T Nation

Coming Back From Year Off

A year ago I was on here every day, reading and studying. I was training t-man style, all the Waterbury methods in particular but also just about every other program that’s come up on here over the years, with incredible results.

I was eating like Berardi would, basically doing everything 90% perfect for several years in a row up until a year ago when I had to completely stop everything.

It’s something that I’ve been upset about every day for the last year – due to extenuating circumstances I haven’t been able to step into the gym even once. And my eating has had to be reduced severely.

Now when I look in the mirror I see someone with none of the gains I’d worked so hard for for years.

Now I’ve got a couple questions for people who have had to take time like this off before themselves:

(1) Give it to me straight – how long is it likely going to take to get back to where I was a year ago? A sense of this will be important in order to avoid the possibility of being discouraged about how long it’s taking while at same time having goal that I think attainable and motivating.

(2) Any advice on how to go about doing this as effectively as possible?

I’m back to scrawny as ever (6’0" 150lbs) and I hate it. Please help me get my 20lbs of muscle back as quickly as possible.

Just go back to what you were doing and you’ll get back in shape reasonably quickly. Much quicker than it took before. Must be pretty big extenuating circumstances to not be able to train for an entire year…

Any more advice from anyone on these two questions anyone? I know the muscle will come back a lot quicker than it took to the first time, but I’ve lost about 4 years of gains here. I’d like to have a slightly better idea of what I have ahead of me than just that it will come back quicker. Anyone had personal experience with how long it takes to come back from long times off?

Eat a lot and Lift Weights a lot…

6 Months of proper eating and lifting and you’ll most likely be back. But 20 pounds in 4 years isn’t a lot of gains in the first place. You probably weren’t eating enough.

For the sake of me, eat 4500 calories a day for 1 week and watch 2-3 pounds fly on, just so u get an idea of how powerful food is. Then i would cut it back a little at a time to find your 500 or so calories above maintenance diet.

This is an emotional post-you’re reaching.

No one can tell you how long it will take, it’s up to you. How can we factor in your training intensity, nutrition, and quality of rest?

I don’t know how bad your situation got but we all get it bad sometimes. If you fall, get back up. Getting a good physique is not a straight line.