T Nation

Push Ups To Lose Fat/Weight

I don’t know much about losing weight and I’m not too great with words so I’ll try to do my best in explaining my whole situation and all my questions in this topic.

I’m 16 years old, 5’7", 152 lbs. I would guess I have about 16-17% bodyfat.

I am trying to lose weight and cut my bodyfat percentage down to at least 8%.

I look fairly skinny and muscular with clothes on. But without a shirt I have slight man tits and a bit of a gut.

I am trying to get a 6 pack of abs and an overall lean body.

With a shirt on, my chest looks pretty big and it looks like I have muscular pecs. But I have slight man tits and my chest is kinda flabby and fat. I don’t think there’s much muscle since I can only bench press 145 lbs.

I want to lose that fat on my chest and make it smaller. My chest is too big compared to my arms and such. I don’t want to lose much muscle. I want to hopefully maintain most of my strength but get skinnier and leaner at the same time.

But first let me explain some of the things I plan to do in order to lose the fat.

Basketball- I plan to play a few hours(2-3) of basketball 6 days a week. I plan to work on my skills, work on my shot, do some drills, and maybe play some pickup games once in a while. I want to improve my skills during the offseason.

Agility and interval sprints- After a couple hours of basketball, I plan to do 30 minutes of conditioning. I’ll jump rope, run suicide sprints, and do other various agility drills. I also plan to do this 6 days a week

Running- I plan to do a 2-3 mile run at about 7-8 mph about 2 or 3 days a week.

Pre-Breakfast jog- I plan to do a light 20-30 minute jog before breakfast on the weekends or any days that I don’t have school. See “100 workouts from ripped city” by Dr. Lowery for more details.

Ab workout- I plan to do situps, crunches, leg raises, planks, ab wheel, etc workout 6 days a week. I’ll mix the exercises around each day and make sure I’m not overworking either my lower or upper abs. I won’t be doing any weights with these so I figured 6 days a week would be ok.

Should I add push ups to my schedule? I don’t want to get significantly weaker. But I really wouldn’t care if I got about 10 lbs on Bench Press weaker.

I want my chest to get less fat and smaller so it’s only muscle.

But wouldn’t doing push ups just be counterproductive and make my chest bigger? Or will it help get rid of the fat on my chest?

If I do pushups, I only plan on doing 60-100 push ups per day, 4-6 days a week.

So here are my questions so far.

  1. Should I do 60-100 push ups 4-6 days a week? Will it help make my chest leaner, or will it just make my chest bigger?

  2. Working out Abs 6 days a week is ok because I’m not using any weights(no resistance), correct?

I plan to listen to my body and cut down on work if I feel that it is too much. I’m also easing myself in to it. I’m only doing about 3 days of running, abs, conditioning, and basketball this week. I’m working my way up to 5-6 days per week.

Any help would be appreciated. Thanks.

oh god…the butchering is gonna commence soon…

How about picking up some weights, cleaing up the diet? Oh and you cant afford 10lb loss in the bench you barly bench shit right now.

Well let me clarify something.

I’m not going to do this same exact thing until I get to 8%.

First I’m going to try and lose 10lbs.

After I get to that goal, I will cut down on the 2 mile runs and agility drills, and start doing some 400m sprints instead.

In fact. I realized that the 2-3 mile runs are useless to do 4-5 times per week. I’m going to cut it down to 2-3X per week as a “getting in good shape” thing. Then after a while I will replace it with the said 400m sprints and some uphill sprints.

After a while I will start adding weights and resistance to my ab workouts and cut it down to 4x per week.

And I did change my diet to a clean one. I have cut out all of my junk food intake. I make sure everything I eat has very very little saturated or trans fat.

if you lose 10lbs you will look like a stick, but if thats your goal then more power too you.

[quote]John S. wrote:
if you lose 10lbs you will look like a stick, but if thats your goal then more power too you.[/quote]

Especially since he may not have stopped growing yet. You’re 5’7" now, but in a year you could be 5’9 or 5’10, how do you think 140 pounds will look then?

