T Nation

My Journey to 180lbs and Beyond...


^ (this is not me, I’m a man, this picture is used in reference to the pec deck fly below)
I’ve done it. I’ve read the articles, I’ve designed a workout, and today I completed my first ‘day’.
It feels good… so good that I can’t really shake people’s hands without my hand clenching on it and having a tough time releasing.

Let me give you some background of who I am.

Name: Geoff
Year: Freshman in College (UMD)
Starting Height: 5’10"
Starting Weight: 135 lbs

Long-Term Goal: To be much bigger and to feel more confident because of it.
Short(er) Term Goal: Gain 10 - 15 lbs of muscle by the end of my first semester

How I will accomplish this:

  1. Stick to my workout program EVERYday
  2. Eat a shitload
  3. Visit this site and stay knowledgable

Physical Review

Soooo… I’m skinny as all hell. You can see that from my weight. But not only am I skinny, I’m also really out of shape. Pretty much for my entire life (until recently, and I’ll tell you why) I’ve been restricted in the activities I was allowed to do. This is because I was born with a congenital heart defect. Please don’t gasp–it’s actually not THAT big of a deal. I’ve lead a fairly normal life, I can do everything that anyone else can do, I just wasn’t allowed to be apart of a sports team that asked for that extra umph during practice–I wasn’t allowed to push myself. So, I was born with aortic stenosis (you can look it up), I had a ballon valvotomy when I was a baby which stretched the valve turning it into aortic insufficiency which I lived with the next 16 to 17 years. I had open heart surgery a month ago and Dr. Irving Shen repaired the valve. As of now I’m cleared for activity.

So this is pretty siiick.


Today, 9/14

What I ate.
Meal 1: Breakfast: eggs, 2 sausages, hash brown potatoes, 3 pancakes
Meal 2: Snack: Cashews
Meal 3: Lunch: chicken leg, beef stew, mashed potatoes, corn muffin
Meal 4: Snack: Cashews (pre-workout)
Meal 5: Snack: protein shake (post-workout)
Meal 6: Dinner: TBD
Meal 7: Snack: TBD

What I did.
Chest/Back

Primary

Bench Press: 50x9, 40x12, 40x10, 40x8
50 seemed like a good amount for the first set; instead of subtracting 10 in the second, next time I’ll see how 45 feels since I did 12 (do 2.5 plates exist?)

Pull-Ups: 0x4, 0x4, 0x3, 0x3 and 3 assisted (a friend held my feet)
Wow I was disappointed by this. Usually I can do 10+ pull-ups (for 1 set) (pull-ups are the palm-out ones, right?) but I think because of the press I was blasted

Secondary

Push-Ups: 0x10, 0x5, 0x5, 0x4
Again, a huge disappointment. I have been able to do 3 sets of 10. The only thing I can attribute my sudden lack of strength to is the previous exercises

Supine Row: 0x12, 0x12, 0x10, 0x10
These felt good in the beginning but in the last half of the 3rd set I could not bring myself all the way to the bar and did like 3/4 rows. The last set I took a break after 5 by letting go of the bar and lying there for maybe 10secs before the next 5.

Auxiliary

Pec Dec Fly: 25x12, 25x8, 17.5x10, 17.5x7, 12.5x5
These were a little iffy. This was a machine where you rest your elbows and forearms on the pad and grip the bars (pictured). First of all, I found myself using my wrists and hands to make the two pads touch (I figure this is a no-no) and secondly something VERY strange was happening to my left shoulder when I did this. I’m not really sure what was happening but my best guess was that there was too much stress on the shoulder and it was beginning to pop out of the socket? I don’t know–all I know is it didn’t feel right.

Cable Seated Low Row: 4platesx12, 4platesx12, 4platesx12, 4platesx15
These felt good–I’ll try the 4.5 plate next week.

Good luck man! From one skinny kid to another. By the way, I would much rather have aortic insufficiency than stenosis, haha!

Definitly possible to get 180. I started lifting a year ago at 130lbs and have doubled most of my Pr’s. Good luck man, work hard!

Pull ups are palms facing away from you, and chinups are palms facing towards you. Good luck dude, expect to see some beastness coming in the near future. Keep it up.

Thanks, guys.

Today is a recovery day and I am SORE!

