First, let me just explain who I am and what I’ve done in the past year and a half or so. I am currently 18 years old, weigh about 153 pounds and am 5’5"-5’6". About a year ago, i was seriously overweight at about 160 pounds and knew that i needed to make a change in my life. I began going to the gym and was, to say the least, rather unexperienced. After about two months, however, i had established a pretty solid routine, i was running on a rather haphazard schedule(running nevertheless), and began eating much better.
Eventually, probably about after 5 or so months, i had cut all the way down to 140 pounds and was really happy with how things were going. One thing I had no experience with was this feeling of satisfaction without any sort of motivation left. I felt as if i had completed my goal and could just stop. Sure, i kept lifting, but the schedule which i attempted to maintain rather rigorously in the past became much more sporadic. My eating habits also declined rather quickly as summer came around and my friends and I ate out more and more due to our immense amounts of free time.
To make a long story short, the veil had been lifted about 2 weeks ago and i found myself at 155 pounds and quite angry at what had transpired in the last 4 or so months. Now, i understand where i should be going and seek the assistance of all of the experts here in order to make this an actually beneficial experience.
First, I have many questions regarding weight lifting itself. I’m wondering how i can actually lose weight while trying to build mass because, as of now, i am sure that at least some of the gain in weight i have experienced has come as a result of my increases in the weight i can lift. For example, a year and a half ago, my max bench was probably 135 whereas now it is about 205.
Another question, the one that plagues me most about the gym, is what exercises i should be doing. Let me first break down my current workout:
(Every Monday, Wednesday, and Saturday)
Bench Press(12 reps @ 135, 10 reps @ 155, 4 reps @185, 1 rep @205[I try to max out every 3 or so times I lift])
Dips(2-3 sets of 15)
Lat Pulldown(2 sets of 12)
Curling bar stand up curls(2 sets of 12)
Tricep pulldown(1 set of 12, 1 set of 10, 1 set of 6-7 as the weight increases)
Standing Chest Fly(2 sets)
Shoulder Press Machine(2 sets)
Oblique exercise with free weight, not really sure how to describe it other than it is the Lateral Flexion (Abduction) on http://www.exrx.net/Articulations/Spine.html#anchor165002 except you hold a free weight in one arm with body fully extended on that machine and bend your body all the way down and all the way back up
Now that you know my current question, I guess I just have some questions as to how I should modify this/what I am doing wrong/right.
After reading all the articles on this site, it seems as if each article focuses on a 6-12 week program which will make my arms huge! or finally give me the huge jumping ability I have always wanted.
However, these seem to focus on only that muscle group(understandably so), but the question then becomes: how can I just focus on this group of muscles? What happens to working the entire body? What about those exercises for my chest or shoulders if I focus on, for example, a big arm routine?
The question then really becomes, how can I create a workout in which I can really train every muscle I want and still see significant results in all these muscles? Now that I have gotten into college and school is somewhat slowing down, I think I will be able to create more free time so feel free to suggest workout options which span the entire week, but plans which alternate days I could certainly do as well.
Another big question I have is about protein. I have a protein powder which I can use to create a shake in which there are 20 g per serving. How much should I put into each shake and should I just drink one after each workout or is there more I should be doing?
Also, I really want to lose all this extra weight I have around my belly and in general( I know you cannot simply spot reduce), but how can I do this while still trying to maintain/increase my weight in lifting. It seems like achieving both at the same time is simply impossible. A side question from this is, should I be running and doing cardio activity. If so, can I do it on the same day, because I remember reading something about it being very unbeneficial to both run and lift on the same day.
I will leave you experts with these questions for now and am very thankful for your time and responses. I think that from your answers I will better be able to analyze my problem and ask more specific questions so as to really get this thing going.