T Nation

Fat Old Man Shrinking


For pecs get your trainer to recommend a machine in your gym that replicates dips while seated. Your described physical condition makes me think such a machine would be better than actual bodyweight dipping, for now. Read Thibodeaux’s articles on this website about dips and dumbbell benches. I believe he thinks those two exercises produce the best pec development. In about a year maybe apply DBasler’s log’s information on here.


Ha! That was made because I looked up through your log and saw lots of pushing but not much pulling. Over the long-term, having a stronger, more developed back will be quite useful in building bigger chesticles.

But yes, biker’s suggestions are a little more direct,.


Ahhhhh ok!

Yer a “funny man” I see : )

That makes sense. I know strong abs help the lower back, so complementary muscles need each other.

Never did a lot of back work until now, and want to do more. However, in the past, for chest I didn’t do much other than flat bench & the occasional incline bench. So now, since I’m pretty much starting with a fresh (though a bit worn) template of a body, hitting chest thoroughly from the get-go is important tp me. I never did have much inner chest development, and with a tiny bit of research, have determined there’s a lot more I need to work on than just bench. That’s sorta why I’m using dumbbells, other than I’m too out of shape to move much on a flat bench barbell.

Take the incline fly for instance. I’d never, ever done those. But a video showed how to do them with a slight retraction and stuff on top to fully hit the pecs. Who;d ah thunk?! Can’t do that stuff with a bar…

So I figure this community will have suggestions for hitting the entire pectoral area much more thoroughly than I ever would, hence the question about movements.

The next question would be: “How the heck do I work on making lat muscle to start with, and then how do I make it “spread” out?

You can see in my pics that there’s flab between the armpits & lats. While still slowly dropping BF, I wanna build the chest & back to help diminish the visual stuff like that while the rest of the ugly flab comes off.

Can not, and will not do diet and cardio to get “skinny” till that crap is gone, so while trying to build muscle, those areas are a main goal.

I did rows the other day, and what I felt to be a LOT of them. It friggin’ felt GOOD, and it fatigued the hell out of me too. Still need to post that workout I think. The cable rows that I thought were gonna be a warmup ended up wearing my old ass out so that t-bar rows were not happening.

Q2: @twojarslave : If I may ask, how old are you? It’s obvious you have “life experience” in the gym, and I wonder how similar we are in age….

In any case, the input I get here is extremely helpful thus far, and I look forward to hearing it.

I started coming to this site I think in 98-99, when it was www.testosterone.net , and it rocked then, so that’s what I looked for last year when I found t-nation.com I remember the black t-shirts with yellow “testosterone” printed on the front, and how pissed my wife got when I wore them saying, “I don’t wear shirts that say ‘estrogen’ what’s the matter with you!’” Ha!

*Today is an “off” day at the gym cuz my muscles are that fatigued, AND I have to catch an AT&T tech guy here at the house to fix HER damn cable receiver – Grrrrrrr! Can’t say I’m happy about either of those….but I ain’t no spring chicken any more! You guys told me it’s ok to workout every day until my body can’t, hence the day off. Otherwise, I’m probably stubborn enough to go anyway & risk injury and not making any progress like the thick headed son of a bch I am!

Ya all have a great day & TTYL!



I’m 36.

As far as targeting specific muscles, I’m not the best guy to advise on that. You’re talking bodybuilding there, and I’ve always trained primarily for strength. What I can tell you is that getting stronger on the basic movements I talked about earlier (squat, hip hinge, horizontal and vertical pushing and pulling) will make you grow muscle over your entire body.

That said, pullups, rows and lat pulldowns will directly work the lats. I’ve got a fairly thick back, and I’d attribute most of that to deadlifts. But who knows really? I was rowing and pulling the whole time too.

It all works, and if you’re lifting smart, it should all work together.


Ok ya youngster! lol.

Pullups is something I’d like to work on, but with the hand like it is…maybe straps will help enough, or there is an assisted pullup thing at the gym.

Same with DL. It’s something I WANT to start doing, but think I best build this body in strength with other movements before starting, whattya think? If I can do it with straps, is there any reason to not at least start? I mean hell, it’s a basic enough movement, and is essentially “just pick it up,” so even I should be able to handle it given my grip will.

