My road to become an IFBB Pro

I thought I’d share my story with you guys, how I got here where I am now.

My prep actually started end of February. I was 79kg, and I was getting ready for the Nabba Worlds in June in Italy. I was very keen, had the passion burning inside me. I wanted to win! Last year I finished 2nd at the Nabba Worlds in Russia and I really wanted to prove myself this year. Athletes would know that a contest prep is not easy, but you can always step it up when you’re keen, so I went all in.

So June came, and I went to Italy to compete. Finished 2nd again – not gonna lie, I was pissed off. We planned another competition a couple of weeks after that, Portugal or Spain, but I said no. I knew what improvements I had to make and I needed a bit more time to make them happen.

So after my first comp mid June I went straight into prepping for the second one in November. First I wanted to go to Poland but then we learnt that the @ironrebelshow was gonna be organised again in November – and we went there with @abe.superman In May when he competed, so I changed my mind and I registered for Denmark.

I had to bring up my shoulders, especially my rear delts, so I started training them 3x a week. My glutes and hammies needed more shape, so that meant glutes and hammies 2x a week, and quads/full legs with glutes 1x a week. Are you keeping score? That meant Ꭵ hᎪᎠ ᏆᎾ ᏆᏒᎪᎥᏁ ᏆᎳᎥᏟᎬ Ꭺ ᎠᎪᎽ ᏆᎳᎥᏟᎬ Ꭺ ᎳᎬᎬᏦ… and this is exactly what I did for 6 months to get into the shape I needed for the @ironrebelshow in Denmark last weekend.

The first pic was taken 2 weeks into my prep in March. The second pic was 1 week before the second comp last weekend. I’m proud of this package, I’m proud of the improvements I’ve made and the condition I’ve got myself into. I know there’s more to come, but so far that was my best ever shape.

Fat burning supplements

ProSupp DNPX is a potent fat burner with many ingredients that promote fat loss.

Caffeine anhydrous is a highly concentrated caffeine powder specifically designed to stimulate athletic performance.

Lycii berry or goji Berry has high levels of antioxidants and it improves immune function, promotes healthy skin, helps stabilise blood sugar levels and detoxifies liver.

Dandelion root is a natural diuretic and it eliminates liver toxins more quickly.

Octopamine HCL aids weight loss with minimising the loss of lean tissue / muscle.

Coleus Forskohlii helps manage your weight, lowers blood sugar levels and reduces high blood pressure.

Taurine improves glucose tolerance and it’s vital for the proper function of potassium, calcium, magnesium and sodium.

Swertia chirayita is an anti-inflammatory agent that also detoxifies the liver, it’s a powerful antioxidant and it protects against cancer.

ProSupps DNPX is available at the Wawan branches.

About digestive enzymes

Digestive enzymes aren’t just beneficial, they’re essential! They break down food into amino acids, fatty acids, cholesterol and simple sugars.

The role of digestive enzymes is primarily to act as catalysts in speeding up specific, life-preserving chemical reactions in the body. Essentially, they help break down larger molecules into more easily absorbed particles that the body can use to survive.

If you have any type of digestive disease such as acid reflux, gas, bloating, leaky gut, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis, diverticulitis, malabsorption, diarrhea or constipation, then digestive enzymes can help. Digestive enzymes can take stress off of the stomach, pancreas, liver, gallbladder and small intestine by helping break down difficult-to-digest proteins, starches and fats.

• Liver disease could indicate a concurrent enzyme insufficiency.

• Crohn’s disease may result in enzyme deficiency.

• Iron deficiency or vitamin B12 deficiency may suggest that the digestive process is failing to cleave these nutrients from food.

• Vitamin D deficiency may indicate another malabsorption issue.

What are the benefits of digestive enzymes?

Without them, we couldn’t process food! The main reasons why most people should take digestive enzymes:

• Assists the body in breaking down difficult-to-digest protein and sugars like gluten, casein and lactose.

• Greatly improve symptoms of acid reflux and IBS.

• Enhance nutrition absorption and prevent nutritional deficiency.

• Counteract enzyme inhibitors naturally in foods like peanuts, wheat germ, egg whites, nuts, seeds, beans and potatoes.

