T Nation

A Fat Guy Seeking Help

Hi guys, here’s the scoop. I am very fat right now; my body is totally disgusting and I am totally disgusted that I let myself get to this point.

I’m 5’10" with a natural largish built and weigh an unimaginable 285lbs. I just turned 36. I don’t know what my body fat % is but it’s REALLY high. I have to wear jeans with a 40 inch waist and XXL shirts; I am carrying most of the fat around my midsection.

The good news is that I’m in pretty good shape for the shape I’m in, if that makes any sense, meaning I am more active and mobile than most other obese people. I won’t lie; I did not and will not include a pic in this post out of pure shame.

Some History; a little bit over 5 years ago I was 190lbs, a semi-competitive kick boxer, lifted 3 times a week and ran 5 km 3 times a week, I WAS is pretty good shape.

I used to read T-Mag back in the day and muscle media 2000 before that, I was interested in health, fitness and weight training. Then I discovered poker and things went straight down hill; everything else in my world just stopped.

I have a bit of an obsessive personality to say the least, I have played a couple of million hands of poker (both live and online) in the last 5 years and that does not leave much time for anything else (just ask my wife God bless her!).

Things have changed, a lot. My wife is pregnant with our first child and I don’t want to be a fat fuck when my child comes into this world. I really don’t want my child’s first memories of me, to be, of me looking like a beached whale! What kind of a role model is that?

In short, I am ashamed of what I have done to my body and want to change it, my size is affecting all areas of my life including work and relationships. I am not a happy fat guy.

What I’m currently doing (and have been for 3 weeks):

Diet:

o Eating 6 meals a day; I’m eating protein with every meal and cutting out all the starchy and sugary carbs (excecpt for my post workout drink)
o Concentrating on fresh veggies, lean clean protein and some fresh fruit and a little whole grain in the AM only
o I am not counting calories but counting “servings”

A typical day:

Meal #1: 2 eggs sunny side up fried in a little organic olive oil with 1 slices of whole grain toast

Meal #2: One serving (about a cup) of fat free probiotic (active BI cultures) yogurt with fresh berries and sprinkled with a little bran based cereal

Meal #3: A large selection (say 4 to 6 cups) of raw fresh veggies (including green and red bell peppers, celery, cauliflower, broccoli, snap peas, baby carrots and cucumber), one grilled eye of the round steak flavored with cayenne pepper and turmeric

Meal #4: 1 cup of 1% cottage cheese and 1 Granny Smith Apple

Meal #5: A large selection (say 4 to 6 cups) of raw fresh veggies (including green and red bell peppers, celery, cauliflower, broccoli, snap peas, baby carrots and cucumber), a turkey breast cutlet fried in a little organic olive oil and flavored with cayenne pepper and turmeric

Meal #6: 1 cup of 1% cottage cheese and ½ of an avocado

Exercise:

o Running/fast walking Mon/Wed/Fri
o Lifting Tue/Thu/Sat
o Nothing formal on Sunday’s but I do walk my dog a couple of KM or go for a canoe ride for a couple of hours

I am running/ fast walking a total of 30 min on Mon/Wed/Fri. I am on a graduated program that slowly, over 13 weeks, increases the running portion and decreases the walking portion with the goal to be running for a solid 25 minutes (with a 5 minute fast walk warm up) at the end. It’s going well so far.

On Tue/Thu/Sat I am doing a full body workout; I am following plan that I found in T-mag: The 3-day-per-week, full-body workout plan by Chad Waterbury.

I like this plan because it’s simple and a little old school. I workout at home where I have a decent range of dumbbells and 300 pounds of free weight (in all sizes) to go along with my Olympic straight bar. I also have a good adjustable bench but sadly no squat rack (I could not safely do squats right now anyway).

So there it is; I am looking for any constructive feedback that can help me fine tune (or revamp if I need to) my current approach. Thanks for reading this and thanks in advance for any advice offered.

Well Braveheart, I’d say your off to a pretty great start. You’ve been an athelete before, you know what it takes, just bear down and do it.
2 years ago, I was/am 6’1 and 263lbs, after 10 mos., of proper nutrition, and full body workouts plus cardio; I went from a 40"waist also to a 33" waist at 209lbs.

I’ve maintained that now for the last year and 3 months.I’m a good bit older than you, so your going to do it, no doubt.