But back to the question, Guess I’ll browse this site to locate targeted pec movements for tomorrow or in the future. The incline stuff I mentioned really feels like it’s hitting them well, so methinks continuing as is for a while is sensible. Can’t expect one week worth of lifts to accomplish a lifetime goal!

<EDIT/ADDITION> K, that was easy enough. Great article here about pec development and how strenght moves like flat, barbbell bench for big weight isn’t the way to do it: https://www.t-nation.com/training/ditch-the-barbell-bench-press

Aight there @twojarslave (interesting nick BTW), I’ll TTYL

Peace be with you,

<Edit #2> Romanian Deadlift: https://www.t-nation.com/training/build-a-brick-house-backside-with-rdls
These look GOOD!!! Should be easier for my amateur self too :slight_smile: !


The gym does have the platform thing to assist with pull-ups & dips.
Very good. Will work on wide-grip dips tomorrow.
Is it best to sit in the platform for dips or put the knees on it?

Being “off” today feels alright, though rather boring. Least it’s a good opp to view how-to stuff online.
And a great time to hydrate up real well…been undisciplined with that the past week so am trying to correct it…

Later Ya All!


This crappy workout yesterday is what told me to take today off :frowning:


Lat Pulldown :
(To sternum, narrow rev grip) 40/10, 40/12, 70/12, 90/10, 100/8, 110/5

Cable Row 60/12, 60/15, 84/10, 96/6
DBell Press (standing) 15/9 20/5 15/6
Lateral raise 25/10
Leg Ext 60/12
Ham curl 30/8 40/8
Goblet Squat 25/10

Guess I wore out after the first movement. Tried pulldowns behind the neck but my ROM sucked so I I stopped!
Cable rows felt very good and they definitely exhausted my back & shoulders.

Tomorrow’s workout should be significantly better. Will begin with assisted, wide grip dips. From what I can tell from reading, these will serve better than most bench movements, and will do incline DB press & Flies. after.

Friggin’ managed to get sick somehow today. Having to take something for a headache, which I get no more than once every few years. Hope the medicine doesn’t goof things up tomorrow.

It took a good bit of ego-swallowing to post that workout, if ya wanna call it that, but it should illustrate why a day off today happened. I’d have gladly went today, but didn’t figure it would do much good…

Here is the plan for tomorrow:

Wide Grip, assisted Dips: 3-4/?

Inc Dbell Press: 1x12, 10, 8

Inc Dbell Fly 15o repeat on concentric at top): 1x10, 8, 6-8

Shldr Press (DBell): 1x10, 8-10, 6-8, 4-6

DB Shrugs: 1x15, 10, 8, 6

Tricep cable press 1x15, 10, 8, 6

DB Triceps Ext
(bent over) Light, 2 x failure

Leg Extensions 1x15, 12, 10, 8, ?

Teacup Squat 1 x 10, 10, 8, ?

Aight that’s it for now…
Ya all be good,


Today’s session went ok for the most part.
Started with assisted dips. Will have to offset my bodyweight more next time and do more sets/reps.

The other movements were ok, but couldn’t use much weight so I did what I could.

Shoulders were difficult as well. Will just have to use light weights as is for a while to build up looks like.

Legs I thought went very well. Hardest I’ve hit them for a long while. Always did like working quads. Started too light, so did extra sets/reps until they were properly fatigued :slight_smile:

Here’s todays log:

Assisted Dips (I weight approx 225lbs): 120lb/8, 135/8
DB Inc Press: 20/10, 30/8, 40/4
DB OH Press: 25/5, 15/8
Shldr Press Machine: 40/4
Triceps Press (rope): 48/12, 72/10, 84/6

Seated Leg Press: 108/12, 132/10, 156/10, 180/10, 204/8, 238/8, 252/6
Leg Extension: 70/10, 100/10, 120/10

Looks like next time the starting weights on legs needs to increase! For now I’m satisfied. Am not injterested in adding bulk to legs…

Pecs are another thing altogether. I wonder if changing to just dips for at least 4 weeks would be more beneficial than using weight. If I can progress to just using my bodyweight that would be good IMO.

For delts, I think that doing one exercise like the DB OH Press and doing it hard may be the way I go.

