Monday, November 30, 2009
10:16 AM | Posted by Martin Berkhan | Edit Post
Me: Could you describe your training routine - for example, do you have a preference for lower or higher volume, or lower or higher rep ranges? Do you stick with the basics or do you include a lot of assistance movements to target smaller muscle groups?
Kristine: I like to variate my training when it comes to volume and rep ranges. I have stuck with a 2-split since I started and it works good for me. I prefer lower reps with higher volume, so I often train a 5x5 program. Then I usually go over to high reps with lower volume, I try to have a period of 3-4 weeks before I change it around again. I have since the summer trained after something called "myo-reps" and it has worked very well. It emphasizes the importance of increasing volume after every pass - it is easy to forget sometimes, routines usually take over. I like the combination of both basics and assistance, but my priorities are basics and free weights.
Me: I see. I like the fact that you're currently doing 5x5 and not some foo-foo routine. Might set a few of my female readers on the right path. Make them steer clear of the usual pump 'n tone bullshit. You've called yourself a perfectionist. How does this quality affect your training? Does it cause stress? If so, how do manage your stress?
Kristine: I call myself a perfectionist, yes. That can work as a motivation, but be careful not to let it bring you down. I always want to be the best I can - and when I reach a goal I set another one almost immediately. I have always wanted to do things in my own way, and I don't like asking for help. I like it tough and independent. I love training, especially when I experience "good" stress and I often feel strong because of the pressure I put on myself. That is what has brought me to where I am now, hard work and no breaks.
I have also experienced a lot of bad stress, the kind that will eat you up inside. That is why I emphasize the importance of having a balance in life. As long as you're aware of it you can do something about it. And part of having a good balance is knowing that everything will fall into place if you give it some time. Some things are more important than others, so pick your battles wisely.
Me: Wise words. I know what you mean. On to something completely different. Obviously a very sensitive topic, but how common is steroid usage among your peers?
Kristine: I have chosen to follow my own plan and as a result of this I have very little to do with the environment, therefore I don't have much insight as to how common usage is. I do know that it is more uncommon to not use. I have taken a stand and I am proud to say that I'm not even close to ever consider it.
Me: That's a very healthy and sound mindset to have. Glad to hear it. You've had a lot of success in a short amount of time: what else do you desire to achieve in the sport?
Kristine: I have achieved more than I could dream of in this short period of time, it gives me motivation to continue. I would like to compete in figure, USA some time in the future. My physique is not only more suitable there than in Europe, but it's also my ideal and what I want to accomplish body-wise.
Me: Excellent. I wish you all the luck in the world. Finally, what are the three most critical pieces of advice you have for the female reader that wants to lose fat and gain muscle? Diet, training, attitude, anything you can think of.
Training: Don't be afraid to train hard! Girls have to lift those heavy weights in order to see progression. I also recommend cardio in your everyday life, it doesn't have to be for hours or in the morning - do it whenever it fits your schedule.
Diet: Learn as much as you can about your own body; when do you like to eat, how much do you like eat in a meal etc. The main key is to eat 400-500 kcal less than you use every day, when or how you eat is not important. In order to lose fat it is important to eat clean, high-protein food and always a lot of vegetables. There are a lot of healthy desserts you can make as well.
Don't overanalyze everything, keep it simple and fun.
Attitude: The only person who can change your life, body and mind is you. Find out what kind of changes you want to make, learn about all the healthy foods out there and get in to it. The first step is always tough, but the sooner the better.
You have to believe in yourself, we all have willpower - more than we might think.
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