Though things have been progressing quite well with my prep over the last few weeks, I have changed up a few things.

I have never trained twice a day, ever.  I haven't felt the need to and I saw no real reason to do so... until now.  First, I'm bored.  Second, I am tired of running out of gas later in my training rotations.  Third, I felt that it might just push me to the point where I am just completely consumed by the rest of this prep - and that seems appealing, for once.  I felt that I could continue as is and continue to progress but here is my thought process on why I changed it up:

As much as the thought of training twice a day doesn't sound too appealing due to the amount of time invested, it did strike me as appealing because I felt I might have more gas for each session - physically and psychologically.  Yes, I have been having issues physically because I run out of gas on no carbs as my 2nd training rotation is finishing up - putting my last leg session in the "not so effective" category.  This last leg session was horrible on Friday night as all I could do was a ton of leg extensions and leg curls with a few sets of leg presses.  The pump was non-existent and there wasn't a vein to be found.  To say I was depleted was a gross understatement.  I did not want to change my diet much by adding in carbs because progress as far as condition has been very good.  I had to come up with something else to try to get more out of my training sessions as I got more depleted.

I also was struggling psychologically because the sessions were just REALLY long.  Stretching before every session, training for 2 hours and then doing cardio makes for a damn long session ... every ... day.  I found myself going into the gym bitchy and not looking forward to the session, at all.  I was looking at it more as an obligation than something that I wanted to do.

Not only am I doing double sessions but I also increased the frequency by changing from a 4-day rotation to a 3-day rotation that looks like this:

day 1
(am) chest/abs/cardio 

(pm) back/calves/cardio

day 2

(am) delts/traps/cardio

(pm) arms/cardio

day 3

(am) quads/cardio 

(pm) abs/calves/hamstrings (and possibly some glute work if I feel my quad session didn't involve enough glute stimulation)/cardio

day 4

absolutely no training or cardio

The complete day off from any work every 4 days is something that was important so that I could push through 3 days of double sessions and then have a day that I don't have to do anything and can rest and recover.  This is helping physically and psychologically.

The shorter sessions are helping quite a bit, as well.

Splitting the cardio up into 2 sessions I feel is also more beneficial metabolically as I was doing only one session of 45 minutes fasted in the am and then doing my weight training later in the day.  I am still doing 45 minutes per day of cardio (25 postworkout in the am and 20 minutes postworkout in the pm) but splitting it gives me more of a metabolic response than doing it all at once.

I do 2 meals and then do the am session, then 3 meals and the pm session, coming home to have my last meal and then go to bed.

I did also make a diet change.  I am dropping my fats down by taking out the cheese and this is my first real adjustment to the diet in a long time (a couple of months or so).  I dropped roughly 30g of fat and 30g of protein by dropping the cheese so it equates to a decrease of roughly 400 calories.   I don't deal much with hunger when I prep, until I get REALLY low on calories and this has not affected my hunger, at all, or my energy levels (yet).  I also am not as distended as I distend easily even from regular dieting meals for the couple hours that follow a meal.

Bottom line:  I need to get leaner and even though I have been progressing, I need more progress so these changes are allowing this to happen without doing a retarded amount of cardio.  Plus, when I was doing more cardio it didn't seem to help with my condition very much and really only caused me to be more run down and possibly interfere with my recovery.

With the change from a 4-day rotation to a 3-day rotation, I have to figure out my Skiploading schedule.  Right now I have not set the schedule so that I can just see how I respond and make the decision based on how depleted I get.  I have 2 main options that I am considering at this point:

1. do 2 rotations, which would have me Skiploading every 8th day and not changing my current diet, at all.

2. do 3 rotations, which would have me Skiploading every 12th day but there is no way I can go 12 days without adding in some amount of carbs in the second or third rotations or my leg training will continue to be shitty.  If I go with this 3 rotation plan, I will need to add in some clean carbs before my leg training (or on leg training days) for the 2nd and 3rd rotations.

I am leaning towards doing option 2 as I anticipate having some carbs for that one day will help to fuel my leg sessions enough to make them effective but still allow me to continue to burn body fat without having to Skipload so much sooner.  Adding in carbs would be in the area of roughly 100-150g of carbs on leg training days. With only 2 meals prior to training quads on leg days, I would likely have to take in 50g of carbs for the last meal the night before legs (after training arms) and then 50g of carbs in the first 2 meals on leg day, prior to training quads.  I contemplated adding in intra-carbs for leg day, but I don't feel that this will be very effective because I tried this about 2 months ago and was just too depleted for the intra-carbs to really have any effect.  I need to get the carbs in me, store them as glycogen and then be able to access them for my leg session.  What kind of carbs?  Probably sweet potatoes - I would boil them and mash them, making them easy to eat, tasty and easy to digest.

I do not expect to have mind-blowing leg pumps, but I do need my leg sessions to be effective because my legs have withered away over the last several years due to my back injuries limiting how hard and heavy I could train legs.  I can't continue to have ineffective leg sessions and lose size.  When I say the sessions are not effective I am talking about a roughly 30% reduction in strength and my legs shaking so badly that during a leg press I have been scared that my legs might actually just fold on me.  I have dealt with depletion during prep phases before so I am not new to it.  This level of depletion is just too much.

So far, the changes are great.  I have renewed focus and I am motivated and not hating the gym sessions.  Cardio "seems" easier in that the sessions are shorter and yet equally - if not more so - effective than the same amount of minutes all in one shot.

The Skiploads are getting damn big with the last one going almost 2 days, yet I am baselined after only 4 days and look my best 3 days after the Skipload due to being pretty dry but still full.  Obviously, the Skiploading helps me to get leaner, but it also provides invaluable information as to how I will respond during the final Skipload prior to the show.  Right now, the plan is to load for 2 full days and allow myself 2 more days to drop the water (fill and spill), being ready for the stage the following day (day 3 after the load).  I have loaded longer than 2 days for shows in the past but at least right now, 2 days seems to be a good fit, though that could change during this last leg of this prep.

In my next coach log entry, I will go into why my Skiploads are so big and why the fat content is higher than what is normal for most people who Skipload.