My quest to become she-hulk so far

Quest To Become She-Hulk

My quest to become she-hulk so far!

I have wanted a muscular physique for a long time, but have hesitated to actually set that goal for myself. Not because it would be an atypical goal for a woman in the eyes of general society, but because I knew how much effort I would have to put into it. If I decided that that was something that I wanted to truly strive for I would not be able to half-ass it. The thought was daunting.

Eventually one fateful morning I woke up and decided it would be great to do it and make a video series to document it. It would help keep me accountable and consistent. It would be a great way to document my journey and track my progress.I also hoped that this series would show how much serious, determined and planned effort it takes to put on a large amount of muscle as a female who isn’t supplementing with hormones. And that women do not have to be afraid of getting bulky if they lift more than a 10 pound weight. The series will hopefully also serve as a bit of a road map or guide for the ladies who do want to build a muscular physique, but also prepare them for the difficult journey ahead and help them set reasonable expectations for their progress. The hope is that eventually this series will also help motivate those people.

Just as I finished that thought another thought popped into my head. Such a series had to have been done before. There is no way that I’m the only woman in the world who has a background in the fitness industry, wants a muscular physique and is a big enough nerd that they would want to name a series about that something along the lines of “My Quest To Become She-Hulk.” I will admit that that thought put a dent in my high spirits. Despite that though I was still excited about the idea so I spent most of that day searching for that existing series and running the idea past anyone who would listen.

Much to my surprise I couldn’t find anything that really fit the bill by the end of the day and the overwhelming majority of people who I ran the idea past were supportive and interested. That was that, I decided I should jump into the idea with both feet. I wrote up the exercise program I would follow, decided on a calorie goal and committed to making the weekly series.

The series is now almost three months old and everything is in full swing. There have been, as there always are, a few small bumps along the road but all things considered the series so far has been a success.

Highlights from the journey so far:

During the first few days eating enough food to reach my calorie goal every day proved to be a little bit more difficult than I had expected. I had to make a conscious effort to eat because I always felt full. Oh, and the bloating. There was some serious bloating going on. I had some stomach pain as well. Turns out that I should have maybe ramped up my calories during the first week. Hindsight is always 20/20 isn’t it? The only days that I didn’t have much trouble eating enough calories were the days that I ate out since a meal at a restaurant can easily knock out 1,000 calories or more.

Getting stronger always has been and always will be something that is incredibly rewarding and exciting to me! Every single one of my lifts has gone up since I started bulking. Well, my pull up count is still stuck at 2 but it has stayed at 2 even though I am gaining weight so I am going to count that as that lift getting stronger!

Something I didn’t think about at the time was gaining weight = no longer fitting into my current wardrobe. I have had to do a lot more clothes shopping than someone who doesn’t particularly enjoy it would have liked in the past few months. I’m sure I will have to do more shopping in the future.

One day I accidently kicked the subwoofer underneath my desk so hard that I had bruising all around my pinky toe and walking ranged from uncomfortable to painful for almost a week. Don’t worry I didn’t break anything! This lead to one workout getting skipped altogether and the next two being only upper body workouts that had me laying on a bench with my foot in the air to keep it from swelling. Also there was no one else in the gym when I was working out so no one saw me looking a little silly. Not that people in the gym would have kept me from doing it anyway.

You can watch the series over on my YouTube channel. Here is the first episode to get you started!

 

My Post-Workout Smoothie

My Post-Workout Smoothie

How to make my post-workout smoothie.

The first thing I put in is a scoop of my protein powder. The protein powder I use is plant based. I get it from Costco. Some people find it a little bit sweet because of the sweetener that they use, but I find that it tastes just fine as long as you put a banana in there with it. You can use whichever protein powder you want there are a couple options for dairy free protein powders out there you just have to look.

Next I put in about a tablespoon of milled flaxseed. It is an easy source of omega-3s.

The next ingredient is a biiiiiig handful of spinach. The spinach gives the smoothie a really nice green color and also, you gotta have those leafy greens! It is a great way to get them into your diet. Even if you do not like spinach trust me, you will not taste it.

