Excited for the Road Ahead

I’ve been so busy that I have not written anything here in quite sometime. But as I review the past year, I am headed in a clear direction with a defined path and it feels great!

A lot of exciting thing are happening

  • Became Certified by ISSA as a Fitness Nutrition Specialist
  • Continuing my education with the Bayesian Personal Trainers course
  • Adding in some specialty education with a Powerlifting Instruction course thru NCCPT  (qualifies for 20 CEUs for ISSA re-certification)
  • And looking at getting certified with Precision Nutrition as well, this will just be starting as the previous two are ending

I’m looking forward to getting some volume back in my training as I take a break from meet prep here in the off season, and hope to build up some better work capacity and strength as I seem to respond better to lots of volume. Excited to be looking into my 2nd year of powerlifting and the new experiences it will bring.

This year was a mixed bag for meet performance, my first meets were my best. I did happen to get 205lbs for squat at my second meet, which was the my only missed attempt at my first meet. I couldn’t come anywhere near the 165 bench I hit at an unsanctioned bench comp weeks after my first meet. I hit a new PR with deadlift at my second meet with 270lbs.  Looking back on my training I don’t think there was enough volume in my programming and didn’t get peaking quite right. So I will be approaching training from a different angle next year.  I did compete in 3 full meets and 2 bench only comps. I plan to scale that back next year to just 2 full meets, likely one in the spring and one in the fall.

I’ve had the pleasure of being introduced to the world of strong man/woman and I absolutely fell in love! Without a gym close by I’ve been having fun figuring out how I can implement some of that into my training. Constantly reading and expanding my base of programming and exercise selection to have as many tools in my box as I can. Its also been fun switching things up and trying out new and different alternative lifts.

Here’s looking forward to another year of great people, leaning and getting stronger!


Decision-fatigue & Why Prepping is a Good Idea


(psychology) The deteriorating quality of decisions made by an individual after a long session of decision making.


Decision-fatigue is just starting to be fully understood by physiologist and researchers. Self-control is like a muscle that can be both strengthened and fatigued.

Just like you may be tempted to “cheat” the last few reps in your set as you get physically fatigued; your decisions throughout the day can be mentally fatiguing. On average people spend 3-4 hours a day resisting temptations. To make things worse, most of the time we do not realize when fatigue has set in & begins to affect our decisions. Where you can often “feel” when you are physically fatigued, you often have no idea when you become mentally fatigued.

Once fatigued the brain attempts to cheat in two main ways. You may become reckless and impulsive instead of expending the energy to fully think through the consequences of your decisions. “Screw it cake!” Might be a familiar example of this. The other short cut the brain may seek is to shut down and avoid any decision at all.

This could spell disaster for keeping self-control in tack in the evening & explains why it’s harder to resist temptations during this time.

How do we best set ourselves up to be successful in the face of decision fatigue? Make meals a non decision. And removing trigger and temptation foods from the home.

By taking one day a week and doing all the planning and prepping, we make meals a no decision event. We get home tired both physically & mentally & just open the fridge & gab a container heat and eat. We are no longer a victim of decision-fatigue where our diets are concerned. By planning ahead we empower ourselves to keep on track even when we have no will power to do so!



Meal Plan High Lights

There have been a lot of people asking for more details on my meal plan. I am going to briefly touch on the main key points here, as I have something coming along that will go into much greater detail!

First I’ll talk about my particulars… I am somewhere between 18-22% body fat therefore I need to eat more fat to meet my energy needs and not take too big of a deficit. This is where calorie cycling comes in. There are a couple different ways to cycle. You could eat at say a straight 20% deficit for three weeks then on the fourth week eat at maintenance; this is a simple straight forward approach. I choose to use a three tier approach and cycle with my training. Cycling a low, medium and high calorie day paired with the intensity of my training. Low being rest days and high being my most intense workout.
I also incorporate circadian weighted meal timing. This optimizes meal timing and content of meals to coincide with our bodies’ natural rhythms which are regulated by day night cycles. There are three aspects to this.

  • First is the general idea to eat when you are active, therefore during daylight hours and to have all your meals in before night fall.
  • Second that body has different times when fat and muscle tissue is more or less insulin sensitive and this affects when we should be eating the carbohydrates contained in our diets.
  • And thirdly, Breakfast should be the biggest meal and less for lunch and less for dinner, and partially over laps with the second point above.

I also implement a TKD (targeted keto diet) protocol. This is a method for consuming some quick absorbing carbs right before training to help fill muscle glycogen to support great effort.

Lastly I also aim to maximize MPS (muscle protein synthesis) so no snacking, all food is eaten with a meal, and these meals are spaced to allow the body to refill ATP and for plasma levels of leucine to fall back to baseline, and set up for the next time MPS is triggered. Also enough leucine is eaten at each meal to trigger MPS in the first place.