Triceps, well, the pressing movements will hit those as will the dips, so isolated movements probably aren’t necessary since I’m not a BB guy.

Comments/suggestions always welcome!

Ya all have a great day :slight_smile:



Good post, I was about to write something like that.

Powerlifting is an horrible idea. You would wreck your shit. I don’t even see the benefit even if by miracle you werent.

Such an awful idea.

Need general lifting, abs, cardio, lunges and things like that.


@jasmincar I don’t quite understand your post. Are you saying the “Big 3” is a bad idea, or heavy lifting in general?

At this point I’m pretty much in what I’d consider a “getting back into it” phase. I don’t intend to go big, compete, or anything more than work on strength and as much physique as I can reasonably handle.

Best I know, my logs are general lifting stuff.

Could you redo the post please? I can’t understand what it’s saying other than you think I should just do “general lifting” and that powerlifting would “wreck my shit.” Lol, that’s a way to say injury right?


Wouldn’t make sense to me to focus on things like the back squat for the sake of it as in powerlifting, especially with the thing you have in your spine.

I think what you are doing now is fine.


I didnt quote the text Eyedentist wrote because I am on a mobile, only replied to it (you can see the reply icon top right of my post). Maybe that’s why my post wasnt clear to you if you are new to this forum since people usually quote the text and use the @ as you did

Edit: done


Ok cool
I used mobile email vs the web page to reply.

I agree as well. The big weight lifts aren’t something I want to focus on

The thing in my spine would definitely be a problem at probably over 315 for squats for sure

Have decided to decrease the movements, use ones that are more simple, and just go as hard as I can each time. It seems I’d hit the “accessory” muscles doing dips for example. Pecs + triceps, so triceps presses aren’t needed right now.

Aight take care!


Here’s what I PLAN to do tomorrow. It could change based on how things go, but:

Assisted Pullups - the kind of “compound” thing I was talking about.
RDL - Looks like a dang good move for hamstrings & other stuff, so I’ll try it out
Cable Row - because “someone” said "row row row!"
Preacher Curl (these because my biceps are toooo small to suit me and I don’t think they’ll get enough work without some kind of curling)
DB Shrugs (to help the muscle close to my spinal implant)

It comes to mind that when in the military, I was in great shape with minimal weights being moved. Sure, it was a different sort of physique, but I could run forever, even while hauling a pack, go up and down cliffs, etc. Lean, agile, strong…all with very little weightlifting…

I did try some bodyweight stuff last Fall, but all it did was take fat off, no muscle building. Since I hope I have no need to run into a fight, or back out of one, more muscle AND strength are desirable now.
Sadly, my body seems a little slow to respond in muscle growth at this age, so it will just take dedication & getting my ass to the gym!
Think I mentioned this before, but calorie intake is challenging to me now because to lose a LOT of weight, I ate ONLY in order to survive, when my stomach felt like it would digest itself. It seems I’ve developed an aversion to food now, which ok, but impossible to build muscle without SOME extra calories.

An aside: Friggin ice storm coming in here at 9:16p! Grrrr I HATE ice!!! Ya just can’t drive on it unless you have a vehicle with chains and…

Ohio winter though - it’s to be expected, especially after it’s been so “easy” until now.
Only 3 months until all kinds of nice weather happens :slight_smile:

Ya all have a good one!


Just occurred to me, wide grip pull ups AND reverse grip pullups need to be done.
That’ll teach those biceps !

And thank God they have the “assist” thing to offset bodyweight. Maybe soon I won’t need it, but that’ll get me there :slight_smile:

I’d expect few to be doing much in this forum this weekend.

We were supposed to have ice coming down here, but I’ll be damned if I see much of anything outside - a good thing.

You people have a great Saturday!


Warm Up??

Hey, I’ve not been doing ANY warm up stuff. Period.


In the distant past, I did treadmill for 8 mins, stretches & sometimes skipped rope…but, I do NOT know what would be appropriate for my age / (lack of) fitness level right now. Don’t even know if I can skip rope, or if I need to buy one.

What do you guys do?

How critical is warming up? I’d imagine it is critical, but have obviously neglected it.