The next ingredient is probably my favorite, frozen bananas. These things taste amazing in smoothies.

Once you have your banana in there and everything is packed down the last thing you need to do is add some water. I add about 1 cup or 1 cup and a half. Depends on how much you have in your smoothie. You just need enough water so that it will blend properly.

All that is left is to hit blend and then wait a minute or so until it is mixed fully and then there you go, one tasty smoothie. Feel free to experiment with the ingredients and maybe add some more of your favorite fruit.

Here is an extra little pro tip for you guys: rinse out your blender right away. Do not let it sit. It will be a million times easier to clean it afterwards trust me. Have a great day and make yourself a smoothie!

 

How To Be Successful

How To Be Successful

How to stick to your program and be successful.

First thing you want to do is to be honest with yourself about why you are doing this. It does not have to be a socially acceptable reason and it does not have to be a reason that anyone else has suggested to you. It has to be your reason, the actual reason that you are doing this. You are going to remind yourself of this reason as often as you can and you are going to write it down. Preferably you are going to write it down in a place where you can always have access to it. You want to be able to have a look at it every single time that you are thinking about not doing something that you are supposed to be doing for your program.

For example, today you do not really feel like going to the gym, you are kind of tired and you had a ruff day at work. You can look in your phone or in your planner wherever you have that reason written down. You are going to look at that reason and then you are going to go to the gym. Being able to see that reason and be reminded of that reason will help give you the motivation to follow through.

Something else that is also very important to being successful is having a growth mindset. Do not focus on how good you are now, focus on how you can improve. You have to know that things like intelligence and willpower are not fixed and that we can develop them. Do your very best to not let your personal traits become part of your personal identity. Your personal traits could be “I have failed in the past” or “I have extra fat”. But do not let that become part of your personal identity. You are not a failure and you are not fat.

Speaking of failure we have to plan for failure. No one is perfect. You are going to stumble along the way. You have to put a plan in place for when you do fail. For example, you missed your workout today because your day ended up being just insane there was no way you could get that workout in. Well, tomorrow you are going to get that workout in no matter what. It is going to be your life’s mission that day! If you do happen to fail you will want to reflect on in. Reflecting often is another way to be successful. Alright, you failed now you have to think about why you failed. What lead to the failure and what can you do in the future to make sure that it never happens again. If you are tracking your food intake it is important to sit down at least once a week and look over your food log and reflect on how well you are doing. Can you make any improvements? Or are you doing fantastically?

You do not want to just reflect on the negative. You also want to reflect on the positive. If something has been working particularly well you will want to make note of it and reflect on it. Do not forget, if you have been working on something for awhile now to recall where you came from and how far you have come already.

Another important thing that you can do to be successful is to not expect everything to change all at once you will be more successful if you make small and gradual changes over time. Do not just celebrate your results celebrate all of the effort you put towards getting those results. You went to the gym when you did not feel like going and you spent all that time prepping food on the weekends. For that, you deserve a pat on the back.

It is also important to focus on the process rather than the outcome. You can make process-related goals like, “go to the gym 3x a week this week” or “eat 2 servings of vegetables every day this week”. When you focus on the process your weight loss or your physique goal will come naturally. However, the reverse is often not true.

 

How Online Training Works

How Online Training Works

How online training with me works.

The first thing you are going to do when you sign up for online personal training with me is fill out your intake form. Take your before pictures and also take a video of yourself doing the 3 movement screening exercises. I will use all of that information as well as everything that we talked about during your consultation to write you your individualized exercise program. From this point on your level of support depends on exactly how much you want. You can take videos of yourself doing the exercises that I have given you. I will make sure that you are doing them with good form and will make any corrections as needed. I can offer you nutritional advice if you need it. If you want to you can check in via email daily. We can also have a weekly skype call where you can ask any questions that you might have and we can also talk about your progress face to face. Of course any necessary changes that we have to make to your program we will make as we go along.

