T Nation

Help w/ Training and Diet (Health Issues)


Hello to all, I'm new here, First of all my name is Jarrod, 30, M, 5'11'', 226lbs. mainly fat. I've been battling certain heatlh issues since age 17, ranging from auto-immune disease, asthma, two strokes, heart disease, a recent heart attack, and have been on prednisone over the years. I hate the prednisone, but it keeps my white blood cells regulated, but it has put so much fat on my body. I don't execise anymore, cause lack of burning fat, I only seem to be working out the muscles.

All of these weightloss programs V-Diet, P 90X,etc. are only for people who are in good health, none of what I mention. I get all into reading or viewing it all to get disappointed and depressed, when I get to the end what I read. Why hasn't someone thought of, or came out with an exercise program for we people with health issues? I mean, I want to get healthy so I can start winning the battle with health issues.

Will some or some people direct me to a better life, PLEASE! My cardiologist tells me, Jarrod do cardio, that gets really boring very quickly, and no fatloss, what I'm after. Been on diets, TNT diet which worked good, but ate some carbs only gain weight back and then some. Before I got sick I was more toned, solid, still had fat, but ,more solid, I miss that, and would love to be there again. Thank you for your feedback.


I'm not a doctor or a lawyer. I think the problem that you have with most/all publicly programs is the restrictions. Those restrictions are in place to protect the people that made them. I'm sure you can appreciate that, in this lawsuit happy society.

What to do? Your doctor isn't too far off. How much are you able to push yourself (without serious injury)? If I were you, I would start off with a minimum of bodyweight exercises. Do a circuit of push-ups, pull-ups, squats, chair dips, jumping jacks ... there is a lot you can do.

Cardio, walking on the treadmill, elliptical, bike ... again, lots of options. Make it challenging, but keep your heart rate in the 120-130 range.

Slow and steady needs to be your attitude.

Your other option could be, screw what the doctors say, do a body part split (stickies at the top of this forum), do cardio, and find out how your body responds.

Again, I'm no doctor.


There are so many things in that sentence that make absolutely no sense to me.

Fix your lifestyle. Note that I don't say "diet"--I say lifestyle.

I don't understand how in the hell 30 minutes of cardio leads to such "boredom."



Sorry to hear about all the health problems. A heart attack and strokes before you are 30 must have been quite the wake-up call.

I'd say just adopt one or two healthy habits every week. Start walking for at least 30 minutes every night. If your joints are a mess, try a bike. Don't drink ANY calories, only water. Getting off soda or beer will take weight off a lot of people. If you eat fast food, stop it. Or, order the burger but no fries, carrots instead. Small changes.

Tweaking your habits a bit can get you into shape so you can do more. Start working in some body weight squats, push-ups and so forth if you can. Start writing down everything you eat. There's a good free online food journal called Fitday.

Just my two cents here. It's not easy but it's worth it.

Go get em!


You're only 30 and you've already had two strokes and a heart attack? You really need to take a look at your diet and lifestyle before thinking about what kind of workout to do.

Do you smoke? If so, cut it the fuck out. There's absolutely NO BENEFIT to smoking.

Do you eat sweets, candy, highly refined/processed foods, vegetable oils, and/or margarine? If so, remove as much of that from your diet as possible. All these things are deterimental to your health, and the more of them you avoid consuming, the better.

Do you eat any sort of lean, unprocessed meat? Any unprocessed fish? Any fruits or vegetables? If not, try to incorporate at least the veggies and fish into your diet. Vegetables and fruit are very good sources of vitamins, minerals and anti-oxidants. Lean cuts of beef (or most any lean cut of meat or poultry) provide your body with protein to regulate and maintain your lean body mass. Most fish are loaded with omega-3s that are essential to being healthy, but most Americans are not getting enough of these good fats. Eating a couple of servings of fish a week (or taking a high quality fish oil supplement) will do wonders for your heart health, among other things.

Finally, do you know how to cook? This part is critical to adopting a healthy lifestyle. Get familiar with how your appliances work--your stove, oven, grill, ect. Learn some basic recipes and how to cook them. Experiment with different foods and how you cook them. You're far more likely to eat healthy if you know how to make what tastes good to you, instead of settling for the convenience of fast food or microwave meals.

Honestly, though... after having several major health issues such as a stroke, why are you acting like what your doctor suggests is such a big annoyance? You'd rather possibly fucking DIE, instead of doing an hour of walking/jogging per day?


Thanks for all the responses, highly appreciated. I suppose takings slow would be good, when I said cardio is boring, I meant tired of doing the same cardio exercises, back in high school for gym, we'd warm-up with stretches, then on to 10 of each, push-ups, jumping jacks, sit-ups, and I keep myself lean. Now back in Germany activity was excellent, Volk marches, don't remember how many miles, rode a moutain bike up a steep hill, going up and down 3 or 4 story strairs, now that was the bomb, I believe this is why I'm still alive today, well the added faith and trust in Christ!