Digestive enzyme products are derived from three sources:

• Fruit-sourced — usually pineapple or papaya-based

• Animal-sourced — including pancreatin sourced from ox or hog.

• Plant-sourced — from probiotics, yeast and fungi.

Source: https://draxe.com/digestive-enzymes

About HIIT cardio

The competition season is upon us, many of you guys do endless cardio to lose body fat. Sometimes we go through phases when the weight loss stops and it seems almost impossible to get it going again. The body is trying to hold on to that little bit of fat – it’s a normal survival mechanism.

When weight loss stops, it’s a sign that your body has adapted to your current training and diet, and you just need to change something to kick it off again.

Sometimes it’s a good idea to switch up your cardio from steady state to HIIT. Many bodybuilders are scared that HIIT training will make them lose muscle. If you use it wisely, that can be avoided.

First of all you don’t need to do it all the time. If you do cardio 1x or 2x a day, you shouldn’t do HIIT both times. Actually, doing HIIT increases your metabolic rate for the next 24 hours, so you could even do it only every other day and on the other sessions stick to steady state cardio. And don’t forget: your body adapts to HIIT cardio, too, so after some time (could be about 3-4 weeks) you can change back to normal cardio again.

Now let’s see how we do HIIT cardio:

The essential framework of high-intensity interval training is always the same: Brief, all-out work periods, separated by rest periods. The work-to-rest ratio can vary from 1:1 (for example, 30 seconds on, 30 seconds off) to 1:4 or more, and the rounds can be just a few or 15 or more. Always try and gradually progress: either by reducing the rest periods, extending the work periods, adding one more round at the end or all these 3.

Don’t forget to supplement with BCAA before and after your cardio to minimise catabolism.

@wawannutrition WBCAA or Ronnie Coleman series Aminotone are a good choices for your BCAA supplementation

@wawanbahrain

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About Casein protein

One of the top sources of long-lasting amino acids, casein protein provides easy-to-digest protein in a similar fashion to whey. One of casein’s greatest advantages is the timing of how it’s absorbed, plus how long it lingers in the body. Both factors make it beneficial for building muscle fast and preserving the body’s lean muscle tissue.

When it comes to nutrient timing, the type of protein matters. Casein protein hits your bloodstream very quickly — plus its amino acids stay where they need to be in order to help build muscle tissue for many hours, as opposed to being flushed from the body relatively quickly.

Derived from milk, just like whey protein, casein protein is actually a naturally more abundant source of BCAAs. That’s why it’s sometimes simply called “milk protein,” since around 80 percent of the protein found in cow’s milk is casein — and it also makes up 20 to 40 percent of human breast milk.

Casein is made up of various “building blocks” called essential and non-essential amino acids. The human body is able to make certain amino acids on its own (called non-essential) while others it cannot (called essential), making the essential kinds crucial to get through the foods you eat. Since plant foods don’t always provide the complete set of essential amino acids we need, animal foods — and sometimes convenient protein powders — are one way people make sure they cover their protein bases.

Casein protein powder is created in a lab from dehydrating parts of milk — the problem is that many forms are denatured and isolated, and may cause health issues. You’ll want to try to find casein protein that is from A2 beta-casein rather than A1 casein (see the difference below).

Whey protein and casein protein differ in terms of their bioavailability and effects on muscle synthesis. Although whey protein has many of the same benefits, it’s believed to cause more of a fast “amino acid spike” compared to casein.

There are certainly benefits to consuming both faster- and slower-releasing proteins; it really just comes down to your goals and schedule.

At the molecular level, within a protein source like casein various amino acids are branched together. Casein protein has a lower percentage of branched-chain amino acid compared to whey protein, which is one reason it’s slower to digest and also tends to work for longer. Because of its utilization and timing, casein increases protein synthesis a bit less than whey does.

On the plus side, it better stops the body from breaking down amino acids it already has available within your muscles. Whey protein also has more sulfur than casein, which can also change the way the body uses it.

Compared to casein, whey is a fast protein source, which means it provides amino acids quickly after ingestion — however they also leave the body sooner than when you consume casein.

Both casein and whey protein can supplement your workouts well and include all the essential amino acids you need, but whey has more branched-chain amino acids and, therefore, might be slightly better at facilitating muscle protein synthesis.

