T Nation

My Diet/Training Problem


Hello everyone, this is my first post here and I have a bit of a problem. I'm aged 23, 5'7", weigh about 169 pounds, and have a 33-34 waist... here is my typical day breakdown relating to diet and exercise, and the dilemma that comes with it:

For breakfast, I usually have a pack of 2 pop tarts (cinnamon), usually with some Tropicana OJ. No snack or anything like that in between.

For lunch, I usually have a combination of things. Usually it's 2 peanut butter sandwiches, sometimes I'll have a 12 inch sub from Subway, along with a half liter bottle of water.

Whenever I go to Subway, I usually get a 12 inch chicken breast/turkey/roast beef on wheat bread, and I usually only get lettuce/carrots/onions on it.

In between lunch and dinner, I usually do my running. There is a track near my house, so I use that to do different types of running. I usually mix it up depending on the day, but the runs I do are Tabata sprints, 100m sprinting/resting/sprinting/resting, and regular jogs (usually 2-3 miles).

After doing the running, I usually drink 2 one liter bottles of water. I also used to go to the gym, but there's not that much time for that anymore.

For dinner, it's very similar to lunch. I usually have chicken/roast beef/turkey... sometimes I'll have a hamburger or chicken sandwich, and I am very careful to avoid the fries. Again, I usually have dinner with a half liter/one liter bottle of water. After that, I'm done with food (no late night munchies or anything like that).

I do go out usually Friday/Saturday and I do drink some alcohol.

Now, the dilemma: I'm not losing ANY weight. I used to drink sodas and diet sodas quite a bit, but my New Years Resolution was to cut out all soft drinks, and I haven't had a soft drink since January 1st (38 days).

I have read on the internet that cutting sodas out of your diet and replacing that with water intake would cause you to lose a decent bit of weight, but I haven't noticed any weight loss whatsoever.

My main goal is to get ripped abs, but it's not happening. I ?think? my problem is not enough fruit in my diet, or I?m just not doing enough cardio. So T-Nation, do any of you know what the problem is in my diet?

Also, YES, I am aware that you need to "eat more" to lose weight, and I am aware of the 5 small meal system; it just seems like nothing is working.

Any help or tips would be appreciated, and thank you for reading this post.


Is this a joke? If it is, it's not funny.


I stopped reading once I saw Pop Tarts.

Granted, I'll have some occasionally when I need to get lots of extra kcal, but they are not exactly a smart choice when trying to get leaner.

To the OP: take the time and review some of the more popular diets posted on this site.

Start here: http://www.T-Nation.com/archives.do?y=0&s=nutrition


Eat more often... scrap the pop tarts, OJ, and other sugar...

Also MAKE time for the gym...


Everything. Everything is wrong with your diet. Also, everything is wrong with your training. Read the articles that were linked above, and go over to the beginners forum and read the stickies.


Beginners area x2..check it out, read ALOT and educate yourself, cutting out soda is NOT going to get you shredded, however its a step in the right direction cut out 99% of the sugar in your diet no matter where it comes from...and for God's sake and yours as well....GO TO THE GYM!!!...Cardio isnt everything bro not even for cutting, its just 1/3rd of the battle.
Good Luck man.


5'7 and 169 and you want to be ripped? To show off what, your skeleton?

C'mon now.


I appreciate the help, and I appreciate the criticism because I want to work towards my goals.

And yeah, I used to go to the gym, A LOT. I just haven't had time due to job-related stuff.

Thanks for the constructive criticism.


Define "Job related stuff." That would be a start.


Given the contents of your post, he was making a pretty valid assumption. Hopefully you'll learn enough to realize that soon.


If you're that sensitive, this is the wrong forum for you.

Itchy's comment was pretty mild, and valid.


Dude, your breakfast is nearly pure sugar, poptarts washed down with O.J.! Not good, get some protein mixed in with low glycemic carbs.



1) Give us some pix of what you look like currently
2) Are you lifting right now? If so give us a breakdown of your regiment when you train/rest etc.
3) What do you do for work? Are you sitting all day filing someones taxes or are you pouring concrete for a construction company?
4) How did you get the way you are??? Once you figure that out, do exactly the opposite and that will get you on the right path.
Thanks, Adam.


Nah, it's all good, I overreacted. I'm actually really laid back and take/dish out jokes with the best of them.


I was an athlete in high school (I played basketball, and I could run a mile at just around 6 minutes during preseason conditioning; nowadays it takes me around 7-7:15 to run a mile). I gained some weight in college that I'm trying to put off (but it's not coming off at all). With that being said, I'm not really that fat at all, but I want to be ripped; I went to a nutritionist a few months ago who weighed my body fat to be around 12% (she said it's average for a college quarterback to have a body fat around this percentage).

I haven't lifted at a gym for about 2-3 months, but when I did, I would go to the gym every other day to do pyramid benching (I weigh 169 and my max bench is about 220), along with other bicep/tricep exercises. I alternate that with running on a track to let my arms rest (you can't go lift EVERY day). I actually just recently got laid off at my other job, which required me sitting around most of the day doing paperwork or doing work in front of a computer.

Like I said, I'm not that fat, but I have 3 main goals: I would like to be ripped in the abs area (6 pack), build some muscle, and lose some excess weight.

Appreciate the comments guys, positive and negative... just trying to find methods to help me achieve my goals.


Thanks, I'll educate myself on all that information tonight.


Forget what you know and start over.

Go to the Beginners forum and read. Next read the articles on this site. While you are doing both go to the gym.

Myth #1 - "You can't lift every day." (Bullshit)
Myth #2 - "Desk jockeys can't get good results quickly." (Bullshit - I am proof)
Myth #3 - "I have no time." (Bullshit - it just is not that important to you)

Good Luck - I hope you stick around. This is a great site with the best resources on the web.


Yep, that's why I'm posting here.

One more thing: What are everyone's opinions on Tabata training? I've used Tabata with the sledgehammer-to-tire exercise (I used to do that in the past as well), and I've incorporated Tabata into my running; should I scrap both of these exercises or should I continue to use them?


Interval training is a pretty solid choice in general, which includes the Tabata methods. Try Tabata front squats some time.


I've done Tabata squats with 95 pounds once... never again. I had trouble walking down stairs the entire day after doing that.