T Nation

100+ lbs. Fat Loss?

Um, so. Here’s my situation as concisely as I can relate it, and I apologize ahead of time if I ramble a bit.

I am 34 years old, 5’6" and weigh 295lbs. I have no idea of what my Body Fat % is, but I find it highly unlikely that I have 195lbs. of muscle under here.

I have a very strong motivation to change this situation. Looking good with out a shirt, and seeing more than 2" of my dick again are all very nice, and well, but I kind of don’t want to DIE.

And the doctors tell me that there’s a pretty good chance that that could happen soon if I don’t do something ASAP. Type 2 diabetes in 2-5 years, stroke, heart attack, no more boners in 10. (This could all happen much sooner of course.) The brilliant advice the doctors gave me was “Gee you need to lose some weight.”

So, I am kind of wondering if anyone here has successfully managed to shed this kind of flab, and if so do they have any pointers that differ greatly from the other highly useful advice here on fat loss?

Most fat loss successes I’ve seen mentioned on this site are for 30-40lbs. Bartl was inspirational in his Physique Clinic, but I lack the solid base of athleticism he brought to that situation.

So a little bit more about my specific situation. about 9 years ago I weighed over 300lbs. It sucked. I tried an extreme calorie restrictive type diet that sounded good on paper, and was actually insane. I lost 150lbs. in about 18 months or so. Although my physical activity did increase as my body lost mass, exercise wasn’t a regular part of the insaneo plan. Very pleased with myself I went 5 years in between “cheat meals”, and was probably mentally unhinged by the lack of calories. Although it would have been hard for anyone to tell, I was skinny and crazy, instead of fat and crazy.

I was skinny fat of course. It looked like I was wearing a flab sweater when I took my shirt off, but life was so much better skinny fat than being a full on fat ass that I didn’t give a rat’s ass. And to my complete shock neither did alot of girls. I looked pretty gross, but they didn’t seem to care so I didn’t question my good luck. I made more money, got laid more, had more oppertunity, and had a much better time over all.

However, one can only live on 700-1200cal. a day before something goes seriously out of whack. I was disgusted by the flab, and bought into alot of bullshit about fasting, “cleansing” and so forth. After about 5 years of this shit, I snapped, and began eating “food” again. I was pretty bitter about my whole experience, and the people I’d been listening too, and I still am goddamn it. Bitter is a slight understatement so I’ll just leave it at that.

Predictably I’ve gained back all the weight I lost. Yay me. I wrecked my metabolism big time.

I agree with Chris Shugart when he says that “will power” isn’t the answer. I didn’t cheat once in 5 years, yet here I am again.

So I’ve been reading through this site, and others. I now understand that I actually do have to eat in order to rid myself of this gut that will kill me otherwise.

I’ve read Dr.Bernardi’s 7 habits, and after having lived on seaweed, and radish juice I don’t think I’ll have too hard a time getting the hang of them.

I understand now, from just about every source that isn’t batshit crazy that weight lifting/resistance training is essential to maintaining health, and vital in re-establishing a healthy metabolism. I’ve never lifted weights in a serious way before, and expect I’ve got a long learning curve ahead of me, I don’t know shit about lifting. Fortunately I’m a fatman, not brain injured so I can learn.

I’m a little bit stuck when it comes to NEPA. Obviously I can walk, no problem. My challenge though is that my body remembers being able to do all kinds of stuff that my joints aren’t too happy about doing right now. I know from the last time that that will change.

Some stuff that I used to really like doing that I’d like to do again includes: Hiking, Fencing, Boxing, Swimming, Biking, Dancing, Choking Bitches Out… no wait, scratch that last one. Biking’s out right now, drivers kill bikers around here. Swimming seems like a good choice, embarassing, but maybe that will give me motivation? I’ve read some kooky notion that it will make me freak out, and eat more after swimming, but if that happens I’ll just switch to something else. Any other suggestions of stuff I can do are welcome. I like Body Weight exercises, but my knees aren’t too happy with those right now. I like that they can be done anywhere, anytime with no equipment. I like doing Tai Chi too, but fat guys doing Tai Chi is so cliched. I’d seriously do it full time 8 hours a day I like it so much, but it won’t help me lose the gut.

