Here's what a year of fitness did for me as a complete newbie
This is from July 23 2016 to ~ July 29 2017
Before Picture Weight: 196 Pounds (yes, really. My legs can hold some serious weight bro)
After Picture Weight: Currently sitting at 164 pounds.
Disclaimer: I didn't log weights until I started taking PPL seriously, so the starting weight may not be exact, but I'm confident that this is pretty close.
I had never lifted a weight before starting out, so my lifts were overall very weak to start with.
Bench (5X5): 40lbs - 180lbs
Squat (3X5): 95lbs - 200lbs
Overhead Press (5X5): 30lbs(I think?) - 120lbs
Deadlift (1X5): 135lbs - 275lbs
Rows (5X5): 50lbs - 160lbs
I actually did 5X5 for squats for a while, because I wasn't paying attention and didn't realize it was supposed to be 3X5 at first. Once I started over on my squats I did the proper 3X5 and it's been climbing since then.
Some might call into question why my squat and deadlift are so low. Well, because I didn't do that shit for way too long.
With squats in particular, I got some nasty tendentious in my hip, and had to build back up to my 200 squat slowly from 120 again. I finally climbed back up to 200 this past week, and my hip feels just fine. 200 is also feeling pretty easy right now, so I'm confident that it will rise to a more "normal" squat for my size easily.
For deadlifts, I was afraid I'd snap my back in half originally, and just felt like I could skip them (I'd slap "past me" if I could). I'm still heavily focused on form, and tend to drop the weight once my back shows any sign of curling. I'm deadlifting 275 currently, but can probably do a bit more once I lock down my form.
Program: October 2016 - Jaunary 2017
From October 2016 until January I fucked around with a half-assed brosplit. I was cutting heavily at the time (~1.5 pounds a week on average).
Lifting was entirely new to me, so I learned from a coworker at the time, who praised his bro-split routine, and I fully embraced it. I worked 3 days a week, meandering around the gym and just sort of picking heavy shit up.
Program: January 2017 - March 2017
This is when I came across metallicadpa's ppl routine on this subreddit. I decided to do a half-assed version of it with dumb bells and continued to kinda fuck around with mostly working out 6 days a week. I didn't do deadlifts or squats, because I wasn't confident in deadlifts and felt like leg press was a substitute for squats. Yeah, I know.
I followed the rest of the program's lifts, but wasn't doing the program. I substituted barbell exercises with dumb bells, because I was more comfortable that way, and I wasn't keeping track of my lifts at all. Pro Tip: don't do that.
Towards the end here, I started dead-lifting. I started with 135 pounds, and genuinely couldn't go up in weight. My lower back and hamstrings were way too weak.
Program: March 2017 - Current
I decided to get my shit together and ACTUALLY do the PPL routine. I got myself a little book, logged my weights, and progressed with barbell exercises like I should. I followed, and still follow the program to a tee now. Within two weeks I felt a huge difference in strength.
This is also when I started my first bulk. I cut 38 pounds of fat, and could have gone a little further, but I was pretty excited to start my first bulk. I bulked from March until early July and went from 158lbs - 169lbs. I originally planned to bulk until October, and then cut for Summer of 2018, but I got a girlfriend - and she foiled my plans. I'm currently cutting some body fat for a month or two before I begin lean bulking through Fall and Winter.
At first I wanted to blame my metabolism for my initial weight gain (in reality it was from getting my first desk job and not changing the way I ate). I learned through this subreddit and the wiki - rather quickly - that I was being a damned fool.
I initially cut my calories by limiting my meals to sandwiches and frozen burritos every day. That's literally all I ate for 3 months. I initially justified this because it was dirt cheap and effective for weight loss. I didn't take into account that:Eating a nutritionally void diet makes you feel pretty awful You can get nutrition for cheap You can eat more food if you eat less calorie dense foods (go figure)
After 3 months of my awful diet, I switched over to a strict meal plan that I still generally follow to this day. I eat:
Protein Shake (whey, whole milk and peanut butter - tastes great with coffee concentrate if you have it)
Chicken, Broccoli, Rice
Beef and Eggs
And if I'm feeling crazy, sometimes avocado and/or cottage cheese
And that's about it. I eat the same thing just about every single day, and I enjoy it. The lack of variety doesn't bother me, though I still eat other things on the weekends to enjoy my food a bit more with my friends and family.
