T Nation

Doubting My Self-Prescribed Program

So, I have three main goals. One, to improve my overall health. Two, look good naked. Three, participate in some local highland games next summer.

I want to get down to 12% body fat by June 1st, 2011. I feel this is a realistically achievable and maintainable number for me, can always reevaluate once there.

My current stats (done this morning after a good shit) are:
Height - 6’
Weight - 284.4
Body Fat (using Navy Tape Measure Test) - 30.47%
Lean Mass - 197.75
Fat Mass - 86.65
Neck - 19"
Chest - 48.25
Waist - 46.5
Right Bicep - 18.5
Right Forearm - 13.75
Right Thigh - 28.25
Right Calf - 18.75

My strategy that I deployed Monday last week was a modified Starting Strength. Using front squats over back squats. The last weight for each being:
FS - 115
Bench - 120
Press - 115
DL - 70
PC - 125

^I’ve lost a lot of strength not training for a year…

I was going to do this for two months, keep adding weight to the bar, and then every third month (November, February, and May), do a solid month of cutting. Equaling six months and two weeks of Starting Strength with clean bulk eating and three months of cutting (HIIT, intervals, low carb, etc).

My first thought was that this would be a really good strategy. Even though I was focusing on zero fat loss while bulking (MAYBE throw in one HIIT day a week once I’m more used to it), the clean eating will minimize fat gain, while helping to add muscle. I figure (correct me if I’m wrong) that if I have 86 pounds of fat at 30 percent body fat and add a bunch of muscle, I still may have 86 punds of fat, but my actual percentage will be lower.

Then I cut, do what I can to hold unto as much lean mass as possible while shedding fat (know I will lose some muscle in the process).

But for some reason, I can’t shake the feeling that maybe I should straight cut as much as possible right now and then try to build up as much muscle as possible afterward.

I guess, what I am asking is this. If you were a trainer (or if you are) and had a client with my stats come to you or if a friend or family member came to you with my stats asking for advice, which path do you think you’d send them down and why? And do you think nine months to get to ~12% body fat is a realistic goal?

Brandon

umm, i think you will probably destroy any fstloss during the bulking phases, especially as you need to lose about 10lbs a month.
how bout a 5/3/1 template+ north of vag + clean eating

x2 on 5/3/1

if you really want results get a copy of Shelby Starnes very low carb ebook and follow his recommendations exactly

I looked at 5/3/1, bought the ebook last night. I definitely like it. Would the recommendation then be to just do 5/3/1 + north of vag for the whole nine months (or at least try it on for a few) and not do dedicated cutting months? Unless maybe were looking at a month, month and a half from goal date and not quite there yet?

If you’re looking to lose 80lbs of fat in a year you’re going to need to cut for more than one month at a time. That will accomplish nothing. Go on a no-carb (except for up to 50g in the peri-workout window) diet for 8-12 weeks at a time and go back to maintenance calories for 2-4 weeks after. Rinse and repeat.

You can’t lose fat while bulking. You’re gonna have to choose whether you want to lose the fat or build clean muscle. You can minimize fat gain while building muscle, just like you can minimize muscle loss while losing fat. But you aren’t going to lose any appreciable amount of fat while gaining any appreciable amount of muscle.

Your plan essentially calls for losing 80lbs of fat in the three months you aren’t bulking. Nevermind the fact that a large percentage of lost weight is water and glycogen (some muscle will be lost too though this can be minimized), you’re realistically going to have to lose over 100lbs of bodyweight to lose the amount of fat you want. You can’t do that in 3 months.

[quote]benos4752 wrote:
I looked at 5/3/1, bought the ebook last night. I definitely like it. Would the recommendation then be to just do 5/3/1 + north of vag for the whole nine months (or at least try it on for a few) and not do dedicated cutting months? Unless maybe were looking at a month, month and a half from goal date and not quite there yet?[/quote]

The beauty of 5/3/1 is it is very flexible. Once you “get it” you can really play around with different assistance work and templates. I’d recommend trying Boring But Big for at least a month, it really revs up the metabolism even though its for bulkimg. Also I would try just doing the prescribed reps for a couple weeks at a time and really nuking yourself with complexes or Tabatas for assitance work

Also, as far as diet goes. I’m working on keeping it whole foods. Basically, just doing a ‘primal’ diet with dairy and some good grains. But what about calories? Just eat maintenance and let the exercise put me into a deficit? Eat a deficit? Or eat a surplus?