Gods I am ranting here, but I’m serious I don’t want to die young.

I did learn some useful things from my time as a calorie restricted maniac. Green vegetables are my friends. Yes, even as a fatman I still love nearly all green veggies. Except for chard. Fuck swiss chard. Living on chicken breasts, grass fed beef, and bison, fish, and broccoli, and kale doesn’t sound like much of an ordeal to me. I learned some coping strategies for dealing with cravings/cheats-see if you can double your time between 'em, or add another week inbetween them. One week becomes two, two weeks becomes three. Once you hit a month inbetween on a regular basis you kind of lose interest. I’ve got favorite herbs/supplements, and such. Doing things incrementally works better than all or nothing for long term, etc.

I am pretty much at the point where I figure doing anything beats dying choking on a frosty.

I’ve liked every Biotest product I’ve tried so far. Metabolic Drive is easily the best Protein powder I’ve used. Same goes for Flameout, least burpy fish oil ever.

Um… I must have dozens of other questions, I feel pretty ranted out here though. It’s exhausting to expose one’s public shame, and ignorance.

I guess I’m wondering if there’s any hope for a person in my situation.

What’s the learning curve for a person who has some nutritional back ground, but zero weight training experience?

What is reasonable progress for a fatman like me?

I realize that statistically speaking I’m likely to die with a half chewed slice of pizza in my mouth, having ignored all rational options to avoid that fate.

I don’t really give a rat’s ass about getting bigger, or being smaller for now, I just don’t want to DIE.

I do have a personal goal of either being well on my way to having a fucking excellent physique (if that’s possible) or being skinny again by Oct.1st 2009. I wasn’t happy being skinny, but it sure as hell beats dying.

Okay I understand a bit of what you were saying, I definitely get teh whole “Now I’m skinny but my life is still shit” bit and the resentment that comes with it. I think you have to realise that everyone has issues and losing weight doesn’t automatically make your life awesome. It can make it easier.

I’m in the process now of coming to terms with the fact that while it’s far better to be a healthy weight, I’m not automatically going to get everything I ever wanted. It’s part of being a human to always want more :slight_smile:

My story is about three years ago I was getting close to 200kg, I was at least 190kg (400lbs+) and over 12 months I lost about 100kg (220lbs) by extreme dieting and cardio with a little bit of weights. I ate stacks of carbs, a bit of meat here and there and low fat. I did it the wrong way… BUT I lost the weight and gained a life.

I totally get what you mean by being thinner but still hating how you look because of the excess skin. I had abs, thigh and calf veins and a decent back and I still had droopy chest and midsection. It kinda sucked!

I think the main thing to keep in mind is all you have to do at this stage is eat healthy and move. It actually doesn’t matter which cardio and what weights and how many reps and are you trainign for strength or size and all that BS. That’s for guys way more advanced that are already at a reasonable base. What you should concentrate on right now is the basics.

At 300lbs I’d forget about ‘exercise’ as such except for full body weights and walking. NEPA is just daily activity though, it’s not exercise. NEPA is stuff like do you put your shoes on sitting down or standing up, do you take the stairs or an escalator, that sorta thing. Think about this, take the stairs, walk to the train, that sort of thing.

As for eating you seem to have a decent idea bout diet anyway. In reality if you knock out the shit food it’s hard to eat enough good food ot maintain 300lbs :slight_smile:

Personally what’s worked for me as a former (very) fat boy is low carbs, moderate fat and moderate protein. I still get heaps of fibre and have worked up from about 50g of net carbs (carbs minus fibre) to about 100g now over the last six months. Most of my carbs come from a couple of servings of beans or oats, the rest is veges.

