T Nation

New Here, Routine and Diet Questions

Hello everyone,
I wasn’t sure where to post this, so I guess this was the right subforum. Anyway, I’m a 30 year old male and I started lifting weights only about 1.5 years ago. Why I started lifting, in a nutshell, is because I used to be morbidly skinny (147 lbs for 6’3") and I was very very insecure about it. I was even too embarrassed to wear goddamn short sleeves.

Right now, I have a more human looking physique: I’m 176lbs for the same height.
Yeah it’s probably still skinny compared to some of you long time lifters, but it’s better than being a walking skeleton right.

So, you know who I and why I’m here. Been lurking on this place for a long time and the community seems friendly so I decided to register.
Allow me to talk about my routine, diet and goals:

My routine:
2 full body workouts per week. Usually tuesday and saturday. I always do 3 sets of each excercise. The added weight on my sets make it so that set 1 goes well, set 2 gets harder and I struggle at set 3.
What I do:

  • Overhand pull-ups: 8-6-6
  • (Tuesday only) Weighted push-ups with feet elevated, 12-10-9
  • (Saturday only) Weighted dips, 12-10-9
  • Weighted split squats, 15-12-10
  • Dumbell bench presses: 13-10-9
  • Dumbell shoulder press: 12-10-9

Since I feel like some smaller muscle groups are not getting a thorough hammering with these, I also do some isolation:

  • Hammer curls: 10-8-7
  • One legged weighted calf raises: 15-15-13
  • Wrist rollers: 3 reps, one rep being rolling all the way up (using the “back-side” of the forearms), back down, back up (using the “belly side”) and back down.

On the other days, I do 2 HIIT workouts per week, finishing those up with planking excercices. These strengthen the core which is important for my main sport (rock climbing) and the climbing also explains the wrist rollers that I do. Believe me, your forearms get lit on fire during rock climbing.

My diet: I went to a nutritionist. Explained my goals.
I now have a surplus of 400-500 cal per day, mainly coming from carbs and protein. I ditched all the junk food: no more Big Macs, no more cola, no more pizza, etc. I literally never drink soft drinks, eat pizza or burgers or fries or junk any more.
My diet consists of:

  • 4 Slices of bread in the morning with coffee and a banana and a glass of soy milk (250ml)
  • 10 am snack: another banana and a glass of 250ml of skimmed milk
  • Lunch: baguette with cheese and ham. No salad or mayonnaise or stuff
  • Afternoon snack: a glass of 250ml of soy milk and some dry cookies (no chocolate on it or stuff like that, just dry cookies)
  • Early evening snack: a handful of peanuts (25gr)
  • Supper: 62gr of rice, veggies (carrots, sweet corn, spinach or tomatoes) and 300gr of fish (codfish, mackerel, salmon, tuna, etc)
  • Later night: one yoghurt with pieces of fruit in it, a kiwifruit and a glass of skimmed chocolate milk

Just after a workout, while the sweat is literally still dripping, I drink one of these “meal substitutes”. They don’t actually substitute a meal for me, but they contain lots of protein, minerals and moderate amount of carbs.
I have sensitive guts and I have a touch time digesting high quantities of lactose. And eggs basically turn me into a chemical weapon if you see what I mean so I stay away from that.

My goal: I’m a rock climber. I do indoor climbing once a week. So I’m not trying to look like Arnold Schwarzie in his peak days as being TOO bulky will simply hinder the climbing.
My goal is to look muscular above average, low bodyfat %age and fit.
I know it sounds cliché and silly, but imagine Ryan Reynolds in Blade Trinity, that werewolf dude in those terrible Twilight movies, Brad Pitt in Fight Club (maybe a little more mass than him though).
Now I know that these guys have coaches and supplements and money to basically get to that shape. And it requires a very low body fat %age, but it gives you an idea.

What I am now: as I already said, 30 yours old, tall and slightly less muscular than your average fit guy. 15% body fat and a 21.7 BMI. I have some subcutaneous belly fat, but for the rest, my fat storage is pretty low.
I was severely skinny (if it wasn’t for my length, I’d have been downright puny) as a kid.

Mah questions:

  1. I’m still not sure what’s better for chest development: feet-raised weighted push-ups or dips, assuming I add enough weight to stay in the 8-12 rep range? For the moment I alternate.

  2. I have mild form of Pectus Caritanum. This is the chest deformity where the chestbone sticks out a little. Not to be confused with Pectus Excavatum where the chestbone is sunken in.
    But in order to hide the caritanum, would it help to build more chest muscles? Can I basically have a nice looking chest despite this deformity?