As we age, being consistent on the nutrition is huge, and once you’ve been fat, its all the more important to stay clean as far as eating goes.
You’ve got a great plan already, just execute it and in afew months time you’ll really start to see the results.
Good luck,
crosdaddy

In all honesty, the weight should fall off with that program and diet. The problem will be in 6-8 weeks when that diet just won’t support that workout regimine.

When you begin to reach your sticxking points I would rec. uping your cals slightly. Include more fats in your diet. Invest in fish oil.

But honestly, if you can stick to that nutritional regimine with that ex. program–slabs should fall off quickly. Especially given your past athletic/healthy background.

Thanks crosdaddy. It’s funny that you called me Braveheart as that is my name on several poker forums I read and post on. Congrats on your succes. I hope to slipping into 32" jeans by this time nest year!

Hey sasquatch, thanks for you comments. I am adding 6 grams a day of Fish oil next week. I also am totally prepared to add more protein and fats if my progress stalls down the road. And your right, in 3 weeks my progress has been stunning, still, I just can’t shake the feeling that I can still improve my approach.

That’s it? No more thoughts or suggestions?

Congrats on your decision to turn yourself around. Looks like you have a great start. A couple of suggestions: add some flexibility work into your training (helps as you get older, wish I did sooner) and as you lose weight try to add back some “junk” food. You’ll probalbly not realistically be able to eat like you are currently forever. Remember balance.

Good Luck

Great suggestions, thanks john, I have not even thought about flexibility work. And no I can’t eat like this forever but I can until I get to a “healthy” size. I’ll switch to more of a realistic diet when I reach(ish) my goals.

Another diet trick I’ve heard is to vary your daily calories somewhat. The theory is that if you keep daily calories constant your body will slow its metabolism in response to starvation. If you vary the daily calories, bu keep the week the same it helps prevent the starvation mode by confusing the body.

With that weight, it would be a good idea to get T,E and thyroid levels. With a CBC, note if blood sugars are high. If the sugars are up or border line, T lower than it should be and E elevated, that would strongly suggest metabolic syndrome that goes along with the fat-on-gut.

If you are short of needing TRT, using an AI such as anastrozole could be helpful. The fat is converting/aromatizing your T–>E, the E drives that fat pattern and weight gain. Changing your E levels could tip the balance towards fat loss and muscle gain.

If you try anastrozole, the fastest thing to be noticed is an increased libido. So that makes a good barometer. The dose of anastrozole would need to reflect your body weight and current E levels. I suggest 2mg/wk to start, in divided doses.

You will need to budget for new clothes :wink:

Having a similar build like you, and having done a lot of running in the past, you might want to invest in a tredmill if you haven’t already. Guys like us who do or did a lot of running get our joints pounded.

Also I found it easier to just go to the basement and bang out a quick 30min then get in the car and go to the park. At least run on grass and stay off the pavement. I’m awaiting MRI results anyday and have had 2 scopes on right knee already.

[quote]KSman wrote:
With that weight, it would be a good idea to get T,E and thyroid levels. With a CBC, note if blood sugars are high. If the sugars are up or border line, T lower than it should be and E elevated, that would strongly suggest metabolic syndrome that goes along with the fat-on-gut.

If you are short of needing TRT, using an AI such as anastrozole could be helpful. The fat is converting/aromatizing your T–>E, the E drives that fat pattern and weight gain. Changing your E levels could tip the balance towards fat loss and muscle gain.

If you try anastrozole, the fastest thing to be noticed is an increased libido. So that makes a good barometer. The dose of anastrozole would need to reflect your body weight and current E levels. I suggest 2mg/wk to start, in divided doses.

You will need to budget for new clothes ;)[/quote]

Thanks for all the info: please excuse my ignorance but what is anastrozole and where do I get some?

[quote]olderguy wrote:
Having a similar build like you, and having done a lot of running in the past, you might want to invest in a tredmill if you haven’t already. Guys like us who do or did a lot of running get our joints pounded.

Also I found it easier to just go to the basement and bang out a quick 30min then get in the car and go to the park. At least run on grass and stay off the pavement. I’m awaiting MRI results anyday and have had 2 scopes on right knee already.[/quote]

I hear this brother. My knees are are starting to hurt for sure. Need…to…get…smaller…ASA fucking P!

