T Nation

Fat Old Man Shrinking


Hi all:
Finally decided to swallow some ego & post some proof of progress.
Top left of collage was mid-2015, bottom right, February 2016.

Single pic is today.

Got my ass back to the gym regularly this past Monday.

Did 6 workouts from M-Fri. Tomorrow am starting a push/pull split based on a workout I saw here.

Please take a look and make suggestions. It’s a rough draft still!!! ALL help is very much appreciated. This is the year…Can post pre-fatman pics if anyone wishes to see how I degraded from 260 strong to 387 lbs of ugly fat, to now 232 of “just” fat and on the road to correcting this shit.

Note bulges in sides of abdomen - they’re medical implants for chronic pain treatment. 1 pain pump (morphine), 1 is a nuerostimulator with electronic leads terminating at C-7.

Also posting a pic of hand injury to illustrate why lifting is literally such a pain for me :frowning:
Screw it, I’ll gut it out.

Here’s the program (tentative stuff) I begin tomorrow at 11:30pm EST.

Thanks folks!.

Week 1
Day 1 (Pecs, Delts, Triceps, Quads)
Inc. DBell Press (bells parallel to body, retract 10 degrees at top, press back, drop & start over)
1 x 10, 8, 6
Inc DBell Fly: 1 x 8, 6, 4 (Load accordingly)
Shoulder Press (Barbell): 1 x 8, 6, 4
Tricep DBell Extension (behind neck): 1 x 8, 6, fail
Leg Press (Hammer Strength): Warmup x 12, 1 x 8, 6, 4

Day 2 (Hamstrings, Back, Biceps)
Hamstring curl (prone): Warmup x 12, 1 x 8, 8, 6
T-Bar Row: 1 x 8, 6, 4-6
Lat Pulldowns (wide, behind neck): 1 x 10, 8, 6, failure
DBell Shrugs: 1 x 8, 6, 4-6
DBell Alt Curls: 1 x 8, 6, 4-6
Preacher Curl: 1 x 10, 8, 6
Day 3 = Repeat day 1
Day 4 = Repeat day 2
Day 5 – Rest
Day 6 – Repeat beginning day 1


Congrats on your progress so far. You have done a great job. It may help if you give a few more details. What are your goals?


Increase muscle, decrease fat of course!
Priorities are:
Pec size, especially inner
Shoulder width
Biceps size

Hopefully in doing the 6/week workouts, fat will burn just because it has to. I estimate I have around 30 more pounds to shed minimum (fat weight).

By end of year, the overall goal is to get as close to a “Spartan” body (see “300”) as possible, then by end of 2018, to absolutely rock that body type…

Are the short-term goals listed too wide? In the end for me, it’s about overall looks in the mirror, and claiming victory over what was a morbidly obese body. But I can’t transform the whole dang thing at once, so those were as far as I’ve narrowed it.

Figured on doing the listed routine for about 8 weeks, evaluating & modifying as needed. I like the 6 / week concept, as I get bored as hell around home & got really fed up sitting in it over the years when I was literally unable to do anything else.

Thanks for the reply, really appreciate it :slight_smile:


Forgot, thanks for the congrats and:

I’m ordering some metabolic drive & surge this week, and my diet is clean, but need to add good calories. Will not eat “big” ever again, but am comfortable going to maybe 2500cal/day.
Sorry for the add’l post on it.


Post away! The only reason I said that about starting all the new threads, is because it’s hard to keep track that way. This way all your junk is in one trunk, it makes it harder to help if it’s all scattered out. :slight_smile:

It can be pretty slow on the weekends, but as long as you are serious and willing to listen, these guys are the best. It may not be what you want to hear, but it will be what you need. Don’t get discouraged and keep at it.


I’m definitely not only willing to listen, I’m also willing to cooperate in action dude :slight_smile:

It’s a good point that my info being in one place would make it easier for others to evaluate, so I’m doing Word docs to track this stuff, and can copy/paste here. Thanks for sparking that idea : )

I need to look at the site controls and see if I can just post in this log without having to reply to an email or post. Would like to just copy and paste the logs daily upon completion.

