As I had predicted earlier, there was bound to be an obstacle that would surface in this prep - there always is, it's just a matter of what it will be and when.  For this reason, I knew I had to be ahead of schedule to compensate for the inevitable.

First, I will preface this coach log with this:  The inevitable obstacles this last weekend I do not consider "bad", in any way, shape or form - at least from the perspective of someone who values family above everything else.  From a prep standpoint, it wasn't the best situation but I will expound.

While doing my first cardio session last Thursday, I looked down into the apartment gym to see someone who very much resembled my Step-Mother looking up at me, smiling and waving.  I thought it was odd that someone could look so similar to her, 2000 miles away.  And then my Dad came around the corner and I realized that they had shown up unannounced down here in Fort Lauderdale for the weekend.  This is where from a prep standpoint you might think, "Oh shit, how I do I pull this one off by staying on track and spending time with my Dad."  However, as timing has it, during the cardio session I had already come to the conclusion that I needed a couple of days off as a "cruise" because my workouts were becoming quite unproductive and I was pretty beaten up - my legs especially.  Obviously, I was excited to see them and flattered they would make the trip from Michigan to surprise us.  I was also glad that I didn't have to tell them that I still had double cardio to do all weekend, tanning and 2.5 hours of training every day between working out, stretching and postworkout cardio.

Now, I COULD have stayed on my diet and just not trained which was what I was going to do had they not shown up.  However, there was no way that I was going to not have a weekend of fun with my Dad considering I was ahead of schedule, anyway.  This is what some will consider the "loser" part but along with my transparency during this prep, I admit to not giving even one fuck about what other people think and it was my calculated decision to take the time off, enjoy the time with my Dad and get back on track on Monday.  This is not knowing what else was to come during this weekend.

As I got into the weekend, my wife and I received the call we had been waiting for from our 17-year-old son who had stayed back in Colorado to try to make his way on his own when we moved to Fort Lauderdale.  If you don't have kids, I can't explain to you how hard this was on both of us.  The girls had moved down here with us (including my oldest daughter, her husband and our 2 grandsons), as well.  The only thing missing was our son.

He tried valiantly to make it work but at 17 it just wasn't in the cards and he finally messaged us after 4 months saying, "I can't do it, I need to come home."

We were scrambling to find him a last-minute flight and we managed to get him on a flight within 8 hours and he was here in Fort Lauderdale Sunday morning.

To say the weekend was an emotional rollercoaster would be a gross understatement.  Had I been chasing a pro-card or if it was 10-15 years ago I would have attempted to continue to prep through this emotional situation but I did not - and I was glad that I didn't.  To say the timing was just about as perfect as it could have been, given that I was beaten up and overly depleted.  I figured I would actually benefit from the break and I think I did.  Even if I didn't, I wouldn't have made a different decision and if anyone doesn't understand that, there will still be no fucks given.

Last week before the events of the weekend, I knew I had to make a diet change and "fix" what was wrong.  As much as the modified keto was working to strip fast quite quickly, it was detrimental to my workouts and I realized it was not sustainable.  Yes, I could have changed up my Skiploading to be more frequent and that may have helped but as most of you know, I loaded for 2 full days a couple of weeks ago and even that didn't keep me from going right back to being too depleted within about 10 days.  The changes I came to were these:

I have to put some carbs back into my daily diet and not rely solely on Skiploading for carbs to "reset."  I have never used this current modified keto approach so I had no idea that it would not be sustainable until just a week or two ago.  Even though I would fill out from the Skiploads, the loading was taking a toll on my system that I didn't like - I didn't feel healthy.  I was going from basically no carbs for an extended period of time and then slamming my body with a ton of carbs and even though the outcome was working for short periods of time after the loads, I just felt that the impact on my system was not good.  I was using the SCGS compound and even that wasn't helping as much as I had anticipated that it would.  What I found was that I was in this perpetual loop of getting very depleted and then slamming my system with the shock factor of a ton of carbs and I just didn't like the results.

I have now made a few changes and will have small amounts of carbs pre/intra/post workout to help feed my workouts so that they are more productive in between Skiploads.  It isn't a huge change or addition but 30g pre/30g intra with EAAs/30g post should make an obvious different and then I am leaving carbs out on non-training days and no carbs other than around the workouts.

I am going to change my Skipload frequency to consistently loading after every 2nd training rotation and that means every 9-10 days instead of pushing for a 3rd training rotation and then loading.  I want to be depleted but not so depleted that the Skipload has little to no impact on fullness and metabolism without doing a 1.5 or 2-day load.  That is just too much for my system.  With the added carbs around the workouts and loading consistently after the 2nd training rotation, I anticipate that the loads won't have to be as large (less stress and shock to my system) and I am also going to stay with a 4-day training split instead of sometimes also doing a 3-day split because the 3-day split is just too much work in one session to be productive (even with added carbs around the workouts).

I am still doing double cardio sessions at 45 minutes for the first session of the day and 30 minutes post-workout other than leg days where I do not do any cardio so that my leg sessions can be productive.  I plan to use this double cardio approach at least until I start the beta-agonist fat burner again in another 1.5 weeks and then decide whether I will cut back to single sessions for cardio (doing only the first session and not postworkout cardio) or if I may still need to do double sessions.  Obviously, this will be based on how I progress over the next 1.5 weeks before I make that determination.

The one thing that is promising is I still am retaining a lot of strength after I come off of a Skipload - though only for 2-3 days.  That means that I am responding well to the loads and I am retaining muscle but that the fatigue after getting too depleted is impairing workouts to the point where if I were to have kept this up, I would have potentially started to get to the point of being severely overdieted.  I feel that I caught this in time and that the adjustments are going to be much more positive moving forward not only for my training to be more productive but also from a metabolic standpoint.

A few people close to me have asked why I just don't go back to loading weekly like I have done for years because it worked so well.  The anwer is simply that I don't believe it was working as well this time around and that I was getting more of a benefit stretching the loads further than every week.  My problem is that I like to learn as much as I can and in doing this, I started to push the loads too far apart and I needed to find that happy medium.  I anticipate these current changes to be just that.

In the meantime, I enjoyed my time with my Father and I couldn't be happier that my son is home.  Life is good and I am already shedding a lot of water from the long weekend and feeling much better.  I look forward to this next phase of prep and I am glad that I have done this long enough to know that I needed to be planful as something ALWAYS surfaces that is not planned.