To get down to about 95kg I ate around 2000cals, 100g carbs, 200g protein and rest with fats. I lifted 5d/wk, cardio 4x a week, plus other odds and ends. I’d suggest more food for you and less exercise and then take stock after a month and make changes as you see fit.

It’s ENTIRELY POSSIBLE to do what you want, you jsut have to work out if you really want to do it :slight_smile:

I’d read some articles on full body trainign and do that 3x a week and then walk 30min to an hour every day. When you lost enough you can start other exercise like riding and then later running.

I used to life 5d a week doing a split program. Now I train 3x a week full body push-pull routine and I’ve never sweated more lifting weights :slight_smile:

Good luck :slight_smile:

Don’t worry about getting too anal on the diet, keep it fairly clean and have a cheat day every 7-10 days. This will actually boost fat loss as well as your training.

Focus on training balls to the wall 3-5 days a week on a program like Thibs’ Metabolic pairings, interspersed with long walks /NEPA sessions and by Oct 09 you’ll be golden.

I think there is always hope…if there wasn’t, then what is left?

For someone that doesn’t have a lot of experience in weight lifting, I think a total body training program would be good.


And of course there are hundreds of other articles here…

Keep us posted!

Welcome to the Nation.
Rather than focus on losing the whole hundred, break it into manageable portions. Focus on losing ten pounds in the next four weeks. If you succeed, set new goals and go from there.

As far as specific actions to take, there’s no magic bullet. Read the beginner stickies (the first four threads in the beginner forum), especially Vroom’s “Are You A Beginner II” thread. Purchase and consume whole, healthy food. Start lifting 2-3x/week. Go for walks in the evening. Start slow, make simple changes first, and before you know it you’ll be well on your way.

Chances are, you’ll have two main difficulties. The first will be finding time to exercise. The second will be eating healthy. To the first… there’s no way around it but to manage your time well (if you already do this, you probably won’t have a problem with it). With the second, just make sure to fill up on healthy food.

It is absolutely possible for you to drop the weight. It will take you some time, though.

As for learning curve… you’ll feel comfortable in the gym in about a month, mostly because you’ll start seeing results.

Thanks for the encouragement guys. It actually helps alot.

Congratulations on your own fat loss ozzyaaron! That’s very inspiring.

From my reading here I did see that full body work outs were the way to go. I’ll have to learn them, but that’s okay. It will happen.

On the nutrition front, I’ve already dropped all beverages with calories. Green tea, and club soda replace just about everything just fine. I’ve been making low carb meals, and trying out recipes, although I can’t say that I’ve been eating that way 100% of the time. That’ll be coming in the next 2 weeks though. (With scheduled cheats for sanity’s sake until I don’t need them any more.)

Thanks for the tips!

[quote]Otep wrote:
Welcome to the Nation.
Rather than focus on losing the whole hundred, break it into manageable portions. Focus on losing ten pounds in the next four weeks. If you succeed, set new goals and go from there.

[/quote]

Thanks for the advice Otep, I posted before I saw your post.

I am actually going to focus on developing healthy habits rather than losing the weight at all.

The weight MUST come off. I’m not exaggerating about what the doctors said.

But I found last time, even though I was doing it wrong, that focusing on building what I thought were good habits was much more helpful than focusing on the weight.

Truth be told, it’s losing the inches off my gut that will give me the most relief. That’s what I’m worried will kill me.

I know it will happen if I focus on eating right, moving enough, and learning how to lift.

Thanks!

[quote]Otep wrote:
Welcome to the Nation.
Rather than focus on losing the whole hundred, break it into manageable portions. Focus on losing ten pounds in the next four weeks. If you succeed, set new goals and go from there.

As far as specific actions to take, there’s no magic bullet. Read the beginner stickies (the first four threads in the beginner forum), especially Vroom’s “Are You A Beginner II” thread. Purchase and consume whole, healthy food. Start lifting 2-3x/week. Go for walks in the evening. Start slow, make simple changes first, and before you know it you’ll be well on your way.