Take care ChickenLittle, and thanks again!



***01/08/2017 ((0611HRS EST))
Day One Thoughts

  • It’s time to start tracking weights/reps at the gym.

  • This is training day one, at 11:30am, the starting point of I’m not sure how many weeks of the program, 6, 8, longer?

  • I question my exercise selections, but they are ones I know how to do and don’t wanna be jerkin around screwing up & getting injured learning others on my own. Sure as hell can’t hire a trainer.

  • Speaking of trainers, there are some competitive power lifters at my new gym, and I was told that they like to share training advice & like veterans – bonus! I need to find out who they are and when they lift, but MY plan is to lift at 11:30 every time. Have to believe the body will respond to a strict schedule better than the cluster bomb like attacks I started 6 days ago.

More thoughts, but most importantly, nutrition, weights/reps to follow today’s workout. Dammit I HAVE to remember to grab the paper from the printer downstairs to take with!

NUTRITION QUESTION: Is it best to eat upon rising, or is it ok to wait until I actually want to throw something down?

A huge motivational factor: my wife. The lady is almost the entire reason I breathe, and I want to impress her. Sure, she loved me when I was ‘fat-man’ living on the recliner from ’02-’15, but I want to make her love me more! Additional sex would be good too, but that isn’t THE main motivation here ya freaks! I think it’d demonstrate to her how much I care if I take the best care of ME that I can, and I have been, but it’s time to be consistent with training and finish up this transformation! Gotta turn it up a notch! In addition to loving me, I want her to be impressed! For the sake of her physical security, I need to be in top condition to meet my own requirements in ensuring she is always safe, even when I’m unarmed, as infrequent as that is.

The friggin’ Velocity diet I saw here looked really good. Thing about that one is the exercises. Not familiar with them, and think I ought not risk hurting my stupid hand with a lot of them just to follow the plan. So, when I can afford it, I’ll buy the recommended stuff and follow the diet, but will use my own exercises. The tempos I can use with what I choose to do, hopefully. It has to be better than what I’ve done in the past, and should definitely help some gains, even if it’s not a competition physique.
Maybe later this year I can learn the exercises required and do the plan by the letter. For now, it’s gotta be modified.

Question on Velocity Diet Nutrition: Is it ok to follow for more than 30 days? Is it sound to do for several months, even a year?

The idea of blending up shakes for meals actually sounds good to me. Convenient as hell, doesn’t require cooking, can have them in the fridge and grab & go as needed. This aids in it being “lifestyle” vs “diet.” Diets are too temporary by definition to do what I want done here. Lifestyle changes, not diets, have taken the weight of an entire person off my frame.

I DO know I’m too stubborn to give up a mission, and this IS a mission. Almost a “quest.” I’m sick of not being as strong as I was 15 years ago, and will be damned if I don’t modify the behaviors that prevent it.

Sleep. Eat. Train. Repeat.

I can do this. I WILL do this! Ooh Rah!!



Just looked at my pics again. Grrrr.
Have to wonder if that flab under the arms will go away, and if making the pecs larger & shoulders wider will at least help draw attention from any of it that may remain.

Damn I’m out of shape! This stuff will end. It begins today!


The lady (my wife of 27 years) whom I want to impress.

MY Motivation for ME!


Odd session today. Energy was abundant, but weight moved was not!!

My “bearings” don’t feel very solid, as if my body isn’t holding itself stable enough. Maybe because I lost so much weight and didn’t lift much while I was doing it?

Pre: 14 oz protein (casein) powder mix drink, and 6 oz of black coffee before going to the gym.

For barbell press, had to use the bar (assume 45lb) for initial guage of what to use. Didn’t get far.

Triceps extension w/dumbbells didn’t work well, so I moved to a cable press for that.

Could NOT locate a leg press machine so did extensions.

