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Craig's Blog #28

Hi again everyone,

Well here we are at the end of 2013 and I am touching base with you all with my 28th blog! This year has definitely been a blur and probably due to the fact that my life has been so full and very busy.

The recent October contest season was another enjoyable experience and journey and I must say so was the post contest rebound! The growth spurt in the weeks after a contest is something that we all need to take seriously as it is a time of making some great gains all whilst staying relatively lean. The proviso with this of course is that you carefully and incrementally add extra calories back in, reduce cardio levels (but NOT to none at all) and maintain your weight training intensity. You can always take a few extra days off the gym later on. For me, this rebound usually lasts for about 3-4 weeks and then the gains plateau, at this point I set my macros and try to stay quite 'clean' with my daily meals. I also maintain cardio sessions of 20-30 minute duration around 3 or 4 times per week. So since my last show on October 13 I have added only 3 kg of body weight and am still quite lean. My plan now is to slowly add another 3-4  kg over the next few months before embarking on a slow and steady run in for September/October season in 2014.

And for the first time since 2009 I have decided to take the May/June off from competition. I have a plan in place to add some extra mass to some lagging body parts which requires more rest and recuperation combined with several new exercises with CW's HIT style training. I also have several clients I would really like to concentrate on with their own journeys to the stage.

One other thing I would like to do in this next season is to be involved more at the judge's table by way of a person that gives feedback to competitors as well as perhaps calling the shots as the judging coordinator. I have had some discussions with legendary ANB promoter David Salamon so hopefully we can work something out at one or two of the upcoming ANB state titles early next year.

CW's YouTube channel

The awesome new gym where I train, Nonstop 24 Hour Fitness in Port Kennedy WA, has recently put in some fantastic new Cybex, Precor and Icarian gym equipment. Most of these are plate loaded machines which enable you to really target the chosen muscle group all while performing a movement very akin to free weights. My YouTube channel entitled "Craig Winter" now has many interesting exercise videos uploaded for your perusal. Some of these include:

Larry Scott style side lat raises
Under and over hand barbell rows
Icarian Supersquats
Smith machine lunges
Gironda incline dumbbell presses
Gironda close grip pulldowns
Cross bench dumbbell pullovers for chest
Heavy stiff-legged deadlifts and many more...

With each video is a written description of how to perform the movement so as to maximise it's function. I now have an App that will hopefully enable me to edit them with some verbal commentary. Until then, they are still worth checking out to give you some new ideas for exercises you may wish to incorporate in your own training routines.

CW's Back session with Nenad

Just recently I had a great back, rear delt and trap workout with my good mate Nenad where the emphasis was on the middle back and lower lats by performing rowing movements first:

1. Heavy underhand grip bent barbell rows 4 sets 20/15/12/8 reps

2. Seated close grip cable rows 2 sets 12/8 reps with a drop-set straight after the 2nd set.

3. Technogym plate loaded wide grip front pulldowns 2 sets 12/8 reps

4. Icarian unilateral parallel grip cable pulldowns 2 sets 12/8 reps

5. Bent over dumbbell rear delt raises 2 sets 12/8 reps with a drop-set after the 2nd set.

6. Heavy dumbbell shrugs 1 set heavy for 12 reps, 1 set lighter with peak contractions for another 12 reps.

Was a grueling workout that resulted in DOMS in the areas I mentioned earlier. The next time I train back I will start the workout with chins and pulldowns so as to place more emphasis on the lats.

Shown below are a few pics after this tough workout was completed, always great to train with someone that is both strong and pushes you hard.

A new addition to my office wall

The latest addition to CW's Office wall is the late great Mike Mentzer.

He was an IFBB pro that competed in the late seventies and arguably was robbed in the 1980 Mr Olympia that Arnold controversially won for the seventh time.

Mike was an advocate of HIT training and certainly built one helluva physique. His training methods were then adapted and applied by the legendary six time Mr Olympia Dorian Yates himself. I have since taken on board this HIT style of training and modified it slightly as well.

My office wall now showcases many IFBB pro's to inspire both myself and my clients.

