T Nation

Living the Impossible Dream


#1

Hello once again T-Nation Rock Stars!

Sadly, as it often does, life has thrown a few curve balls and I have been away from here. With everything settling, life in general going in a great direction, I decided to take on a new adventure and wanted to share it with all of you! With the surprising support I received in: T-ransformation 2017: HeraWynn1's Blog I knew the positive vibe of the T-Nation Forums is something that will help me reach this new goal.

As you will see in the blog that is linked above, these last two and a half years yielded some great change. With the help of @robstein I have gotten to the point that I am today. To catch anyone who is reading this up to speed, here is the short version:

Through fitness and nutrition, I have lost over 160lbs and currently have 2 clients of my own as a Certified Personal Trainer. So whats next? Well, from the title of this blog, I am sure you can guess it. Go ahead…Guess. I will wait.
.
.
.
.
.
.
So if you haven’t guessed yet, obviously beat from the gym or suffering from Keto flu, I will fill you in. Over the next year, I will be prepping to be on stage for my first body building competition. As you will see from the pics I am going to post, I have a long way to go, but have built a decent foundation to start. So what does this mean I need to do? Well, working with my amazing coach, @robstein we sat down and came up with a plan.

I am currently weighing in at 208. Once again, those pesky curve balls of life. Sure the stress attributed a bit to my 10lbs gain, but really, for the last two months, we have been trying to figure out a good balance of eating and fitness to determine my maintenance level. I will admit, I enjoyed myself a bit too much. Haven’t had a slice of pizza in like 2 years, so did that, enjoyed Halo Top a bit too much, had some cake and cookies (Panera Bread makes amazing cookies!) and re-visited my love for all things Gummi. Needless to say, I am actually sick of all that and been DYING to get back on a regiment. This regiment is starting MONDAY September 11th! No significance on why that day, but I know, being that date, I will indeed do what we all should be doing, not forgetting that day. We (Mr. Steing and I) will be taking this mini test prep to January 1. So what are we doing? We are going pretty aggressive.

Currently, as mentioned, we are at maintenance calories per day, with some extra carbs built in on workout days, pre and post workout. As for workouts, I have been on a 4 day split, throwing in post workout LISS cardio. Nutrition was basically carbs only around workout times with a light amount on non-workout days. The new plan is something like this:

7 day workout, broken down into 5 lifting days, hitting my weak spots, Chest, Lats, and Delts, twice a week. LISS cardio on three of those days, and the other two days will be some HIIT cardio.

Nutrition, we have it split into heavy, medium and light days. Heavy on leg day, medium for all other lifting days, and light on HIIT days. Keeping a fairly aggressive 15-20% calorie deficit, we are doing a nice mix of protein, fat and carbs on every meal, of course heavier carb counts around workouts.

Now for the hard part… Due to being such a large fella guy in the past, I have a decent amount of extra skin. Thankfully, I met with a plastic surgeon, got an estimate, and will be working on a funding page (not sure which platform yet) to help get rid of this skin. I know talking to Rob, we really can’t set targets until we get rid of this excess and get an idea of stage weight, body fat levels, etc. Due to getting life back on track and starting a new job, they are VERY supportive of my transformation and journey and support me in the time off I need to get the surgery and work towards being on stage.

I have a great support system behind me, Team Stein, some other guys in the fitness world I have met along this journey, an insanely proud and supportive girlfriend, as well as you guys. I do have to say, the comments on my T-ransformation blog were a big deciding factor in taking this next step. I look forward to hearing from everyone here, and may post the link to the funding in case anyone wants to help me make this dream a reality. So here goes! I will be posting before pics, chatting with Rob on what to post in here, and will be documenting EVERYTHING, including the personal struggles with image I am and will be facing throughout this! Thank you for reading and follow me from being as big as a stage, to being on one! Truly living what seemed to be an impossible dream


#2

You know I’m following along! After watching you literally lose an entire human’s worth of weight and turn into a gym rat, this next phase is going to be exciting. The hardest working guy I know, nothing is going to stop you.


#3

Very in for this


#4

Thanks! Appreciate the support and looking forward to having some great people come along for the ride!


#5

I’ll dive in


#6

Oh hell yeah! Let’s do this!


#7

Rad, I’m in. So great to see proof (160lbs!?!) of the positive influence that this forum can have, both in advice and motivation.