The main reason for my ridiculously cheap meal plan is that I'm one frugal mother-fucker, and this keeps my grocery bill about as cheap for complete nutrition as you can get.
This diet doesn't include fish, so I supplement with fish oil. I take animal (that's the brand - not talking about animal shaped gummies, here lol) multivitamins as well, just to ensure that I'm not missing out on any minerals or vitamins.
I actually posted my progress on here before: https://www.reddit.com/sub/Fitness/comments/5u1icy/my_5_month_transformation_progress/
You'll notice I get called out for my lifts seeming a bit odd when people asked for them. That's because I wasn't logging anything and just kinda guessed where I thought things were at. It helped me realize I still wasn't doing things optimally, and I'm sure I still have a lot to learn.
How do you prepare your food?
For the shake, I blend up the ingredients in a shake bottle with a lid attachment - so similar to a bullet. Takes me less than a couple minutes to whip up, chug, and clean. Laziest breakfast ever.
For the chicken and broccoli, I throw that shit in the oven and watch netflix for 20 minutes, take out the broccoli, and then take out the chicken after 45 minutes.
I make a shit ton of rice every week or so in roughly 10 minutes, and then everything goes in the fridge/freezer.
I toss my lunch foods into meal prep containers, and then I'm done.
How is this 1 year of progress if you started lifting in October?
I started dieting in July last year, and went to the gym a few times, but I didn't really try and take lifting seriously until October.
how much food do you eat?
That changes depending on my current goal. I'm currently eating around 1800-2000 calories a day on a cut, and while bulking I was eating around 2400-2600 calories a day.
How about seasoning?
Some "kickin' chicken" seasoning from walmart + copious amounts of hot sauce for the chicken, and then I cover my broccoli with steak seasoning (sounds weird but it's tasty as fuck).
For the beef and eggs, I just use salt, pepper, and you guessed it - more hot sauce.
Your previous post didn't have rice in the meal plan
I actually didn't add the rice until I started my bulk, and so I was effectively on a keto diet. Adding rice made a massive difference in my overall energy. I'll never go back to low carb. I didn't realize how much energy I was missing out on until I re-introduced them.
What are your long term fitness goals?
This goal shifts a lot. At first, I just didn't want to be fat. Now, I wanna look as good as I can with my clothes off. I think I'm going to want to improve my cardiovascular fitness as well, because I currently don't do any cardio whatsoever.
Once my linear progression stalls (my squat and bench are still steadily climbing) I'll probably switch to 5/3/1
Why don't you do cardio?
Don't feel like it.
It's good for you
I know. I'll step up my cardio game at some point.
How about creatine?
I add creatine to my shake every morning
Once in a blue moon I'll take it if I'm feeling fog-headed and don't have work the next day, but generally I don't feel like I need it. Warmups are usually enough to get my ready to lift at my best.
What do you do for warmups?
I usually just do 5-10 reps with really low weight to get the blood moving. If that doesn't get me going, I'll add a little weight before tackling my big lift.
What about your progress on your legs and back?
I sadly never took progress photos of either, but I can take a shot of my back and legs and add it to the album, if people are curious.
Why are your starting lifts so low? Were you really that weak?
No, probably not, but these were the numbers I started with. Keep in mind, I was completely new and learning proper form from scratch here while trying to move up in weight/reps every day, so these weights seemed to work for me at the time.
TL;DR I read the wiki and good things happened. Looking forward to year 2.
**Edits for clarity and such
Not bad. Everything looks in proportion, although your OHP is pretty strong and squat is a bit weakish. (I suck at squats too).
good luck :c
1,750 Head Press is nothing to scoff at
I'd like to point out that I'm also totally open to critique on my progress. I'm always looking to learn. I've clearly been wrong in the past!
lemon salt or chili powder or sprinkled parmesan or make it a dip (sour cream + parmesan) or roast it with garlic & olive oil drizzle
there's so many ways to spice up broccoli with close to no effort
Been consistently going to the gym for the last 1 year. Here’s our progress (twins, UPDATE)
Had a ton of support on our last post, and posted to /sub/progresspics this morning, so decided to have an updated post on this sub!
First, progress pics and link to our previous post!