I really concentrate on getting enough leucine and therefore about 2/3 of my protein for the day comes from cheese like swiss, parmesan and cheddar. I find that as long as I keep the cheese to meals, and DO NOT snack on it, it does not negatively affect me at all! And since I have always loved cheese it makes my meals very enjoyable. The meats I generally eat are things like chicken breast, sirloin or ny strip steak, salmon, eggs (whole and whites) and ground beef of varying fat contents to meet my macros. I actually eat salmon every night for meal 3; this optimizes omega fatty acids as well. I include some veggies in my first two meals; such as broccoli, asparagus, spinach and green beans.

This is really the nuts and bolts of my meal plan. As you can see I aim to optimize a lot of different areas, and I feel that it is really paying off! I am eating 1650-2200 calories and losing 1-2 lbs a week. I am very close to goal, and generally losses like these are not realized with so little weight left to lose. I lift intensely in the gym and do very little cardio.

Please stay tuned I have some exciting things coming up in the near future! Hoping you all success in your weight loss / muscle gain efforts!

Meal Timing & When to Eat
Insulin sensitivity/Insulin Resistance (IR) & Muscle Protein Synthesis (Ketogenic Dieters Facebook Group Post)

Here are is some further reading on circadian rhythms.

“Afternoon Diabetes” and nutrient partitioning

High Energy Breakfast with low Energy Dinner Helps Control Blood Sugar in People with Type 2 Diabetes

Circadian Surprise: How Our Body Clocks Help Shape Our Waste Line

Meal Timing and Peripheral Circadian Clocks

Entraining Central and Peripheral Circadian Rhythms

Further reading on TKD


Videos and further reading on MPS
Dr. Layne Norton presents on Refractory Phenomenon

some further reason not to snack

Prevention of Resistance – Hormonal Obesity XII

The Perils of Snacking – Hormonal Obesity XIII

Cheese Rocks for protein and leucine especially Swiss, Parmesan & Cheddar

Protein cheese chart

List of some meats to reach leucine threshold for mps (Ketogenic Dieters Facebook Group Post)

Plan for Success or Plan to Fail

You have your macros but have no idea how to turn them into meals. Then this book is for you. Find out how to meal plan using several different methods. Extensive protein carbohydrate and fat food list. Section on prepping as well.

$4.99 for the book. And well worth it for the food list alone!

Send me your email in a msg & I will send you an invoice. Then once I receive payment I will send you a password for the download page.


How to Clarify Butter

Why Clarify Butter
When you clarify butter, you remove any remaining milk solids and water. This results in a few benefits such as:
– Raising the smoke point from 350 (regular butter) to 450. This means you can sear steaks and sautee at higher temperatures; as its the milk solids that burn when the butter gets to hot.
– Extends shelf life. Removing the water reduces rancidity and allows the butter to be stored like more traditional fats such as olive oil.
– By removing the milk solids you also remove any remaining lactose. This allows those that suffer from lactose intolerance to enjoy butter.

How to Clarify Butter
1) Purchase a good high quality unsalted butter. It is acceptable to use salted, there is just no way to determine how much salt will remain in the finished product.

2) Unwrap butter and place in the crock pot. Turn the crock pot to the middle setting and let the butter melt fully.

3) Once the butter is fully melted, turn heat up to high and allow butter to come to a soft boil.

4) Place a strainer over a bowl. Then place a folded piece of cheese cloth that is several layers thick in the strainer.

5) As the butter softly boils the milk solids with either rise to the top or sink. Every 10 minutes or so ladle off the solids on top. Strain thru cheese cloth to make sure you don’t waste any finished product. Turn down the heat as needed to keep butter from boiling too hard.

6) Once most the water has been boiled off, carefully strain remaining butter thru a new piece of cheese cloth being careful to leave in remaining water behind.

7) Let butter cool to room temp and place in container to store. Maybe be stored at room temp or in the refrigerator.

Letting the milk solids stay in until brown before removing, will give the finished product a nice nutty flavor.


Butter softly boiling in crock pot & straining out the milk solids.


Clear finished product.

Looking Up!

My life has really gone through some big changes in the last few months and as I get this new year underway there are lots of exciting and positive things to look forward too!!

Big life changes really had the stress ramped up for a while. Now that that is mostly behind me and I am all settled in a new directions things have settled and are really going in a good.

I finally kicked myself in the butt and started my first group diet coaching adventure. I have been successfully helping people for sometime, however I have finally jumped in with two feet and going to try and make a business out of it. I am excited with my first group and to do everything I can to ensure their success! Excited to see how much fat loss we can accomplish is 12 weeks!

I continue to lean more from Menno Henselmans Personal Trainer course.  It is very exciting and interesting. We are diving into training and I am very interested and motivated to make some sense out of an area, that frankly has somewhat intimidated me, simply because of the shear volume of information out there on training. I’m motivated to get a solid foundational understanding so that I can better analyze existing programs and information out there. And hopefully start to customize my own training.