The most thing is motivation, I've been reading on weightloss, and yes I know somebodies gonna say, well STFU, and do it already! I tell myself that, but I'm still lacking knowledge. I do cook, dam good. I cook and eat salmon, catfish,lean chicken, groung turkey, not relly red meat, but will start again, lean RM, fruit, veggies, whole wheat, nuts(almonds, SFS, peanuts, I mainly cook with olive oil. Yes, sometimes I eat fried foods, from Louisiana, I have changed that La. eating habit, it wasn't really hard. I have the nutrition and some physical activites down, the main thing I'm looking for is effective exercises that slices fat. What exercises do I do to rebuild upper body strentgh? I didn't mention when thay put a difribulator in my chest I lost weight lifting time to heal. So push-ups are tough. I used to smoke marijuana, and drink, not anymore.

3Commandments, its boring cause I see no fatloss, and I feel as if I'm spinng my wheels, so I just stop. I know losing weight won't happen as fast as its put on, and that's one of my biggest probs, I want fatloss quick, on that TNT Diet I lost 30lbs. in three months, I felt great! Especially not losing that much from sickness, like when I lost 60lbs. in 3 months, from my white blood cells attacking my body. I do need more nutrition education, Protein VS Carbs. With all this said, feel free to send more responses, I appreciate them all, and thanks for all input. P.S. I lack activity, keep making excuses, I need to be more active, just realizing what I mostly at this point in life, don't need anymore strokes or H.A.'s, which is why I joined this site, to get help and motivation.


The wisdom is that when you are fat, it's 80% diet. You can't exercise your way out of bad eating habits, although it won't hurt to try. I suspect you are seriously overeating the wrong things.

Do you live alone? - I'm asking because that makes it easier to control the food in your house.

Do you have a desk job?

If you aren't cleared by your MD to do something like V-diet then how about just substituting 2 scoops of Low-Carb Metabolic Drive for your evening meal everyday. That should cut some calories right there.

Most of us are eating 5 or 6 small meals with lean protein everyday.

If you are trying to loose weight you gotta control your insulin which means carbs only need to happen right before and after your workouts. Anytime you eat refined sugars and breads, you are telling your body to store that crap as fat.

Also, try not to combine high carbs with high fat in the same meal. Something like pizza is both high carb and high fat so your body is going to store that thing in your fat cells. Almost all fast food is like that.


Are you expected to remain on prednisone for life? Your list of health problems is pretty extensive and pretty serious, have doctors ever suggested any kind of underlying cause?

Diet is going to be the most important thing in your struggle. High protein, high fiber, moderate carbs and fats (with an important emphasis on the source/types of fats you're eating) is likely what will show you the most benefit. Losing body fat while on prednisone isn't going to be easy.

Just as prednisone is prescribed to deal with systemic inflammation, diet can have a huge impact on inflamatory conditions, as can exercise, stress levels etc.

A 30 minute AM or PM walk is probably a good start for cardio as this kind of activity can help with stress as well. You said you did volk marches in germany, I'm pretty sure we call this hiking in America and there's no reason you can't pick it up again. A good two hour hike on a mildly strenous trail is one of my all time favorite cardio activities.

Even if you don't see fat loss, weight lifting will still be a good thing. Improvements in muscular strength, mobility and endurance which come from weight lifting will all have carry overs to a healthier and better functioning body in general. Start light, work all muscle groups using a 3 or 4 day split and increase weight on any given exercise when it starts to feel easy.


Most of the food I consume is described in the paragraph above your last message. I'm not currently working, just recieved information to work on Disabilities. The main two problems I face at the moment is eating the right foods at the right time, and lack of exercise. As ATG410 mentioned, losing bobyfat while being on prednisone, is pretty tough. Lucky me my new radiologist started me on another immunosupressive med. But, you have be weened of Prednisone, cause it can cause alot more health probs., just stopping the med. I should be of Prednisone in four months, but I can't wait til then to lose weight.

I recently purchased an E-book written by John Roman, that should help me burn fat. Its a program where you workout to lose fat in six weeks, and it should train you to eat better, and continue working out. ATg410, the docs put me on prednisone to keep my white blood cells in check, after I was taken of chemo. Its an auto-immune disease, simular to Lupus. I eat almost every three hours, with a fruit in between meal. I believe most of my calories are from fluids, I tend to drink alot of kool-aid. I don't really mess with sweets, some cookies every now and then. That's my main thing lack of exercise. thanks for your feedback, keep it coming.


I would lay off the Kool Aid as well. It's essentially like eating a whole cup of sugar (or more, depending on how you prepare it). That's gonna absolutely wreck any weight loss you are going to see.

Drink an equivalent amount of water instead. If you get a sweet craving, stores like Wal-Mart sell zero-calories flavored spritzers in the alcohol section that taste pretty good when you add lemon or lime.


Thanks Nate, that's my doc tells me leave the sugar water alone, I figured if I added real lemon juice to it, it would kill the sugar taste, I try and add half cup of sugar. I enjoy the zero cal waters from Walmart.


Cardio might be boring but it just might extend your lifespan and give you better quality of life. A couple of years ago I was so out of shape I couldn't run more than about 20 meters and all the joints, ligaments, tendons etc in my feet hurt like shit when I tried. The solution for me was 'low impact' cardio that could raise my heartrate but not fuck my body up. I bought a fluid rowing machine and rowed off all my fat. I got fit enough to run and by progression I was able to strengthen all the stabilising muscles in my feet so they could handle running. Now I do barefoot running and love it(I used to HATE running with a passion). Sorry to hear about all your health problems. Just remember anyone can get fit and improve their quality of life. Just take it one step at a time and never quit. Good luck.