Here’s your workout plan:

Day 1 - 4 sets x 6-8 reps (heavy as possible)
DB Bench Press
Standing BB Military/Push Press
Weighted Pull Ups
Chest supported rows
Lunges
15 minutes on the bike doing high intensity intervals. Every 30 seconds, pedal as fast as possible for 30 seconds and then slow for 30 seconds. Repeat for 15 minutes, feel the burn.

Day 2 - 3 sets x 8-12 reps
Squat
Dips
Forward/Side Raises
Upright Rows
Bodyweight pull ups followed immediately by BB curls
Shrugs
Calf Raises

Day 3 -5 sets x 4-6 reps
Deadlifts
Incline DB or BB Bench
Snatches followed immediately by max sets of push ups
Leg press
T-bar rows to the chest, elbows flared

Day 4 - whatever you want to do in the weight room

It may not be the best plan, but it’s better than fucking push ups and random cardio. Do cardio 3x a week, if you want to. One long run, one day where you bust ass and go hard, one day of sports cardio (basketball, heavy bag, jump rope).

[quote]Baller1950 wrote:

I’m 16 years old, 5’7", 152 lbs. I would guess I have about 16-17% bodyfat.
[/quote]

Your problem is probably too little muscle, not too much fat, per se.

Tons of cardio is not going to help this. You’ll have a smaller version of the same physique.

I’m not trying to tell you what your goals should be, but wouldn’t big and ripped be better than tiny and ripped? I know you’re playing basketball, not football or hockey, but even in basketball wouldn’t 170 lean be much more athletic than 140 lean?

You just answered your own question, you need more muscle.

Shouldn’t you be trying to make your arms bigger to match your chest? Not to mention your legs and back?

After all of the basketball, this extra conditioning is unnecessary and unproductive.

After 12-18 hours of basketball per week, this is another bad idea. What is the point of this? What is your reasoning?

More cardio? What are you thinking? Pick one of these cardio protocols and stick with it, instead of trying to do 3-4 cardio/conditioning programs at the same time.

What is the point? Trying to get a six pack? Well, this won’t help. It’s all about diet and total energy expenditure. Do abs a couple days a week if you want, but don’t waste your time with all of this. BTW, the best ab exercises are heavy deadlifts and squats.

Nothing wrong with pushups, but they’re not going to make you lose the fat in your chest, if that’s what your thinking. It doesn’t work that way.

Why the high reps? Add weight if you need too.

No. And it will not make you lose fat in your chest.

Waste of time.

I don’t mean to pick on you, but you are way off here with most of your ideas. Your program is what a typical skinny-fat person would do. You need to reevaluate your rational.

[quote]Baller1950 wrote:
I don’t know much about losing weight and I’m not too great with words …[/quote]

If you listen to what these guys are telling you, especially the advice about picking up progressively heavier weight, you’ll be fine. Eat plenty too, you’re growing.

As far as your ability with words, it far surpasses the other dopes your age that try to post using IM-speak.

[quote]Nothingface wrote:
Baller1950 wrote:

I’m 16 years old, 5’7", 152 lbs. I would guess I have about 16-17% bodyfat.

Your problem is probably too little muscle, not too much fat, per se.

I look fairly skinny and muscular with clothes on. But without a shirt I have slight man tits and a bit of a gut.

Tons of cardio is not going to help this. You’ll have a smaller version of the same physique.

I am trying to get a 6 pack of abs and an overall lean body.

I’m not trying to tell you what your goals should be, but wouldn’t big and ripped be better than tiny and ripped? I know you’re playing basketball, not football or hockey, but even in basketball wouldn’t 170 lean be much more athletic than 140 lean?

With a shirt on, my chest looks pretty big and it looks like I have muscular pecs. But I have slight man tits and my chest is kinda flabby and fat. I don’t think there’s much muscle since I can only bench press 145 lbs.

You just answered your own question, you need more muscle.

I want to lose that fat on my chest and make it smaller. My chest is too big compared to my arms and such. I don’t want to lose much muscle. I want to hopefully maintain most of my strength but get skinnier and leaner at the same time.

Shouldn’t you be trying to make your arms bigger to match your chest? Not to mention your legs and back?

Basketball- I plan to play a few hours(2-3) of basketball 6 days a week. I plan to work on my skills, work on my shot, do some drills, and maybe play some pickup games once in a while. I want to improve my skills during the offseason.