Austin: Height 5'6. Weight: 155
Lifts (in lbs):
Bench 205 --> 265
Squat 305 --> 405
Deadlift 335 --> 468
Justin: Height 5'7. Weight 164
Lifts (in lbs):
Bench 205 --> 270
Squat 305 --> 391
Deadlift 335 --> 505
Bench doesn’t appear to improve much for either since our last post, but we went from touch-and-go to competition-legal (paused) bench to prepare for our first powerlifting competition
Training: Stuck to one program, and added modifications as we saw fit. From our last post, we quickly stalled with that homemade program. We switched to N-suns 5/3/1 and that gave us a TON of progress. We modified it on preference and eventually, we came up with our program. It’s designed so we try to increase our working max every two weeks, as well as trai... If anything on it is unclear, please let us know and we'd be happy to clarify!
Diet: IIFYM. We try to get a minimum of 200 grams of protein a day (as opposed to 140 like last time). Even though people recommend 0.5-1g of protein per pound of bodyweight, we feel like our progress has significantly improved by sticking to the 200 grams of protein, ESPECIALLY during our cut.
During cuts, we eat at around 2200, which was 2 lbs a week deficit (during the summer, we walk A LOT as we have no car, and the gym is 3.5 miles one way. During the school-year, our TDEEs are closer to 2900-3000). We're doing our first bulk in a long time, and our first long bulk. Right now we're eating 3500-3700 everyday and it seems to be going well.
We competed in our first powerlifting meet on July 8th. Austin got first place in teens and 5th in the lightweight division overall. Justin got 2nd place in teens and 7th overall, and beat the teen Georgia State Deadlift Record with a 227.5 kg deadlift. Not going to clog this post with this but go to this link if you want to read more about it (and feel free to comment on it as well!)
Thought to end this post with 5 points that we wish we knew before we started lifting
Get on a program! We just did random 5x5 workouts at first and while we made some amazing progress, getting on nsuns made everything SKYROCKET. Our modifications was after running it for a bit to fit our preferences, but the bottom line is that if you’ve never lifted before, follow something from someone who knows what they are doing will be your best bet
PROTEIN! We had to cut at a significant rate for our powerlifting competition (2-2.5lbs a week). We went from 163lbs to 150lbs and 154lbs to 143 (including water cut) in a month Our bench digressed by 5 lbs but our other lifts both improved by at least 10 lbs. We STRONGLY attribute that to keeping our intensity as high as we could manage while mitigating the risk for injury as well as having a LOT of protein (200 grams eating <2000 calories)
Don’t assume a cut means you’ll lose strength. Sorta add on to the previous point but we were terrified that we would lose strength for our competition but as we previous stated, most of our lifts went up during our drastic deficit and water cut
Count your calories! We mentioned this during our last post but we think counting your calories is absolutely vital for success. Unless you’re eating the same meal-prepped foods every day, knowing what you put in your body is invaluable
Consistency. It won’t happen overnight. Some days you’ll be bloated and look terrible. Some days you look great. Some days you just don’t want to go to the gym. Honestly, just push through it. Making going to the gym a habit (or whatever your chosen physical activity) will make the whole process smoother
Edit: Becuase we have a lot of skepticism, yes we are completely natural. The biggest proof we have is when we were drug tested for our powerlifting competition. We have never and don't plan to ever hop on steroids.
Pretty badass physiques. And good endorsement for n-suns.
In red and blue, you guys look like you're on an epic quest to rescue your girlfriends from the
Our goal was to resemble Greek Gods but a crime fighting duo is pretty badass too.
How To Get a Six Pack | Jeff Nippard ft. Christian Guzman (Video based on 18 science papers)
Posting this mostly because this busts a lot of ab myths on this sub and if the goal truly is fitness then a discussion needs to be had.
The tl;dw seems to be that compounds don't work the abs, they work the lower back. If doing weighed sets for abs go for 8-12 reps per set and for bodyweight exercises go for 15-30 reps per set. Planks are not very effective unless they are made very hard. Also situps are not really detrimental in a full body resistance routine.
Your routine should be split between evenly between leg raise movements and ab crunch movements.
One thing I want to point out is that these emg studies show that you can target the lower abs (leg raise movements). So many people in this sub were adamant in telling me this was not true less than a year ago.
