Tag Archives: contest prep

Thursday of Peak Week #2

This afternoon, I pinched Chris’s fat and measured its thickness at various locations on his body.  This is the kind of date we go on these days.  Ha!

Back to seriousness, this is called taking skin-fold measurements.  We were doing this to see how lean he is.

Skin-fold measurements are decently accurate at estimating percent body fat if you know what you are doing and have had sufficient practice.  Being amazing, as I am, I do know what I’m doing and I have had sufficient practice.

I pinched and measured Chris at 7 different sites.  We then put the numbers (in mm) that I got into 3 different equations which are all meant to estimate body density which can then be used to estimate percent body fat.

(I say “estimate” because no body composition method can exactly determine percent body fat; almost nothing irritates me more than someone bragging that he is exactly 7.52% or 9.43% body fat.  No, you’re not.  That is an estimate and you are in that range.  Ditch the decimals.  While we’re on the topic of body comp related things that irritate me, the phrase “lean muscle mass” is way up there.  Think about what you’re saying you ridiculous supplement company or new workout fad promoter!  There is lean mass and there is muscle mass but there is no “lean muscle mass.”  Is there fat muscle mass? If I didn’t do your workout or take your supplement would I develop fat muscle mass?  I don’t think so.  So don’t ever say “lean muscle mass.”  Ever.  Or I will throw messy bodybuilder tanner all over you.  Now, back to Chris and the skin-folds.)

It is stated in textbooks that the density of lean mass is 1.1 g/cm^3 while the density of fat mass is 0.9 g/cm^3.  Using three different equations, we calculated Chris’s current body density at 1.089, 1.094, or 1.092 g/cm^3.  Although of course those numbers are not his exact body density, the range of them all is pretty close to 1.1 g/cm^3, meaning, Chris is extremely lean.

When we calculated percent body fat from these numbers, Chris came out at 4.54%, 2.22%, and 3.31%.  This means he does not have much body fat.  (Again, it does not mean that he is exactly 4.54%, 2.22% or 3.31% body fat).

As far as taking his skin-folds went, it was interesting to see that I could get a good fat pinch from the subscapular site (on the mid back) but was clearly measuring just a double layer of skin thickness at the chest and midaxillary (under the armpit) sites.

Chris weighed 189 lbs. today.  He is, once again, clearly the leanest he has ever been.

After we took the skin-folds, on the way home from work, Chris told me I smelled like salad dressing.  I hadn’t eaten any salad dressing.  Or even been around salad dressing today. The man is so hungry.  Well, with his testosterone levels like they must be by now based on my previous case study of him, at least him thinking I smell like salad dressing could finally peak some interest in me maybe…

Oh, were you wondering if Chris had created a new spreadsheet to track changes in his skin-fold thickness measurements, body density, and % body fat in the off-season?  Come on, you know the monster we’re dealing with here.  Body fat

Please note that he titled the spreadsheet, “Offseason.”  I thought spreadsheeting was ending with the show this weekend.  I really thought that was the goal.  But this is clearly a new spreadsheet and it appears that it will be used in the “Offseason.”  I now think Chris may have an addiction to his spreadsheets.  Along with the cinnamonologist recommendation for Chris that I asked for in a previous post (to cure Chris of his excessive use of cinnamon), I think I now need a recommendation for a good spreadsheeters anonymous group for him…

2 days!

Wednesday of Peak Weak for Show #2

Chris just returned from the grocery store and excitedly displayed for me all the foods he bought for next week when competing will be over (for a few years at least), and he can stop spreadsheeting everything he consumes.  The exciting diet-breaking foods he bought were the following:  pistachios, cheese, and a different brand of peanut butter.  Wow.  Don’t go too crazy there buddy.

To accompany these crazy foods, Chris also bought many of the exact same things he has been eating during the diet but, after the diet, he will get to eat them in larger quantities. Gosh, I just don’t know if I can marry a man this CRAZY. 

As a man delighting in preparation, Chris has again pre-selected the wing place where we will go to after the show on Saturday and, of course, he knows exactly what he will eat there (25 hot wings).

In other news, last weekend, we went to Chicago for my friend’s wedding.  There was serious talk of photographing Chris in his posing trunks in front of The Bean, but, much to my dismay, at the last minute Chris decided it was too cold out.  This would have been an awesome blog post if I had a picture of Chris in his posing trunks in front of The Bean (probably with large numbers of people gawking in the background).  Alas.

In Chicago, on Saturday, we made Chris walk around the city for hours in the morning, watch us go out to lunch, and then stay up well past his 9-10 pm eastern timezone bedtime. Saturday was Chris’s planned lowest food intake day of the week so this was tough for him. He was quite the trooper though and powered through although he does look like he might eat someone in this picture taken at the wedding:

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“Soooo hungry!!!” – Chris

We got back to Massachusetts mid-day on Sunday which meant Chris had just enough time for some high-intensity intervals.  As his gym was closed, this meant running hills.  As I love running and love Chris running, whenever Chris runs hills, I feel obligated to run with him.

Chris told me we were going to run “the hill by our apartment,” and, as there are many hills by our apartment, I assumed we were going to run up the closest hill to our apartment which is very steep.  Chris, however, meant that we were going to run up the absolute steepest hill you have ever seen ever, that is also sort of near our apartment.  This is the kind of hill where it looks like cars will topple over backwards when driving up it.

