T Nation

Help!! I need to get Ripped!!

Hey guys, I am New to this Site and I was wondering if some of you could help me with some questions i have.

First Off, I need to lose some Fat i have on my stomach and back, my legs and arms do not have that much fat but it wouldnt hurt to get them better looking (more muscular i mean, bigger) I weigh about 173, stand at 5’10". I have only been training for about 1 year, and not that regularly. I can only bench like 170 on my weider home gym, so that means i probably cant even bench that on free weights, right?

So this is what i need from you guys. I need some Tips, Suggestions on what to do to gain strength and get RIPPED!! I want to know what to eat, what supplements to take, if any? Just anything that you think would be useful for me to know.

I will be receiving 2 bottles of Hot-Rox, Some Protein Bars (21 g protein, 2 net Carbs), I also was thinking of a Carb Blocker?? Atkins seems to be a good diet to get rid of the fat. I could be wrong though and I want you guys to tell me, please!!

Thanks for your time, I hope Im not sounding dumb, remember Newbie. Thanks, Nick.

P.S.- Let me know if you need any more information from me that would help you guys out.

I’ll second that. Just peruse through this website, there are so many diets and training articles, you should be like a kid in a candy store. Once you’ve got your basic diet and routine down, ask some more specific questions if you need help.

I’ll help out.

Do a search for the following:
T-Dawg Diet 2.0
Don’t Diet
Optimized Volume Training (OVT)
Meltdown Training I and II
Running Man
The Missing Ingredient

Read them all to get a feel for it, pick the individual diets and exercise programs that appeal to you, and stick to them throughout the duration. Remember to log everything you do in the gym and everything you eat. No doubt you should make some incredible gains in terms of fat loss and MAYBE even some muscle gain as well.

Good luck to you and welcome aboard.

Dan McVicker’s Checklist for Getting the Information You Want From Testosterone Magazine:

  1. Did I read the FAQ? (http://t-mag.com/nation_articles/faq.jsp)

  2. Did I check Chris Shugart’s two part article entitled “My Big Fat Training Guide”? Part two has a link to part one. (http://www.t-mag.com/nation_articles/280fat2.html)

  3. Did I check the Diet Manifesto? (http://www.t-mag.com/nation_articles/271diet.jsp)

  4. Did I DAFS? (Do a fucking search?) Note: this includes the magazine as well as the forum.

  5. Did I RTFM? (Read Testosterone’s Fucking Magazine/Read the Fucking Manual/Read The Forum Materials?) Note: This consists of READING the hits that come up from the previous steps.

  6. Did I post a question on the Forum?

  7. Did I bump as neccessary?

  8. Did I make an effort to learn on my own?

  9. Did I give the information a fair try?

  10. Was I certain I understood the information? If not, have I started over at step one to attempt to clarify the information I learned?

If the answer to all of these questions is “yes,” then you either have the information you’re looking for, or something is seriously wrong. Hope some of this helps you with any future queries you might have about getting HUGE or RIPPED.

Anything I would have to say about getting HUGE or RIPPED has pretty much all been written before. RTFM.

Dan “God, What an Asshole–he expects me to WORK for this.” McVicker

Well, whenever i do a search i come up with like 65,000 results so it kinda hard to pin point what i want with a search unless i know exactly what im looking for, which i dont, otherwise i wouldnt have needed to post a question. Thanks for everyones input so far, i have found the links very helpful.

Char-dawg’s simplified list (for those that find Dan’s recommendations too taxing):

  1. Pick any of the above mentioned training programs. Start it.

  2. Buy a calorie counter book and keep track of everything that goes into your piehole for two weeks. Find the average number of cals per day.

  3. Make sure to eat 350-500 cals below this number consistently. You will lose fat.

  4. Start with T-mag Issue #1 and go from there. Read everything. You’ll have more ideas than you know what to do with, and you’ll learn as you go.

There is no point in ‘getting ripped’ if you don’t have any muscle to begin with.

I second what Ike says…

Benching 170 and being 175 at 5’10 tells me that you’re kind of skinny or skinny/fat.

Put on some muscle, eat clean and you won’t get fat, then you can consider the RIPPED!/SHREDDED! mentality.

McVicker is the forum McMotherfuckingMaster when it comes to issuing out advice, as snide and as sarcastic as it may be. He’s at done the research and formulated a process, which keeps those of us who have been here for awhile from groaning everytime we see the “Hi! Nebie here!” threads.


Hey Nick,

Since I am kind of a newbie also (training 1 year), I figure I may be able to relate a little info. While all of the other tips and comments are great, they can be a little overwhelming. When I first started training, I had a gut and fat on my sides and back. I’m 6’1" and weighed 180 in all the wrong places. I was going to the gym 5 days a week with no direction or routine to follow. I found T-Mag by accident while lookng into supplements. Anyway, look up From Fat to Fire by Coach John Davies. I used this program for 2 months and it was great. I gained muscle while burning body fat. It’s tough at first but stick with it and it’ll pay off. Once you start noticing results, you can add supplements. I have done two 2 week cycles of Mag-10 followed by Tribex for 2 weeks in between. I’ve lost 4 inches in my waistline while increasing LBM. I now weigh in at 196. Once the fat is gone there are a number of muscle building programs on this site. Here’s where patience comes in. Look through a bunch of them and find the one you think best suits you. Don’t be afraid to switch it up every now and then.
Good Luck!

