T Nation

Where Do I Begin?


Hello all. This is the first installment of my attempt to find help from all of the knowledgable readers of this site.
I am 41 years old, married with 2 kids and a beautiful wife of 13 years. Both kids are at school (7 & 9 yrs old) and we both work full time.
My hope for this site is that i will get the advice that i am lacking in my search for self satisfaction of my body shape.

I have only shown my upper body in the first set of photo’s as I want to get that portion sorted first. Legs will come in the near future.

What i am asking for at first is anyones point of view on what my strenghts and weaknesses are Stature wise. I am not looking for extreme bulk but I do want to achieved a ripped and proportioned look for my height.
I am aware of the fact that diet is a major contributor to the ripped part and i do eat reasonably well. However, as most do, i do “fall off the wagon” so to speak.
I am a hardgainer but generally do tend to push myself when training. I am not currently following any set training programme (hence the lack of form) and i do only train 2 days a week. (I swapped with my wife and she does the 3 days a week.)Weekends are awkward for us both.

Anyway, thanks if you have read this far and i look forward to the responces and advice…good or bad…just hope i can tell the difference.

Cheers

Kev


Another pic

One more

More pics in profile to help with the opinions

Welcome Perfectcircle! I love the screen name, the tats, and your beautiful country. A place I want to visit before I kick the bucket. My first impressions to your pics are to start eating big and lifting heavy. But how much size do you want? I gave up trying to be ripped a long time ago buddy. You are pretty slim now, I’m not seeing a lot of extra fat on you. You start packing on some muscle and you’ll look great. Your profile says you’ve been training for about three years. I’d be interested in learning more about what you’ve been doing to give you more specific direction in regards to that. I’ve gotta get off my ass now and train myself. I’ll check back later, and see what some of the other guys have to say.

It looks to me like you’re in the 10% to 12% bodyfat range right now, which is a good level to train at. If you want to rip down to the 3% to 5% range now and then for pictures/fun/sense of accomplishment that’s fine, but getting truly ripped will take serious calorie deficit and you’re not going to add muscle while in severe calorie deficit.

My advice would be to start a training log. I find that my training log really helps me push myself harder and keeps me from falling into a rut with my training.

I’d also recommend that you read about Hypertrophy Specific Training (google it). I really like doing both high and low rep work and I get the best results from it. I also find that spending a month now and then doing the big Olympic lifts sets me up well for going back to isolation movements. It’s the mixing things up that keeps you from getting stagnant.

I’d also recommend that you get the book “Nutrient Timing” by Ivy and Portman as it will help you dial in your nutrition to the best effect. Peri-workout nutrition is critical for the best results.

You’re in the place now where you’re going to have to work harder and harder to get smaller and smaller results. When I was 50 lbs overweight, losing 20 lbs was a snap. But now, getting from 10% to 6% bodyfat is so difficult that a single banana can make a difference in my diet.

Thanks for responding guys. Happydog, you said it right about the training log. One of the things that i am lazy with is keeping track of my progress. Daddyzombie, over the last 18 months especially I haven’t really followed any particular programs. I tend to workout specific areas ie. Chest/tri’s or back/bi’s. Shoulders I usually do seperately with a few legs chucked in. I know I need to structure my workouts and keep track of my progress in order to maintain consistent gains.

I currently avoid carbs like bread white rice etc. i also avoid dairy such as milk, ice cream and cheese but i do eat yoghurt. I dont mind the odd flat white coffee either, but hey, cant be perfect all the time can we.

I know the above discription is not very detailed but i think i have the nutrition side sorted. I need to eat more to gain size. i also need to lift heavier to gain strenght and size.

The area’s that concern me most are the chest and bi’s. the way I see it is if i work on these “Problem” areas the rest will naturally follow…to a point anyway.

I hope that has all made sense and not just made me look like and uneducated blow ass. If it has, then do your best to correct and guide me if you will.

Cheers

Kev

You will see it mentioned many times on T-Nation:

Train movements not muscles!

If you only have a limited amount of time to workout each week, it is pointless and counterproductive to do isolation work.

You will get more bang for the buck if you work compound movements and when you have more time to really hit it, you will have the base strength you need to make some progress with more specialized work.

Bench, squat, OH press, deadlift, power clean…

have a look at Chad Waterbury’s article

http://www.T-Nation.com/readTopic.do?id=459341

Just an update to those that care…I have been taking the time recently to check my form before i even think about going heavier. In a couple of cases i have actually dropped the weight to keep the form correct.

This i find has me slowing my moves down an makes me more focussed on the job. I can feel the changes in my body in place that i should have felt it in the first place.

My short term goal now is to perfect my form on all the exercises i do until it just comes naturally.
It’s like starting all over again but with the hindsight of a couple of years of experience to help out.

Later…

Hello Perfectcircle, the fun is about to start. You’re going to get to eat all the food you want and even more, yummy, yummy food in the tummy. I to am a hardgainer so I can relate to your situation.

Chad Waterbury’s workout is great and can be done at home for less than a gym membership. An option if gym time is difficult. Second hand equipment is really cheap.

Anyways welcome to the old man’s club, it only gets better and better. So work smart, work hard and never look back, you’ve already been there. Stay strong Bro.

[quote]streamline wrote:
Hello Perfectcircle, the fun is about to start. You’re going to get to eat all the food you want and even more, yummy, yummy food in the tummy. I to am a hardgainer so I can relate to your situation.

Chad Waterbury’s workout is great and can be done at home for less than a gym membership. An option if gym time is difficult. Second hand equipment is really cheap.

Anyways welcome to the old man’s club, it only gets better and better. So work smart, work hard and never look back, you’ve already been there. Stay strong Bro.[/quote]

Thanks Streamline, its all good fun and i love to watch the changes happen.

Good luck on your record attemps to.

Kev

Smart move training the body and not the ego. I agree that the pay off is going to be huge! Good Luck!

Way back in the day Franco Columbo called them the “Sea Changes” he saw in himself. Welcome.

[quote]Colin Wilson wrote:
Smart move training the body and not the ego. I agree that the pay off is going to be huge! Good Luck![/quote]

Thanks Colin…I was just checking out your profile and to my delight i see you have a Bull Mastiff. Awesome dogs, I’ve owned 3 of them over the years. They are such cool dogs.

Unfortunatly I’ve had one stolen, one died of cancer at 5years old and the last i had to sell as we had just had our first child and he was far to boustrious to be around the baby…shame really as they would have grown up together. Good dogs around kids.

How old is your one?

[quote]hel320 wrote:

Thanks Streamline, its all good fun and i love to watch the changes happen.

Way back in the day Franco Columbo called them the “Sea Changes” he saw in himself. Welcome.[/quote]

Thanks…