Looking for Direction

@littlesleeper, thanks for the tag!

@bing16, congratulations on your initial weight loss from 300-215, that is HUGE! Well done! As @littlesleeper mentioned, I was on a similar path, although I was never athletic or good at sports as a kid, with the exception of tennis which I was moderately good at, and one season on the swim team. I am 5’4", so pretty short for a male, and hovered around 155-160lbs. By the time I was 24, due to a sedentary job and poor nutrition, I was 205lbs, sweating after climbing stairs and had to hold my breath to tie my shoe. Over 200lbs at 5’4" (none of it muscle) is not good. Eventually hit a rock bottom point, and took control, starting with P90X, which got me down to 135lbs after about a year. Then I kept going with home-workout routines, and eventually, got into the gym, which was the best decision I could have made.

My first question would be, what is your goal? Seems like you answered that here:

One thing that sticks out to me is “also like to possibly look good with a shirt off.” As a FFB (former fat boy) I can relate and understand how the prospect of having a 6 pack can seem like a fantasy. However, I would strongly encourage you to define your goals and write them down, and don’t short change yourself. Let’s be serious. You don’t want to “possibly, hopefully look good without a shirt, maybe, one day.” What you really want is an incredible physique, a defined mid section and look like you workout, shirt or no shirt. And there is nothing wrong with wanting that. You are hesitant to commit to your goal because you’ve never been that lean, and are afraid of failing. Don’t be afraid. If you believe in yourself and your drive, and deep, burning desire to achieve your goal, then you will achieve it, it is just a matter of time, and effort.

Realize that your training, and nutrition are going to be equally 100% responsible for your progress. People often ask me what the “percentage” split is between nutrition and training? 50/50? 80/20? NO! It is 100%/100%! Once I learned that, results came quickly.

Here’s the basics:

Pick a training program that will get you big and strong. You want a great looking physique, so you need to train for one. IMO programs like 5/3/1 will get you strong, but it won’t build a head turning physique at the beach. Use a bodybuilding style template, which will also include foundational lifts, as well as isolation exercises, and a variety of rep ranges to keep you getting bigger and stronger. Anyone who’s followed my forum posts knows I’m a huge fan of Clay Hyght and these programs.

Make sure to read the two preceding articles first:

This program by CT is also fantastic, and was the first program I ever did in the gym. Builds a great foundation, and also has bodybuilding aspects, the Indigo programs, do the “hypertrophy” one.

There’s your training.

Nutrition - Abs are made in the kitchen, no way around it. You should be eating at a 15-20% deficit daily, sprinkling in combination of LISS and HIIT during your week. If you don’t have a food scale, that should be a staple in your kitchen.

Yes, it certainly does! For your first journey to a 6 pack, having a coach would be a great help, @dchris will attest to that! We’ve been working together for about 4 months and he’s lost a lot of weight, and is the leanest he’s ever been, abs starting to come through. 15 more pounds to go, and he’ll have that 6 pack!

Please be sure to post with any additional questions and keep us updated on your progress. Don’t be shy with your goals. Dream lofty dreams. Stay focused on your goals, you can do it!