As a former big guy myself, I’m doubly-interested in this prep. Best of luck, sir!


#8

Thanks, it will get a little deep, but that is the best water to dive into!


#9

In it to win it! Look forward to daily posts starting today!


#10

This is going to be great and happy I have a forming big guy who will appreciate going from being called “Big Guy” in a teasing way, to being called “Big Guy” due to pure beastness! Thanks for following along.


#11

Well, I started this Blog mentioning life throws curves and I wasn’t kidding. Decided, now that, as of TODAY! we are starting this prep, Yup, Today was a low day for nutrition and my first H.I.I.T cardio. Side note, WOW does that suck. I forgot how much I hate that, but it is a must. Also did some unplanned fasted cardio this morning (well, had some coffee first). Here are some things to look forward to for those following along, and those who will hopefully tag in for the journey.

Today is the start of DAILY updates. I am going to get personal, and definitely sharing EVERY aspect of this journey and being dead honest about the ups, downs, any cheating, any struggles, as well as the improvements I noticed. I will also be sharing a steady stream of weekly photo updates and weigh in’s. I may also do measurements if everyone would like. If so, leave a comment about what measurements I should take and I will update them weekly as well! I will be sharing my daily nutrition and workouts, the numbers I am putting up (warning, I am NOT a heavy lifting guy, I am that guy who is struggling to put up smaller weights than most guys start their warm ups with. It is what it is). With all that said, here is a quick update on why the gap…

In June, I lost my job. It was NOT fun and without going into details, I basically went from then until now without an real income. It was a low time, and though I was fairly tenacious in finding a new job, the job I finally landed 2 weeks ago, a position I really was hoping to get, I went through 8 interviews. Not a typo, 8 interviews. Was supposed to be a last interview but they ended up hiring me. I started a job briefly, but it ended up paying minimum wage and well, to anyone that can live off of that, I envy you. I have a new goal to get to the point of minimizing my life to get there. These last few months have been humbling. I will admit, the stress of money woes, not paying bills due to just NOT having the money, did not help with sleep, and when it comes to working out, if I have a lack of sleep, I feel I may do more damage than gains. Also, with lack of money, I went from using the following Biotest supplements;











Which I LOVED using and saw HUGE improvements on, to now, I have a decent stock of Metabolic Drive that has been holding out for me and that is it. Huge change, and still using good ole Vitamin C every day to help with my immune system with this lack of sleep and in an attempt to control a bit of anxiety and help with sleep, I have been taking some Kava Kava or a few drops of Passion Flower in my tea/water to help with that. Now having my first paycheck and knowing what my pay will be, I can start formulating a plan to get back in control of my finances, get caught up on bills and hopefully by the new year when this first prep/test prep comes to an end I should be able to get back on at least a few supplements. Which, by the way, doubt they will see this, but HUGE thanks to Biotest for not only this venue to share my journey, but making amazing supplments that were originally introduced to me by @robstein but as I did my research, ended up being THE BEST I can find on the market and look forward to taking my training to a new level getting back on them.

OK, background and reasons for the gap out of the way, lets HIT THIS! Where to start? As they say, no better time than now. With the help of Mr. Rob Stein, we came up with a plan, which basics are as follows;

2 low days of nutrition a week with H.I.I.T cardio
4 medium days of nutrition a week with standard split workouts
1 high day of nutrition a week for leg day

As the days go on, I will break down what those are with all the details (we have time within the next 16-20 weeks) I will admit, I was suppose to do 8 intervals today and ended up doing 6, wanted to throw up, and squeezed one last one in making it 7. Thursday is round 2 for that, so we will shoot for 8. As for nutrition today, I am one meal left, which I want to finish this blog out so I can grub up!

My end to today’s installment and the new beginning will be the pics my amazing girlfriend took for me. Front, side and back rested and then some posing. I realized I missed out on at least 2 poses, but welcome to feed back, since I KNOW I need A LOT of work on posing. Will update with extra poses if anyone recommends them.







Thanks for reading, follow along and tomorrow I will have a fun update/BIG announcement!!! Things to look forward to. Can’t wait to be down in weight, see some things tighten up, finally get this surgery to get rid of all that extra skin, and make an impossible dream come true!


#12

Congrats on getting the job!


#13

Amazing man, im in for your logging!!


