Chapter 11 – Amazed at yourself

Date: 27th November 2016
Weight: 53.2kg – Does it even matter? ūüôā
Weeks out: 24 weeks out
Comp date: 7th May 2017, Sunday @ INBA VIC

ponikuta progress

I have to admit, whilst my training has been consistent at 4-5 sessions a week and cardio has been incorporated in most ofmy ¬†sessions; my diet on the other hand hasn’t. I’ve been struggling in¬†getting the right macros and keeping within my macros.¬†I really need to clean up my diet and keep food intake as clean as I possibly can moving forward. This will be my focus for the next week weeks.

ponikuta fitness

Last week’s exercise routine:

  • Legs, glutes, cardio
  • Abs, cardio
  • Shoulders, tris, cardio
  • Cardio – long walk (40 mins)
  • Back, bis

I’m trying to incorporate as much cardio into my routine as possible. Including walks after dinner and days I don’t make it to the gym so I can keep things moving along and keep the heart rate going.

Physique update:

ponikuta weightlifting tips

Front – Feeling leaner than before even though I’m am due for the time of the month in about 3-4 days. Usually I’d feel bloated and carries a stupid amount of water retention with me.

ponikuta fit girl

Back – My arms are slowly filling out and also hit my PR of barbell curls 30kg this week.

ponikuta bodybuilding

Side – Slowly but surely have seen a more defined shoulders. Hopefully this will continue to grow and shape!

Changes this week:

  • This week I’m feeling weaker than usual with a shorter amount of stamina. As a result, lifting has been focused on higher rep and lower intensity. I’ve also switched up my rest time to a minimum so that I can push for the pump.
  • Been cutting out strawberries from my morning smoothie but still taking some other form of fruits (banana, blueberries, apples). So far so good, I feel less bloated already.new nike focus
  • Got myself a new pair of Nike. This is their latest Nike Focus / Free from their rose gold collection. You can’t really see it in this pic but there are specks of rose gold all over it. It’s love and is designed to be a training shoe too!
  • My cheat meal this past week has mostly consist of either dairy products that I should be taking (ice cream, matcha latte, yogurt, etc) and I should really cut down my recent venture into soft drinks (coke zero! yikes no more!).

 

Read all about my weekly progress here:

First 10 weeks: 

Week 1, Week  2, Week 3, Week 4, Week 5, Week 6, Week 7, Week 8, Week 9, Week 10

 

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Bioderma Sensibio Range

Have sensitive skin? Read on!

Many of us don’t realise we have sensitive skin, sometimes it can be reactive (to products, treatments, lifestyle, diet) and sometimes it can just eventuate from build up of poor skincare/lifestyle routine. For those of you who are unaware of Bioderma, here’s 3 things for you to get up to speed.

  1. Made in France
  2. Famous for their cleansing water
  3. Great, afforable skincare that works!

Bioderma Sensibio range

For those with sensitive skin, rejoice! Bioderma has a range dedicated for the sensitive skin folks with active ingredients to prevent skin sensitivity, skin redness and strengthens skin overtime.

  • Sensibio Cleansing Milk (RRP AUD$32.99)
    • This doubles as a non rinse gentle makeup remover and cleanser. The emulsion milk formula is good for full face including eye, lips and face area. Helps with skin sensitivity and strengthen skin overtime to become more resilient and less reactive.
  • Sensibio¬†Toning Lotion (RRP AUD$32.99)¬†
    • Toning Lotion doubles as a double cleanse and to prep skin before moisturiser steap to soothe, decongest and keep skin feeling supple and fresh. Additionally, you can keep this in the fridge during warmer months for a refreshing treat to skin/soothing eye mask.
  • Sensibio AR BB Cream (RRP AUD$43.99)
    • Unfotunately for me, the “light” version of this cream was too dark for my skintone. This anti-redness BB cream has broad spectrum skin protection of SPF30+ and delivers a¬†radiant, velvety finish.

There are other products within the Sensibio range so be sure to check them out when you’re in a pharmacy next as I am sure you’ll love it like I do!

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Chapter 10 – What is your destiny?