And as is expected, I also COMPLETELY agree with what Ike and Brad has said.

5’10" and weighing 175lbs AND “benching” only 170lbs tells me you are not in an area to get “ripped” but to gain.

Once you add LBM to your frame your “issue” of getting ripped will be forgotten - you’ll wonder why in the world you wanted to get ripped in the first place. Especially when you’ll be more muscular and stronger than you are now.

One more thing to add to Dan McVicker’s fucking list: perform a search for the following thread:

MASS: Time to Get Some


That’s beautiful.

You give both the quickstart–pick a program and start it, keep a diet journal–and the long term–start at issue #1 and read everything. I actually haven’t done that yet–heh. Heh.

I do know that the T-mag powers are making the search function both more powerful and more accurate, so that you can get the results that you really want, instead of a bunch of fluff that you don’t.

Ike, I agree 100%. So many people, especially newbies, are afraid they’re going to turn into huge fatties if they go on a bulking program. I think that John Berardi has contributed to this fear, even in more advanced trainees, by saying that you shouldn’t bulk unless you’re 10% or less bodyfat. Now where this makes the most sense is if you’re at an advanced training age (like JB) who is already at a very high calorie intake (like JB).

But for a newbie who is somewhat overfat, an isocaloric or even slightly positive calorie balance, as long as the macros are broken down correctly in the entire diet, and within individual meals (P+F, P+C) are going to lose that extra fat, even as they add muscle. It makes no sense to cut down to 8% bodyfat at 144 pounds. The Auchowitz survivor/Heroin Chic physique is so 1996.

If the goal is to get big (at least bigger than average–not Nasser El Sonbatyesque, neccessarily) and ripped, then starting out at tiny and ripped isn’t going to help you.


BTW, Ike, how’s Korea treating you? I graduate in two months, and teaching English to Asians is looking mighty appealing right now.

Dan “Is this a hijack? I’m not sure.” McVicker

Couldn’t agree more with you Dan! I decided a few months ago to just suck it up and go through a true bulking cycle and I am LOVING it. Sure, I have times where I don’t like the added fat gain (not that it has been that much), but I am looking at things in terms of what I will look like AFTER putting on some quality mass.

BTW…I will second what Patricia said…do a search for “Mass: time to get some”…VERY motivational

As long as people don’t interpret me as saying:

“Go ahead, eat your Krispy Kremes and blow up to Off-Season Lee-Priestian proportions!”

I’m fine with that.

As Dr. Lonnie Lowery once said (I’m paraphrasing) “What’s wrong with a little bodyfat during a bulking phase, anyway?”

(See the “Ultimate Question” or something like that thread–the one where they tried to figure out a way to add muscle mass and lose fat at the same time.)

Dan “Can’t Answer the Penultimate Question, much less the Ultimate Question” McVicker

First off, I am not skinny. And I do have muscle. I dont know what i should be expected to lift or whatever. I said 170 on my home gym. It different everywhere i go, on my friends Bow FLex I can do 200, so who knows what i can really do. I dont know what to do, Ill just continue searching the forums and look at the mags and just learn some stuff myself, thanks for all the input from everyone, it has helped alot. Nick

You sound a little defensive - try not to take things personally. Keep in mind there are a lot of hideously experienced people on this board. A lot of them no doubt consider a 1 rep bench max of say 1.5 times body weight to be rather weak. You will too when you can do that for reps.

Vital that you don’t let this deter you. What matters is that YOU make progress: compare yourself with yourself.

I’d also suggest you start using free weights. (Please, for safety’s sake don’t start with anything like 170 first time you do a real bench.)

You’ll make much better gains with free weights and you’ll also have more consistency between workouts. (Hard to track progress if one day you do 170 on your home gym then 200 on the bowflex and so on)

I suggest you do what I did when I first found t-mag - start at issue 1 and read everything. Then do it again. Above all - enjoy the journey.

One more thing to consider…

Of all the talk about putting on some more muscle first before cutting, etc etc- sometimes its good for the ego, the mind and one’s own self esteem if they do “get ripped” or at least, fairly lean, even if they don’t have the most muscular frame yet. They may be small and toned, but sometimes you just wanna look good with your shirt off, regardless of how big you are.

I’m not sure if this is the case with Slik. However, it bears importance amongst all of the “put some meat on your bones” suggestions.

From a beginner’s standpoint, as this was true for me year’s ago, I wanted to be lean first, then work on getting bigger, just because I wanted to look and feel better…

Of course I guess it all depends on how much weight you have to lose as well. If you’re not overfat, and look “ok” then sure, put on some beef…no need to cut if you’re already fairly decent I suppose.