T Nation

What Works?

I want a new BIGGER ME!
I’m 29 and weight in at 268 this morning. I’m 15.2%BF and 6’5" tall. I started my new lifestyle in April of this year and lost 26lbs of FAT and gained 6lbs of lean mass. I do a 45 min HIIT routine on my treadmill EVERY morning before breakfast and 60 to 70 min BOWFLEX routine six days a week in the evenings. I’ll alternate BACK/BICEPS, CHEST/TRICEPS, LEGS/SHOULDERS, each day with ABS everyday. I did the Atkins thing until I noticed a decrease in my energy during the day. I have low blood sugar that stays around 65 to 80 all day. I’m still learning about the affect of insulin on BF storage. I’ve started noticing a lot of defination in my chest and arms and legs, but I’ve still got this WATER BALLOON hanging over my abs. I have faith that I will see my abs someday, so I’ll continue my ab routine; but I need some expert info about losing the balloon FASTER. I’m open to all suggestions.

So, in a around two months, you lost 26lbs? That’s not bad. I’m sure others are going to chime in and point out that a lot of that was water weight, etc. How did you arrive at that bodyfat % number? It seems a little low, frankly. What’s your current diet?

And stop using bowflex! Get some free weights, dadburnit!

Well,
I used a digital fat caliper I purchased from EAS when I attempted Body-for-Life in 2002. As far as the BOWLFEX, I live in an apartment with my wife and my two small children. I had free weights until my 2yr old son decided to be like daddy and dropped it on himself. Left a nice bruse. He can pull on the cables to his hearts content and not get hurt. Once I exceed the 410lbs resistance, I’ll get a gym membership. As for my diet, I take in between 1400 and 2000 calories a day. Weekends are about the only time I have to eat. My average intake is 140 to 200g protein; 100 to 130g carbohydrates; 60 to 80g fat and at least 100 or more oz of water. No junk food like pizza or chips or sodas. More than often it’s, ground beef, salads, chicken, veggies, tuna, shrimp, GROW, MASS Factor, Creatine cycle and in April, did Tribex 500 and M stack to see what it would do to my T levels. Thinking about trying Alpha Male. What suggestions does anyone have on supplements like HOT-ROX or T2?

Hey bro,

Congrats on the weight loss! If you genuinely want help you’re in the right place.

Here are my thoughts:

  1. I think your bodyfat is higher than 15.2%, but the actual number is really not that important. What is important is that you can compare one measurement with the next to see if you’ve lost or gained.

  2. 1400 calories per day is too low for you. I’m 5’3 @ 165lbs and I diet at 2100 cals. 1400 cals/day just isn’t acceptable for you. At the very least you should be closer to your higher number (2000 cals). If you starve your body it will store fat.

To ensure you get the calories you need you MUST prepare food in advance. Don’t use the excuse that “I don’t have time to eat much except on weekends”. If you want to succeed you’re going to have to MAKE time.

  1. You asked for advice. As soon as someone suggested that you use free weights you gave reasons (read: excuses) why this is not possible. Join a gym. There is no need to worry about space or your children getting injured. BOWFLEX will get you started, but it will NEVER take you to the level you are trying to reach.

  2. While you could start with HOT-ROX I’d suggest that you make sure your diet (proper calories, macronutrient ratios, and post-workout drinks) and training (using free weights and doing compound movements like bench press, deadlifts, squats, etc) are optimal before making that leap. The word supplement means exactly that. They are geared to supplement optimal nutrition and training…not replace it.

  3. Finally, while this post may come across as though I’m attacking you, I’m really not. I’m just trying to tell the hard truths. One other hard truth is that this process is going to be a SLOW one. While you’d like it to happen quickly (as the commercials always make it look in our society) it is going to take a long time. Take it slow and it’ll be permanent. Don’t do it expecting everything in months. Mastery takes time. Be consistant and enjoy the ride.

I’d also give you the advice to GRADUALLY increase your calories, because if you take them up too much too quickly, you might have problems.

You’ve done a good job so far, but you need to take it to the next level. Go ahead and get that gym membership. You might also want to post your actual food selections, not just the macronutrient breakdown. I’m not incredibly knowledgeable, but there are people on this board (like Tampa Terry) who really really know their stuff. Have you checked out John Berardi’s “don’t diet” article, btw?

I can’t believe nobody has mentioned the obvious!!! You’re training way too much. Overtraining to the MAX even.

Maybe try cutting your HIIT training down to a 3 days a week w/a slow session of cardio in there as well.

As for lifting 6 days a week… Absolutely nuts. You’ll want to keep it to 3 or 4 a week max. Anymore and you’re not giving your body a chance to rest which is crucial to your success! As for doing abs every day, this is good if you’re trying to strengthen your midsection and perhaps help any back problems you may have. If you’re attempting to build muslce in the area you’ll have to train them like any other muscle ie. maybe once or twice/week.

As for the Calorie intake… while you’re bf% is so high (probably more like 25%), you can probably get away with such a hypocaloric diet, but as the #'s get lower you’ll have to up the intake or you’ll start to lose some serious muscle. It looks like you’ve got a pretty good share waiting to show itself.

It looks like you just need to do some reading. Hang out on the site, look around, see what has worked for other people… Hope I’ve been some help.