POWERLIFTING!!  I have really switched gears here. I have really put any kind of bodybuilding show on the way back burner for now. I am pursuing powerlifting. I am registered for a show end of April!  I am super excited about the meet!  Had to invest in a bunch of new equipment as none of what I had was IPF approved.  And THANKS to the people (you know who you are!) who selflessly helped me pay for said equipment and with USAPL membership and Meet registration!!  Also for the kick in the butt that finally got me moving in this direction instead of just thinking about it! It all means so much to me!! Probably way more then the people involved could ever really understand!

So thus I am venturing forward into unknown territory with a bright wide open future in front of me! Here is to following your dreams, never giving up & doing what it takes to get there! I am feeling loved and fortunate to be involved in such a great community and honored to know such great people!

KetoCaNa Review part 2

I wanted to write quickly about my experience over the last week.

I’ve gone back to strict cutting macros over the last week with Protein Sparing Modified Fast on rest days. In the past my strength & energy has greatly suffered from this & I end up increasing calories to make strength gains.

This time is different. This time I’ve noticed no loss of strength or energy. My weights on the bar are increasing while the number on the scale is decreasing! So what’s different? My Preworkout routine has changed.

If you read my first review, you’ll remember I reserved KetoCaNa and Keto8 for my 2 most difficult training days.

Well ive started taking both everyday in conjunction with caffeine and 12g dextrose PWO. I’m loving it! Leg day is Monday and it can be tuff following PSMF. Last Monday I never noticed any difference at all. And all week I’ve been going strong! I’m estatic! I’m now on the road to hit my goal of 18% body fat all the while still killing it in the gym!

Now this poor girl just has to figure out how to afford to keep buying it! Will work for KetoCaNa??

Original KetoCaNa Review

High Protein?

Here is the difference between weight loss and maintenance broken down

Some very important things to understand here..
Total Energy Expenditure

lets say for ease that 2000 calories is maintenance level that is how many calories I would have to eat to maintain not lose and not gain

But I want to lose some body fat so I am in weight loss

170g protein – 680 kcal – 49%
70g fat – 630 kcal – 45%
20g carbs – 80 kcal – 6%
total 1390 kcal

this looks high protien low fat, except now lets add in the amount of fat that would come from fat stores

170g protein – 680 kcal – 34%
70(dietary)+68(body fat)g = 138g – 1242 kcal – 62%
20g carbs – 80 kcal – 4%

now we see that when total energy expenditure is accounted for and the fat coming from the body is accounted for that the diet is in fact high fat!


all the fat would come from the plate to keep from losing weight..

A diet that looks low fat and high protein may not be once body fat is figured into the big picture!!

And this is also a really big reason why grams always grams NOT % when figuring a diet!  Even at 3g/kg lbm this diet is ketogenic and is within the ketogenic “ratio” you just have to look at the big picture!


Chart below from
Dr. Stephen Phinney – ‘Achieving and Maintaining Nutritional Ketosis’


KetoCaNa Review

I am following a ketogenic diet and carbs are very low. I get my energy from fat & ketones. Here is a basic primer on ketogenic diets if you are not familiar Ketogenic Basics .

For the last couple months I’ve been doing a Protein Sparing Modified Fast (PSMF) on rest days from the gym to help fat loss. It has worked great except after 2 days around 1000 kcal Monday in gym can be rough to say the least. And to make matters worse, Monday is leg day, one of the most taxing training days. The past 3 leg days I have used a product from KetoSports, Keto CaNa.

KetoCaNa contains 11.7 grams of the ketone body Beta-Hydroxybutyrate (BHB) per serving in a delicious orange flavored base. It contains no artificial sweeteners, flavorings or colors. Consumption of KetoCaNa before exercise can result in significant decreases in oxygen demand and increases in performance.

What I have discovered is Keto CaNa delivers a very nice steady state of energy that really boosts stamina and helps offset the lack of strength from low calorie intake. Coupled with Keto8, an MCT oil, I feel unstoppable in the gym.

I am doing a recompisition, losing fat while building muscle, and therefore calories need to tightly controlled. At only 68 kcal a serving for KetoCaNa, it is a big endurance boost with only a few calories, which I do account for.

I also took KetoCaNa before my last heavy back day. Thursday (4th training day) is back day. And even here with a bit higher calorie intake (still deficit though) I noticed a marked increase in endurance. I was able to lift more reps at each different weight.

Unfortunately KetoCaNa is on the expensive side, though a lower price with more Beta-Hydroxybutyrate (BHB) per serving then other similar products out there. I will be reserving it’s use to the two most taxing days, legs & back, but feel the benefits on these days out weigh the cost.

Bottom Line
If you are looking for an increase in endurance/staying power I would suggest you try KetoCaNa.