Journey Back To Strength 14

Digging Deeper Than EVER Before

Journey Back To Strength - Digging Deeper Than EVER BeforeJourney Back To Strength - Digging Deeper Than EVER Before
As I sit here to compose my 14th blog documenting my “Journey Back To Strength,” I am immediately faced with a situation. The situation is a moment of total nothingness! LOL! I mean, the lights are on, but no one is home. And normally, there is a whole committee running the show. But, the removal of some carbs and increasing my training tenfold may be part of the issue. I am totally dead tired, but I am actually so happy. I know I am doing something right at 9 weeks out, because I am experiencing a sort of blankness. I use all energy that there is for the workouts alone, then focus every other part of my day on preparing food, measuring it, cycling the carbs, getting everywhere on time, taking care of my online clients and you know the rest. I could wait for a few extra carbs or some additional hours of sleep, and that may be a bit more entertaining, but I have to keep it real and the calories are dropping and now!

Reuniting With My FIRST Trainer

Journey Back To Strength - Digging Deeper Than EVER BeforeThe first thing I thought about when contemplating my topic for the week is, “Where do I start?” First and foremost, I am training with more intensity than maybe ever before. And I mean EVER. As LUCK—a word that is synonymous with God in my world—would have it, on my very first day back at Busy Bodies Gym in Boca Raton, I see my very first trainer I had in 2005 who prepped me for my very first show, the 2005 NPC Southern States where I won the Overall in Figure.

Long story short, we found a way to work out together several days a week in the gym, and we are killing it! I mean on a scale of 1-10…we are doing a level 12 workout.

In a previous blog, I mentioned taking risks, which I did when I decided to try the HIT-style lifting. However, after a few sessions, I knew it was not for me. I seem to recall being told to “Trust Yourself,” and I did. No harm, no foul. It’s great for people with less time to spend in the gym. I just know that I need to focus on volume training and specific lifts to develop specific areas of my body to create a balanced overall look. Additionally, I cannot afford to injure myself with lifting weight that is too heavy, which is a major part of HIT. I felt the pressure on my knee joints, especially starting out not in the best shape of my life, so it was not a safe choice for today. Possibly during an off-season, I can revisit that technique.

Journey Back To Strength - Digging Deeper Than EVER BeforeSo I connected with Lynn Suave, and she has that old school in your face kind of push that I love and need, especially right now. Everyday, I am back to hitting it hard, with intensity and really focusing on conditioning and shape—amongst all of the many other aspects of competing. There are many besides working out like posing, which I’m starting today after this blog!

So, let’s talk about my recent leg day for example. I started with my HIIT session on the spin bike, and then worked out with IFBB Physique pro Katie Bartlett Davis and Lynn, which helped with alternating machines, rest times and stretching in between. Plus, we all trained differently even using the same equipment by adjusting weights used, reps completed as well as differing other intensity techniques like rest-pause, drop sets, etc.

Journey Back To Strength - Digging Deeper Than EVER BeforeI really liked that between us there is just an understanding that we instinctively perform differently, and it’s very, very focused to address each of our individual needs. That gives me a great deal of relief, because this is never a one-size-fits-all situation, especially when working out with other people. For instance, Katie needs the mass, so she lifts heavier than I do. I still lift heavy weight for my level of conditioning, but I may do a few more drop sets, etc.—always with 100% effort.

Digging Deeper Than Ever Before

Additionally, we both have differing strengths, so adjustments must be made per person. In short, I am in the right gym with the right women who are strong as hell pushing me the distance. And I am in heaven! The great part is that we all bring something to the other, so everyone wins in a situation like this. For now, it’s a BIG push for me. Needing to dig deeper than ever before, I know that having the added element of inside the gym support is going to get me where I need to be in 9 weeks.

AVA-JOURNEY-BACK-PART-14-ins6And, I know I am right where I need to be for my training, because there is not one ounce of anything left when we are done with a workout. The most I can do is buy groceries, cook and sleep. I really need a manicure, but I can’t even manage to get one done! No time to waste!

Bring On The Pain

Dr. Layne Norton dropped my calories quite a bit today, and right now, I am a bit worried how this blog is going to sound. Maybe all over the place, but I compete and that sort of goes with the territory. Oh and my body is bouncing back to life daily. When I have a moment of fear about the nighttime hunger, I just remember how it will look and a few other key visuals that work for me personally. That is worth every ounce of pain. Bring on the pain…it’s only for a short while and the rewards lasts much longer.

Hopefully, the next few weeks bring great change—that is my 100% focus. This morning, I prepped everything for the day, and now am going to pose then lift. Must be prepared. Everything is counted and measured, and I have the schedule for when it’s eaten daily. And then grocery shopping
after the gym…I need water!

Ava Cowan is an IFBB Figure Professional, a CPTS® and full time online coach and consultant for women of all fitness levels.

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