Date: 20th November 2016
Weight: 53.4kg
Weeks out: 25 weeks out
Comp date: 7th May 2017, Sunday @ INBA VIC

Let’s start this week’s chapter with a quote I’ve came across recently. It is so simple yet the flow from beliefs to destiny is so true. If you want change, ¬†you need to grasp onto a firm belief that it WILL change, no matter what obstacles come your way.

“Your beliefs become your thoughts,
Your thoughts become your words,
Your words become your actions,
Your actions become your habits,
Your habits become your values,
Your values become your destiny.‚ÄĚ
‚Äē Mahatma Gandhi

progress shot

Oct 2015 vs Oct 2016 – Progress probably could be better if I stop loving food so much! ūüôā¬†

Last week’s exercise routine:

  • Shoulders, cardio
  • Quads, hamstrings, glutes, cardio
  • Abs, glutes, cardio
  • Back, Bis, tris, cardio

abs workout

Managed to hit all my sessions relatively heavy this week and ended all my session with cardio. Maximising¬†my current luteal phase to work on lower-intensity cardio and moderate to heavy strength work at the gym. I’m also trying my best to avoid high carb food to avoid crash in serotonin, nauseating, fatigue and exhaustion. These are all common signs when one is going through luteal cycle.

Physique update:

ponikuta abs

Front –¬†Tried to pose with my arms differently, to keep track of my biceps growth too.


ponikuta comp prep

Back –¬†Waiting for my back muscles to lean out….

ponikuta progress shot

Side –¬†Shoulders has been leaning out and I can see more of a definition here.

Changes this week:

body composition scan

  • This week I went and got a body composition scan update at my local Evelyn Faye supplement store. The last time I did such a scan was back in March 2016 at Arnold’s classic. So it was interesting to track how I’ve gone for 8 solid months of training in between. Overall, whilst my body fat has increased but so has my lean mass index. Glad to see that my arms, legs gains has been symmetrical too.
  • I picked up quite a few tips from a seasoned bodybuilder earlier this week. He mentioned about how it takes 4 days for any food to show in our abs. So if I had cheated with a meal on Tuesday, it’ll show on my belly come Saturday. All I can say is, I will never have good abs on Wednesdays as my dedicated cheat meal day is Saturday. LOL
  • With the increase of cardio exercises, hot weather days in Melbourne and lack of sleep (pretty much surviving on 5-6 hrs per day all of last week); I have been breaking out more than usual and is also slightly dehydrated. I’ve been getting peely lips and flaky nose. It goes to show, sleep is super important especially once you’ve past the 30 mark, it definitely takes time to bounce back.
  • Today, I saw a 7 months pregnant woman working out hard at the gym. She went at it with the treadmill, TRX, stretches and leg machines! The image of her working out reminded me of how there shouldn’t be ANY EXCUSES to not to make it to the gym and work for my goals.
  • For some glitchy reason, I lost my Spotify account. As a result, I’ve lost all my workout playlist/tunes. At the moment, I am listening to MarLo, Will Sparks and Eminem on repeat and random whilst working out. Insert sad face.
  • My meals hasn’t changed much since I’ve first documented them.¬†Just slowly reducing fruits one variety at a time and having leaner/cleaner protein – chicken breast instead of thigh, white fish instead of salmon, etc. Cheat meal galore below.

cheat meals

Read all about my weekly progress here:

Week 1, Week  2, Week 3, Week 4, Week 5, Week 6, Week 7, Week 8, Week 9

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Real Techniques Ultimate Base Set

real technique brushes

From the famous Youtuber duo Sam & Nic, these limited edition Real Technique brushes are a must have!

I’ve previously used their previous collection of brushes (circa 2013) and I absolutely loved them and still use them til this day.

real technique brush review

This base set includes their 3 essential base brushes. As these days I focus less on eye makeup, base brushes are what I am most keen on. It also comes with a carrier pouch that has a huge mirror.

This pack comes with:

expert face brush review

Expert Face brush – firm and broad brush for buffing cream or liquid foundation. Or even liquid/cream blush!

deluxe sponge review

Miracle Complexion sponge – rounded side blend larger area of face and precision tip covers imperfections and flat edge helps to contour around eyes and nose.

expert concealer brush review

Deluxe Concealer brush – dense, rounded bristles to blend concealing application especially great for around the nose and eyes area.