  3. As I said, my goal is not to look like the Hulk. I’m trying to build some mass and minimise fat gain (or even burn some). Is it good to do some HIIT on my non-workout days? Would this help in getting rid of the subcutaneous belly fat? I know that kinda fat is stubborn as hell… I heard that if you’re looking to bulk, you should eat everything, including junk, to grow. That somehow sounds… strange.
    Would my diet basically be enough to make some clean muscle gains and minimize fat gain?

  4. Would going climbing the day after a workout or workout the day after climbing overload my body and cause overtraining?

  5. Any other comments about my routine or diet?

Sorry for the long read and sorry if some of my questions are stupid. Also don’t shoot me if you see mistakes in my routine.

Thanks!

Okay dude, right off the bat (hehe, no pun intended), but you’re hitting several troll flags already. Super skinny, wants to look like a dude from Twilight, drinks soymilk, etc. Because of this, you’re very likely to get grief from folks. I try to give the benefit of the doubt though, so, let’s see what’s what.

[quote]Snowbat wrote:
2 full body workouts per week. [/quote]
Do you only have two days to lift or is your schedule more flexible? Also, do you have access to a full gym? The bodyweight exercises and dumbbells make me think you’re training at home with a minimal setup.

[quote]I always do 3 sets of each excercise. The added weight on my sets make it so that set 1 goes well, set 2 gets harder and I struggle at set 3.

feel like some smaller muscle groups are not getting a thorough hammering with these, I also do some isolation[/quote]
Full body workouts are fine and can certainly be productive, but yours is very poorly designed.

[quote]My diet: I went to a nutritionist. Explained my goals.
I now have a surplus of 400-500 cal per day, mainly coming from carbs and protein.[/quote]
That’s a mistake. Fats are not only calorie-dense, making it easier to reach your daily calorie surplus, but they’re healthy and essential for a bunch of functions.

You’re an underweight dude who’s not exactly fat right now. You should not try eating like a competitive bodybuilder, avoiding all junk food. A few slices of pizza will not kill you. And there’s precisely zero things wrong with a big, delicious, fresh burger.

[quote]My diet consists of:

  • 4 Slices of bread in the morning with coffee and a banana and a glass of soy milk (250ml)
  • 10 am snack: another banana and a glass of 250ml of skimmed milk
  • Lunch: baguette with cheese and ham. No salad or mayonnaise or stuff
  • Afternoon snack: a glass of 250ml of soy milk and some dry cookies (no chocolate on it or stuff like that, just dry cookies)
  • Early evening snack: a handful of peanuts (25gr)
  • Supper: 62gr of rice, veggies (carrots, sweet corn, spinach or tomatoes) and 300gr of fish (codfish, mackerel, salmon, tuna, etc)
  • Later night: one yoghurt with pieces of fruit in it, a kiwifruit and a glass of skimmed chocolate milk[/quote]
    Not to speak contrary to your nutritionist, but… soy milk is shit. It actually simulates estrogen in the body. Use almond or rice milk instead; clarifying that your cookies have no chocolate on them is pretty laughable. If you’re having cookies, have cookies; Your overall diet is actually ridiculously low in protein, which means you’re not giving your body what it needs to build muscle. Animal protein in every meal, please and thank you.

This is a very good idea, but consider having it a half-hour or so before training instead and then having a good sized protein and carb meal a half-hour to an hour after lifting.

[quote]My goal: I’m a rock climber. I do indoor climbing once a week. So I’m not trying to look like Arnold Schwarzie in his peak days as being TOO bulky will simply hinder the climbing.
My goal is to look muscular above average, low bodyfat %age and fit.[/quote]
Your goals are your own thing, that’s fine. But at your height, understand that you’re not going to “look muscular above average” until you’re a pretty lean 205+ pounds. So keep that in mind as your mid to long-term goal, number-wise. While we’re at it, forget about actual bodyfat percentage (15%, 8%, whatever). It’s too hard to actually calculate and there’s no real world carryover. And BMI is an absolute waste of time for people with muscle. Forget that too.

Neither is that much better than the other. But once you’re on a good routine, stick with it for a few months before changing things. Frequent variety can actually make it difficult to see progress.

I’m not an expert, but I’d say yes and yes. Get even-less skinny and it should mostly sort itself out.

No, doing excessive cardio, especially high intensity cardio, is 100% counter-productive to your goals. Some easy low intensity cardio a few days a week could be worked into the plan if, big if, you were gaining too much bodyfat.