Chances are, you’ll have two main difficulties. The first will be finding time to exercise. The second will be eating healthy. To the first… there’s no way around it but to manage your time well (if you already do this, you probably won’t have a problem with it). With the second, just make sure to fill up on healthy food.

It is absolutely possible for you to drop the weight. It will take you some time, though.

As for learning curve… you’ll feel comfortable in the gym in about a month, mostly because you’ll start seeing results.[/quote]

I would listen to this man right here,he helped me get my head on straight and he dosent even know it.

you are in good hands here,you do all the hard work though.
like otep said break it up.

look at it this way,be picky,and by that I mean notice the tiny changes if you notice one day you are lifting 5 pounds more than you did last time,great be proud of yourself and move on.
every time you do something different,set that as your new starting point. its all the tiny things that will make up the big picture later.
worrying about numbers will drive you crazy untill you are comfortable. dont get too overwhelmed youll do great!
keep it simple if you can avoid any type of food at first avoid anything in a box or a wrapper.

most your time in the store should be spend walking around the outside edges of the store and stay away from the inner isles.
all the fresh stuff is on the outer ring area.

read all the stickies and you will have great info and be making great choices in no time.
keep your head up your taking the first step here and that is always the toughest.

Time to introduce you to someone I had the pleasure to exchange words before he lost his weight, and afterwards.

http://www.T-Nation.com/free_online_forum/pictures_pics_photo_body_rate_image_performance/from_330_to_200?id=1924920&pageNo=0

I’ll tell you this. The difference is those that find a reason to commit and stay dedicated. To grow step by step and to never falter. Cheers ~

All of the same things that work to shed 40 lbs will work to shed over 100 lbs. It just will take longer and certain exercises may initially be harder. From your post, you sound like you actually KNOW what to do in regard to diet and exercise. Now, it’s just time to put it into practice. Good luck!

Yes I agree with football head. Jsbrooks speaketh the truth. Heed him well.

I�??ve lost about 80lbs over the past year, after years of loosing and gaining the same 30-40 over and over.

Here are a few conclusions that I’ve come to in that time:

The weight loss process is progressive. Meaning, the more fat you lose, the more intense your training and diet will need to be. To start with, even minor dietary changes will show up in the mirror and on the scale, but as you progress you’ll need to become more and stricter and more intense with your training and diet. For example, I started off restricting carbs to under 150 grams each day, but now I’m keeping around 30 grams. When I started my training was 3 days of weight training each week. Now I’m doing 3-4 days of weight training, 3 days of intense interval training and a ton of NEPA.

Low carb is the best way to lose fat and the healthiest way to eat. Do the research. It’s obvious, to me anyway, that this is the way humans are meant to eat. I’ll be low carb for the rest of my life.

If you’re a binge eater, like I am, you can’t do regular cheat meals. I’ve definitely cheated on my diet over the past year, but I can’t handle the one day each week thing. I’ve basically done a weekend every few months and even those have led to two week binges that have derailed my progress.

The human body is meant to be active. Really active. 3 hours of exercise each week is not enough. Your body will thrive on activity if you let it.

I could list 100 more things I�??ve learned the last year, but I�??ll stop here. Just remember, you don�??t have to starve to lose fat just stay consistent and keep increasing the intensity and you�??ll get where you want. It�??s definitely not easy to start with, but after a while it gets to be really easy.

Hey,

I know exactly how you feel, I made this very same realization at about 305 lbs in April of this year.

Earlier in my life I had literally starved myself down to about 190 lbs, skinny fat but it felt great to fit into your body and whatnot.

But like you I gained it back, crash diets, and whatnot - I definitely destroyed my metabolism.