#14

Thanks! I’m excited and really enjoying it. First 9-5 kind of job I ever had. WOW what a difference that makes on your health and general well being. A job I keep at work and can concentrate on me and my life outside of work. So many new experiences at one time. I will have to make a point to touch on this in the blog.


#15

Wow, thanks for coming along for the ride! Can’t believe people are up for following along. Should be a wild ride!


#16

Though it is technically day 2, welcome to day 1 everyone! So what did today bring? A medium day of nutrition and day 1 of 5 for lifting this week. What you say? You want details? Well, just know you asked for it!

Nutrition! We broke my day up into 5 meals a day. This morning when I woke up, I had a delicious breakfast.

2 eggs, cooked up with a little pepper. I kind of cheat, I use this fun microwave egg cooker. Just crack them, put them in this little container, microwave for 2 minutes and viola! Delicious eggs.I added 2 oz of far free chedder. As if that doesn’t sound good enough on its own, throw those on a piece of Ezekiel toast. I also like to give it a little spray of “I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter” spray. So that covers our savory, so what is the sweeter side of waking up? How about another piece of Ezekiel toast, a little more of that not so buttery spray, a light coating of fat free cream cheese (which is hard to find) and sugar free preserves. Today was strawberry, which was quite delectable. I recommend it. So what did this all add up to? If you are a numbers guy like me, here ya go!

Fat= 12g
Carbs= 36g
Protein= 35g
Calories= 375

I will leave it to you guys and how much detail you want per post. We are going to be together on this journey for the next few months so plenty of time to reveal details. So how about each day I fully describe a meal like I did above, but will give each days macros breakdown? I literally have a meal plan lined up that I eat the SAME thing for every Medium, Low, and High day. Through this prep we will be making tweaks and really the numbers are the important part, but would love to share actual meals like above. I truly do love what I am eating day in and day out and it won’t feel like a prep to me. So you guys let me know! Here are the macros for the rest of the days 4 meals=

Meal 2
Fat= 15g
Carbs= 22g
Protein= 38g
Calories= 360

Pre-Workout
Fat= 12g
Carbs= 57g
Protein= 38g
Calories= 440

Post Workout
Fat= 8g
Carbs= 45g
Protein= 36g
Calories= 500

Last Meal
Fat= 15g
Carbs= 45g
Protein= 32g
Calories= 440

TOTALS
Fat= 62g
Carbs= 207g
Protein= 181g
Calories= 2075

This should be 5g of fat and 45 calories more but that includes 4 Biotest Flameout pills at the end of the night. Can’t afford them right now, but it is first on my list once I get a few paychecks under my belt. Changing gears, we talked about the fuel, so what did that fuel? Here was today’s workout, and yes, as promised, I will include my numbers with it. Nothing impressive, especially since today I was working some of my weakest body parts, but I am where I am. Without further ado…

Chest
Plate Loaded Incline Press
4X8. That is 4 sets of 8 reps, with 2 warm up sets. My working weight was 25 on each arm. I usually do a medium rest period in between sets, roughly 45 seconds.

Low to High Cables
3X15. That is 3 sets of 15 reps, going right from the previous exercise, so the only rest was to set up the machine and since I am doing such a low weight, no warm up. Working weigh was 5lbs on each arm. I do a very short rest between sets, usually around 15 seconds, no more than 30.

Delts
Side Leaning Dumbbell Raises
3X15. That is 3 sets of 15 reps. Feeling pretty good today on this, being higher rep, I did one warm up set with 5lbs each arm, but my working sets were 7.5lbs and really got a great bump in my delts. Short rest in between, again, 15-30 seconds.

Rear Pec Deck
3X8. That is 3 sets of 8 reps. I started out with a warm up set of 35lbs just to really get the blood flowing and then pushed it hard with 45lbs as my working set. Really had to squeeze the last rep out and could have done one more if I had to, so I think it was a great set and ended up doing another medium rest of about 45 seconds.

Biceps
Incline Dumbell Curls
3X10. That is 3 sets of 10 reps. One warm up set with 10lbs each for 12 reps and this also felt great. That is usally what I rock as a working set, but pulled out the 15lbs with medium rests and it felt great! Good burn at the end and a perfect lead in to the next exercise.

