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Sick, Lost 25 Pounds and Strength

Looking for some advice. I'm coming back off an illness (stomach problems) I went from 195 in December, down to 170 at my lowest. I just got the OK from my Doctor to start working out again. I was able to get myself back up to 182 as of yesterday just on diet.

I'm a Judoka who supplements with weight training. I want to get back to my main goal of packing on enough muscle to compete in the 198 pound weight class. This would give me a walking weight between 200 and 205. I guess my goals are kinda odd, as I need to pack on 25 pounds as quickly as possible, but then get as strong as I can without moving too much from the 100 pound mark. Anybody have any tips on how to go about that?

Here's my info cause I know you guys will get pissy if I don't post it:

I'm doing weights on Monday and Friday.

Monday is:
BB flat bench - 4x5
DB incline - 3x5
T-Bar Row - 4x5
Back Squats 5x5
Front Squats 4x5
Then I go home and throught out the evening I do
25 pull-up (however I can get them)
5x5 bodyweight dips
Friday is:
DB decline: 4x5
BB Standing press: 3x5
Cable rows: 4x5
Conventional Deadlifts: 4x5

(I hang onto the bar throughout the set on Deads. I can't use as much weight that way, bit I have a killer grip for Judo from it)
leg press: 4x5
Then I go home and do the same for pull ups and dips.

I have Judo for 1 1/2 hours on Tues, Thurs, Sat.

On Wednesdays and Saturdays, I do conditioning which is a butt load of pullps, dips, abs, medicine ball work, neck, burpees, sprints, etc. I like to mix it up.

As far as diet, I eat clean and get between 2500-3000 calories a day at age 33. I get my gram of protein per pund of weight a day, but other than that I'm just a lot of fruits, power bars, and carbs throughout the day. I need a high carb diet for my sport.

I'd eventually like to work in a routine with a lot of Olympic lifts, but I don't think I'm ready for that quite yet.


Hmm, I would incorporate trunk twisting exercises (Russian twists or some exercises with the sandbag). Also I would add farmer's walk. I think if you will keep on training after the break, you will gain your weight back.


Sorry, not all things come to mind right away. I would not do main lifts such as squat and dead in the end of the session due to the fact that u r going to be fatigued.

Try to separate the days: bench day, squat day and dead day or bench and squat day and dead day. On bench and squat day start with the bench then go to the squat and then go to the bench again. So, dont do main lifts in the end of the session. Probably, cut back on upper body movements and incorporate more lower body and core movements, especially abs.

Do you do 25 pull-ups in 1 set? If you do, then its time to work on 1 arm pull-up.


Hey Bro, thanks for responding. Your post brought up a few questions I'm hoping you can answer.

As far as abs, I do about 250 crunches, 50 twisting crunches, 50 side crunches, and a couple hundred reps of bicycles, leg raises, kick outs both with and without a 20 pound medicine ball on my conditioning days. Do I still need twists with that kind of workload?

As far as upper body reps. I tried to design my workout so I get a total of about 35 reps total on upper body, and 45 reps for lower body. My understanding is this should put me in the lower end of the hypertrophy range. Am I thinking this out wrong? If so, what would be a good set/rep scheme?

I've always done squats and deads last as I was told they take so much outta you that they should be last. I'm wiped after squats and deads, so that lines up with what I know. How would I plan for intensity if I do those on the middle? I don't wanna run outta gas before I'm done with my workout.

Oh, and naw, I can't do 25 straight pullups yet. I do sets to failure until I bang out 25. It usually is a couple sets of 4, then a few at 3, and the rest at 2 until I hit 25.


For the big lifts its going to be exactly the opposite. If you do them last you can't get nearly as much weight up. This will limit your strength gain and thus limit the benefit from the rest of your lifts. As a general rule go big and get smaller as fatigue sets in, for exercise order that is.

As far as the core I would add some weighted exercises once a week. As a a Jiu Jitsu guy I know how bad your core gets hammer with high rep work at practice. However your midsection is resposible for much of the power of throws and power transfer from the legs. I'd do some work in the 5x5 range for the abs, obliques and maybe add some hyper extensions.

As far as twisting motions I like russian twists but if you rely on trips and throws like Osoto-Gari that dont require a lot of rotation you might not care.

One last thing I would only do deadlifts or squats in each workout. Start your workout with one then next workout the other. Finally ditch the leg presses.


Crunches gotta go. They dont do anything. Do ab pulldowns (attach a rope to a high pulley, put one leg forward and bend forward), roll ups (put the bar on the floor, load it, grab it with the regular grip and simply roll forward, then stop, your body supposed to be straight as if you are doing the front plank and then roll back to the standing position, use your abs), weighted sit-ups (dont crunch, your body supposed to be straight).

These are the exercises that actually work, go heavy with them. Russian twists with barbell. Load one end of the bar, put another end in the corner, raise the bar, grab it with both hands and twistit to one side, then to the other side, make sure you twist your entire body and look to one side and then to the other side.

Include your main lifts first because that way you will be able to put all your strength in these strength building exercises. I think you will be able to do the rest of the session with no problem. I have a sandbag, its actually more of a waterbag (bottles of water in the bag) and I do squats, overhead pressing, goodmornings, lunges and different twists.


About the rep scheme. I would go with the max effort (very useful to read The Eight Keys, by Dave Tate) rep scheme on the main lifts and with repeated effort on assistance lifts. But after the break I would go with repeated effort for all lifts for just 3 weeks, then deload and start the max effort.