I started lifting weights 3 years ago exactly (pretty much) with the help of Mens Health. I did their total body workout for 3 months and felt incredible. I was hooked. I started reading up about nutrition (within MH and various other health magazines) and pretty much just tried to eat regularly and balanced.
Following this I started watching the bigger guys at the gym. I would try and see what they were doing and ask them why. Eventually a few of them advised me on what I should be eating and how I should train to maximize results. I did this for about 9 months and then found T-Nation thanks to a friend. Looking back my training was far from great and my eat anthing I can find bulk diet lead me to a high teen bf %.
By this time I had gained nearly 25 lbs. On T-Nation I started posting on the BOI; AmsterdamAnimal was a real inspiration and TampaTerry was awesome with helping me nail my first “cut”. (I probably shouldn’t have done it but I did lose 8lbs of fat which gave me a lean base to clean bulk from). Over the next year I tried various training splits (programmes, set/rep ranges etc) and had my first protein shake.
After year 2 I had made an overall gain (since beginning) of 30 ish lbs and was mid teens BF %. It was only in my last year that I stopped doing any “programmes” of sorts. What I did (rep/set wise,excercises and body parts) was chosen when I got there depending on how I felt and what was available. The only goal was to lift more and/or heavier than last time. It worked!
3 months ago I did a 5/3/1 to kick off my switch from BB motivations to Strongman ambitions. Diet is 600g+ carbs a day and I know weigh just off 230lbs. A total gain of around 50lbs and still low teen BF%. Im pretty happy!
I had issues with shoulder dislocations before starting training and following the past 3 years of hard work I’ve more than doubled all my lifts (DL, Squat and Bench).
I’ve also seen vast improvements in other aspects of my life. The hard work I’ve had to put in helped me mature faster and apply similar techniques to professional and private life. Not only that but the information I’ve been able to access here will help me (I hope) in leading a long and healthy life (touch wood).
Thank you to the Authors (all of them) for their interesting articles even if I might not agree with some. Thank you to the veteran posters ( AA, TampaTerry, Meat, Modi, Prof X, SteelNation, WS4SB, Folly, MightyStu, OneMoreRep etc) for your insight over the years and also the “relatively new guys” (Waylanderxx, HolyMac etc).