Mirror To-Go case – Perfect for touch up and for your brushes on the go with you

Overall, I highly recommend the Real Technique makeup brushes as they are good value for money, performs surprisingly well and holds their shape really well too. They all work really well with wet formulas so any foundation/concealers that has a gel, cream, liquid texture can all be used with these base kit to blend well with.

RRP AUD$45 
Available online here 

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Chapter 9 – No sweat no gain

Date: 13th November 2016
Weight: 53.5kg
Weeks out: 26 weeks out
Comp date: 7th May 2017, Sunday – INBA

26 weeks out! May 2017 sounds like such a long time away but in reality 26 weeks is really not much. As an inexperienced female competitor,¬†I will need a minimum of 20 weeks to start prepping for comp. I am quite confident that I’ve already had the extra 8 weeks to research, mentally prepare and getting into the zone. Come next week, it’ll be no excuses and no exceptions!!

bikini posing

This whole time though, I’ve been researching and mentally preparing for ANB as I’ve been to one and is more familiar with that. However, it’s been announced that due to the clash of both ANB and INBA comp dates being the same, ANB decided to push the comp date out by a week to the 13th of May.

ponikuta atp tribe

This sucks because I am leaving for a planned overseas trip on the 11th of May, as a result I have no choice but to compete in INBA on the 7th May and I will have to re-look and plan on the divisions I’m attending.

cardio for fat loss

Last week’s exercise routine:

  • Shoulders, cardio
  • Abs, glutes, hamstring, cardio
  • Bis, tris
  • Back, glutes, double cardio session

This week, I’ve been working on heavy sets and focusing on my negatives. This combination has always been my favourite way of training except I got a little extra help on negative training and boy did it burn. I’ve also upped my cardio session to a minimum of 30 minutes and max of 40 minutes.

Physique update:

ponikuta progress shot

Front –¬†Bulking mode, nothing to see here.

follicular phase

Back – Back definition is coming along nicely but definitely heaps of room for improvements.

ponikuta fitness

Side – Quads are popping!!

This week, I’ve started to work on my poses and boy can I say, I have no graceful bone in me! Lets just say the biggest challenge for me would definitely be posing.

 

Changes this week:

  • For some reason, on day 9 of my follicular phase; all the water retention dropped off and I woke up to my leanest in awhile. Could also be a combination of smaller dinner, less food intake, T432 Plus and cardio session. I am definitely capitalising on the follicular phase by eating lots of carbs and training hard and lifting heavy.
  • Been doing some research on Sweet Sweat and I am keen to give it a trial. Meanwhile, I’ve been training with more clothes on (long sleeves tops) throughout my exercise and cardio session to keep my body temperature warm¬†throughout each session. So far so good, I’ve been sweating heaps and this is coming from someone who doesn’t sweat easily.
  • Cutting out fruits and starchy vegetables as much as I can as a first step to reprogramming my body come shredding season. I’ve slowly reduce strawberries in my morning smoothies and is keeping only blueberries and banana in it. Soon, I’ll cut out blueberries to phase it out too.

ponikuta food

Cheat meals this week and then some…

 

Read all about my weekly progress here:

Week 1, Week  2, Week 3, Week 4, Week 5, Week 6, Week 7, Week 8

 

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La Roche-Posay Effaclar Purifying Foaming Gel

foaming gel

Designed for oily, sensitive, acne prone skin – this foaming gel is from La Roche-Posay’s Effaclars’ range.

For someone with oily and acne prone skin, I am no stranger to gel cleansers as they tend to cleanse my skin better and if the formula is good; it doesn’t leave my skin feeling dry and tight. La Roche-Posay is exactly that!

It cleanses my skin really well and foams up pretty good despite it being a soap free formula. My skin always feels clean (rid of makeup) but never dehydrated/dry using this.¬†Effaclar Purifying Foaming Gel has a pH 5.5 formula and is infused with La Roche-Posay’s signature thermal spring water, it helps to soothe and works as anti-irritant for the skin too.

Overall, this serves as a great everyday cleanser that cleanses skin thoroughly and leaves my skin feeling fresh and unclogged. I use this as my “shower cleanser” and use it at night after oil cleansing. Love it and it’s totally affordable too as this 200ml cleanser will last you awhile.