Trying to get used to this gym, the location of equipment & stuff is a bitch! It’s HUGE.

At least it wasn’t crowded. Seems morning is the best time to go, given a spot isn’t neefed, but for the puny ass weights I’m moving it won’t be for a while (grrrrr).

Mixed another protein drink soon as I got through the door, downed it, and am starting on water at 16 oz. Will try to drink 16oz per 90 minutes throughout the day.

Question for all:
For increasing the weight, should I add reps to the next to last one used this time, or drop starting weights? And please don’t be a bunch of smarta**es telling me that to decrease weights for me would mean using NO weight at all hahaha!

Here’s how it turned out, Day 1, Jan 8, 2017

Inc Dumbbell Press: 35/8, 45/6, 50/6
Incline Fly: 20/8, 25/6, 30/5
Barbell Press: 45(bar)/8, 55/5, 75/3
Tri Cable Press: 40/8, 75/6, 90/3
Leg Extensions: (40/12 warmup), 50/8, 70/8, 90/3

Rest between sets was no more than 2 min., and max of 4 between movements, probably closer to 3.

For Inc Dumbbell press, the last set was taxing and I barely got the last rep.
Flies the same.

Barbell Press: It was difficult to keep the bar horizontal. Thinking it a good idea to try these weights again next time as dropping the first weight used would mean dumbbells & I wanna use the bar!

Triceps used to be a strong point for me. What happened? Dangit, Not working outside the home the past 16.5 years has led to immense weakness in arms that used to be a solid 21"… Should I do more than one movement for triceps or keep on with one? What about biceps? Am trying to KISS (Keep It Simple Stupid) this stuff…

Quads hit by leg extensions correct? That one actually felt good minus the seat. There are other styles of seats on this I may try next time.

Input from those who know is always appreciated.
Later ya all!

(Working on an age/body timeline photo thing to post to illustrate the changes since military service…Will post soon.).


realize the body is covered in these, but it gives an idea of body changes from age 21-47:

1991, Post Desert Storm, Pre-injury:

1998: Squat 1RM was 595, Bench 315, Barbell Curl (Strict) 135 x 3

1999: Still working but no lifting for 6 months. Note gut.

Spinal Cord Stimulator, 4th implant, 2008(?):

2009 - Post recovery (wife’s hand on shoulder there :slight_smile: )

2012: Post pain pump implant, average day spent in recliner:

2013: Last year spent doing almost nothing except going to places like EO’s & eating toooo much!

Right (dominant) hand condition, December 2016:

There, with the first pic posts and these, we can see how I went from soldier in 1991, to fatboy, to now. A ways to go, but…I will get there!!

Peace !


Hey there @s_afsoc.

Congratulations on all of your success. You’ve clearly got a lot running through your head right now, which is great. You’re starting to think about muscle and strength, which is great. You’ve obviously put thought into your diet, which is great.

It sounds like you need to find your gym wings. Based on this and your other threads, I have two specific recommendations for you.

  1. I really think you should buy both Starting Strength and 5/3/1 2nd Edition. Starting Strength is a good movement reference to help you learn how to do compound barbell lifts. 5/3/1 is how I’d recommend you execute them. Wendler also does an excellent job of explaining the principles necessary for success with lifting. I’ve not yet read a more concise explanation that covers everything someone at your stage needs to know.

  2. Get serious about your lifting. Hook up with the powerlifters around town. If they are any good at what they do, you will learn a lot. You don’t need to train like a powerlifter unless you want to, but learning the power lifts is an invaluable tool. If they suck at powerlifting or are a bunch of dicks, do it on your own without their help. No matter what, keep lifting. Find a way to lift that appeals to you and that you can fit into your life. If that’s barbell work, great. You’ve chosen correctly. If that’s dumbbell work and machines, great, you’ve still chosen correctly. No matter what, follow a sensible plan. You’re free to chart your own course, but remember that success leaves tracks.