Agility and interval sprints- After a couple hours of basketball, I plan to do 30 minutes of conditioning. I’ll jump rope, run suicide sprints, and do other various agility drills. I also plan to do this 6 days a week

After all of the basketball, this extra conditioning is unnecessary and unproductive.

Running- I plan to do a 2-3 mile run at about 7-8 mph about 2 or 3 days a week.

After 12-18 hours of basketball per week, this is another bad idea. What is the point of this? What is your reasoning?

Pre-Breakfast jog- I plan to do a light 20-30 minute jog before breakfast on the weekends or any days that I don’t have school. See “100 workouts from ripped city” by Dr. Lowery for more details.

More cardio? What are you thinking? Pick one of these cardio protocols and stick with it, instead of trying to do 3-4 cardio/conditioning programs at the same time.

Ab workout- I plan to do situps, crunches, leg raises, planks, ab wheel, etc workout 6 days a week. I’ll mix the exercises around each day and make sure I’m not overworking either my lower or upper abs. I won’t be doing any weights with these so I figured 6 days a week would be ok.

What is the point? Trying to get a six pack? Well, this won’t help. It’s all about diet and total energy expenditure. Do abs a couple days a week if you want, but don’t waste your time with all of this. BTW, the best ab exercises are heavy deadlifts and squats.

Should I add push ups to my schedule? I don’t want to get significantly weaker. But I really wouldn’t care if I got about 10 lbs on Bench Press weaker.
I want my chest to get less fat and smaller so it’s only muscle.

But wouldn’t doing push ups just be counterproductive and make my chest bigger? Or will it help get rid of the fat on my chest?

Nothing wrong with pushups, but they’re not going to make you lose the fat in your chest, if that’s what your thinking. It doesn’t work that way.

If I do pushups, I only plan on doing 60-100 push ups per day, 4-6 days a week.

Why the high reps? Add weight if you need too.

  1. Should I do 60-100 push ups 4-6 days a week? Will it help make my chest leaner, or will it just make my chest bigger?

No. And it will not make you lose fat in your chest.

  1. Working out Abs 6 days a week is ok because I’m not using any weights(no resistance), correct?

Waste of time.

Any help would be appreciated. Thanks.

I don’t mean to pick on you, but you are way off here with most of your ideas. Your program is what a typical skinny-fat person would do. You need to reevaluate your rational.

[/quote]

Thank you for the advice. But to explain my reasoning a bit:

I’m not really “playing” basketball 12-18 hours a week. I’m practicing basketball. I’m not really going hard. Just doing random ball handling and layup drills. Shooting around. Working on random stuff. I’ll sweat and stuff. But I won’t be close to exhausted after the basketball.

Plus, I’m out of shape, so the extra 30 minutes of conditioning will help me.

And I won’t do the 2-3 mile runs forever. Just for the first few weeks to get myself into better cardiovascular shape and burn some extra calories. Then I’ll run 400m sprints and such.

But can I ask you some questions.

How CAN I get rid of the fat on my chest?

I understand that more muscle will help me. But I don’t want a more muscular but just as fat chest.

And what is the best way to get a 6 pack besides heavy dead lifting and squatting?

My mind set right now is to burn as many calories and to get in the best cardiovascular shape I can without injuring or burning myself out.

I’m trying to burn more calories than I take in, but maintain as much strength and muscle mass as I can.

Thanks for the help.

Baller, you really need to do more reading around here. You can’t spot-reduce and you don’t want to diet and do cardio without lifting, it will leave you looking small, flabby and weak.

Honestly, keep it really simple and you will have great results, especially at your age. Lift weights 3-4 days a week and do some sprinting on your off days. If you play some basketball in addition to all that, no problem.

Eat a solid diet along the lines of Berardi’s “7 Healthy Habits” article at a slight surplus calorie level.

You should be able to do some recomposition (lose fat and build muscle) and then continue to build muscle on a leaner body.

Seriously, scrap everything you’ve written above - lift heavy, do a little intense cardio and eat well - it will all fall into place for you. Good luck!

