T Nation

New Around Here

I am a Dallas UPS driver, who is finally ready to get in shape and not have my job kill me day after day.
Look forward to hearing from you with any tips and wisdom.

Welcome. I’d suggest reading the stickied threads at the top of this Beginner’s Forum. Then read the articles that are linked in those stickied threads. Read, read, read. Knowledge is power when it comes to transforming yourself.

Also, you should be warned that this site is sort of a ‘playground’ or locker room for alpha males and alpha females. So there tends to be a lot of tough love that goes to everyone, especially the newbies/beginners. Some times it goes beyond tough love. But at any rate I would grow a thick skin and be ready to take advice, even when it is offered in kind of a ‘back hand’ fashion. It’s a rite of passage for a lot of people–I went through it when I joined this site many years ago as well. The people who are coachable will stay and transform themselves, the ego driven people or the people seeking ‘half measures’ and quick fixes will leave to lick their wounds.

That being said, it really is a very helpful place. Vets know their stuff, contributors stay around to answer questions in their forum area, it really is the best place on the net for changing your life. We just don’t coddle anyone for any reason. :slight_smile: You have been warned.

Also, I saw your post in the “Sex and the Male Animal” forum (SAMA). You might want to rethink that one: the rule is “it’s worthless without pictures” in that forum. So either post a pic of yourself (NOT recommended), or throw up a couple pics of hotties.

Rules to changing your life and physique:

  1. There are no shortcuts. Consistency and perseverance are almighty.

  2. There are no shortcuts. Consistency and perseverance are almighty.

  3. There are no shortcuts. Consistency and perseverance are almighty.

  4. Use the search function before posting questions–generally it will save you time and some criticisms. If you read something you don’t understand in an article, ask a question about it! Generally if people know that you’ve been doing some background reading they don’t give you a hard time. We’ve been having a rash of lazy posters who don’t use the search function lately.

  5. Read first, ask later. This goes with the above rule, just to make your life easier. We have 10 years of articles on here in the archives. Also, you are GUARANTEED to get confused by reading things–this is fine, this is normal. The nice thing about this site is the info. By far the best and most thorough on the web. The bad thing about this site is “Analysis Paralysis” for newbs. ASK Questions on stuff you read!

  6. Along with the above point–doing >> reading. Pick a program and a nutrition plan, and STICK TO IT. You can read while you work. Besides, even if your plan isn’t the best thing, you’ll make progress as long as you put effort into things. And some progress, even if it is slow or less than optimal, is always ALWAYS better than no progress.

  7. This is a bodybuilding site. We have lots of guys interested in strongman or powerlifting or martial arts or athletics more than bodybuilding (I would be among those people). It’s perfectly OK if your goals aren’t to bench 500 lbs, or get to 250 lbs of lean muscle. That’s fine, we accept all serious comers.

And many of us started out “just getting in shape” but somewhere along the lines we converted to the “dark side”. But this site is about getting big and strong, so please respect those who choose the competitive bodybuilding lifestyle, including steroids. (We’ve been having a rash of the “I don’t want to get too big” and bodybuilding bashing posters lately too)

  1. Don’t get impatient–total transformation takes years. Not a couple months. Lots of progress can be made when you start, sure, but build the foundation strong and deep.

  2. Simple = Progress. Don’t overthink things. Well, do that, but not while sitting on your arse. Doing anything is superior to doing nothing, even if you are confused in your mind.

  3. Forget everything you “thought” you knew about lifting, diet and nutrition–everything the infomercials tell you, every thing the popular media tells you. Trust me on this. High protein intake will not destroy your kidneys, steroids will not kill you, training your lower back is in fact GOOD for you, all fat is not bad, all carbs are not bad…blah blah blah.

  4. this site is about the pursuit of excellence. Period. It doesn’t matter how long the journey is, only that you pursue it whole heartedly and unrelentingly.

  5. This road is not easy. This road is not short. This road is beset on all sides by saboteurs who want to see you fail. This road is painful. This road is also enlightening in every sense of the word.

  6. Changing your physique is the Single. Hardest. Thing. you will ever do, unless you count beating brain cancer or similar. Changing your physique required wholesale LIFESTYLE changes. Not a ‘diet’ but a lifestyle. For the rest of your life. Forever. Change the way you think about food, the way you act, the way you plan your day, the way you walk into the grocery store. There’s no other way to do it. I did it this way, and you can too.

Wow Aragorn, I want to go back for a 3rd session @ the gym today because of your post. HAHAHA.

