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Go Hard Or Go Home: What An Intense 12 Week Training Programme Can Do To Your Body

Is 3 months enough time to get in shape for a holiday? Does weight lifting & taking protein make you bulk? What are you supposed to eat whilst training like a beast?

Bikini bodies aren’t made in summer, for summer.. hell, they’re not even made in winter for summer – they take a LOT of time and dedication. It’s a full-time job, without as many holiday days and definitely no days in lieu, and it gets harder as you get older.

For some of us, balancing work, exercise, socialising, eating healthily and sorting general life admin is a struggle, without a legitimate reason for it to be so. Life literally just happens too fast.

For me, I just want to feel comfortable in my own skin. Cry me a river. 3 months away from a trip to Ibiza, I signed up to a 12-week fitness programme at Roar Fitness which consisted of 3 personal training sessions per week, a nutrition plan and regular body measurements. Get me on that abs train!

WEEK 1:

Up at 5am for a 6am nutrition appointment, where I had to take my top off for the nutritionist. Do people actually wake up this early? The pincers came out and he grabbed every inch of fat on my body. Right. Cool. At least he didn’t ask to then take a ‘before’ photo. Oh wait…

The sesh: squats, lunges, deadlifts, shoulder press, chest press and rows… you know the drill. I couldn’t move for 2 days, I couldn’t sit on the loo. I thought I’d have to wee standing up for the rest of eternity.  

Still hurting by session 2, which consisted of attacking exactly the same muscles, means I now seriously understand the term ‘no pain, no gain’. So. much. pain.

I won’t give all 12 weeks a full rundown but here are a couple of key notes from the programme that might persuade (or dissuade) you from doing one: 

1. MEAL PREP IS YOUR BFF

2. YOU CAN GET THOSE UGLY HAND CALLUSES AFTER A COUPLE OF SESSIONS

3. EATING OUT IS ANTI-SOCIAL UNLESS THERE'S STEAK AND VEG ON THE MENU

4. HAVING A 4 EGG OMELETTE EVERY MORNING ISN'T AS BAD AS IT SOUNDS, EXCEPT THE FIRST FEW TIMES WHERE IT CAN TAKE UP TO 40 MINUTES TO EAT

5. A 'CARB COMA' IS A REAL THING - I MISSED THE HOTTEST DAY OF THE YEAR BECAUSE OF IT

6. PIP AND NUT NUT BUTTER IS A LIFE SAVER

7. TAKING PROTEIN POST WORKOUTS REALLY HELPS REDUCE THE PAIN

8. SUPPLEMENTS SMELL LIKE DOG FOOD BUT I GOT ILL AFTER I STOPPED TAKING THEM, SO TAKE THEM

9. EATING COPIOUS AMOUNTS OF MEAT WILL DENT YOUR BANK ACCOUNT

10. BREAKING THE 'DIET' IS A BAD IDEA, EVEN IF IT'S YOUR BIRTHDAY (I PROJECTILE VOMITED 12x A FEW HOURS AFTER EATING DAIRY - TMI)

11. YOU HAVEN'T TRAINED HARD UNTIL YOU CRY (3x) IN THE GYM

12. HELLWEEK AT BARRY'S BOOTCAMP IS A MUST IF YOU HAVE EXTRA ENERGY (WHICH YOU WILL)

13. BOOTY GAINS HAPPEN

14. LIFTING WEIGHTS IS MOSTLY MENTAL

People always say that with training it’s 80% food, 20% diet. Abs are made in the kitchen blah blah. That is SO TRUE! Initially, the meal plan hit me like a wet fish in the face – no carbs for 4 weeks (apart from day 15) and the meals were larger with much more protein than I was used to, but it worked! If you can dedicate enough time and stick to a programme for 12 weeks, I'd definitely say it's worth it... & I felt so great on holiday!

I haven’t mentioned weight for a reason and that's because weight means nothing when you’re lifting. I lost 5kg, which doesn’t sound like that much & interestingly between measurements 2 and 3 (the carb weeks, 5-9) although my body fat decreased, my weight increased because muscle weighs more than fat.

MAIN EXERCISES:

Lunges, Deadlifts, Bicep curls, Chest press, Shoulder press, Seated rows, Lat pulls, Triceps, Hamstrings, Prowler, Pendulum squats, Reverse hyperextensions – 3 sets, 13-15 reps. To give some perspective, in 12 weeks I went from deadlifting 40kg to 90kg - a LOT more than my body weight.

EXTRA ESSENTIALS:

Vegan protein (I alternated between PRESS' Organic Pea Protein and Neat Nutrition's vegan vanilla protein), Pip and Nut almond butter, Wild Nutrition supplements (Multivitamins, Vitamin D, Magnesium), Roar Fitness supplements (Omega 1250, Blood Glucose Control), Hydrate M8 water bottle.

Below is a rough guide of what I ate over the 12 weeks but if you want any more details about the programme, leave a comment below and we'll get back to you.

Breakfast:

4 Egg omelettes, onion, coconut oil, pepper 

Snack:

Celery and 30g nut butter 

Lunch:

Grilled chicken salad - 200g chicken breast, leafy herb salad, 2tblsp olive oil, 1tblsp sesame seeds, lemon

Afternoon Snack:

90g Olives 

Dinner:

Turkey meatballs with cauliflower mash - 150g turkey breast mince, chopped onion, fresh herbs, any spice and boiled/steamed cauliflower mashed with 1tsp butter & salt 

Breakfast:

Protein Pancakes - 2 scoops protein powder, 2 eggs, 50ml coconut milk, coconut oil, 100g coconut yogurt or 1tbsp nut butter 

Lunch:

Coconut turkey stir fry - 300g turkey and 120g mixed veg, 1tbsp coconut oil

Dinner:

Chicken satay - 200g chicken breast, green beans, mushrooms, soy sauce, 1tbsp peanut butter, cayenne, garlic

Breakfast:

150g smoked salmon, 1/2 avocado and 1 poached egg

Lunch:

Thai beef salad - 200g  lean beef strips, lettuce, grated courgette, 1tbsp soy sauce, 2tbsp fish sauce and fresh chilli, 1tbsp oil (+250g sweet potato twice a week, split into 2 meals)

Dinner:

Grilled pork loin or tuna steak - 200g pork loin or tuna marinated in garlic and ginger and boiled/steamed green beans.

 

 

 

Chloe Palmer, Editor, @chloe.palmer_
DISCLAIMER: We endeavour to always credit the correct original source of every image we use. If you think a credit may be incorrect, please contact us at info@press-london.com

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