Cycle 2. Well I’ve been here before. Looking back this is my 4th Cycle 2. Yes, 4th! During round 1 I hit Cycle 2 once, but in my 2nd round I had an injury and hit Cycle 2 twice, so with this one that makes 4! This one is quite different. Why? Well you’d better read on!
As always this is my honest account of what happened during this Cycle 2.
So this is what I did this time round:-
The Food – You know I’m a pick and mix / create your own girl so there’s no change there, despite the new and improved set recipes. I like to cook and I like the clear rules that I get with CYO. On the old plan were having 3 carb meals a day, but only 2 with this version of the plan. I would presume the changes have been brought about by the change in training (more about that later) and of course client feedback. I can’t say that I suffered from bloating. I did mix up the carb sources on my training days and I was pretty happy with the food.
Again I’ve stayed away from protein powder, choosing to live as close as possible to ‘real life’, but I have to admit that I’ve really struggled with chicken. I’ve started to dislike it’s texture to the point that I’ve had a few meat free days just to give me a break from the bird that is chicken. I have tried different grades of chicken, Red Tractor, Free Range, Organic, Cornfed. I think I’ve fallen out of love with chicken. I’ve had to really mix up the protein sources to give me more choice but when chicken is the cornerstone of your nutrition and the mere thought of eating it makes you turn green, it really makes you think about how much of it I’ve eaten and how I’m going to be able to replace it without turning to meat substitutes.
Cycle 2 has always been my favourite cycle because you can eat out fairly normally providing you know what options to choose on the menu (this is why I like CYO). Also Mothers Day happened during Cycle 2, but this year I decided not to hide away from it. Last year I was on plan during Mothers Day and I decided to postpone afternoon tea with the family (I think it wasn’t until May last year that we had our afternoon tea), but my sons are getting more aware of these events, especially as Nursery has them making cards for their mums so we make arrangements to have afternoon tea with my mother-in-law too, making it a real family event. My sons enjoy eating out and it was a joy to share a scone and other goodies with them.
My husband and I also had the opportunity for a ‘date night’ and believe me when I say that these don’t come around often, so when they do you jump at the chance to put a dress on and go out after dark. We ended up at Bill’s for dinner. It’s lovely having someone else doing the cooking for a change but I have noticed that I order very differently to how I would have done a few years ago.
Hydration – I’m beginning to wonder if the hydration side of the plan is a sneaky way to work in extra activity into your day with countless trips to the nearest convenience! I have to admit to starting off strong on the hydration front, slipping a little in week 3 and then picking it up again in week 4. I do enjoy the odd cappuccino and latte when we’re out, but lately I’ve started having almond milk lattes at Starbucks. I’ve never been a fan of flavoured coffee but I like to keep an eye on the calories as I don’t want to be drinking my calories!
The Workouts – The thing that stood out for me on the old plan were the workouts. They were hard, challenging and I was new to the idea of weight training. I was really surprised at how much I enjoyed the old cycle 2 workouts that were based on GVT (German Volume Training), but the new plan is based on weighted circuits 4-5 times a week. I decided to stick with my own training program. A weights session followed by a hiit session on my cross trainer. Throughout the cycle I’ve been hindered by a back problem and I made changes to my weights session leaving out anything that aggravated my back, but during week 3 the pain was too much and I had to stop working out. At that point I stuck with reduced carb meals because I wasn’t doing the workouts to warrant the post workout meals.
Supplements – My supplements remain the same but I’ve added Omega 3 capsules to the pile for its many health benefits.
Results – How can I say this. There were none. Not an inch lost, nor a pound either, but from seeing others results in Cycle 2 I fared pretty well! I didn’t have the best cycle because of my back problems. Am I disappointed? No not really. I’m pretty happy that my stats stayed the same instead of increasing like I’ve seen for others.
Ultimately we’re all different. We’re all doing the plan slightly differently depending on how we choose to eat and exercise. It’s great that you can take a plan like 90 Day and tailor it further to fit your life, but because this is the 90 Day plan but repackaged, there are exceptions in terms of the results you can expect to achieve. The training methods in this newer version of the plan are very different to what I did before, GVT and Pyramid training. Overall this newer plan is more ‘doable’ than the old plan, but I kinda miss the old plan, its challenges and it’s results.