The good news is this: After comparing the effects of both proteins on body composition and performance in female athletes, researchers from the Exercise and Performance Nutrition Laboratory at the University of South Florida found that whey and casein had similar positive effects. Females were found to experience benefits using both supplements, including an increase in performance markers from consuming protein after resistance training and a decreased body fat composition.

The benefits of casein protein:

• Building new muscle tissue and promoting lean muscle growth (5)

• Repairing broken-down muscle fibers after a workout while you sleep

• Preserving muscle you already have (making it anti-catabolic)

• Restoring nitrogen balance during muscle recovery

• Curbing your appetite

• Regulating blood sugar levels

• Helping prevent overeating

• Potentially helping with weight loss/maintenance

The Best Times to Use Casein Protein

Ideally, you want to use casein protein before bed (if your goal is to build muscle and potentially gain weight) or as a meal replacement/snack between spaced-out meals. Remember that casein is digested slowly, which means following a workout it will take longer than other types of protein (such as whey) to reach your muscles.

Since you want to supply your damaged muscle tissue with nutrients ASAP following exercise, using casein over faster-acting protein sources won’t give you the benefits of an immediate rush of amino acids that you’re after. Because whey protein is so quickly absorbed and digested, it makes the better choice following a workout. Your muscles are searching for a rapid supply of nutrients after you train in order to carry out muscle synthesis, so hold off on having casein to better speed up this.

Nutrition facts

A serving of casein powder has around:

• 120 calories

• 23 grams protein

• 1 gram fat

• 1 gram sugar

• 450 milligrams calcium (45 percent)

Different Types of Casein Protein: A1 vs. A2 Casein

Milk is composed of about 85 percent water and 15 percent sugar (called lactose), protein, fat and minerals. Among the protein compounds in milk, there is more than one kind. A2 beta-casein is the type that has been produced naturally by animals for thousands of years, even before they were first domesticated more than 10,000 years ago. It’s believed to be easier to digest, and some research suggests it has much fewer effects on human health than the other type, called A1 casein.

A1 is the “newer type of casein,” which first developed sometime in the past few thousand years following animal domestication. It came about after certain genes caused proteins to change, resulting in proline amino acids changing over to histidine. Today, A1 beta-casein is more abundant in dairy cows that are used to produce the vast majority of milk in the U.S. and even Europe.

Each cow has a certain genotype of A1/A1, A1/A2 or A2/A2 that ultimately affects the milk it produces. It’s preferable to consume milk products, including all dairy foods and whey/casein protein supplements, made from cows (or goats) that predominantly contain A2 casein. How come?

When A1 beta-casein caused a switch from proline to histidine amino acids, it resulted in problems with humans digesting and properly metabolizing milk. In fact, most people who are intolerant of cow milk are actually sensitive to one of the proteins found in it, A1 casein. They essentially lack the ability to digest A1. This intolerance is now linked to a wide range of illnesses, including autoimmune reactions, food allergies, digestive issues, type 1 diabetes, heart disease and more. A1 is also thought to promote inflammation, however milk that contains mostly or exclusively A2 casein produces far fewer (or zero) inflammatory effects. Usually the grass fed whey products contain less A1 casein.

Source: https://draxe.com/casein-protein/

About beta-alanine

Beta-alanine is a non-essential amino acid. It is not used by the body to synthesize proteins. Instead, together with histidine, it produces carnosine.

Carnosine reduces lactic acid accumulation in your muscles during exercise, which leads to improved athletic performance.

In muscles, histidine levels are normally high and beta alanine levels are normally low, which limits the carnosine production.

Since beta alanine supplements increase carnosine levels in muscles, they help the muscles reduce their acid levels during exercise. This leads to reduced fatigue.

Beta-alanine improves athletic performance. It can reduce fatigue, increase endurance and boost performance in high-intensity exercises.

In general, muscle acidosis limits the duration of high-intensity exercise.

For this reason, beta-alanine specifically helps performance during high-intensity and short-duration exercise lasting one to several minutes.