Close Grip EZ Bar Curl
3X12. That is 3 sets of 12 reps. Jumped right into this after the incline curls with a 20lbs bar really squeezing at the top with slow eccentric (negative). Great burn that I am sure I will feel in the morning, and this was with a short-medium rest.

Triceps
V-Bar Push Down
3X10. That is 3 sets of 10 reps. I did one warm up set of 12 and then right into it, pushing down 40lbs for my working sets. After doing biceps, you really feel this one and I love that after a good pump from the biceps, you can really use them to boost that eccentric and get a good feel in the lateral head of the tricep. A good medium rest in between sets

Overhead Dumbbell Tricep Extension
3X15. You guessed it, 3 sets of 15 reps. Jumped full blown right into this using a 25lbs dumbell. Really felt this one by the end in that long head of the triceps under the arm and wow, 15 reps of this for 3 sets, you are ready for post workout cardio. I pushed these out and took and short/medium (about 20 second) rest in between.

Finally, I went onto my post workout cardio which was 20 minutes on the bike, trying to keep my heart rate between 120-125bpm.

So far, i am prepping my last meal of the night, consumed about 120oz of water when all said and done, and I did have a large cup of coffee, half at lunch and the other half pre-workout. Just black, no frills, except that shot of espresso.

So there ya go, day 1…2 down. And now, the big announcement!! I have been wanting to get this surgery done, and really, even for prepping purposes, it is impossible to tell where I need to be, what a good stage weight would be, what I need to work on, etc… without it being done. I already talked to my new employer and not only will they let me take the necessary time off I would need, they are FULLY SUPPORTIVE OF IT!!! I found a great place to work and couldn’t be happier. Sadly, as you have guessed, this is very far in the future for me, and since I did this the hard way and didn’t get the gastric bypass done, and because I keep myself clean and healthy, the extra skin hasn’t caused any irritation issues, insurance will NOT cover a dime. So I have to go it on my own.

Good news, I found a highly reputable plastic surgeon who is giving me a great deal and will be doing the extra consultations for free that I will need to get before the surgery. Usually that is $150 a pop! So with all this inline, friends and family convinced me to start up a funding page to help this happen sooner. So here is the link. Not only will this help with this endeavor, but in general, it will help me get over being embarrassed of my body and finally feel proud of what I have done. Truth be told, I don’t feel like what I have done so far is that great or hard. Of course I have friends and a girlfriend who keep me black and blue with reminders to knock off that thinking. I really do need your help so if you can help out at all monetarily, THANK YOU, and if not, keep following and your support through here will help me live this impossible dream!


#17

Day 3 of the prep, but day 2 of the workout. What day is it folks?

That’s right, my FAVORITE day of the week, for 2 reasons. Feel free to take a look at my pics above, legs are my strong point and I LOVE rocking out leg day. Also, Nutrition wise, this is my high day, and that means the most amazing post workout meal of the week. What dreams are made of…

Yes ladies and gents, post workout today consisted of 6oz of chicken with some pepper and garlic salt. Add a cup of broccoli and a little bit of Sugar Free BBQ sauce and that leaves room for a pint of Halo Top. Today was the Cinnamon Roll, and it was, as you guessed…DELICIOUS! I do have one more meal for the day, so here is the break down of a High Day for nutrition. Of course the calories may change a bit high day to high day depending on the Halo Top I pick.

Breakfast
Fat= 7g
Carbs= 40g
Protein= 32g
Calories= 315

Meal 2
Fat= 8g
Carbs= 22g
Protein= 38g
Calories= 300

Pre-Workout
Fat= 12g
Carbs= 60g
Protein= 38g
Calories= 500

Post Workout
Fat= 10g
Carbs= 100g
Protein= 40g
Calories= 900

Last Meal
Fat= 15g
Carbs= 45g
Protein= 32g
Calories= 440

TOTALS
Fat= 52g
Carbs= 267g
Protein= 178g
Calories= 2455

Mighty calorie count, especially post workout…so what does this grub fuel? Here it is…First day of this new workout, so needed to make some adjustments.

Quads
Leg Extension
4X8. I did 2 warm up sets to get into it, so started out with 50lbs on the machine, doing 10 reps regular, 4 with single leg eccentric, and finishing with 4 single leg on each leg. Next warm up was at 75lbs for 12 reps. Working sets ended up being 100lbs and ended up doing 10 reps each set, and the final set, doing a drop set. A bit too light, lesson learned. Next week i will be upping the weight and seeing how that goes.