[quote]Baller1950 wrote:

Thank you for the advice. But to explain my reasoning a bit:

I’m not really “playing” basketball 12-18 hours a week. I’m practicing basketball. I’m not really going hard. Just doing random ball handling and layup drills. Shooting around. Working on random stuff. I’ll sweat and stuff. But I won’t be close to exhausted after the basketball.

Plus, I’m out of shape, so the extra 30 minutes of conditioning will help me.

And I won’t do the 2-3 mile runs forever. Just for the first few weeks to get myself into better cardiovascular shape and burn some extra calories. Then I’ll run 400m sprints and such.

But can I ask you some questions.

How CAN I get rid of the fat on my chest?

I understand that more muscle will help me. But I don’t want a more muscular but just as fat chest.

And what is the best way to get a 6 pack besides heavy dead lifting and squatting?

My mind set right now is to burn as many calories and to get in the best cardiovascular shape I can without injuring or burning myself out.

I’m trying to burn more calories than I take in, but maintain as much strength and muscle mass as I can.

Thanks for the help.[/quote]

I don’t understand guys who think like you because it implies you have never even observed weight lifters or “bodybuilders” for any length of time. You are attempting to go from “shitty” to “Oh My Gawd, what a HUNK!!!” in one swing and it just doesn’t work like that. You can’t start weight lifting with NO muscle mass and expect to diet down and look lean and muscular. You have to build the muscle first or else you simply look like a starving foster child that has been kept in someone’s basement for too long.

You HAVE to put the time in and gain some muscle. There is no way around that. You can’t go from being the last guy picked for teams in high school basketball games…to being Kobey Bryant in a few weeks.

Life is NOT a SlimFast ad. This is hard work that takes years. If you aren’t ready for that, I am sure the kids in the chess club could use a new member to flesh out the troops.

One more thing, YOU ARE STILL GROWING. the LAST thing your body needs is for you to start starving it just because you are too foolish to listen to people who have more experience than you. There is a HUGE difference between gaining some muscle and eating better to have an effect on body composition…and starving yourself while doing tons of cardio just so your abs show when you just got hair on your balls.

[quote]Baller1950 wrote:
Nothingface wrote:
Baller1950 wrote:

Thank you for the advice. But to explain my reasoning a bit:

I’m not really “playing” basketball 12-18 hours a week. I’m practicing basketball. I’m not really going hard. Just doing random ball handling and layup drills. Shooting around. Working on random stuff. I’ll sweat and stuff. But I won’t be close to exhausted after the basketball.

Plus, I’m out of shape, so the extra 30 minutes of conditioning will help me.

And I won’t do the 2-3 mile runs forever. Just for the first few weeks to get myself into better cardiovascular shape and burn some extra calories. Then I’ll run 400m sprints and such.

But can I ask you some questions.

How CAN I get rid of the fat on my chest?

I understand that more muscle will help me. But I don’t want a more muscular but just as fat chest.

And what is the best way to get a 6 pack besides heavy dead lifting and squatting?

My mind set right now is to burn as many calories and to get in the best cardiovascular shape I can without injuring or burning myself out.

I’m trying to burn more calories than I take in, but maintain as much strength and muscle mass as I can.

Thanks for the help.[/quote]

You can’t spot reduce the fat on your chest. It will come down as your total bodyfat comes down. Same with abs. Working your abs will strengthen them and build muscle. It won’t help you lose fat. I understand the basketball is not all out all the time, but you still have way too much cardio in your post, and not enough lifting.

Again, I don’t want to tell you what your goals should be, but I think you’re “missing the forrest for the trees”. Meaning, you’re worried about small details, and missing the big picture. Who cares if you have a little fat on your chest if you can barely bench your bodyweight? Who cares if you end up with a 6 pack, if have the physique of a small girl? Is your back so thin that when you turn sideways you disappear? Do have sticks for legs?

The point is that you’re still growing, and you shouldn’t being dieting strictly to get a 6 pack. Getting a 6 pack is fine, but not if it gets in the way of building a better physique long term. Take the suggestions above, eat more, but clean. Lift heavy 3-4 days a week. Work in your cardio after that. In a couple years you’ll be glad you did. It’s not going to happen overnight.

To OP:

You seem quite set in your own ideas and training plan despite the advice everybody is giving.