I know I only said two, but here’s a third. Listen to your body. It is cliche, I know, but doing barbell lifts while dropping fat has a way of leaving me feeling beat-up and more prone to injury. If it hurts, stop and figure out what doesn’t make it hurt.

Good luck, and I’ll be following along!


Hey there twojarslave!

Thank you for the input!

The books: Starting Strength and 5/3/1 2nd Edition are both by Wendler I take it? And availalbe for order online?

Yes, getting my wings at the gym. Will be persistsent about learning everything.

Will speak to the guy who enrolled me tomorrow and try to locate the power lifting competitors, or when they lift.

I prefer learning and doing the barbell movements because I think they will build strength best? If I have to work up to them with dumbbells then ok, but definitely want to use bars as much as possible :slight_smile:

Feeling “beat up” hasn’t happened yet, I just can’t seem to move the weight I’d like even though I’ve an excess of energy most of the time. The books will be of help with how to approach that issue I’m sure.

Thanks again for the book recommends as well as the input.

Any time you may see something needing comment, plesse do go for it!



Wendler is impressive as hell!

Yes, googled that stuff & the books are on my list at AmazonPrime…

I look forward to reading stuff written by a guy who obviously knows WTH he’s writing about!

Yaaay, this year is starting on the right foot :slight_smile: !


You are off to a great start. You’ve got the right attitude, you’re embracing barbells (yes, they are generally superior at your stage), and you’re seeking out good information.

Regarding barbells. I cannot emphasize Wendler’s recommendation to start light enough. Learn the movements first, then start loading them. Any seasoned gym go-er will be much more impressed with a set of 10 full-range squats with 135 on the bar than they will with someone who puts 315 on their back and bends their knees a little. Impressions aside, the former will get you stronger and the latter will get you injured.

Leave your ego at the door, do things right and you will have great success. Wendler tells you how to do things right.


Forgive me if I missed it, but how old are you? My impression is you’re in your late 40s.

Also, given your extensive hx of musculoskeletal issues, how does your doctor(s) feel about you engaging in heavy weightlifting? @twojarslave has made some excellent points above, but I for one am wondering if a powerlifting approach (ie, focusing on getting stronger on the Big 3) is the best strategy for someone your age, and with your physical limitations/concerns.


I’m 47.
Doctors are ok with it. Have to be cautious about hand use & how much weight I put across my back but otherwise no worries.

If I hit a roadblock I’ll figure out how to get around it :slight_smile:

Fact is, I feel as good as I did 20 years ago and am up to the challenge of at least trying hard as one can.

Thanks for making me think about that stuff though, it needs to be given consideration so I don’t really screw up.

Appreciate the reply!
Take care,

the main physical limitation is hand strength, and pain resultant from use of that hand. I posted elsewhere on TBation asking if anyone knew of something that might assist my grip. Have used lifting straps, and the main assistance needed is with pulling…
Very Hot or cold temps bother me as much or worse though.
As for my spine, it’s intact but has electronic paddle leads on the cord at C7 anchored inside the spinal column.
No other medical restrictions per se. The serious issue is, and always has been severe pain in that hand.
I am a Type II diabetic, but no longer require meds for that stuff… I am watching my diet and don’t anticipate issues from diabetes unless that stops.
With the pain, I’m unable to work because I never know when it will shoot from a 3/10 level to 9/10, so if I did have a regular career, call offs would get me terminated inside if 6 months.
Also, the USAF retired me.,…I was told before I served, "If anything happens to you, you’ll be taken care of the rest of your life. I upheld my end, so…
Think that’s enough info. If by chance more would be of help ya all just ask >


JEnd of Training Day ONE:

'Energy level just now decreasing a very little.
Melatonin in 1.2 hrs.

Didn’t get the water down as planned.

Been on TRT w/Fortesta for years - doc said my T was low due to using opoid analgesics, and that it would improve my “general sense of well being,” but haven’t used it today. Yet. May ought to do that.

