T Nation

JIm, I'm Stuck

Jim, let me preface this by saying I appreciate the books, advice and all the work you put into helping us all become better. Also, I know how much you probably hate weight loss questions so I’ll keep it as brief and simple as I can.

After a visit with my orthopedic doctor for an injury and him urging me to lose weight and my own mind being made up to cut down to a more manageable weight. My main goal is to lose 40 or so pounds. I don’t need any advice on how to to do this I am plenty capable of that.

I just want to know what template you recommend I follow while this is my goal. I know it is incorrect to try and gain strength and size while in a caloric deficit but I still think that weightlifting is important for obvious reasons. As a result, I am stuck on which program to follow.

Thanks again for any help.

I have run 5/3/1 on a cut last year (dropped from 230 to 215 in 3 months) and made great progress using the 2 Day Template Strength Phase from Beyond 531. I was able to get stronger and set PR’s using that template while in a caloric deficit. Volume will not be your friend during this time and can run you down very quick (speaking from experience). On off days I would use kettlebells for conditioning as well as sprints.

You can hit your lifting days hard since you will have so much recovery time. Let your diet and conditioning dictate your fat loss and let the weight training maintain the muscle you have built. As far as how many calories to cut, I just started with dropping about 250 calories from my diet and adjusted up or down as needed.

Have you lifted before? If not he recommends 5’s pro to a lot of people including beginners. Almost anything you do though honestly by just starting to get into the gym and eating a clean diet will help you lose weight.

Yes, I’ve been lifting for about 7 years.

This is simple - it doesn’t matter that much. If your goal is to lose fat, I assume you are going to be eating less. And probably doing more conditioning. With this in mind, it only makes sense to do LESS work in the weight room as you have less fuel (food) and are expending more energy via conditioning. So it’s not so much the template that you are doing but finding the minimal amount of work you need to do in each lift to maintain or slightly gain strength.

You primary focus should be on developing GREAT long term habits as this will carry over to your lifelong goal of being less fat. Crash diets, elimination diets that are impossible to follow are all short term answers that ALWAYS backfire in the long run.

My advice is to follow a 3 day/week NOV style program with bodyweight assistance work, hard conditioning on training days. AirDyne work on off days. The search for the “perfect” program/template will sideline you; just keep it simple and think about it as a long term plan (104 weeks to a better body) that will help you develop great habits that you will retain over the rest of your life.

Great advice as always, thanks, Jim.