If you have any other questions about online personal training you can always email me at alana@alanakeelingfitness.com you can also have a look at my website for more information.

 

Build Confidence

How To Build Confidence

Weight lifting helps people build confidence.

Today I want to talk about why. Over the years I have seen a very interesting side effect of weight lifting in my clients. They started to build a whole lot of confidence. Something that they were not expecting or really hoping for but it just sort of happened. And I think it is just due to the nature of weight lifting itself. When someone starts weight lifting a lot of the time doing something like deadlifting 200lbs off of the floor seems like a goal that they could never accomplish. But then a few months down the line all of a sudden they are able to do it and do it with ease. Talk about a confidence builder! Being able to do something that you never thought possible is awesome. In weight

Being able to do something that you never thought possible is awesome. In weight lifting if you are tracking your workouts correctly it is very easy to see your progress. For example when people look back at their workout logs and find that they are lifting 30 more lbs than they were a few months ago it is an amazing feeling. You get to watch as your bench press goes up by 5lbs and then 5lbs again and then 5 more pounds. And then all of a sudden you are bench pressing 100lbs and you can not help but feel a little bit more confident in yourself. For a lot of people, weight lifting gives them a healthy way to exert control over their life. With weight

For a lot of people, weight lifting gives them a healthy way to exert control over their life. With weight lifting you can set reasonable goals and work towards them in a fairly controlled environment. It is a great training place for life in general. You can set a goal to lift a certain amount of weight. You will work towards that goal and eventually you will get there. As long as it is a reasonable goal. Weight lifting has a lot of benefits and one of the ones that I’ve found that I didn’t quite expect was that it’s a great confidence builder. If you liked the video please like the video. Subscribe and I will see you next time. Thanks for watching.

Weight lifting has a lot of benefits and one of the ones that I have found that I did not quite expect was that it is a great confidence builder.

 

What Is Fitness

What Is Fitness

Let’s talk about what fitness is.

If you ask me fitness is not just about fitting into a certain size of clothing or looking a certain way. Fitness is about a lot of things. It is about increased quality of life. It is about longevity. It is about increased confidence. It is about being pain-free. Fitness is about feeling good and taking care of yourself and being the best version of yourself that you can be! Fitness is not just about changing your body, it is about changing your mind too. Fitness is about building a body that will not get in the way of what you want to do with your life, but will help facilitate it. To me fitness is about the long term!

 

Exercise Tempo

Exercise Tempo

Let’s talk about exercise tempo.

In your exercise program from me you will see a 4 number notation. That is the exercise tempo that you will be working at. The first number is the eccentric phase of the lift. This is when, say, during the bench press you are lowering the bar towards your chest. The second number is the pause at the bottom of the lift. The third number is how long it is going to take you to push the bar back up to the top. The last number is how long you pause before you start the next repetition. For example, if you are doing some more explosive work your notation might look something like: 2-0-1-0.  What it would look like is, it would take you 2 seconds to bring the bar down to your chest. You would not pause at the bottom. You would simply touch and push the weight back up. It would take you 1 second to push from your chest back up to the top. Then you wouldn’t pause before you started your next repetition. You’d come back down for 2 and continue on.

 

Good Form

Good Form Why

Why good form is important.

If you ask me one of the keys to success in they gym along with consistency and a good diet is good exercise form. That is for a few reasons. First reason, and one I bet you already guessed, is that it reduces the risk of injury. When you are working towards a goal in the gym the last thing want is to be out on an injury. Another reason that you want to make sure that you are using good form is because you want to make sure that you are targeting the correct muscles when you are working out. Good form is also important for optimal strength and muscle gains over the long term. I like to think of it this way, if I am cheating on a rep I am just cheating myself. The best thing you can do for yourself is to not lift with your ego. If you need to reduce the weight, reduce the weight! Good form is especially important for beginners because it is much easier to get into a good habit now than it will be to get out of a bad habit later. If you’re used to doing and exercise with really bad form it is hard to, down the road, get out of that bad habit. It is easier just to learn the exercise with good form right off the bat. You will thank yourself later!