Less than a year ago? There is some real cult mentality on thid sub those same people will keep saying the same thing a year from now.
I've run into multiple people on this sub who couldn't even wrap their head around the fact that I wasn't interested in LIFTING. I was seeking cardiovascular exercise at the time and they were melting down over it. Basically if you're not just deadlifting, bp and squat, gtfo. Oh and the ones dishing out the most one sided shitty advice almost NEVER have personal photos of their physique. It's a great sub but you have to take everything here with a grain of salt.
Edit: This question will set you free on this sub: "What's your mile time?"
Always such great production value from that guy~
From fat to fit.
Hey all of you. TL;DR Was fat, am not anymore.
Just wanted to talk to you a bit about my transformation in the last 2 years. It was a hell of a rollercoaster.
In May 2015, I had enough. I was feeling sick, I was 24 and supposed to be in my prime. But at 340 pounds and 5’11’’, it was not the case. So I decided to change. I went on the subreddit /sub/loseit and learned how to lose weight by counting your calories. And it worked.
In the first week I lost 17 pounds. Sure, a lot of it was water but God did it give me motivation to continue. The second week, I was 10 pounds lighter. It really worked.
So I counted my calories until I was around 215 pounds. By then, I had lost 125 pounds in around 7 months.
While I was doing this, I decided to do the C25K (/sub/c25k) to help me start running. I ran my first 5K while I was weighing 275 pounds. It was slow, so very slow, but I did it. I was SO proud of myself. I was working on becoming a healthier person. That’s when I saw one of my childhood friend who is a gym rat. He was so proud of me and asked me if I was going to the gym. I was, but I did not follow any program. I was still doing some “FuckArountIt”, meaning I didn’t know what I was doing. So he helped me to do a basic program.
3 Days Split PPL LEGS Cardio 20 minutes Squat 4 x 8 Lying Leg Curl 4 x 8 Stiff-Legged Deadlift 4x8 Russian Step-up 4x8 One Leg Squat 4x8 Calf Raise 4x8 Cardio 20 minutes PUSH Cardio 20 minutes Flat Bench 4x6 Seated Cable Row 4x8 Lat Pulldown 4x8 Incline Dumbell Bench Press 4x8 Dumbell Row 4x8 Flat Fly 4x8 Cardio 20 minutes PULL Cardio 20 minutes Deadlift 5x6 OHP 5x8 Shrug 4x8 Barbell Row 4x10 Glute-Ham raise 4x8 Cardio 20 minutes
With this new program in the gym, I then started to follow something like LeanGains (/sub/leangains) in counting my macros. Training days 1800 Calories High Protein, High Carbs, Low Fat. Rest Day 1500 Calories High Protein, Low Carbs High Fat.
And I continued to shed some fat. It was slower, of course but progress kept on going. I stopped after 11 months at 172 pounds lost. I was weighing 168 pounds and was pretty skinny.
At this point, I started going to maintenance a bit, around 2200/2400 calories. It was summer so I went in vacation, had fun and enjoyed my new shape. I even did a 21k for fun with a friend.
So, here we are. 168 pounds, able to run 21k, going to the gym 3 to 4 time a week. Eating 2200 calories a day. What was I going to do now?
It’s Bulk time. To do this, I changed my 3 day Split PPL a bit. LEG Cardio 20 minutes Squat 5 x 10 Lying Leg Curl Machine 5x8 Leg Extension 5x8 Leg Press 5x10 Calf Raise 4x8 Stiff-Legged Deadlift 5x10 Shrug 5x20 PUSH Cardio 20 minutes Flat Bench 5x8 Dumbbell Row 5x8 Seated Cable Row 5x10 Incline Bench 4x8 Flat Fly 4x10 Push-up AMRAP Lateral Dumbbell raise 4x8 Front Dumbbell raise 4x8 Shrug 5x20 PULL Cardio 20 minutes OHP 4x10 Chin up 4x5 Dumbbell Overhead Triceps Extension 3x8 Seated Cable Row 3x10 Parallel Bar triceps Dip 3x10 Barbell Curl 3x10 Triceps Pulldown 3x10 Shrugs 4x20 Lat Pulldown 4x8
As for my macros, it looked like this: Training Days 2900 Calories, High Protein, High Carbs, Low Fat Rest Days 2100 Calories, High Protein, Low Carbs, High Fat I bulked from October 2016 to March 2017 and put on around 20 pounds.
