T Nation

For Female Figure/Physique Wannabe


Hi Bron! Thank you for your posts. I am struggling to get it together. I'm in my early 5th decade, 5'3 and weigh 155 lbs. My bodyfat is approx 34% as per the hand held device. I have been training with little to no results since May of this year. I am coming back from injuries 18 months ago and now have chronic knee pain which I am being trated for. Anyway, I have a backgound in powerlifting (collegiate All-American) and after graduating I just lifted for my own satisfaction.

Now I am really serious about competing and can't seem to get in competition shape. I am trying to incorporate a healthy diet of at least 13-1400 calories a day. I am increasing my water intake to at least a gallon a day. I train with weights 5 times a week and do cardio 5x a week as well. I was doing HIIT 3-5 days a week but I have stopped due to the knee pain, so I walk on an incline and adjust the pace from 3.5-4mph. And monitor my heart rate.

As far as diet, I am working on putting together up to 75-155 grams protein/54-77grams fat/75grams carbs and 20-25 grams fiber a day (as per some other articles about macros). I don't usually have an appetite so getting all this food in me is going to take work. I've been reading about the supplements like Indigo 3G, but I have yet to read on the others you have suggested. As far as supplements, I have been taking BCAA's, green tea, an Elite Training Pack by Precision Engineered Series. I have been using a casein protein powder and add L-carnitine, glutamine and 1/2 cup of berriesand 1 tbsp of coconut manna (for taste).

I am stronger, but I am not losing any weight and don't notice any significant muscle gain. Even my husband says I haven't lost weight (but he likes my shape).

So if you have any suggestions, please help. Thank you !



Just a few questions for you... Do you have any current photos that you are willing to post? Also, what does your current training program look like and can you give me an idea of what exactly you're eating during the day? Sounds like you've done some research on supplements and I can definitely make some more suggestions. Indigo is amazing, I love it! It's excellent for body composition goals, it allows your body to absorb nutrients more effectively. Best time to take it is 30min preworkout and then drink Plazma (intraworkout carb/protein drink) during your workout... You'll turn into superwoman in the gym!

Are you looking to compete in a physique competition or are you looking to do powerlifting? (You mentioned that you're getting stronger so I was wondering if strength is also one of your main goals).

And....How long have you been on your current program? It takes time to see results so if you just started recently don't get discouraged yet! :slightly_smiling:


Hello Bron,

Thank you for getting back to me. I am looking to compete in Physique. I stopped Powerlifting awhile ago.

I do have photos but I'm not willing to share them with the world right now...is there any other way I could get them to you?

I'm trying really hard to get 6 meals a day in. So far I'm up to 4. My first meal is oatmeal (Better Oats brand) with 3 egg whites and 1 whole egg.
2. Protein shake with creatine and 1/2 cup berries (taste), 1 tbsp almond butter
3. chicken breast with vegetables
4. pre work out shake (with glutamine, EVP, L-carnitine)
5. chicken/turkey breast and vegetables, small yam
6. casein shake with 1/2 cup berries, 1 tbsp coconut manna (pureed cocunut)

Unfirtunately I do have a sweet tooth and I may have a few pieces of licorice a day, but nothing overboard like cake, ice cream or cookies. If the urge gets too bad I'll also chew sugarless gum.

I'm also battling knee injuries right now and I had my 3rd and final treatment yesterday. it will take another 8 weeks to be fully back into the swing of things as far as leg training. I get in extensions, curls, lunges (no weight) and calf raises until I get better 1-2 times a week. I have no issues with upper body.

I'm not running right now as well or doing any HIIT due to the knee pain. I am walking on the treadmill at an inclline and keeping my heartrate in the 70-75% fat burning zone.

I've been at this for over 4 months and I am not seeing any fat loss. I am gaining strength but nothing else. No weight loss, but no weight gain either.


I think the biggest problem is falling within the diet. If you're not accurate with your measurements, food choices and meal timing it can make all of the difference. And a few pieces of licorice may seem like it's not much but over time any little slip up in your diet can have negative effects on your result.

If you have a sweet tooth, I would HIGHLY recommend using MAG-10 as a protein source. You control the amount of flavoring that you add to your protein and it curbs any sweet cravings, especially the grape or orange flavors.

Hopefully the last treatment for your knee goes well. Once you are able to get back to regular leg training it will help but until then you can make plenty of improvements just by adjusting your diet accordingly. The more specific you are with your diet and training the faster results will come. If you've been doing the same thing for 4 months with no results then something isn't right and changes need to be made. Without seeing photos it's hard for me to make an accurate suggestion for diet and I don't want to give you general information that won't be beneficial for your goals.

If you don't feel comfortable writing all of your personal info/pics here, I do offer customized training/diets and if you're interested you can send me an email to silvercirca@hotmail.com


Thank you Bron! I am at my wits end! I will send you the photos to your email.

And thank you, my knees are feeling much better since the last treatment. I'm going to attempt some low impact group training over the next 2 days.

I was following a coach via facebook who suggested supplements from Beverly International which I have been using for about a month. They include creatine, BCAAs, Aminos, protein and several others.

I'm wondering if some of my issues could be that I am in my early 5th decade and could be perimenopausal.

At any rate, thank you again. Chat with you soon.


Hi MajorH419,

I did receive your photos and thought I'd write a quick reply here as well.

First thing you need to get on track is your diet. Even if your training was 100% on point you can never reach the results you want without making necessary adjustments with the diet. Abs really are made in the kitchen and it's a combination training and diet together with the right supplementation that will get you results.

You have great shape for a physique athlete but the main goal at this point should be to reduce bodyfat. It's not a matter of starving yourself but having the right food types at the right time throughout the day.

As for the supplements, since you've already invested in them you don't want them going to waste however I don't think the Creatine is something you must use at this point so you can put it aside and add it in later on when it would be more beneficial to your goals at that point. I am a huge believer in Biotest products and they are the only thing I use now, they are superior to anything else in terms of quality and results. For you specifically I would highly recommend looking into Indigo-3G (for body composition purposes), Plazma (intraworkout carb/protein), these 2 together are amazing. And because you have a sweet tooth the MAG-10 is a perfect option for a protein source and it's the highest quality and fastest absorbing protein you can get, I always use it during my diets and it eliminates any cravings and keeps me feeling full and strong.

Any fluctuation in hormones can cause mental and physical side effects, so you're absolutely right that menopause could be effecting your results in some way. The good news is that you are able to work around these issues and make significant progress from your current state. Your final goal is to step on stage and I have no doubt in my mind that you can do it!


I am thrilled to find this thread.


I am female, just turned 62 y/o. I've been lifting weights for about thirty years and am in far better shape than my peers. I stand just under 5'4" tall and my bathroom scale says I weight 138 with 28% body fat. My workouts took a beating for about two years while working and caring for my ailing , elderly mom.

She has since passed away, and I'm now retired and ready to take care of myself, but I'm at a loss. I'm in a rut. Nothing I do is bringing about any improvement. I have no interest in competition, except with myself and am tempted (but scared) to call it quits.
I have several goals:
1) Decease body fat.
2) Improve bone density: I have osteopenia and take Fosamax 1xwk and 1200mg Caltrate daily.
3) improve balance. I have a medical condition which causes vertigo and balance problems and take medication, Per doctor's orders, I also take up to 800mg Magnesium, 3600mg fish oil, 100mg riboflavin, and 200mg CoQ10,

BTW, I just discovered T-Nation and love it! I hope to see more about people in my age group, especially women.
Thank you.