, so instead did nothing but drink water, until I reached the airport. My “meal” for that evening was pretty woeful; a pizza and a bar of Milka chocolate. Things carried on once I landed in England, as I demolished a share size bag of crisps and guzzled down a 500ml bottle of coke.

So, what can we say about that? It seems I’m not alone in having had a bit too much “flexibility” with my diet this Easter weekend, but I’m not stressing about it, no lasting damage will be done as long as I’m focused and back on track this week and judging by today’s session, that certainly won’t be an issue.

Thanks as always for reading, let me know how your Easter was and if you indulged as much as I did!