T Nation

Thoughts On My Plan Of Attack


Quick rundown on my body info:
5' 7
205.5lbs when I started, last weigh was 204lbs, approx 1 week in.
Probably 30% body fat.

Been at it for two weeks now, too short to really gauge the effectiveness of my plan, so I figure I can get some input here.

I'm following the Starting Strength workout - it's been about 4 years now since I stopped wrestling in high school - I dont even look like I was once in shape.

I am alternating days of lifting and HIIT.

Lifting days:
~2000 - 2100 calories.
5min warmup on stationary bike
10 min dynamic stretching
Starting Strength
10 min dynamic stretching

HIIT days:
~1700 - 1900 calories.
5min warmup + 10min HIIT (intend to bump this up as I can take more)
10 - 15min dynamic stretching.

Now Onto Diet:
Typical days break down to about 35-40% carbs, 35-40% protein, and 20 - 25% fat. No processed food, all carbs are complex.

Random days diet, spaced throughout the day:
2 - 3 eggs + 2 slices of turkey bacon + lowfat yogurt
12oz can of lean chicken (spaced throughout the day)
2 slices of whole wheat bread (may make a chicken sandwich)
1 packet of quaker instant oatmeal (changing over to non instant when I run out)
~100calories worth of pretzels
Banana / Strawberry / 1%milk protein shake
Lowfat, chicken soup.

Not every day follows this, but gives a feel for my day. I keep it around my calorie goals, and 40/40/20, or as close as possible.

My thoughts, comments, and changes to make:
- I need more veggies. I have picked up carrots and spinach. I am going to start using carrots as snacks, and adding spinach to my shakes.

  • I will probably pick up some Greens Plus to suppliment this.

  • I am taking fish oil regularly, plus protein suppliment. Nothing additional.

  • The calories may seem a little on the lower side, but this I am doing because of the high BF% - should I still bump up the calories? I think my estimates are probably decently accurate.

-I work an office job, totally seated. I have been taking two 10minute brisk walks outside during the day.

Thoughts? Comments? Input? Thanks!

I will post a not so pretty before picture when I get to my camera after the gym tonight. I've already seen some improvements, albeit they may be a "placebo effect" sort of deal.


It seems like you have a pretty good plan in place. Now the key will be sticking to it. A couple suggestions:

1.) I think your calories are a little low. I have a table from CT from his book on physique transformation and, based on your amount of lean body mass, he recommends somewhere from 1900-2400 calories. So I would think that you'd want to try to get at least 2000 calories per day but lower than 2500. Plus since you just started cleaning up your diet (am I right?) you can see fat loss at a higher caloric intake just from eating better quality foods.

So I would start with that and then think about changing things if you hit a fat loss plateau. Remember to think long term, a pound or two of fat per week rather than dropping 15 pounds in 3 weeks and gaining it all back.

2.) Your training plan looks decent but it might be a little much. It seems like you are fairly out of shape so throwing all that in there with no rest might be a little much. I'd suggest something like:

M- Weights
T- Cardio
W- Weights
T- Rest
F- Weights
S- Cardio
S- Rest

So you have a couple days in there to let your body recover. You could take the weekend off as your rest days but I think training at least one day on the weekend is a good idea. You are less likely to go out and party on Friday, getting wasted calories and alcohol and shitty sleep, if you know you have to get up at say, 9am and do intense cardio the next morning. Kind of a little gimmick that has worked for some people.

You seem like you are off to a good start. Now remember that the planning isn't the important part, it's the DOING. Best of luck with your goals.


Been at it perfectly for two weeks now, maybe a bit more. Not perfect, but I find planning is a HUGE asset in doing, with my personality type.

I am thinking about making Sundays a rest day for now. The reason I'm trying to hit the gym daily (even if for a 10min light cycle), is to keep me in the groove of going. I feel that the first day that I make an excuse not to go ("rest" counts), the excuses will grow.

Perhaps implement a day or two per week of simply very light cardio + stretching at the gym will do a decent job as a rest day?

I may bump up the calorie count, but I have to admit one thing: eating significantly healthier is expensive! Before I was hitting 2500calories per day easily, soda, white bread, etc - it was a no brainer to get it all. Now with eating better, lower calorie stuff, its sometimes a struggle to get all the calories :slight_smile:


The extra cost of eating healthier is far smaller than the medical costs you could, no scratch that, WOULD face eating the way most people do.


Oh absolutely, I dont doubt it at ALL. Its just an unexpected kick in the wallet, fortunately I can absorb it without too much additional trouble :slightly_smiling:

Any additional comments on my strategy? I doubt I'm going to shave off the weight quickly, but with the diet and regular weights, I should improve my body composition significantly over time, no?


That is good that you're off to a good start. Keep it up.

Remember that if you mess up a little part of your plan, everything doesn't fall apart. I say this because you mentioned your "personality type." I know a lot of people who are very "all or nothing" who need to have everything planned out and if one thing goes, they get into that trap of "well I already messed up the plan, so it doesn't matter if I eat the rest of the pizza" or something like that.

If you mess up, recognize that and hop right back on. I know a lot of people who have not had nearly the success they could have because they get bumped off their plan and can't get back on. If you consistently eat 90% of your meals (by that I mean following your meal plan) and hit 90% of your training sessions with good, hard effort for the next few years you will have made dramatic differences in your physique and your health. Better to hit 90% every week then alternate between periods of 100% and 0%.