Many moons ago (yes again) I did martial arts training (Tang Soo Do, TKD, WuShu) that required a ton of stretching, pushups, situps, jumping jacks & stuff like that.
One sensei did his best to start a session with us doing 1,000 jumping jacks. I never made it past 150 :frowning: Pushups were daily fare in the service, as were situps & squat thrusts. But that was 25 friggin’ years ago & I easily followed that shit up with 5-15 mile runs, something that’s unnecessary and undesirable to me now.

<don’t recommend “Agile 8” please. I looked at that & don’t have the foam stuff to do it with, nor am I very interested in it>

THE questions here are:

  1. What do YOU do?
  2. What do you recommend for a 47 y/o man who is essentially a beginner again?

Thank you. I look forward to hearing comments/suggestions!



Hi guys!

I need to look at the Romanian Deadlift how’to again! Tried them but definitely wasn’t doing it right, felt a small pull in the lower back & moved to ham curls instead till I can look at the video again.

A cool thing - actually felt some pump in the lats & biceps after this one. Looks like the pullups did that – happy happy!

I replied to a comment received in email, someone told me to “stop whining.” If I am whining, it is definitely never my intent. Hell, it may have been in a different forum - dunno. Whatever. Complain yes, whine no. Not my style lol. Thought I’d address that here in case it came up.

'My 26 y/o son went with me today. Says he can’t afford the $25/mo. & will go to Planet Fitness :frowning: I tried. Fact is, weak as I am, he couldn’t keep up. lol, that made me feel good. Probably better for him to learn on his own anyway. I lack patience…

Here’s today’s session:

Pull Ups (w/assist): 165/10, 195/10, 195/15, 195/15
RDL: 45/10, 95/6
Ham Curl machine: 50/10, 70/8, 90/4
Cable Row: 96/10, 72/12
Preacher Curl: 30/10, 40/10, 50/10

Yes that’s it! The pullups (and dips) I’m getting back into and will adjust the assist weight down once the body adapts to the movement.
Ham curls will go away when RDL’s are lined out.
Cable Rows I’ll keep.
Preacher curls I love! Next time will adjust the weight up.

Ya all have a good one!




I warm up for 25-30 min before each workout but I’m nearly a decade older. Some guys can hit it cold without issue but I cannot . I use a Tmilll or Stat bike to get blood flowing and joints lubed. I hit a foam roller, stretch and do mobility work…Google Eric Cressey, Dr John Rusin or Mike Robertson they all have excellent drills and tutorial videos… So does Tony Gentilcore…all write for this site as well.

Good luck on your quest, and thanks for your service.


First, you’re very welcome for my service. It was truly my pleasure & id still be active duty if it was feasible. Loved it!

Today I did very light stuff with each exercise first, & it seemed to be helpful.
I think I’m right in between the ability to start cold and not! Will check these out

Today was a little odd, as I woke up at 0401 which is early even for me :confused:
My wife had left the bed to read in another room, then fell asleep, so that’s likely why. Amazed she got out of our room without alerting me:/

So I was thoroughly awake time I hit the gym, possibly making it go better, hence actually feeling a little “pump” - a great feeling I’ve missed.

Funny you use the word “quest.” That resonates with me.

I’ll google those names. It seems like I’m new to being old - it snuck up on me ! Probably should look to advice targeted to my age bracket instead of trying to reinvent the wheel.



A few things from skimming your log from the past few days.

First I looked and can’t find the hook straps I had. Not convinced that they aren’t here somewhere as I rarely throw anything lifting related. I have about 5 sets of regular straps and would be happy to mail one of them to you if you need them.

I would definitely add in deadlifts. Start out very light and make sure you get your form dialed in. No better overall back builder than deadlifts.

For your chest add in a flat bench movement since you are doing inclines. I would just do a conventional barbell bench press but a dumbbell bench press would be beneficial as well. If you go the dumbbell route you may want to give single arm dumbbell bench a shot. You have to use lighter dumbbells for a while until you get the feel of it but they really target the chest.

I would not get the Finnebars. I tried a box years ago and they never settled well on my stomach. Never had that problem with any other protein bars that I have tried.

I’m a few months shy of 50-years-old and have found that I’m much better off doing more frequent shorter training sessions than I am fewer longer sessions. Your schedule looks like it lends itself to being able to train frequently so take advantage of it.