So in March, I started a cut to shed a bit of the fat that I got while doing this lean bulk. I finished it in June at around 175lbs. I was doing the same program. Just added some cardio 3 days (10k). As for the macros: Training Days 2100 Calories, High Protein, High Carbs, Low Fat Rest Days 1700 Calories, High Protein, Low Carbs, High Fat
Since then, I’ve switched to nsuns 5days program and upped my calories to go into maintenance/recomp. I’m still getting leaner so I guess everything is going great.
First of all congratulations . You look great.
Every time I see these big transformation, I can't help thinking about the unseen gain. Discipline, mental strength, commitment, strong will. These hopefully won't change with time.
It changes everything. The discipline takes over a lot of things after that.
How come every time I see one of these fat to fit things the guy is always good looking as fuck. If I become fat then skinny again do I magically become good looking?? Edit: most popular comment is about how ugly I am, what a surprise :(
Great job. Amazing how counting calories has such an effect on weight loss and hair loss
I filmed a short warm-up sequence for your hands and fingers that you can do after a day at the computer.Video:
Hey athletes of /sub/fitness,
i filmed my favorite finger/wrist sequence that's especially good for you after you have spent a day at the computer or playing with a gamepad. I consists 4 short exercises and 1 stretch and you can easily do it in the sitting position after your work. It will promote bloodflow into your forearm muscles, your finger tendons, stretch your finger flexors and make you feel good. It takes only five minutes of your time and you can just follow-along with the video, if you like.
If you don't like to watch the video, i have the exercises written down with pictures for you here:
After a long day at the computer, start by shaking your hands a little bit. It will loosen up the tightness in the fingers and make them feel good.
Start by closing and opening your hands in an explosive fashion. Focus on really closing the fist with your muscles and opening them quickly. Do this for about 30 seconds.
Second Exercise: Now keep the fingers tight to each other and close the hand in two steps: With straight, extended fingers, bend at the MCP joint, then bend the PIP joint next. Now open your hand explosively and repeat. Do this for about 30 seconds.
Shake your hands again for a bit, like at the start of the routine.
Next exercise are the "Walking Extensors". Take the ending position from the Second Exercise and extend the Index Finger. Now while closing the index finger, extend the middle finger. Close the middle finger and extend ring and pinky finger. Go back to the middle finger. And back to the index finger. Repeat for about 30 seconds! Example picture here. If you can, go really fast at this one and increase the speed.
End the routine with a flexor stretch of your fingers. Extend them, grab them with the other hand and stretch. Done! Go for 30 seconds per side.
I hope you enjoy this routine. To promote discussion i would like to ask you guys a few questions aswell:After a long day at the computer, do you stretch your fingers or do a sequence like the one above? Do you think it's necessary at all to warm up/work out the fingers before/after sitting for a long time?
Maybe post this in /sub/gaming or something like that (not sure if it's allowed, but I don't see why not)
are you looking to get toned or put on mass
I made a wallpaper/poster for the same purpose a while back if anyone is interested.
I'd second that.
I do CAD work all day then go home and work on hobbies and gaming on my computers. My hands are often too rough for gaming by that point, after nine or ten hours detailing parts.
World Champion Gamer Transformation 5'8 130->200
Stats: Before: 5’8 130 lbs, M 20 y/o - 55 lbs bench, 65 lbs squat After: 5’8 200 lbs, M 26 y/o - mid 300’s bench, mid 400’s squat
Full before/after album: http://imgur.com/a/706Fr Bonus filtered pic of legs because they’ve come the furthest haha: Full lifting/nutrition details at the bottom!
Hey guys! I’ve been lurking /sub/fitness off and on since before the first day ever stepping foot inside a gym, and I thought maybe my story could be interesting to a few of you. I notice we get a lot of posts about people who were playing video games all day and ended up quitting that to pursue a healthy gym life. Totally cool - but my story is a little different. I actually got MORE dedicated to my love of video games during my fitness/life transformation, so I want to give hope to people who think it’s an either/or decision!