Anyway, the good part is I seem to be in the process of repairing it, it IS possible. I know all I wanted to hear when I started is that “YES - if you work hard enough you can fix that metabolism you fucked up, and have a chance at a normal life!”

So I’m here to say that to you.

It is definitely not easy.

I have not missed a “gym day” in 4 months. I have not had a cheat meal, I have not eaten ANY poor carbs, the only sugar I’ve put in my body is Surge. I eat 5 or 6 times a day like clockwork, I look at the mirror, and I look at the scale (bad habit).

I lost over 50 lbs in about 6 months so I’m on track. If I can do it you can do it, but remember, its a long term thing, it wont happen tonight, tomorrow, 2 weeks - you gotta think that it might take a year or more, but whats one year for a healthy life, right?

I wish you the best, drop me a PM if you need anything.

you’ve got the know how, now stick to it. good luck and persevere.

I just pretty much skimmed over and saw your stats man, I’m 5’6 and started at 304 in mar 07. I jumped right in counting calories and weighing my food, and resistance trained and did cardio. today im 179 lbs and about 17.5% bodyfat.

No pills, nothing crazy. unless you count a relentless dedication and attention to detail. I lost about 2lbs a week on average.

By no means is a hardcore approach that i took necessary. You can ease into it if you have a willpower dedication issue. But if you are going into it hardcore, adequate nutrition is a MUST! I’m so glad i took the tiem to learn instead of just drastically cutting calories and spending endless hours of aimless activities in the gym

If you ever need any help shoot me a message

good luck!

Mr.Eff

First off you’ve come to the right place for knowledge and support, make T-Nation a perminate part of you life.
I don’t have anything to add that hasn’t already been said as far as diet and exercise go, just stick with it. As a guy who just lost 75 lbs myself I can tell you it’s a long, frustrating road that can be walked, just put one foot infront of the other, it’s totally worth every step.

Best of luck

[quote]jsbrook wrote:
All of the same things that work to shed 40 lbs will work to shed over 100 lbs. [/quote]

Thank you, that is EXACTLY what I needed to hear!

Thanks everyone for the support and advice. I actually wasn’t expecting it to make that big a difference, but some how it has given me more motivation than I had before.

Since there’s an almost 1-1 ratio between my weight gain, and when I got this laptop with wi-fi a few years back I am trying to cut down on computer time (I used to bike 20 miles a day just to use the computer lab at my university when my car broke down.)

I appreciate the support, and have been lurking here, and reading articles for a few months now. I’m kinda at a “Gee, wish I’d started sooner.” point, but it takes new information a while to penetrate a skull as thick as mine sometimes.

Checked out the gym across the street, cost me an arm and a leg but I’m headed over there tomorrow to get a start.

Thanks again everyone.

Great work man.

Remember - slow and steady, and forever. You are changing your entire life. You will not do it in one day, but you are laying a healthy foundation one brick at a time.

Go at your own pace and think of the bigger picture.

Mr.Eff
Thanks for your post.

I am in the same situation. My Doctor told me that I was MORBIDLY OBESE!!! Lose wieght or be dead before I’m 50.(I just turned 39 last month)
That has had me reading a ton (here on T-Nation) and getting myself ready to change my lifestyle. I want to be 200lbs, in good shape, for my 40th birthday.

I have already cut out all soda and have started reducing portion size. THe gym workouts start on Monday.
I will be looking forward to following your progress and hopefully I will be keeping up with you!

since around 2001 i dropped from 260 lbs to 185 lbs and within the past year bulked up to 215 lbs with minimal fat gain (became very strict with eating, compound movements, timing rest periods, etc.)

all i can say is that it’s a serious pain in the ass initially to break bad habits, your mind keeps screaming at you “who cares, what’s the harm in continuing” so you have to realize that this is a lifestyle change,

not a 4 week or 12 week or 6 month change, this is a change for many years and years, and when you reach that kind of milestone with your improved habits you won’t even be tempted anymore to let it all fall apart again

good luck !