T Nation

Advice for a Beginner?

Hey, this is my first post on this forum.

I am stuck in a rut and I am looking for serious advice about fitness/strength building that will help me towards changing my life.
I’m 30yrs old, and I am in awful shape. I’m not an over weight guy, but I am out of shape and I am physically weak.

I have a history of exercising for a period, stop exercising for a longer period. That’s been my cylce for the last 3years. When I do exercise I focus more on losing body fat, cardio, circuits, body weight exercise, but I have never really done any serious weight lifting, building muscles has never really been my aim, it has always been more about cardio, staying fit, and losing weight.

In 2010 I injured my back(lower/lumber) due to heavy lifting at work. I went to see my dr, he refereed me to a physiotherapist, and I was given a program of core exercise to help me. I kept up with it for a while, looked like it helped, but something happened in my personal life ment that I had to refocus my life and priorities. Since then I have struggled to keep up with my fitness goals.

2012 I decided to sort my life out, career wise, family wise, and fitness wise.
So far this year I have managed to get the ball rolling with sorting my life out in every aspect except from fitness. So, 2 weeks ago I started training again, got weights at home. What I realised is that I am probably in the most unfittest stage I have ever been.

My muscles are week, I have poor muscle endurance and bad cardio. The worse this is, and its a big problem, is that it is taking me muscles 3-5 days for the soreness(DOMS) to go away, which means, at this stage, I can only lift weights every 4ish days. After doing small weights to get back into training, and some body weight squats, my body takes ages to recover.

So, I’m not exactly sure how to approach getting back into training, especially because it takes me ages to recover, therefore only allowing me to lift weights when the soreness is gone. Any advice?

Also I want to, for the first time, concentrate on becoming stronger and increasing muscle mass. Im sick of having good cardio, but being physically weak.
I want to significantly improve my strength and muscles.

I think this is where I need advice. How to I get back to training and tackle the DOMS issue?
Also, how should a beginner sensibly and safely approach weight lifting?
What kind of lifts should I be doing?

F’k me, this is a long post, I apologize for that. If you have read the whole thing then I fully appreciate it. I hope you guys can help me out on this.

Thanks guys!

[quote]Oliverallover wrote:
Advice for a beginner?[/quote]
Never be first
Never be last
Never volunteer for anything.
Keep your head down
You are not Superman
If it’s stupid but it works, it isn’t stupid.
If your workout is going really well, your doing it wrong.
There is no such thing as a perfect plan.
The important things are always simple; the simple are always hard.
If you receive two contradictory orders, obey them both.

[quote]Oliverallover wrote:

I think this is where I need advice. How to I get back to training and tackle the DOMS issue?[/quote]
Good news! Lifting heavy for 3-5 reps produces less soreness than higher-rep training.

Go heavy, but work up to it. Start with much less weight than you know you can lift and increase the weight a little bit each session. At first, you’ll feel like you’re not doing enough (that’s a good thing). Before you know it, those top sets are going to get tough.

There are plenty of good programs posted on this site. Read the stickied threads at the top of the beginners’ forum. Basically you just want to work every muscle in your body, and load it with a weight that forces you to get stronger.

Work everything
Go heavy
Ramp your sets
Eat well
Sleep well

This is boiling it down to the very basics, but it really is that simple.

[quote]Oliverallover wrote:
Hey, this is my first post on this forum.

I am stuck in a rut and I am looking for serious advice about fitness/strength building that will help me towards changing my life.
I’m 30yrs old, and I am in awful shape. I’m not an over weight guy, but I am out of shape and I am physically weak.

I have a history of exercising for a period, stop exercising for a longer period. That’s been my cylce for the last 3years. When I do exercise I focus more on losing body fat, cardio, circuits, body weight exercise, but I have never really done any serious weight lifting, building muscles has never really been my aim, it has always been more about cardio, staying fit, and losing weight.

In 2010 I injured my back(lower/lumber) due to heavy lifting at work. I went to see my dr, he refereed me to a physiotherapist, and I was given a program of core exercise to help me. I kept up with it for a while, looked like it helped, but something happened in my personal life ment that I had to refocus my life and priorities. Since then I have struggled to keep up with my fitness goals.

2012 I decided to sort my life out, career wise, family wise, and fitness wise.
So far this year I have managed to get the ball rolling with sorting my life out in every aspect except from fitness. So, 2 weeks ago I started training again, got weights at home. What I realised is that I am probably in the most unfittest stage I have ever been.

My muscles are week, I have poor muscle endurance and bad cardio. The worse this is, and its a big problem, is that it is taking me muscles 3-5 days for the soreness(DOMS) to go away, which means, at this stage, I can only lift weights every 4ish days. After doing small weights to get back into training, and some body weight squats, my body takes ages to recover.

So, I’m not exactly sure how to approach getting back into training, especially because it takes me ages to recover, therefore only allowing me to lift weights when the soreness is gone. Any advice?

Also I want to, for the first time, concentrate on becoming stronger and increasing muscle mass. Im sick of having good cardio, but being physically weak.
I want to significantly improve my strength and muscles.

I think this is where I need advice. How to I get back to training and tackle the DOMS issue?
Also, how should a beginner sensibly and safely approach weight lifting?
What kind of lifts should I be doing?

F’k me, this is a long post, I apologize for that. If you have read the whole thing then I fully appreciate it. I hope you guys can help me out on this.

Thanks guys![/quote]

As far as the DOMS goes it may eventually go away after your body adapts but you may need to up the frequency of your work outs. I used to get terrible DOMS after my weekly squat session that would have me struggling to walk for a few days. I changed up from squating once per week to 3-4 times a week and now I never have DOMS from squats even though I am crushing weights I only dreamed of 6 months ago.

The first week and a half of squat so often definately sucked and each rep felt like my legs would burst, but by the second week it was done and so was the DOMS. I would never advocate pushing through an injury but DOMS isnt an injury… suck it up and push through it.