Coffee in the morning is probably not ok. Seems it jolted me too hard today. Friggin’ bad for us anyway. I had been drinking a pot/day, but over the past 7 days no more than one cup/day. Cutting that out would be better for me no doubt, and would cost less!

Have blank session sheets typed up in Word, next 2 days printed. Need to try like hell tomorrow to increase weights from today’s levels. I’ll get there…

Not modifying chest at all (incline to flat presses) until day 5 of this during this 6 day string. Probably will keep it flat on day 8 as well. I think (?) it’s best to keep pec movements mixed up?. Maybe I will eventually be able to mix them in the same session, but am not ready for that yet IMO.

Going to set alarms on iPhone for protein intake tomorrow. If I’d done that today, I wouldn’t have been tempted into the (low carb) pasta. However, since that was my only carb intake, it’s not toooo bad I reckon.

Probably ought to set alarms for water too. I’ll get in the habit sooner or later. Could tie an empty jug to my belt!

Q: When I order protein and Surge from BioTest this week, not sure if I should get some Finibars for peri-workout ?

Q: When would it be most useful to use creatine monohydrate?

Q: Does the nicotine I use (Copenhagen) have a negative effect on gains, or just indirectly via cardio vascular health? Either way it’s not good, but stopping that stuff could be quite the challenge.

Q: Is there a supplement that would aid in mental calmness? I’m wound up like a top from the time I rise in the morning until late evening or bedtme.???

__Signing out of T-Nation for 01/08/17. _
_Day one, although not as good as I’d hoped, was better than not trying at all!!! I’ll make gains over time as long as I maintain discipline, something I was good at until I became totally disabled in 2001 & had to stop working. __

Am “back in the game” and I’ll be damned if I’ll not play to win. We can see from the posted pics how that works out :stuck_out_tongue:

Adios ya muscleheads!


Here we go. Morning of day 2:

09Jan2017; 0725HRS EST
Note to self: _Inevitable setback - exacerbated hand pain. It’s mid-January in Ohio, so the cold weather is sinking in. Add to that the use of my hand with weights, and the pain elevated from the typical 3/10 to 6/10 on the pain scale last night. This is NOT a surprise, but is unwelcome as hell. At present, I’d rate it a 4.5/10. _
Will this affect my workout? Yes to an extent it will, but I found the lifting straps and they will help. Can’t know how cooperative the hand will be to begin with, and with the pain elevated, there’s no way to tell how much I’ll b able to tolerate. What it will not do, is skip the workout. Good judgment is essential. I have to customize things to my own abilities, or in this case, disability. Customize, NOT stop. If I have to use dumbbells 15+ lbs lighter than my left side would allow, or have to decrease reps by a few – ok, whatever.
_I wish it were otherwise, but “cosas se pasan.” It’s the proverbial “grace under pressure" that matters here… It’s an opportunity to excel. _

I did locate the lifting straps and will throw them in my bag. It sucks to have to use them for weights that most would scoff at even using, but if that’s what it takes…

It’s something in the path posing an obstacle. I can’t go directly through it, so circumventing it is the way to get there. It will take longer, but I will not turn tail and run like a 4 year old sissy girl.

Gut it out or go home are the choices. I don’t give up, so….

(Awoke at 0709)
**20oz Water: **

** 14 oz, Protein powder drink**
12 oz coffee – working on it now. May ought not have it, but dammit I like a cup of coffee in the morning!
Will wait until 0900HRS to leave for the gym if I can sit still that long. It seems I felt more like working out after 0930HRS yesterday.

Today’s planned session.

09Jan17 (Day 2)
(Target Sets/Reps = 1x8, 6, 4)

Bent Over Row (barbell)
Straps will be needed.

Lat Pulldowns (Wide, behind neck)

DBell Shrugs

Preacher Curl

Hammer Curl

Hamstring Curl


Can’t locate an “edit” button on the page, hence replying to my own post.

Friggin hand pain is at 7+/10. Oh well, at least no one is shooting at me!