T Nation

What can I improve?

Dear T-Nation,

I want to build a better body!

A short introduction, I’m turning 28 this month, 5’9", 203 pounds and 25% bodyfat (scale thingy).
I have legs like small treetrunks, a nice chest and upperbody, but all covered with lots of fat.
After a layoff of about 4/5 months, I’ve started lifting again in the last couple of weeks and am currently doing the Beginners Blast Off program by Chris Shugart.
One of my passions is baseball - I play at a really low level (in Europe), yet I want to excel at it, and have in the past.
Last season was the first season I felt old. My range in the field was shit, my power at the plate
none-existant and my throwing arm was weak if I had done any throwing 2 days previous.

Part of this where injuries - I sprained my ankle the first tournament we played, and played on it for the rest of the season. My right knee has been hurting for years and have waited until recently to look for a way to ‘fix’ it, getting an MRI done in a couple of days.

Part of it was age - I needed to stretch more, and I didn’t, as a result, I’m tight as a knob right now.

My goal for next season is simple: Have a great all-round season and have a great body as a side- effect.
In more detail, to have a better season, I think several things need to happen in the next 6 months:

  • Lower bodyfat (<10%).
  • More strength.
  • More flexibility.
  • More explosiveness in my motions.
  • Faster recovery rates.
  • Better general endurance.

With these things in mind, I’ve started doing stretching after a workout.
My diet is still shambles, except for the oatmeal breakfast, eating starchy carbs as much as possible and eating tuna/chicken on my bread. This obviously has to improve.

Workout wise - I was thinking of doing Christian Thibaudeau’s ‘Pendulum for Athletes’ training as it seems to cover all that I’m looking for, while giving me room for endurance training.

As I’m not experienced work-out wise, I want to ask everybody here on some input/ideas.
Are there things that I am missing? Are there extra supplements I should take to make sure my body can handle this increase in ‘load’? Should I work up to it slower?

One other question, most of my injuries seem to come from joints and tendons that get inflamed. What ways are there to improve this and make them more resistant, safe taking anti-inflammatory medication
all year long?

Thanks for reading and any comments. :slight_smile:

I’m not familiar with Pendulum, but if it is built for athletes, maybe you should ease into it first. You sound like you’re really out of shape, so maybe you should take it slow getting back into it. Although, maybe you’re not in as bad of shape as you make it sound, so it’s your call.

As far as supplements go, I would worry about getting your diet geared up first. It sounds like you’ve got a good base to work from. Look at John Berardi and Lonnie Lowery’s articles for diet ideas if you’re not sure what to do.

Good Luck

Oh, and like my dad always said, keep your eye on the ball.


In Baseball, sometimes a batter keeps on fouling balls out. Now for the last 5 to 10 minutes or more, you have not been doing anything and your muscles,tendons,ligaments, etc. are getting cold. Then all of a sudden a ball is hit in your vicinity and you have to sprint towards it to try and get an out! You are looking at a possible injury, because you have not been moving!

What I used to do in High School Baseball and JC College Baseball, is move around (run in place, windmills with my arms, etc.) till the pitcher did his wind up and pitched the ball.
This quasi warm-up kept me injury free for a long time!!

Go ahead and try CT’s Pendulum training and see how that works for you. If not look at full body workouts threads and start at two full body workouts a week, kind of like what you are doing right now with the “Beginner’s Blast Off” program. Eventually going to three full body workouts a week.

As far as recovery (I’m not trying to be a Biotest nutrider) try Surge. I’m now 35 and don’t recover from workouts like in my twenties. Surge has helped me recover alot faster from my grappling and weight training sessions!I highly recommend this product!

Flexibility is important in any sport in my opinion. I integrated yoga into my arsenal and have really benefited from it. I kid you not try it for a couple of weeks and see how that works out for you.

If you have any more questions ask away!