 

RRP AUD$23.99 
Available in Priceline and in stores 

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Chapter 8 – Focus on your goal

Date: 6th November 2016
Weight: 54.3kg
Weeks out: 5 months and 29 days out
Comp date: 7th May 2017, Sunday (ANB or INBA)

Comp date is finally out and both ANB and INBA are holding their Melbourne comps on the same day. I am yet to decide which comp to enter, at the moment I am leaning more towards ANB. Regardless, D day is 7th May and I have approximately 6 months to prep.

This whole time, I have been working towards April 2017 deadline upon finding out the comp dates, I am kinda relief that I have more time to work on lean bulking and shredding.

lean bulking female

At the moment, I am on track with macro counting keeping my calories within 1800 – 1900 daily (lean bulking diet). I am also slowly making sure my sleeping hours are adjusted to waking up earlier so when I commence my morning cardio routine (likely to start in December), it will be less painful. So far, I am still struggling with the sleeping earlier routine, I am just a night owl through and through.

Last week’s exercise routine:

  • Shoulders
  • Back, cardio
  • Bis, tris, cardio
  • Abs, cadio
  • Quads, hamstrings, glutes

cardio session

Managed to smash out 3 x cardio session this week and I am pretty happy with that. Shall continue a bare minimum of 3 cardio sessions a week leading up to shredding season.

Physique update:

front pose female

Front – Full bulk mode is evident when not only you can see muscles definition being fuller, I can feel fuller as well.

back post female

Back – Probably the only place I can see muscle definition left is my back… barely any at that too.

side post female

Side – Side hammies are slowly popping out though.

Changes this week:

  • In other thoughts, I am thinking of starting to measure my body parts & body fat % come December so I can track my progress. At the moment I am only weighing myself without putting too much thoughts into it. I’ve definitely gained in size in the past month or so with my bulking diet.
  • I got accepted as part of ATP TRIBE this week. Can’t wait to share more about what this is all about. So happy!

lululemon review

  • New gym gear (Lululemon – favourite for leggings and Lorna Jane – fav for sports bra) always give me more motivation to gym. So when you are feeling less motivated, this retail therapy trick might help. (really any excuse to get new activewear, YAS!)

jefit app review

  • I’ve been using this app – JEFIT when I first started lifting because it gave me simple, clear and quick instructions of exercises and how-to use equipments at the gym. This was extremely helpful for me because most of my exercise routines are self taught. I could pick by body parts I wanted to work on and it helps for me to mix up my exercise routine to keep things fresh as well. It’s free to download too, how good is that?

    jefit

  • Been incorporating ATP Infared (drink during workout) to my workout session this week and I’m loving it since I don’t take BCAA as I find most of them are either too sweet/spikes my insulin level with the sugar free component and what not. ATP Infrared doesn’t mess up with my gut and doesn’t leave me bloated. LOVE IT!

female comp prep

  • Incorporated workout and food intake along with my hormonal cycle. Shall blog abit more about it on a separate post around – follicular, ovulation and luteal phase which all impact females and their weighting game. Train smart and hard!!

cheat meal dirty bulking

Cheat meals this week. Yikes! 

See you next week!

Read all about my weekly progress here:

Week 1, Week  2, Week 3, Week 4, Week 5, Week 6, Week 7

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Keune Refreshing Spray


keune blend

8 brownie points for Keune Refreshing Spray’s packaging. Let’s face it, a dry shampoo is a dry shampoo they all are kinda same same but different to me. The key difference are mostly the mist texture (fine or ultra fine), scent, finish (shiny, matte). Hence it is why so important to win in the packaging department to really stand out!

Keune Refreshing Spray is essentially a dry shampoo with super fine mist that refreshes roots, absorbs oil with a semi matte finish.

keune dry shampoo

It leaves my hair feeling somewhat clean feeling (although nothing beats proper shampooed hair) and smelling great. However, it does leave my roots with white specks that needs to be combed out thoroughly before stepping out the door. Just be sure to thoroughly shake the can before blitzing hair all over with a dry shampoo and use a really fine tooth comb to tease out any white specks.

keune refreshing spray

Overall, whilst it is slightly more expensive than your average dry shampoo, packaging, scent and the finish of this dry shampoo certainly rank in the “better ones” category.

RRP AUD$29.95
Available through www.keune.com.au

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