It’s possible that beta-alanine improves body composition by increasing training volume and promoting muscle growth

L-carnosine’s health benefits are generally due to its antioxidant properties, which support many age-related conditions. The specific uses of L-carnosine include support for the skin, joints, digestive system and memory. Carnosine also prevents changes in the structure and function of proteins in the body. This may give it some anti-aging properties.

Moreover, carnosine seems to elevate nitric oxide production. This may help against the aging process and improve immune function.

Lastly, carnosine increases the quality and function of muscles in the elderly.

It is generally recommended to consume 2-5 grams of beta-alanine daily. Taking it with a meal may be even more effective.

The most common side effect of beta-alanine is paraesthesia.

This is an unusual sensation typically described as “tingling of the skin.” It’s usually experienced in the face, neck and back of the hands.

The intensity of this tingling increases with dosage size. It usually starts with doses of 800 mg or higher, and disappears 60–90 minutes after consumption. But there is no evidence that paraesthesia is harmful in any way.

Wawan WBCAA recovery contains 1.8gr of Beta-Alanine, 10gr of BCAAs and 2.5gr of L-Glutamine, with 12gr of carbs – it makes it a perfect intra workout drink.

About the different types of proteins

There are 4 common types of protein:

  • When protein concentrate
  • Whey protein isolate
  • Hydrolysed whey protein
  • Casein protein

All whey proteins are easily digestible, therefore they break down in your body quickly, hence they can be a very essential part of your breakfast (after the fasting hours of your night sleep), and after your workout.

Whey protein concentrate is one of the most basic forms of protein.  This is probably the most common protein for anyone who works out. This is a great starting point for beginners, it’s slightly cheaper than the other types and it does the job. It has around 75-80% of protein in it (which means in a 100gr of powder you get 75-80 gr of protein), and it’s reasonably low in fat and carbs. However some people might have some gastric discomfort from this protein especially if they have any digestive issues already. For those people I recommend they try the other types of protein below.

The next level is the whey protein isolate. This protein has been filtered further than the concentrate, and therefore it’s lower in carbs and fats, lactose has been removed as well, therefore it usually doesn’t give any digestive issues. Its protein content is a bit higher, too, you can expect about 85-90% of protein in 100 gr of powder.

Hydrolysed whey protein is the clearest form of protein. It has no fat or carb content, therefore it’s almost 100% protein (around 90-95%). It’s very quick to absorb in the body.

Casein protein is different from whey protein. It breaks down slower in your body, over the course of 5-7 hours therefore it makes it a great ‘snack’ before you go to sleep. It also has high glutamine content, which is great for recovery.

WAWAN ISO Tamrya is made from EU sourced grass fed Cross-Flow Microfiltered Whey Protein Isolate, which makes it a great choice for breakfast or after workout.

About diabetes – part 1

There are 3 main types of diabetes mellitus:

  • Type 1 Diabetes: results from the pancreas failing to produce enough insulin
  • Type 2 Diabetes: a condition of defective insulin signalling
  • Gestational Diabetes: a condition where women without previously diagnose diabetes exhibit high blood glucose levels during pregnancy.

When insulin isn’t produced or acts ineffectively, glucose remains circulating in the blood, leading to a condition known as hyperglycemia. Long term hyperglycemia can result in the dysfunction and failure of various organs and systems, including the eyes, kidneys, nerves, heart and blood vessels.

The key players in diabetes are the pancreas and the liver.

The pancreas is both an endocrine and exocrine gland.

Exocrine means that it’s a gland that release its contents through a tube from inside to outside the body. It helps with digestion by producing important enzymes that break down food, which allows the body to absorb the nutrients.

The endocrine function primarily involves the secretion of the 2 primary hormones relevant to diabetes management: insulin and glucagon.

Insulin increases the storage of glucose, fatty acids and amino acids in cells and tissues and is considered an anabolic hormone. Insulin is a key player in the storage and use of fuels within the body.

Disorders in insulin production and signalling have widespread and devastating effects on the body’s organs and tissues. Glucagon is a peptide hormone produced by alpha cells in the pancreas. The pancreas releases glucagon when blood sugar levels fall too low. It opposes the action of insulin by raising the concentration of glucose in the blood.

Dietary carbs are not essential, however, the body needs glucose. The brain typically needs about 130 gr of glucose every day. Not all glucose has to come from the diet because the liver has the ability to synthesise it.

