Making Progress When Family Eats Poorly


My name is xmngr (or you can call me X), I’m chilean and I have a bunch of questions to make to the experts here. I was referred to this site by a friend in the Gearbox Software forums (Borderlands, Battleborn, etc) about some doubts I have.

First, I am a 5’2", 23-year old who weighs 164.4 pounds with a hefty and stocky body. My main goal is to get shredded and hulky. But I’ve ran into some “issues”:

-I live with my family who usually eat poorly, and I struggle with it because I want to improve my diet and not worsen it. What I should do?
-I don’t feel fully satisfied with my body and I want more, but I don’t know what to do: build muscle then shred or shred first then build muscle
-I can’t take any supplement because I’m under ADHD treatment (atomoxetin and sertralin) and fat burners can hurt more than help me.
-I don’t have enough motivation now, and I find every excuse to not to train.

I’ll keep adding more questions as long as I have them :slight_smile:
Oh, and pardon my English, may not be the best, but I do my best

Cheers! :smiley:

Sadly, the name X is already taken in these parts. It has special meaning. Lol

If I were you, I’d drop the gaming until you spend more time outside being active.

No need to worry about bulking or cutting, worry about being active, in some way, 6-7 days a week. Also, get on a program written by an expert. There are hundreds of good ones on this site. If I were you, I’d do a full body one that is 2-3 days a week.

No need to use supplements. They are there to ‘supplement’ your diet. Diet is the most important thing for losing fat and gaining muscle. What exactly did you eat yesterday? Having an understanding of what you eat every day, will help with determining which foods to remove/add.


Fair enough xD

Sounds good, it would be great to get more advised :smiley:

bread, milk, a chicken breast with pasta for dinner and more bread at night, that’s been my diet the last week

Welcome! I wouldn’t consider myself at all one of our experts but I’ll try to help out.[quote=“xmngr, post:1, topic:220813”]
-I don’t feel fully satisfied with my body and I want more, but I don’t know what to do: build muscle then shred or shred first then build muscle

Normally I would advise people to build muscle first, as it is a lot harder than losing fat. For you though, I have a feeing you’ll be a lot happier to lose a few pounds and get some general fitness before worrying about putting mass on. I grew up short and stocky, and while I ultimately became an even stockier powerlifter, I started my fitness journey by losing some weight and learning to diet. I was a lot happier for it and when I eventually decided to take my training in a different direction, I had the self-assurance to know that I could be lean if I wanted to again.

You don’t need a fat burner. You just need to learn how to diet properly.

As far as your family and your motivation, this is going to be a matter of working a diet and training program into your routine. After a while it becomes part of your day and you will find the motivation is natural. My suggestion is take things slow. Cut out the bread before bed, go to the gym tomorrow, and start reading some of the great articles we have here on T-Nation. Eventually you will find a program and diet that you can follow dilligently and you will be on your way.

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PS you don’t have to stop playing video games. You just have to make sure you work out before or after and don’t eat a whole bunch of crap while you’re doing it.

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If directed at my comment, to clarify, I don’t mean drop completely. I meant, create boundaries around when to play, i.e. Can’t play until have been active for awhile.

Well, what have you been doing in the gym? What do you have access to, a full gym, garage gym, few dumb bells? Knowing what you have will help determine what you can do.

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Well, I have access to a “functional training” gym, in a rugby field I have in my city. Uses some rubber bands, discs, some barbells and some dumbells. Isn’t pretty equipped to be honest.

Would be good to let you know that I’ve lost 12 pounds since april

What level of strength do you have now? Specifically in:
Overhead Press

This is fatal every time. You have to want it. It can be done but only if you really want to sweat and work for it. If you don’t…stay chunky.

Nobody can give you motivation. You have to find that yourself. You can get all the answers you want but you won’t do anything about it without wanting to keep at it.

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Sounds about like the best gym you could have. You can make great progress there…IF you want to push yourself and suffer. Transforming your body isn’t free. It takes sweat, time, and determination in the face of people who will tell you otherwise. You have to mentally embrace the suffering, daily.

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I don’t want to stay tubby


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You could offer to cook dinner and then make what you want.

I like @Aragorn’s post about motivation. My $.02, for what it’s worth, motivation is less important than dedication. All of us here have, at one point or another, been bitten by the iron bug. Not every; however, can maintain their dedication to the game after that initial motivational high has run its course.

If you’re anything like me then you need to create habits so that you’ll remain dedicated for the longer term.


I would spend the next 1-2 years working on 4-5 basic compound movements. This will change your entire physique.

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Yes, as above you need to focus on building a foundation with the main lifts and things will fall into place.
Either of these are a good place to start…

Also try get some greens and lean beef in your diet

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what about cardio man?
or should I focus on weightlifting

as an additional note, I was working out to control my hyperactivity and anxiety issues by 4 years, but because personal issues left it last year, on june

should i recover my previous shape faster?
should i move to another gym with more barbells, benches and stuff?

Oh, should I post a pic of mine?

Pick one.Do it
You might think ‘‘well duh’’ but honestly it’s as simple as that
Winter is approaching,so you can probably handle a bit extra fat,therefore you might be better off focusing on building muscle

At the end of the day it is what it is.If they could build good physiques at 1930 with the limited equipment,information and 0 supplementation you can too

Maybe think of changing your training a bit?Adding more sets to failure and stuff to make lifting more fun?
But there a point where you just have to do what you have to do

That’s all for me.I said nothing about the nutrition part of your question cause anyone could give better info than me

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That was pretty much where I was going with it, although I didn’t say it explicitly.

Motivation needs to be developed, and then dedication needs to take over the spot when the journey gets tough.

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I’d post a pic of your gym, but the truth is if you have enough weight to be challenging–whether that is a bar or dumbbells or whatever–you have enough equipment to make progress. The truth is it comes down to simply doing the work. Create a plan, stick to the plan, modify it as needed.

Are those weights you listed your 1 rep maxes? Or how many reps is that? Also important–is that the total weight or the weight on each side of the bar?

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4*12 reps usually
and those weights are on each side of the bar

Ok, that makes more sense.

It is usually convention among lifters to list the whole weight (including barbell weight). For machines or dumbbells we usually just list the weight we put on and not the machine weight or dumbbell weight.

I would add cardio to your lifting routine. Also, you haven’t said what your lifting routine is currently–how many days a week do you lift? How long do you rest between sets? What does your warm-up look like? etc.

We need details to advise you.