Why didn’t someone post this for me when I joined?

That was very motivating, Aragorn. Mind if I print it out for some pocket motivation? :slight_smile:

awesome post Aragon - made me want to run back home and get back to lifting…

welcome douglas41 - i started last year - it’s a definite life change - for the better and beyond. i train to live now.

i don’t think too much anymore - i just do.

awesome aragorn. That post was fantastic.

lol. Well thanks everyone. I try my best. But it’s pretty much truth and I learned a lot of it the very hard way. Print it out if you really want to.

I appreciate the response, looking forward to keeping in touch and sharing my progress with yall.

What’s your diet and training look like?

First of all, where in Texas are You?
Diet- I am trying to lose about 30 pds as well as put on some muscle, and I have never been one to do that before.
Eating beef once a week, on a sat. as a treat.
Fish and chicken at night with a vegatable and a huge salad.
During the day, I eat fruit, protein bars and stop at a subway or bring chicken salad or something.
I haven’t had a coke in a month!
Take plenty of vitamins and supplements.

As far as working out goes- I am not doing very much.
When I get home from work I do cardio on a stationary bike and I have some wieghts and a bench outside that I can do some lifting.
I have never lifted before so I am a novice in that area.
I have lost 4 pds in 2 weeks.

Good job with kicking the coke. Eating mostly good foods there. you know what is good for you and what’s bad. Most people do, they just never make the switch because they lack the willpower.

The weight loss is ok to start the first couple weeks. But we need more details. Here is an assignment. You will record every. single. thing. that you eat and drink for the next 3 days. Don’t change anything you’re doing. Just write it down–EVERYTHING. We need times you eat, and amount of each substance you eat, or as close as you can approximate it. Any drink with calories touches your lips, we want to know exactly what, when, and how much. Post them day by day, starting tomorrow (Sunday).

It is good that you exercise as soon as you get home from work. The longer you wait to do it the easier you make it to rationalize yourself away from exercising that day. It would be good for you to do some brisk morning walks for about 30 minutes ASAP when you get out of bed before work. It will help you wake up and provide a boost for the day. You may or may not feel tired after doing them until your body gets used to the habit.

After you get done posting your daily food intake we will discuss pros and cons of the plan you currently have and how/if we should change things.

For your training, what experience have you had to date? Do you have access to a gym or equipment at home? Do you have any issues that will affect your lifting? How active are you outside the gym?


Stuward- I have no experience in training to date, just now starting. Turned 41 and looked pathethic and wanted to do something about it, finally am. For the past 5 yrs. I have used my UPS job as my time of exercise, but admit that just abuses the body.

I have a little bit of equipment at home, not much though.
I don’t have any issues that would effect my lifting.
I consider myself pretty active, I do walk about 10 miles a day with UPS and I have a 7 and a 6 year old to keep me busy.

Aragon- I will do your assignment, you should be in management at UPS!

The UPS work is keeping your heart in shape and giving you adequate cardio, we don’t have to worry about that.

The first step is for you to start getting comfortable with exercising and applying force with your muscles. You should start with a body weight program for a few (2-4) weeks. If you have a chinning bar or dumbbells that will help.

You will need to get access to a gym or purchase a barbell and eventually a bench and squat rack. You should be able to find cheap equipment on the used market in Texas.

For body weight, I recommend the following:

To start:
Push ups, start on the floor and elevate feet to increase resistance,
Inverted Rows
body weight squats,
Situps, knees bent
back extentions

Once you are used to the above, add:
chin ups
split squats and lunges
hand stands

Once you can do 20 of any exercise, look for ways to make it harder.

Once you have access to a barbell, look into this forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=2281631


I have a bench, with dumbells and barbell.
The weight capacity right now is at 80 lbs.

I have a bench, with dumbells and barbell.
The weight capacity right now is at 80 lbs.

Aragorn- I am posting my menu from today.
THis is my family day so it is a little more different or relaxed than when I am at work and alone most of the day.
8:15am 2 eggs, I toast with jelly
I jay robb whey protein drink with milk mixed with 10 fresh strawberries.

10:45am cinamon crossant from target while shopping

12:45 10 oz frsh orange juice

3:00pm large salad with crackers and some cheese

4Pm frozen yogurt from a health food store

6:45pm spagetti and 2 pieces of bread
I natural soda 140 calories 37g of sugar 39 carbs

Ok, check. Post up monday and tuesday and we’ll analyze it after you’re done.