A pleasant surprise from my gym owners

Just recently the owners of my awesome gym at Nonstop 24 Hour Fitness presented me with 2 singlets and 2 t-shirts with CW along with a list of all my 60 contests to date on the back.

This was a very nice gesture indeed and once again a reminder of just how supportive they have been to their members since opening some 2 years ago.

Nonstop has become a great place to train with a really good working atmosphere along with all their excellent machines and equipment. They also have a very good supplement and gymwear store too.

Always great to know that when you sign up for the direct debit to pay your membership that your ongoing financial contribution actually comes back to you with improved facilities and friendly service.

The festive season approaches

CW and Luscious Louise are now back in Melbourne to celebrate Christmas and New Year festivities with family and friends. During this time I have cut back my training to just 3 days per week with the following workout splits:

Day 1: Quads & Calves
Day 2: Chest & Biceps
Day 3: Hamstrings & Calves
Day 4: Delts & Triceps
Day 5: Back, Rear Delts & Traps

As you can see this workout regime takes 5 sessions to train the whole body and I am doing only 3 of these per week. This means that it takes me around 10 days to cover all the body parts. Many people will say that this frequency is not enough, I can assure you that great gains can be made with this plan as all body parts get trained directly once and then indirectly in another workout. It also allows for plenty of rest and recovery time which as we all know can equate to GROWTH!! Another added benefit with the extra rest is that you give your body a chance for some of those annoying injuries and niggles to heal and recover.
I will, however, as the contest season approaches reassess this frequency by sticking to exactly the same split but increase my training days per week to 4 or 5.
This workout regime is truly worth giving a go, at worst you will achieve maintenance but I reckon you will more than likely experience some pleasantly surprising newfound gains.

A festive farewell from CW!

So as Blog #28 draws to a close I once again thank Maria McCarter and my amazing ANB family for their support this year with my blogging as well as with their fabulous work with natural bodybuilding in Australia. I would also like to thank all those people that have cared to read my stuff and I do appreciate your positive and kind feedback. I am very passionate about our sport and love the many benefits that the health and fitness lifestyle has to offer, and as a result of this I enjoy spreading the word in the hope that more people come on board and reap the same rewards.
In closing, I hope you all set some goals as part of your New Year's resolutions and that you have a wonderful festive/holiday season with your loved ones.

Kind regards and best wishes until next time, CW.

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  1. Re: Craig's Blog #23

    Oh yeah, best of luck for the ANB Asia-Pacific! I'll be keeping an eye out for some good news!Train hard...

    -- Peter Varley

  2. Re: Craig's Blog #23

    Hey Craig, nice blog buddy. Yes, we all either get those positive comments (eg, "you guys are awesome...

    -- Peter Varley

  3. Re: Craig's Blog #19!...

    Hey Leonard, so glad you liked my Blog #19 buddy :-)) Always glad to be of service ;-) Hope you're training...

    -- Craig Bodychisel

  4. Re: Craig's Blog #19!...

    Thanks so much for creating a Blog. A great read with heaps of info that I can commence myself. Look...

    -- Leonard Alfred Birch

  5. Re: Craig's Blog #13!...

    Thanks Gemma for the kind words and glad you enjoyed Blog #13! Look out for Craig's Blog #14 in the ...

    -- Craig Bodychisel

  6. Re: Craig's Blog #13!...

    So great to read your achievements! Love how you have involved your family and they support you. The...

    -- Gemma Dawson

  7. Re: Craig's Blog #7!...

    As usual very informative and motivating. Thanks Craig for yet another awesome blog! Maria

    -- Maria McCarter

  8. Re: Craig's Blog #4!...

    Thanks for that Lauryn I'm glad you enjoyed my Blog #4 :-))Kind regards, Craig W.

    -- Craig Bodychisel

  9. Re: Craig's Blog #4!...

    Cool blog Craig.. A really interesting read. :)Lauryn

    -- Lauryn Dina Meredith

  10. Re: Craig's Blog #1...

    Hi Craig, Great Blog. We look forward to having you be a contributor to the ANB site!

    -- Maria McCarter