T Nation

Help! Total Newbie!


Hi everyone! Totally new to the site and was wondering if someone could help me with a general nutrition plan. I want to start competing in figure competitions, and I know I have a looong way to go, but part of the problem is that I have no idea where to start. I was pretty lean in the past (15 or 16%), but I didn't do it in a healthy way, and then due to some health issues, I gained quite a bit of weight. Anyway, I'm a female and right now I'm 25, 5'7", 175, and about 29% BF. Like I said, I have a long way to go, so I won't be competing anytime soon, but I'd like to lose about 40 lbs, and get below 15%BF at least. I know I have the discipline, I just haven't put it to use as much as I should have lately! Any help anyone could provide would be much appreciated!


your best bet is to check out T-Nation's figure model sister site.



Figure Athlete is a good place to start, although it doesnt really tell you the basics:

1 - Focus on progression: Either be getting more reps in with the same weight or get more weight on the bar with every workout if you can. This will NOT lead you to looking manly masculine.

2 - You must be working HARD during your workouts. If the last few reps of your sets are not difficult chances are you will not be improving your physique very much. I'm not saying you need to be grunting and yelling to finish the last rep, but it should be very hard.

3 - Diet and cardio: These are largely personal and vary greatly between individuals. As for diet you typically want to stick with some kind of "healthy" eating plan that includes lean proteins and veggies, good carb sources (beans, oatmeal, etc...) and do as much cardio as you need to to reach your goal. Some people can get away with very little, I had to do 2 sessions a day when I was getting very lean.

4 - Accountability: Write down your goals, stick to them, tell people about them. The more people in your life who know about your goals the more you will be likely to stay on track. People wont be offering you birthday cake at the office if they know you are dieting, family wont be sending your christmas cooking by the dozen

5 - Training: If you are new I'd probably start with a 3 or 4 day a week program that includes many large movements (squatting, lunges, pressing).


Check out the articles posted here, as well.