T Nation

Advice for Formerly Obese Male

Although I do not really consider myself a beginner I am posting this here because I think it’s probably the proper place due to the objectives of my question. Before I ask it, though, I would like to present you with some background. I am 35 years old and a year ago I weighed nearly 300 lbs and lead a very sedentary lifestyle.

Since November of 2008 I have been following a somewhat modified version of the Body4Life work out and diet. I am now close to 200lbs and plan on getting below 180 with a body fat around 7% in the late spring of 2010. My current supplementation routine is as follows:
Post workout:

  • Protein shake (2/3 whey isolate and 1/3 soy isolate)
  • Argenine and Glutamine
  • Creatine with about 6 oz of grape juice.

My pre workout carb is just an apple as I am currently focusing on weight loss. I eat a balanced diet very low in fat (though almonds and other nuts are a staple in my diet) and very high in whole grains, fruits, and veggies compared to most people.

My main proteins are chicken and egg whites with some sea food, though I do not shy from beef and pork. I also have a protein shake like the one mentioned above first thing in the morning. My current program is like this: Week 1: U H L H O U H Week 2: L H U H O L. Monday - Sunday where U = upper body, L = lower body, H = HIIT for cardio and O = off.

In July I plan on beginning a specific muscle building or bulking routine, assuming I hit my weight goal. My question is what do you more experienced guys suggest in the area of a training, nutrition, and supplementation for some one of my age (approaching 46) who has been participating in a weight training and diet regimen for a year and 9 months?

I am very disciplined. My diet is quite clean and I do not miss workouts. Like I said I don�¢�?�?t really fit as a beginner, but I may not really be intermediate.

[quote]Luguaedos wrote:
a year ago I weighed nearly 300 lbs and lead a very sedentary lifestyle.[/quote]

Big congrats on changing things around.

[quote]Post workout:
Protein shake (2/3 whey isolate and 1/3 soy isolate)
Argenine and Glutamine
Creatine with about 6 oz of grape juice.[/quote]

Soy protein powder is bad mojo. You’d be better off, in this case, just going with straight whey.

Arginine is pretty close to useless, and glutamine is more beneficial during a low carb diet. In a well-balanced diet, it’s not as useful. Those two could probably be dropped with no noticeable change in your progress.

Read through “How Bodybuilders Should Eat” for an alternative to a low fat diet:

Egg yolks are your friend. Use them, enjoy them, grow from them.

Um… what? Let me try to translate:

Sun - Upper
Mon - HIIT cardio
Tues - Lower
Wed - HIIT cardio
Thurs - Off
Fri - Upper
Sat - HIIT cardio

Sun - Lower
Mon - HIIT cardio
Tues - Upper
Wed - HIIT cardio
Thurs - Off
Fri - Lower
Sat - ???

Seems basic enough, and from the results you mentioned, it’s working for you. But what exactly are you doing each session - exercises, sets, and reps?

What kind of weight are you using on the basic lifts (squat, overhead press, deadlift, etc)?

July is a long ways away, my friend. I don’t really see the need to plan your training with much detail seven, almost eight, months in advance. Not that you won’t hit your goal, but based on exactly where you do land by then, your next step could be different. And what if you reach your goal sooner? Then you’ll be all thrown off.

Wait… you’re 35 now or 45 now? Which was the typo? Not that it really matters that much. With your basic level of experience and the condition you plan on being in, you’d be fine with pretty much any training program from the Archives:

And really, it would be a pretty ideal time to test out the Anaconda Protocol, if you’re leaning in that direction:

Is there a particular reason your protein shake is 1/3 soy? While that amount may not make a difference in my experience getting shakes without soy is cheaper and you don’t have worry about turning into a vagina.

@ Chris: Sorry for the typo. I am 35 going on 36. The reason why I am gathering information now is because I am a huge planner. I want to get the advice from you guys and then begin doing my own research to find my own way. I’m not the type that mods a “method” to the point that it is unrecognizable, but I need to understand the science and ideas behind it in order to believe in and follow it. So the 6 months is to give me time to research, plan, and budget. I do include some yolks with my eggs, btw.

I know about the previous studies that suggested soy protein could reduce testosterone and increase estrogen production but the most recent material out there by the American College of Sports Medicine (http://www.acsm.org/)and others have contradicted those. So I have no concerns about turning into a vagina. The inclusion of soy in the supplement was really some experimentation to see if it had any effects. There were some articles I read that made me curious to mess with the protein mix a little.

As far as the exercise routine goes it is basically like this:
Chest 1x12, 1x10, 1x8, 1x6, 1x12+1x12
So you do one set of 12 bench press with one minute between sets and then one set of 10, one set of 8 etc. For a final set you do another set of 12 followed by an immediate set of 12 for a related exercise. For chest I do incline press. It is similar to a super set but the goal is not so much muscle isolation.

My bench press has just gone up to 180 for the final set of 6; my squat for the final set is verging on 300. I have been practicing ultra correct form to compensate for my lack of â??mind/muscle connection.â?? You guys probably donâ??t know what itâ??s like to be so fat itâ??s hard to be able to tell where your muscles are. But now I am moving more towards what Christian Thibaudaeu termed the â??qualitative approachâ?? to the rep. My basic routine is this:

Upper Body
Chest: Bench press/incline press
Shoulders: Military press/lateral raises
Lats/back: Pull downs/rows
Arms:
bis: seated hammer curls/inner-grip preacher curls
tris: triceps machine/rope press downs

Lower Body:
Quads: Squats/leg extensions
Hams: Good mornings (or stiff leg dead lifts)/leg curls
Calves: I tend to vary this, seated raises or on legg press depending on who is using what at the gym.
Abs: crunches/side crunches

Also, I frequently flip these so that I do incline press, then bench press one week for example.

I’ve looked through the articles and archives. I was hoping to hear a bit about what you guys do and why you think it works for you.

Thanks for the reply!