Day 1 – Return To Training – Follow my Journey

Day 1 – Return To Training – Follow my Journey

I am undertaking the Challenge as below. If you fancy transforming yourself at the same time as me? Try my new 12 week Lean Gains Muscle guide -

It’s been 4 long and I do mean long weeks since my operation and thank the lord, I am finally now allowed to start to train gain albeit very carefully!!

This is great news on all fronts. I didn't realize how much I missed the training, until I got into the gym today.  My mood was changed instantly.

If you are ever stressed or frustrated, and then go and do some exercise, it's a panacea to most problems. It clears the mind, allowing you to focus which in turns starts to generate the solutions to the problems. I digress however!

The reason behind the delay back to training is I have had to wait to have the stitches out and for the wound to fully “heal” before I was allowed to train. I say heal not mend as that’s still another 12/16 weeks or so. I remain on crutches and will be for another 8 weeks, so any little victories are to be really enjoyed.

The down side to this return to training is now I have to get everything in order; by this I mean nutrition, recovery and focus. I have positioned this injury in my mind’s eye as having real positive connotations. Something I can use to my advantage instead of viewing it as a setback.

The idea is to come back fitter, more mobile and powerful. I have enjoyed my down time and allowed myself to put on weight and sadly not good weight at that. However in the recovery and tissue repair period, eating carbs is really important, as is looking after your immune system. So eating more fruit than usual or more carbs is in general a positive.

I have been relatively relaxed about my diet, but have kept an eye on my calories through the app My Fitness pal. When I say I have, I mean I have been filling it in, but my wonderful girl friend has gone above and beyond in the preparation.

I have been very sedentary for the last 4 weeks so was trying to maintain my muscle mass without gaining too much unwanted fat. I was sticking to around 3000 calories per day. (This is not a recommendation to you to follow, as everyone is different. You starting eating 3000 calories you could balloon into a beach ball with a face)

This being said, I very rarely get time off and have not really had much rest in the last 14 years. So while I watched my calories, I decided if I wanted to eat something I would.

The rationale behind this is there is going to be enough strict dieting and hard training to last a lifetime in the next 4 months. So enjoy it while you can was my thinking. Although as with everything within reason of course!

I wanted followers of James Haskell Health & Fitness to be able to track my journey from the start of my rehab, all the way to when I play again.

I’ve already posted a couple of videos which you will find on my Facebook page or my YouTube channel This gives you and idea what I have been doing and what has been happening to me.



I will also be doing a series of written blogs and posts on my website just like this one.

My Starting Point!

This is what I look like today the 20th August.

This is a big day for me, as I would never normally post a photo of myself out of shape. This is of course always inevitably due to reasons of vanity.

It's a good example of why social media is so dangerous; never believe the photos people post, or the lives they pretend to live. However that is story for another day and several dozen blogs!

What am I doing?

Before I go into exactly what I am doing at the moment, it’s important to note that I always recommend the best way to track your progress is by using photos. There are some rules to doing this. It is very important to always do it in the same area, location, and the same time of day and ideally in the same clothes or at least style of clothes. Don’t wear a burka for the start or end shots for example!!

You can of course weigh yourself. However I am not really trying to lose weight. Instead my focus is on reducing my body fat (clearly when I reduce my fat, my weight will fluctuate) and crucially for me to build back-up the wasted muscle.

My Stats as of day one

Weight = 121kg

Bodyfat = 13%

Marcos wise I am doing the following (This will change as the training intensifies) 2g protein per kg, 1-gram carbs, 1 gram fat for now.

I am then dividing this into 4 meals, which I am trying to have 3 – 4 hours apart. However this is not vital, it’s just a rough guide to stick to.

While I am comfortable with following my own nutrition plan, I wanted to hook up with someone to take things to the next level. For most people you don't need to go to these heights, but for professional sports people it’s very beneficial.

I am always keen to really push myself to ensure I can get the best out of what I am doing. However the key is not to over complicate things. Trust me I have done that in the past.

So this time around I decided to work with someone I trust. I have worked with Matt Lovell many times over the last 14 seasons. He has worked with the England Rugby team for years, Manchester city and others!

I decided to hook back up with Matt and look to really get my nutrition rebooted and sorted.

You can follow him on twitter @MattLovell and on his websites 

I am also super lucky to have Chloe (My girlfriend, who runs her own fitness business looking after me. She is amazing at her nutrition and makes sure that I stay on track. She cooks for me, makes shakes and looks after my supplements.

It makes a massive difference if your partner is helping you, and following the same goals.

There are some statistics out there which suggest if not show that those people who have a  training partners or members of their family following the same programme, are much more likely to succeed.

In my next blog I will talk a little bit more about what I am doing training wise.

So if as I said at the start, if you want to follow along and transform yourself then you can work virtually with me by following my 12 week Lean Gains plan.

It has all the info in it to help you get into shape.

Plus it has been definitely proven to work if you follow it to the letter and eat well and properly, as well as train well and properly

Stay tuned for more updates on my social media

Twitter @JamesHaskell

Instagram @JamesHask


– Entry was posted on August 22nd, 2016 by James Haskell
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