At the time of writing this I’m the 3rd ranked achievement hunter in the world on PC (Steam - over 117,000 achievements earned, over 840 games 100% complete) and have had a wide variety of success including a few dozen Guinness World Record book appearances, Xbox/Playstation world championship victories, getting my own official video game trading card, and various other nerd stuff like getting some articles written about me for a 43-hours-straight marathon session (which resulted in a world first for Borderlands 2). Since this is an /sub/fitness post I don’t want to dwell on the non-fitness parts of it, but totally willing to talk more about it in the comments if you guys are interested. I think it is an important part of my story to make clear though: I got WAY better and more accomplished at video games after starting my fitness journey! In fact I gave a talk at one of the big gaming conventions (PAX) about how I feel gamers are super-charged potential ready to be unleashed on fitness success. One of my main goals is to show other people like me that they have this power inside.
Anyways, I grew up very small and skinnyfat, reaching a peak of 130 lbs as an adult after being in the low 100-something lbs range through high school. Somehow not that lean of a 100-130 because I grew up never playing a single sport or...going outside, and instead spent my developmental years glued to Runescape, World of Warcraft, Halo, etc.
Before lifting: http://i.imgur.com/zn6SW3z.png
So many people told me I had to quit playing video games all the time and start going to the gym, and I gave a big “hell no” to that. It wasn’t until my third year of college that my formerly-overweight best friend tried lifting weights and convinced me to give it a shot. He basically said “dude check out /sub/fitness and try Starting Strength” and I was on my way. This was mid-2011.
First day in the gym was a confusing nightmare. I was googling “what does a barbell look like” and similar questions from my phone, desperately trying to figure out what was going on. I still have a picture of a squat rack from the very first time in the gym, which I sent to someone to ask what it was. My starting lifts were basically 45 lbs or slightly more. I will forever remember failing 45x1 on overhead press and having to try some lighter dumbbells to get the motion down. Needless to say, I was very weak and had a long road ahead. I ended up alternating between a day with squat/overhead press/deadlift and a day with squat/bench press/assisted pullups, sometimes throwing in a few curls or something. Basic minimalist linear progression with barbells (3x/week). I had help and motivation from a few cool internet people like u/MythicalStrength and was on my way!
This is my first “after” picture, the strongest and most fit I’ve ever been in my life (yikes): http://i.imgur.com/2ELD36a.jpg
Eventually I started getting pretty burned out and realizing that I needed to do something more fun, I started doing 5/3/1 which introduced the startling concept of...doing more than 5 reps of an exercise. Needless to say the adjustment was brutal, haha, and it was definitely the right move. AMRAP sets were a huge motivator for me, and I made an excel spreadsheet with a full list of all my best reps at each weight, best sets of 5x10, etc. After that, I rotated through a few powerlifting-specific programs and worked my numbers up to a 200-something bench, 300-something squat, and just over 400 deadlift...then totally lost motivation at the beginning of 2013. Didn’t really make any progress that year. Here’s me in 2014 getting ready to set goals again:
As you can see I’ve put on a TON of mass from where I started...but a lot of it still not good, haha. I stuck to barbells as a foundation again with almost the exact same program I started with in 2011, then switched to the PHAT template and learned a ton of new exercises. For the first time, building toward looks as a primary goal seemed like a cool thing to do, rather than obsessing over the barbell numbers as my only metric for success. My motivation was very off and on, and the big long term goal and my discipline toward it was the only thing that kept me on track most of the time. Eventually I switched over to some basic push/pull/legs action and modified that completely by feel. Sometimes I’d do sets of 30-50, sometimes I’d do a bunch of sets of 4, and so on. But usually I’ll gravitate, these days, to sets of 8-12 for my main work, maybe 15’s or 20’s for certain stuff.
Here’s me now after all that, sitting right at 200 lbs.