The liver serves as a warehouse for glucose storage and production. It can also produce fatty acids under certain conditions.

As blood glucose and insulin levels increase, the liver increases its absorption of glucose. Glucose is stored as glycogen. The amount of glycogen stored depends on circulating insulin and glucose levels. When blood glucose levels drop, insulin production falls. The shortage of insulin signals the liver to release its assets by sending glucose back into the blood to keep the body nourished.

When carb intake is restricted, it lowers blood sugar and insulin levels. As insulin levels fall and energy is needed, fatty acids leave their respected fat cells and enter the bloodstream. From here they’re taken up by specific cells and metabolised. Ketone bodies are molecules created in the liver, that are pushed into the blood stream where they’re utilised by skeletal and heart muscles cells as fuel. Also, the brain begins to use ketones as an alternate fuel source when blood levels are high enough to cross the blood-brain barrier. When this happens a person is said to be in nutritional ketosis.

Ketogenic diets are very popular because they suppress insulin and that seems to be very effective in the treatment and management of obesity and T2D. However the severe restriction of carbs (often below 30 gr) may increase the potential for hypoglycaemia of people with T1D.

Lipogenesis is creating fat within the body from glucose or other substrates. It takes place mostly in the liver. Lipogenesis occurs in the liver during times of calorific excess and overfeeding. The liver converts excess glucose to fatty acids. These fatty acids can be stored in the liver or transported via lipoproteins (carriers) to muscle and fat tissue for future fuel use or storage. The ratio that is stored or used is highly dependent on energy intake vs. energy expenditure.

In a healthy liver, insulin halts the production of glucose and instead promotes glycogen storage or generates fatty acids during times of energy excess.

The liver of a person with T1D has no internal break system. Insulin deficiency allows glucose production in the liver to go uncontrolled leading to hyperglycaemia and ketoacidosis if unmanaged. When there’s not enough insulin available, glucose cannot enter the cells for use as energy. Therefore the liver produces even more glucose in an attempt to provide energy for the starved cells, but because insulin is not available, none of this glucose can enter the cells. It builds up and starves the cells even further. Consequently, administration of insulin medication is needed to facilitate the entry of glucose into cells.

Insulin increases glucose uptake in the liver by facilitating the creation of glycogen and decreases glucose output.

Prolonged elevations in insulin that result from an energy surplus increase the body’s ability to produce fat via the process of lipogenesis.

Source:

Phil Graham: Diabetic Muscle

About L-Carnitine

Taking L-Carnitine is known to:

  • Improve high-intensity work capacity
  • Increase athletic performance
  • Speed your recovery from intense exercise
  • Make your brain work better

Carnitine is an amino acid composite that is made of lysine and methionine. It is responsible for the transport of fat into the cells to be used for energy, therefore your body becomes more efficient in processing fuel and it will increase your energy levels.

Elevating carnitine will improve physical performance by burning more fat, sparing glycogen, clearing muscle lactate, and optimizing hormone levels.

For Carnitine to be effective, you need to make sure you have enough Omega-3 in your body. Omega-3s increase metabolic rate by increasing cell activity and fat burning. Carnitine is the delivery system for long chain fatty acids therefore the less carnitine you have in your body, the fewer fatty acids get into the cells, and you don’t burn them for energy. Instead they’re stored as fat. By elevating carnitine fat burning increases, you will have more energy and feel more motivated.

Carnitine fights visceral belly fat, that is known to be the toughest fat to loose. Raising your carnitine levels will fight this visceral belly fat gain because it increases fat burning.

Higher muscle carnitine levels help decrease pain, muscle damage and markers of metabolic stress from high intensity exercise by reducing lactic acid production, therefore you can have a greater work production because it will not feel as physically difficult.

Taking carnitine will also support an anabolic response to exercise by up-regulating the androgen receptors, which will speed up your recovery.

Carnitine can help prevent type 2 diabetes because of how it improves fat metabolism. It can counter the diseases of metabolic syndrome by supporting cardiovascular health while inducing fat loss.

My message for beginners

A short video for those of you who contacted me on social media asking me questions about how to lose weight or get bigger.