[quote]I heard that if you’re looking to bulk, you should eat everything, including junk, to grow. That somehow sounds… strange.
Would my diet basically be enough to make some clean muscle gains and minimize fat gain?[/quote]
This is a hot topic with some people, but since you’re still pretty underweight and not a big fat bastard, you do not have to be 100% clean and strict. Wanna go out for wings and beer with the guys once a week? Go and enjoy. Want to order in Chinese food for a naked Saturday at home with your significant other, do it, but throw on a robe before answering the door.

Somebody already carrying more fat would have to be more strict, and somebody even more underweight (like you were a few years ago) can get away with more crap a bit more often without stressing over fat gain.

As long as you’re eating plenty everyday, you should be fine. You might be sore, but you’ll adapt soon enough.

Ha, ask a lot of questions, get a lot of answers. :wink:

I loled at “baguette.”

You’re doing great man…who the fuck needs protein anyway?!

Dude, if you aren’t a troll, then you need to just start with a clean slate. Forget whatever you thought diet and training wise.

Diet: Mulitply your BW by 18. That’s how many calories you’ll likely need to be eating to gain. Maybe more. Use the scale.

Get at minimum 1g of Protein per pound of BW, optimally not from soy
Get at minimum .45g of Fat per pound of BW, from good sources (fats from oreos isn’t ideal). Animal fats, VCO, EVOO
Fill in the rest of your caloric needs from carbs, fats, protein. Whatever makes you feel best.

Once you do that consistently, you can probably play around with meal timing, like getting protein in PWO, whether you like carbs evenly spread through the day or restricted to certain times, etc. But right now, just get in the calories.

Programs:

5/3/1 (any of the templates)
WS4SB
KingBeef’s “Do This Program Instead Of That Dumb One” (Type in the search bar)
Anything you didn’t make yourself

More advanced guys and critique more specific stuff or whatever, but this is probably at least a good start.

x2 ^

wish I did that all from day 1

Mods: this would be the perfect board to sticky KingofBeef’s thread, instead of people having to do searches for it.

[quote]Spidey22 wrote:

Diet: Mulitply your BW by 18. That’s how many calories you’ll likely need to be eating to gain. Maybe more. Use the scale.

[/quote]

Where did this logic come from?

[quote]usmccds423 wrote:

[quote]Spidey22 wrote:

Diet: Mulitply your BW by 18. That’s how many calories you’ll likely need to be eating to gain. Maybe more. Use the scale.

[/quote]

Where did this logic come from? [/quote]

I feel it’s a pretty standard number for gaining.

Usually maintenance calories are a person’s BW x 15. For Cutting BW x 10-12, for gaining BW x 18-20.

Obviously it can vary based on individual metabolisms, activity levels, yada yada. But yeah, it’s a pretty good starting point.

[quote]Spidey22 wrote:

[quote]usmccds423 wrote:

[quote]Spidey22 wrote:

Diet: Mulitply your BW by 18. That’s how many calories you’ll likely need to be eating to gain. Maybe more. Use the scale.

[/quote]

Where did this logic come from? [/quote]

I feel it’s a pretty standard number for gaining.

Usually maintenance calories are a person’s BW x 15. For Cutting BW x 10-12, for gaining BW x 18-20.

Obviously it can vary based on individual metabolisms, activity levels, yada yada. But yeah, it’s a pretty good starting point. [/quote]

I’m not saying you are wrong, I just want to know where the factor came from. Is that your opinion or say Dave Tate’s?

Edit: Basically what I’m getting at is this is a very simple answer to a complex problem.

[quote]usmccds423 wrote:

[quote]Spidey22 wrote:

[quote]usmccds423 wrote:

[quote]Spidey22 wrote:

Diet: Mulitply your BW by 18. That’s how many calories you’ll likely need to be eating to gain. Maybe more. Use the scale.

[/quote]

Where did this logic come from? [/quote]

I feel it’s a pretty standard number for gaining.

Usually maintenance calories are a person’s BW x 15. For Cutting BW x 10-12, for gaining BW x 18-20.

Obviously it can vary based on individual metabolisms, activity levels, yada yada. But yeah, it’s a pretty good starting point. [/quote]

I’m not saying you are wrong, I just want to know where the factor came from. Is that your opinion or say Dave Tate’s? [/quote]

I’ve read it on a few forums. But seems pretty true for most. I have a slightly faster then average metabolism, so I’ve been doing my BW x 19 for calories while gaining (i reset every 5 lbs or so). Allows me to gain decently without getting fat.

So yeah, I guess it’s advice I took from mulitple more experienced sources, of which I have applied to myself, which has been working. lol