T Nation

Back at it After 11 Years


Hey everyone! So after 11 years of not training I’m getting back into it.

I started out when I was 19 power lifting. I absolutely loved it. I went at it for around 3 years. Long story short, after some shotty coaching from a young guy and me not paying enough attention to my form I ended up injuring my back. I tried to get back into training off and on but I always fell into the glory days issue and would injuring myself again.

Now I have a different goal. I want to just get lean and healthy. When I was power lifting I would eat 4,000 calories or more daily. Which helped me now to being 5’11 and 250, man boobs and all.

I have been eating 2100 calories a day, sometimes less, clean. When I say clean I mean no dairy, very little sugar (only sugar I get comes from fruit) and no wheat. I made myself a promise that I would not step foot in a gym until I can do 100 push-ups and 50 pull ups. Do you guys think this is a decent goal? Next year I would like to start running in the spartan races. Do you think I should go the cross-fit route (which I’m not a big fan of) or just go to the gym and work on the main lifts plus running?

Currently I walk 30 minutes in the morning and 30 minutes in the evening. I do push-ups everyday on a scaled plan to get up to 50 in a month. I also do planks which I can go 60 seconds currently and I do negative pull-ups as I can’t get my fat ass up to the bar yet.

Any tips?


While I understand the sentiment behind such goal-setting, I think it’s counterproductive in this situation. You need to get back in the gym sooner rather than later. And while 100 push-ups is probably within reach, 50 pull-ups, frankly, is not even on the horizon. (As an aside: In terms of relative difficulty, I would equate 100 push-ups with 10 pull-ups, not 50.) Unless you truly love push-ups and pull-up negatives, would suggest you let yourself out of this deal and go to the gym.

As for what you should do when you get there: Train in whatever fashion you enjoy the most, be it PLing, BBing, whatever. Don’t pick a style you don’t enjoy (eg, CrossFit), because you’re not going to stick with it in the long run–or if you do, it will be without enthusiasm and effort.

Finally, a tip: Planks suck, especially for guys with midsection fluffiness and bad backs. Do crunches.


I thought 50 pull ups was a bit much too!
Glad you said it.


Thanks for the advice. I will look into the gyms in my area and will start doing crunches. I will plan to start with the base lifts (deadlifts, squats, bench, presses) along with supporting lifts on these and go from there. As for cardio for the run I will find a program for beginner runners. With the right music I don’t mind cardio and I’m pretty motivated to run a spartan race.


Good luck with the ride and well done for getting back on the horse again, you will love it!


If you could do 50 pull ups you should go to a gym just to show off. I quit lifting for almost 10 years. I started back doing the same things I was doing when I quit, just less weight. Just pick what you like and have at it.