[quote]Scottish Warrior wrote:
KSman wrote:
With that weight, it would be a good idea to get T,E and thyroid levels. With a CBC, note if blood sugars are high. If the sugars are up or border line, T lower than it should be and E elevated, that would strongly suggest metabolic syndrome that goes along with the fat-on-gut.

If you are short of needing TRT, using an AI such as anastrozole could be helpful. The fat is converting/aromatizing your T–>E, the E drives that fat pattern and weight gain. Changing your E levels could tip the balance towards fat loss and muscle gain.

If you try anastrozole, the fastest thing to be noticed is an increased libido. So that makes a good barometer. The dose of anastrozole would need to reflect your body weight and current E levels. I suggest 2mg/wk to start, in divided doses.

You will need to budget for new clothes :wink:

Thanks for all the info: please excuse my ignorance but what is anastrozole and where do I get some?

[/quote]

Anastrozole is Arimidex, a prescription drug. It is an aromatase inhibitor the reduces the amount of T that is converted to estrogen by the aromatase enzymes that are found in fat and other tissues. it would be good to get the lab work done as I suggested. If thyroid levels are low, that leads to low energy and weight gain and that issue should be addressed. You would be wise to get E levels checked to adjust the AI dose. Optimal E2 levels from a libido point of view seems to be in the [17-20] range. You can do your own blood work via LEF.org, but I think that a few states are restricted. A good doctor would be a good thing, but many do not understand the hormone connections to syndrome X aka metabolic disorder and pre-diabetic conditions. So if not from your doctor, many get such things from research chemical suppliers.

Well…it’s official, I have to stop running for a while. The pain in my knees is getting unbearable and I don’t want to do any further damage. I am going to start walking with a weighted backpack for the time being, I’ll try running again after I get under 225lbs.

Anyone have any thoughts as to what would be a good total weight for the backpack? I was thinking 45lbs or so. Thoughts?

look into the x-vest have one it great. has been reviewed here should be able to do a search for it. medine ball 8lbs i do a workout based around 30 sec.gos as many as i can get 15sec.rest repeat for 5 min. set up 4 different monements to take 20 min. picked the ones that targeted my needs. hope this helps

[quote]Scottish Warrior wrote:
Well…it’s official, I have to stop running for a while. The pain in my knees is getting unbearable and I don’t want to do any further damage. I am going to start walking with a weighted backpack for the time being, I’ll try running again after I get under 225lbs.

Anyone have any thoughts as to what would be a good total weight for the backpack? I was thinking 45lbs or so. Thoughts? [/quote]

Not to beat a dead horse but is a used treadmill out of the question. Cardio is very important as you already know. Perhaps a used stairmaster or my least favorite the exercise bike. I would bet you could pick one up cheap. I know I have a relatively unused exercise bike that I paid 500 for that I would almost give away to get it out of the basement.

My MRI results showed a torn Meniscus, a popliteal cyst with the bonus of a possible rupture due to fluid, a sprained ligament, osteonecrosis,(deadening of the bone), in the Tibia and Fibula, along with mild thinning and early degenerative changes.

Bottom line you have to take care of your joints. What you do now comes back to haunt you. Maybe a break from cardio and then a treadmill. I did most of my semi-distance running 4,5,6,miles, 4-6 times/wk in the 70s,80s, when there wasn’t a gym with cardio exquipment on every corner. At 5’9" and running at 185lbs-200,not exactly the body of a Kenyan and I haven’t ran much since I hit my 50s.

Sorry for the short story.

I use a recumbent exercise bike and I love it. No joint stress, a very comfortable and non-prostate irritating wide seat.

Don’t overlook your nutrition in your injury recovery process.

http://www.sportsinjurybulletin.com/archive/nutritional-therapies.html

Good luck!

[quote]Scottish Warrior wrote:
Well…it’s official, I have to stop running for a while. The pain in my knees is getting unbearable and I don’t want to do any further damage. I am going to start walking with a weighted backpack for the time being, I’ll try running again after I get under 225lbs.

Anyone have any thoughts as to what would be a good total weight for the backpack? I was thinking 45lbs or so. Thoughts? [/quote]

You already wear a heavy back pack all day. Your knees do not need more weight!

Hey Good luck. Stick with that diet/training schedule and you should be down to where you want fast! Sorry about the knees, hopefully that gets better.