If that’s the case, you should go ahead with your workouts as planned. Give it, say 6 months and evaluate your progress at the end of it.

If it is not giving you the results you expect, come back here and post your questions again. Maybe then you will be more receptive to the idea that gaining some muscle can help in your fat loss.

I was in a similar boat, let me tell my story…

I’m 17 years old, 5’ 10", and was 165 pounds. At some point I decided I wanted a six pack, and read that in order to do so you must lose weight. So I did. I ate a lot less and would alternate days of cardio/crunches.

In a few months I got down to 130 pounds (yes, I was 5’ 10" and 130 pounds) and still had no six pack. I was a good bit weaker, had much better cardiovascular endurance (I had been mostly sedentary before), and had a rather unimpressive physique.

Realizing I wasn’t satisfied and that there must be more to getting a six pack than losing weight and doing crunches, I did some more research online. I needed to bulk. I started eating a lot more and doing heavy (for me) compound exercises every other day.

I regained my original strength (which wasn’t much) relatively quickly, and 3 months into bulking, my strength and weight are still shooting up. I’m back to 165, but much stronger and with a much better body composition than when I started, and it will only keep getting better.

As a beginner you can both gain muscle and lose fat, so don’t do what I did and waste months that you could use bulking.

[quote]The New Guy wrote:
I was in a similar boat, let me tell my story…

I’m 17 years old, 5’ 10", and was 165 pounds. At some point I decided I wanted a six pack, and read that in order to do so you must lose weight. So I did. I ate a lot less and would alternate days of cardio/crunches.

In a few months I got down to 130 pounds (yes, I was 5’ 10" and 130 pounds) and still had no six pack. I was a good bit weaker, had much better cardiovascular endurance (I had been mostly sedentary before), and had a rather unimpressive physique.

Realizing I wasn’t satisfied and that there must be more to getting a six pack than losing weight and doing crunches, I did some more research online. I needed to bulk. I started eating a lot more and doing heavy (for me) compound exercises every other day.

I regained my original strength (which wasn’t much) relatively quickly, and 3 months into bulking, my strength and weight are still shooting up. I’m back to 165, but much stronger and with a much better body composition than when I started, and it will only keep getting better.

As a beginner you can both gain muscle and lose fat, so don’t do what I did and waste months that you could use bulking.[/quote]

Good post.

With the only qualification that as a beginner you indeed can both gain muscle and lose fat UNLESS you are already fairly lean and even if you aren’t it won’t be that long before you level off on the fat loss and will have to be content with a certain amount to keep gaining.

Beginner’s Section?

Madness? THIS IS T-Nation!

I’ve lost 15kg, a friend of mine about 25 in about a year, so I know wjat i am talking about. Although 100% derived from experience, you might notice they are very similar to what these guys tell you. Wonder why?

TOP 5 TIPS:

Eat more, and more times
5 meals a day
NEVER go without having breakfast.
Eat healthy
(i.e no junk)
Just boiled foods, way better than fried.
Raw foods, better than boiled (more tissue repairing material)
Stay away from refined products.
(always prefer wholewheat bread, pasta, rice etc).
Avoid sugars, prefer complex carbs and fats. Eating a high proportion of fats will make you lose fat. Eat lots of protein, but always with salad or veggies to digest it.
When doing weights, do strength training (low reps).
TAKE your time.
There is something wrong if you wre losing more than 2kg/month
LEARN
Use people you know, ask, and listen. Although last, this is the most important point.

CARDIO TIPS

CUT on that cardio
You are doing way too much cardio, and this is from someone who goes running to school(9km) and back almost every day.
You WILL get hurt.
I recommend mixing HIIT and Tabata style workouts with longer cardio sessiones. For max results do short morning intense cardio sessions while fasting and wait 1hr before breakfast.
NEVER step into a treadmill, not only is it useless but you will hurt your knees.
I recommend running, if you must use machines: indoor rowing, bike or snowshoes (the last one is also useless although it will build your bum).
Buy a HRM
And learn how to use it.

Although I did not always follow these points, my best results came when I did. Losing weight is an art (like anything related to building a better body), it takes practice and patience. But if you have what it takes you will reap the results

Cut out all drinks containing sugar.