Here’s what I’ve eaten:

Breakfast: eggs, sausage, potatoes, 2 french toast, banana (around 8am)
Snack 1: Peanut butter sandwich (11am)
Lunch: Orange Chicken, Beef and Broccoli and Fried Rice (2pm)
Snack 2: Protein Shake (4pm)
Dinner: TBD (7pm)
Snack 3: TBD (11pm)
Late-night snack: TBD (depends on when I wake to pee)

After I take a nap (right now) I might go play some Ultimate to keep active.

Tomorrow is Biceps/Triceps day

Biceps & Triceps WOOP!

Primary

Standing Barbell Curl: 20x10, 20x10, 20x8, 20x9
When I say “20” I mean 1 10lb weight on one side and another on the other side. How much does a barbell bar usually weigh? Should I be recording the TOTAL weight (i.e. plates plus barbell weight?) or what I did (just late weight)?

Dips: 4.5x8, 6.5x8, 6.5x8, 6.5x8
4.5 and 6.5 is the number of the plate of assistance for the dips. These were effing hard.

Secondary

Hammer Curl: 10x10, 15x10, 10x10, 15x10
Next time, I might start with 20 instead of switching back and forth and move down. What do you think?

Standing Dumbell Tricep Extension: 15x10, 15x10, 15x10, 15x10
I started to cheat on these at the end–instead of keeping my triceps completely vertical and elbows forward I noticed my elbows would point out and the angle of my triceps would drop to around 80 degrees instead of 90 from the ground.

Auxiliary

Machine Curl: 37.5x10, 35x9, 25x11, 22.5x20
Is this a weird progression? These numbers look weird to me.

Machine Arm Extension: 25x15, 37.5x12, 37.5x12, 37.5x9
Hard.


SOOOOO, I’m kind of an idiot. Last night after my post I napped, ate, and visited a friend’s room who said he’d be going out that night. Of course I said I’d join.

We ended up getting back from drinking around 3 and instead of waking up at 6am today I woke up at 10 and skipped my first two meals. F*#$!

A question to you all: how do you balance school, school work, eating 5-7 meals/day, working out, and social night-outs (and any other responsibilities/clubs one might have)? How am I supposed to have a good night of drinking with the boys if 1) alcohol destroys all the work I did the day before and 2) destroys half of the work I’ll be doing the next day?

Any advice welcomed!

[quote]skinnyguap wrote:
When I say “20” I mean 1 10lb weight on one side and another on the other side. How much does a barbell bar usually weigh? Should I be recording the TOTAL weight (i.e. plates plus barbell weight?) or what I did (just late weight)?[/quote]
a normal barbell supposedly weighs 45 lbs, but that varies. most people report their weights with the 45 added in.

[quote]Hammer Curl: 10x10, 15x10, 10x10, 15x10
Next time, I might start with 20 instead of switching back and forth and move down. What do you think?[/quote] GO heavier, dude! You got it. I know you do.

[quote]Standing Dumbell Tricep Extension: 15x10, 15x10, 15x10, 15x10
I started to cheat on these at the end–instead of keeping my triceps completely vertical and elbows forward I noticed my elbows would point out and the angle of my triceps would drop to around 80 degrees instead of 90 from the ground.[/quote] Not a big deal AT ALL.

[quote]A question to you all: how do you balance school, school work, eating 5-7 meals/day, working out, and social night-outs (and any other responsibilities/clubs one might have)? How am I supposed to have a good night of drinking with the boys if 1) alcohol destroys all the work I did the day before and 2) destroys half of the work I’ll be doing the next day?

Any advice welcomed!
[/quote]

First off, IT TAKES DISCIPLINE. If you have that on lock, you don’t have to follow a formula, you will find a way.

Second, I have one word for you: Tupperware. Get some, get more, than go back for extras. If you really want to commit to putting on the pounds, you need to pre-cook food all the time and take it with you. Find microwaves where ever they may be, or learn to eat it cold. Sometimes I make enough food for 3 days worth of meals at once. Get a huge lunchbox and make it your hallmark. I am by no means an accomplished bodybuilder, but I am known by my peers in all circles by my lunchbox, because it is one of those igloo coolers, filled with meat and broccoli! If you can do this, 2 things will happen: first, you will have food available all the time. second, people will notice. once people notice, they ask questions. once you realize you have to answer them, you become committed to your answer: I am try to get freaking jacked.

As for your drinking issues, can’t say anything, cause I don’t drink. You don’t have to to be social. I am one of the most well-known people at my school because of everything else I do, not because I get wasted with the boys. I still have a blast, just while I am sober.

Hope that helps.