Here’s the background…
I’m 31 and for the last 17 years I’ve been a competitive distance runner. I’ve run a 5k in 15:43, a 10k in 32:08, a half-marathon in 1:09:40 and a marathon in 2:32:45. My claim to fame is being the top US marathon runner from Kentucky in 2005. I was always “big” for a runner at 5’6" 140-45lbs…which is still pretty small.
I have a Bachelors Degree in Exercise Science, an ACSM-HFS cert, and work in the fitness industry both in corporate wellness and as a personal trainer. It’s amazing how little practical information you get from a degree and cert. Most of my most useful knowledge about weight training and health & fitness in general has come from knowledgeable co-workers who have directed me towards authors and posters on this site and other sources.
Due to some hip issues that prevent me from doing a lot of volume and some ‘real life’ issues I don’t have the time nor the body to put in the training I need to stay competitive. Once you’ve been at a certain level it’s just not satisfying to continue on at a lower level. So, I needed a new goal, a new competitive drive…
So I stopped running competitively in September '08 weighing 145lb and 7 sited 8.9%. After some time off I got out of shape and started lifting in November '08. I could bench 135 for 5 reps. I could also squat below parallel 135 for 10 reps and do 5 pullups. I started with your basic 4 day upper/lower split doing everything in supersets, 4 sets of 10 with 60s rest. I have quite a bit of endurance so this seemed to work well.
After a month I switched to a 5 day Push/Pull/Lower, Total Upper/Lower split…interesting to say the least. Again, 4 sets of 10 supersetting everything. In the gym no longer than 60-75 min. I tested myself and could bench 200 and squat 205 below parallel. Starting in January I went on 8 weeks of GVT cycling 5 days: Chest/Back, Legs, Off, Shoulders/Arms, Off. I then went into 6 weeks of 5x5, again using the same split. Tested again and benched 220 for one rep and squated 235.
I’m currently 160lbs, 8.9% via 7-site.
Current training plan is nothing but drop sets shooting for 3 sets of 6-12-25. If I make all 3 sets pretty easily then I go up in weight the next time.
Diet is 3000-4000 calories depending on what I’m training. I’ved picked the carbs up since switching to the drop sets. Was under 100-150g for a couple months. Now I’ll get up to 300 or so grams on leg day and 200-300 on other workout days. Non-workout days are 200 or below. Basically following a carb cycling approach compared to the low carb approach before. I run a couple days a week and cycle most days. Not much, but I feel with my background I can get away with more. Running/Cycling no more than 30 minutes a day, mostly through my commute to work.