T Nation

Fat, Old, and Lost!


OK, so there is probably a forum or thread or something out there that I could find if I had the time, but I thought maybe I would try this first.

I am relatively new to this site.

I say I am fat. But, truth be told, I am 5'10 and weigh about 190 or so. I am not really fat, just got a bit of the tire and I look kind of soft (blech!)

Old, well, I am 43. I joined the Army at the tender age of 34, and was in for 8 years. I guess you could say I am a late bloomer. I worked out while in the service (did more pushups than anyone else in my unit -- weenies!) and I've recently been doing a lot of research on what I should be doing to start working out. My main interests are cutting the body fat percentage, getting bigger and stronger, and basically feeling better.

Hope someone out there can maybe point me in the right direction.



Starting Strength....maybe some barbell complexes. It's all on the site, good sir. Have fun.


Any program that emphasizes progressing on strength each week is your best bet. The "softness" is going to be a function of diet. What does your diet look like? If you are currently lifting weights, what are you doing?


Starting Strength is a GREAT starting point =)


Do you think squatting 3x/week is such a great idea for a 43 year old? I think 5/3/1 is a much more popular choice over in the Over 35 forum.


Ditto. It's a MUCH better, well-rounded program. I would pay closer attention to the isolation work using high(er) reps, such as 10-15 per set.


You guys are right. No sarcasm.


hmm... trouble with 5/3/1 is calculating the 1RM. i thought i read somewhere (maybe in 'starting strength') that it didn't make much sense to talk of beginners 1RM's...

wouldn't it be better to do something like starting strength and then once one stalls on increasing the weights moving to 5/3/1? once one has an idea of what ones 1RM really is?

i've wondered this for a while.


I'm sure OP could underestimate his 1RM, put an emphasis on progression, and he might be better off. I believe Wendler even states in 5/3/1 that he thinks starting lighter is better than heavier, due to the cycling or some shit and you end up with better gains in the long run or something.. ahh, fuck if I know..


Sounds like 5/3/1 is what I'll try. I've been out of the weight game for a while, and should probably start lighter than my ego wants to.

Thanks for the suggestions fellas.


ROVdude, 5/3/1 is the way to go. I would suggest doing some hard conditioning immediately after, or the day after your lower body days. Jack tha metabolism up! Hard conditioning would be hill sprints, stadium stairs, jumping rope, anything you find that really kicks your ass! Jim has some good stuff with the NOV program, but it is something you should definitely work into, starting with easy weight, little assistance and easy conditioning.


I wouldn't rule out the slow, boring conditioning like treadmill walking and exercise bikes at that age (or any age, really). It just depends on how you feel about doing the high intensity conditioning.


5/3/1 is a great program but I have hard time seeing why a beginner would choose this program. It's a monthly progression. I think beginners would benefit more from a daily progression, then a weekly progression.

I second Starting Strength.


write out what your SPECIFIC goals are: squat 405, dead 515 whatever it is so you have a purpose. Fat loss and weight control will come from your DIET. Give yourself a specific time frame as well. I have used the Westside for Skinny Bastards and have heard rave reviews of and own Wendlers 5/3/1 book. For your info on 1Nov10 I was 73" and weighed 173 at age 44. I am now 190 with the same bodyfat but a MUCH higher strength to weight ratio...good luck and lift strong(er).