The Road to Nationals – Project Thighland

The first month of #ProjectThighland is officially in the books.
And it’s been bloody glorious.


Sunshine, incredible gym, delicious food (albeit not a lot of it), and more sweat has seeped from my pores than during the entire of my collective years to date.

Project Thighland

#ProjectThighland is what I’ve dubbed the two months I’m spending in Southeast Asia training my face off, destroying every piece of clothing I own with sweat, and fighting a constant, losing battle to remain hydrated.

Let’s get into the nitty-gritty of what’s going on over here.


The training phase that I ran for the first chunk of #ProjectThighland and is best described by the following:

  • Ridiculous, tissue-assaulting volume spread over a 10 day rotation.
  • Two rounds of two-a-days in each rotation.
  • Sessions have been primarily split into upper and lower work, with a standalone arms and delts session.
  • Laying the ground work to move into a metabolic-based training phase, with goal of stripping off any remaining fluff.

As of 3 days ago (from the time of publishing), the aforementioned metabolic-based training phase has begun.

You could say it’s done a great job of creating an offensive amount of oxygen debt, drenching me in even more sweat (I didn’t think that was possible), and setting new heart rate records.

On the other hand, you could simply say that Allen Cress is a sadistic asshole who wants to put me into the ground before July 1st.

Either works, and both seem to be true.

Nonetheless, it’s truly been a blast (for the most part).


To date, my nutrition over the course of this prep has been vastly different from last year.

Last year my prep started with my carbs and to total calories quite high (something along the lines of 225g protein, 450g carbs, 50g fat), and gradually brought them down week after week. When things bottomed out, we moved to very, very low calories with strategic carb cycling to stave off death.

This year has been a testament to the fact that no prep is ever the same and that the internal state of your body can vastly change.

To that effect, this prep began at similar protein and fat, but less than half the carb total. Plus a whole lot more body fat to get rid of.

Meaning, at this point it’s primarily been about supporting the sky-high training volume, while ensuring that fat loss is still happening. Best of all, it’s been working, well.

Thankfully, I haven’t yet hit the wall. Although, I can sense the impending arrival of the dreaded heavy legs, daily naps, and a vanquished desire to move from the couch.

Such is the nature of contest prep.


Carddddiiioooooooooooo: everyone’s favourite subject.

Not much to report here as my cardio has remained stable for the first phase of #ProjectThighland.

Consisting of:

  • 30 minutes of fasted intervals/sprints on single training days only (I’ve been jumping around between the spin bike, air dyne, and prowler pushes).
  • 20 minutes of post-workout walking on single training days only (this lasted for one rotation before being pulled).
  • Light 20-30 minute walks in the morning and evening on rest days.
  • Light morning walks on all training days.

That’s it, that’s all. Not much to see here.

The nearly-nekkeds

No contest prep update would be complete without inundating you with pictures of fresh out of bed and posing in my underwear. So, without further ado, here they be.

project thighland

Initial morning weight: 194.4

Current morning weight: 175.8





Word up.

The final reps

All in all, prep has been really fucking fun so far. Which, if you ask me, is exactly as it should be.

Pushing yourself and dieting down to being skinless isn’t everyone’s idea of fun, and there’s not a chance in hell you should consider doing so if you don’t believe that’s the case.

Moving into the second phase of #ProjectThighland while sitting 8 weeks out from Nationals, I’m pumped to see what damage I can do to the fluff that’s left before I pack up and ship out to Edmonton, Alberta (where Nationals are being held) to close out the final few weeks before stepping on stage.

And so it is.


PS. 4 out of 5 lifters will let their rationalization hamster run wild. Convincing themselves they’re making progress…yet you build no muscle, and burn no fat. The 5th lifter joined the MASSthetics Clan and put the information within the (free) Hypertrophy Handbook to good use. He no longer has to rationalize his progress. He simply is. Click here to become the 5th lifter, and let me know where to send the prestigious Hypertrophy Handbook.