Quick background: 6 years ago I weighed somewhere over 450lbs at 6’3”. I didn’t look that fat as I have a very large frame and very proportional fat distribution, but I never knew my weight for lack of a scale heavy enough. And lack of wanting to know.
The birth of my first child spurred change. It started with the foods we ate and later on I added intense class based circuit training. You know the current fad type… dumbbells, TRX, lots of plyo, ropes, blah blah blah. I did a couple boot camps including one 8 week one where I dropped 80lbs.
Over the course of 18 months I dropped down to my lowest at 299. I saw that number after completing a 13.5 mile jog by myself. I did a fair amount of dumbbell stuff and a little bit of lifting at PF, but never got serious with the weights.
Anyway, life happened. In one short season of time I did a lot of work travel, stress at home, and a third child all conspired to knock me way off the wagon. I got lazy. I grew back to somewhere over 450 again. Not by as much (I think I was closer to 500 originally judging by pictures).
In Feb 2019 I was moving a water heater and fell through a basement access panel that was open. 9 feet to the concrete below. Minor scratches and a severe hamstring strain, but no tear.
In April I asked my doc for physical therapy as my hammy was still dysfunctional. It just wasn’t working right. He was all for it and off I went.
My first PT session reminded me how much I actually liked exercise, so I decided it was fine to climb back on the wagon and get down to business.
But I discovered I had developed significant knee issues. I think I was WAY to hard on them at the circuit training place. A 300lb guy should not be jogging 13 miles. A 400lb guy should not be doing box jumps. Or any number of other plyometic and dynamic moves, but I did… because I could. That was a mistake I’m paying for now.
So I decided to use my PTA sessions as my spring board. I fixed my food intake. I joined a local family fitness gym with a good weight room.
I eat around 1800-2200 calories a day. I don’t obsess over the numbers because I know that range is well below my current BMR. I aim for 200g protein a day. I try to limit carbs to 80-100, and usually succeed. I eat a lot of fat in the form of meat (beef and chicken thigh and lots of eggs). I cook my food in tallow I made. It’s all good quality food. I do a protein shake after lifting sessions.
Weight is coming off, but much slower this time. I’m ok with that because I think it’s much healthier and more sustainable this way. I did the rapid weight loss once. Look what happened? My knees can’t support the type and intensity of exercise that bought me that rapid weight loss even if I wanted to.
I’m down around 415 at last weigh in, about 3 weeks ago. I don’t weight often because I don’t care about the number, I care about moving in the right direction and I don’t need a scale to measure that.
So now, I’m looking for feedback on my current lifting routine. I “designed” the routine after a few weeks of doing the typical splits 5-6 times a week. You know, chest and tri day, back and bicep day, leg day, blah blah blah. That’s what they did at the circuit boot camp place so its what I did this time. But I remembered reading that those splits were designed with a bodybuilding focus, largely for building a certain physical look.
That ain’t me. lol. Never will be. It’s not my goal.
So I sat there and said “what is my goal?” Weight loss. Fat loss. Pretty simple. So I figured my exercise program should be designed to support THAT. Not to build physically bigger muscles. Not really to even get stronger.
So that led to what helps burn fat? High metabolism, more “afterburn” effect. I figured the best way to do that was to focus on large muscle group, compound lifts. So here is what I do:
Monday: heaviest day, go after PR’s
- 10 minutes treadmill, 2.8-3.2mph, 15 incline. HR climbs over 155.
- leg press via plate loaded sled machine
- standing strict OH press
- 6-10 minutes on treadmill, same style/effort
- BB bench press OR smith bench press
- straight bar deadlift
- assisted pull-ups
- 10 minutes treadmill again, same style.
- 45-60 minute lap swimming
- 45-60 minutes low weight stability/ankle strength workout. Lots of BOSU stuff, anti rotational stuff, core stuff.
Wednesday - same as Monday but only go to about 75-80% PR weight
- typically an off day due to work. Maybe 40 min cardio on a treadmill or in the pool
- 40 min swimming
- 10 min treadmill
- light smith high bar squats (can only do half range at best due to knee, but no leg press where I workout on Saturdays. Smith because it hurts the knee less than a normal squat
- strict OH press standing
- smith bench
- assisted pull-ups
Sunday - nothing
So, that’s my plan. I am dropping weight, slowly. Clothes are fitting better. PR’s are improving. I had never dead lifted before when I did my first at a physical therapy session about 10 weeks ago. I couldn’t really do 225 due to grip issues. That’s come a long way really fast.
Current PR 1RM
- leg press: 868
- standing strict OH: 185
- smith bench: 280 plus whatever the bar is
- flat bench: 255 today… I had more but nobody to spot me so I chickened out
- DL: 445
- assisted PU: 200lb counter, 3 reps full motion. When I started I had zero upward motion, so stoked about this one. Long way to go though
Hoping this thread can help me stay motivated and provide feedback on the lifting routine relative to my goal.