Leg Press
Ahhhhh, my FAVE!!! 4X15. I did one warm up set at 497lbs. Working set I just added an extra 90lbs taking me to 587lbs. I ended up doing super slow negatives really concentrating on that outer quad. Just like the leg extensions, this was too light, so my last set I pushed out 20 reps on the last set and did 2 drop sets, the last being 10 reps, 5 half reps, and another 10 reps till I cried (kidding, but it did burn).

Walking Weighted Lunges
2 drop sets ended up being a mistake, because I never knew how much walking weighted lunges SUCK! I did just 15lbs in each hand, started my first set doing 13 reps on each leg, short break, 12 reps on each leg, and then a measly 10 reps for each leg after a short break and wanted to die. WOW, the burn.

Hamstrings
Lying Leg Curl
4X8. I did one warm up set, 50lbs for 15 reps. I used to do Hamstrings before quads since it was a nice prep for them, but reversing that, OUCH. Working sets were at 70lbs with medium rest (about 45 seconds).

Hamtractor
4X15 and really this was just a great way to really make those hammys BURN! 30lbs as a working weight with 15 second rest. Doing this right after the curls felt great.

DB Romania Dead Lifts (RDL)
3X10. I rocked this out with a set of 25lbs in each hand, going nice and slow, really concentrating on standing up with my hamstrings and squeezing them and my glutes at the top. I love ending leg day with this since I naturally have tight hamstrings, so this helps get a nice stretch.

THANKFULLY, no post workout cardio today. As time goes on, I am sure we will be adding it in there every day, but for now, I am happy we didn’t. Felt toasted after this and my chance to eat Halo Top was just too exciting!

Thanks for tuning in folks! I am having a blast laying all this out. This week will be laying down the workouts and Nutrition. Next week we will get into the nitty gritty and reporting on the changes. That is when this will all get personal and deep, but also fun and hilarious. I promise it will be fun, entertaining, informative, and hopefully inspire all of you to join in! Let’s all do this together and be the best US we can be. Live those impossible dreams! I will leave you today with one of my favorite quotes of all time…

“Today’s Impossibilities, are tomorrow’s possibilities”


#18

I love your attention to detail man!, keep it up ;). Its great things are working out for you!


#19

Thanks! No use doing anything if you aren’t going to do it right and with full intention! Hope you follow along and enjoy!


#20

Late to the party. Didn’t post yesterday, and that will probably be the trend. Wednesdays I will either be working in NYC so the bus ride to and from puts me in the gym late, or, that is girlfriend day! Confession, I do love girlfriend time more than the gym. Proves I am not that much of a masochist. What’s OK about this…today, Thursday, is a low day with H.I.I.T cardio. Lets go back to yesterday and discuss a tasty meal choice of the day.

My pre-workout meal, everyday and something I REALLY look forward to, funny enough, is something really simple. I take some oats…48g to be exact of rolled oats, a scoop of Metabolic Drive. Yesterday and today was chocolate…

Ya…That stuff. Add in some unsweetened almond milk to mix it all together, throw it in the microwave for a bit, and when it comes out, mix it all together with 16g of peanut butter and use some apple slices as a spoon. As if pre-workout isn’t already a treat because, well, it is a build up to a workout! Since yesterday was a medium day of nutrition, and today was just H.I.I.T. (Who am I kidding, H.I.I.T is H.E.L.L., as in, Hot Ever Lasting Lamentation. It is truly one of the rings of Hell.) Let’s discuss the macros of a low day, and the workout from yesterday.

Low Day Macros;

Breakfast
Fat= 15g
Carbs= 29g
Protein= 39g
Calories= 365

Meal 2
Fat= 15g
Carbs= 45g
Protein= 32g
Calories= 440

Pre-Workout
Fat= 12g
Carbs= 61g
Protein= 36g
Calories= 500

Post Workout
Fat= 24g
Carbs= 6g
Protein= 44g
Calories= 370

Last Meal
Fat= 15g
Carbs= 0g
Protein= 36g
Calories= 260

TOTALS
Fat= 81g
Carbs= 140g
Protein= 187g
Calories= 1935

HA! everything else I wrote just ended up missing. So To Be Continued!!! Tomorrow will be a nice long update! Can’t wait to keep you guys in the loop.