Pictures don’t do it justice, but we took some anyway:

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There’s Chris!  (taken from the top of the hill)

And that's me!

And there’s me! (taken from the top of the hill again)

Note the distant background in the picture; that is the bottom of the hill.

What? Pictures aren’t enough?  You want to see video footage of Chris running up the hill? Well, lucky day for you, I have video footage of Chris running up the hill!  I think the video does a better job of showing the hill’s grade.

I have no idea what those weird noises in the video are.  My breathing maybe?  That at the end there was, “You can stop recording,” as in, “Lindy, I will throw-up on you right now if you do not stop recording this instant.”  He never did vomit.  (Neither did I).  We call that a successful hill workout.

Three days until show number 2!

Grocery Shopping for Show Day

At 7:49 am today I received an email from Chris with a photo attached:

Chris’s Email:  “I call this picture ‘Grocery Shopping for Show Day!'”

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As I read this email, two questions formed:

1)  Really?  All those Reese’s?

2)  You went grocery shopping and were back and composing emails to me at 7:49 am?

When I asked Chris question number one, he explained that yes, he had overbought on the Reese’s but no, it wasn’t out of some delusion of actually eating all of them.  He bought the large pack, because he did not know where in the grocery store they keep the individual candy bars.  Is there a single other person in America who does not know this?!  Ask a 3 year old where the individual candy bars are and he or she can tell you (and will grab some).  Chris has been dieting for way too long.

The answer to question number two was, as expected, that he barely sleeps anymore and was awake at 6 am so he went to the grocery store.  Of course.

To follow up on what I ended with yesterday, yes, Chris just shaved his entire body.  He used the head hair clippers first to get rid of the big hairs on his legs and then followed it up with a once over with the beard razor.  It took him an hour.

And that’s been Sunday with Chris.

 

 

Cinnamon and Coffee

I introduced Chris to cinnamon.  I thought he was strong. I thought he could handle it.  I didn’t know cinnamon would become a contest-prep obsession.

The gateway cinnamon was in oatmeal.  Years ago, I showed Chris how just a bit of cinnamon added to oatmeal and combined with Equal and blueberries is delicious.  Over the years, he started adding more and more cinnamon to his oatmeal; I neglected to notice this dangerous progression.  Around the start of this contest-prep, I showed Chris how I also put cinnamon and Equal in my Greek yogurt; Chris started doing the same…with large amounts of cinnamon.

We don’t buy the modest, cylindrical, cinnamon container; we buy the humongous, we-are-serious-about-our-cinnamon box.  Usually, Chris has back-up cinnamon in the cabinet too (for cinnamon emergencies I suppose).

Despite such cinnamon intensity, I thought Chris was handling his cinnamon OK until the other day when I walked into the kitchen, where Chris had made sweet potatoes, and saw this:

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That is only cinnamon on those sweet potatoes.  That is a full half centimeter layer of cinnamon.  A half centimeter.  Tomorrow, I will take Chris to the cinnamonologist for treatment.

To be fair to cinnamon, it’s not his only spice obsession.  As he gets further and further into the diet, all spices are highly exciting.  He has these anonymous mixed spices that he enthusiastically dumps on everything (except, of course, for the foods he has already doused with cinnamon).  Usually, after spicing foods to the extreme, he then tells me how amazing the food is.  What I want to say, when he tells me how good his spiced broccoli in a bag is, is, “Yeah, but know what else is good? Chocolate ice cream,” but that would be mean so I nod politely and then go outside to cough the spice-dense air out of my spice-blackened lungs.

I sometimes contemplate putting drywall crumbles on his food, telling him it’s a new spice, and seeing if he tells me that it is delicious.  Because he would tell me that it is delicious.   Because he’s hungry a lot these days.  The other day I was eating what had aspired to be a taco salad but, due to my hunger-induced meal-prep corner cutting, was basically ground beef and lettuce, and Chris exclaimed, “Wow, that looks amazing!”  Ground beef and lettuce do not look amazing.

Along with excessive spicing, Chris is also very, very into coffee right now.  He recently decided that your standard-sized travel mugs just weren’t cutting it.  Thus, he purchased a mammoth, transportable, coffee container.  The thing is intimidating.  I imagine him entering a meeting at work, where people sit calmly around a table with traditional coffee cups, and Chris, smiling, plunks this monster down.  I then imagine Chris’s coffee monster eating the traditional coffee cups.

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Hi-ho, hi-ho, off to work with my coffee pot!

Speaking of work, the semester has not started yet so Chris and I are not going into the office regularly, but, the other day, Chris went in for a few hours.  Below is what he brought to sustain himself:

 

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Monster coffee carrier, little coffee cup, shaker bottle, yogurt mixed with cinnamon, apple, peanut butter, whey, scale, and index card listing what is to be eaten when and in what quantities

This day at the office, Chris’s scale gave him the “low battery” message and shut-off.  Luckily, he had already weighed what he needed to and catastophe was averted.  He bought batteries later that night and was about to put them in the scale when he realized that it was working again.  Wha?!  Eventually he realized, with his brilliance, that he had put the food scale on top of the frozen ice pack in the cooler.  And thus, we all learned that food scales cease to function when put on top of frozen ice packs in coolers.

And that’s the kind of fascinating stuff going on around here…

Please let me know if you need the number of a good cinnamonologist.