Example template for the workouts. Exercises would be worked on with increasing weight or reps each time until I don’t feel like the following session would be productive to attempt this (loss of rep quality, or just running myself too hard into a wall) and then rotated out for another variation. Another strategy I may use is to REDUCE the weight of an exercise every single week, but increase the sets and reps. Nothing groundbreaking, but I spent so long desperately trying to increase the weight every single time that it took me a while to realize all these other options, haha
Here’s a recent example of how my 3 days on / 1 day off rotation looks:
Barbell incline up to a heavy set of 10, then lighter 4x10
Dumbbell ohp 5x10
Rope pushdowns 3x12
Overhead rope extensions 3x12
Side raises 3x15
Tbar rows 3x10
Seated rows 3x15
Rear flyes 3x12
Face pulls 3x15
Lat pulldowns 3x15
Preacher curls 3x20
Leg press 3x20
Leg extension 4x12
Leg curls 4x15
Calf raises 3x18
Dumbbell curls 3x12 (<-Yes I know this isn't legs, but it's a major weakpoint, haha)
Biggest struggles / mistakes / lessons:CONSISTENCY - Lots of on/off cycles of going super hard, then not at all. In 2017, I feel like I finally for the first time in my life locked into a firm unwavering dedication to a fitness-based future and am feeling accepting about the ups and downs in the process. Understanding that not every week or month will have 100% dedication is a huge part of fitness for me, because beating myself up too much about it will surely lead to crashing and burning. BALANCE - Not like, balancing on a tightrope, but I mean balancing the effort you put into your workouts. I’ve had bad habits of dumping 90% of my energy in the first exercise or two and then neglecting the rest, and then years later tried to correct it by putting way too little effort into my exercises in fear of not finishing the workout strong with good reps. Of course, I then figured out that the answer is somewhere in between. Hit your “main” movements hard, but with a smart plan, and then attack your assistance movements with sufficient ferocity as well! They matter a lot more than I realized. NUTRITION - I’ve struggled a lot with eating properly throughout my life and I neglected it for a very long time. For most of my time lifting, I was basically cramming myself with whatever easy fast food I could find, just desperately fixated on putting in more calories and gaining more muscle and adding more strength. I even did "gallon of milk per day" for a month early on, haha. I started to find pretty good success with the IIFYM style, eating a lot of “unhealthy foods” but at least “intelligently chosen junk”, for lack of a better phrase haha. But my results were very slow, and very strength-based (eat whatever I need to get my squat to go up, even if I gain some fat) so as my goals shift, my nutrition has shifted to roughly the following for now, and obviously adjustments are made up/down depending on goal and results:
7am: Eggs, sliced turkey, toast, packet of flavored oatmeal
10am: Cereal, whey shake (usually I DON’T use protein powder, but started to now preworkout like this)
11am: Start sipping on a 50g carb shake (lots of brand options, go with taste preference haha)
1pm: Some kind of meat (maybe chicken or tilapia), rice, some cashews, some veggies
6pm: Some kind of meat (maybe salmon or steak), potatoes, and a small salad
8pm: Greek yogurt and nuts
Quantities are adjusted up and down but right now that’ll put me around 220g pro / 320g carb / 85g fat. This is the most protein and least fat I’ve ever had in my life, for what it’s worth! I’m liking it.
Current goals: Making fat loss a focus while trying to slowly improve strength, then add some mass to these arms and back! Kind of vague, I know - but my main goals end up being simple stuff like “I want to do all these reps again, but 5 lbs more on the bar next time.” Keeps me focused!
Phew, well I think that covers the main details so far! Please don’t hesitate to ask if you’re curious about any more details or info - this is the first time writing a transformation post haha! And I’d like to say thanks to you all, to /sub/fitness but just to everyone who has that calling to ask questions and share answers with each other with the purpose of us all collectively growing. Without internet communities like this one, I know 100% that I never would have gotten myself into the life I live now. Fitness in 2017 is such a beautiful and accessible thing because of communities like this one. It really has changed my life to something completely unrecognizable, in all the best ways.
edit: Oh god I'm "that guy" making the typical edit - I love you all so much and I'm so overwhelmed and thankful for these comments. I'm trying to get to every single one but I have to run out to an appointment. Will come back home and keep responding tonight I promise! Love you all
He worked out like an engine, an unreal engine.
Unreal transformation bro, well done. Keep it up!
I'd say that the more I game, the more I start digging out real life experiences and lessons that can apply to other situations. At a high level, stuff like determination, patience, being calm in the face of stress/challenges, etc. is all present through the development of a competitive gaming career. But beyond my specific experiences, I really viewed fitness as a "game" and approached it with a gamer mindset 100%. It may sound silly, but concepts like "leveling up" and "grinding" were second nature to me. If I can sit down for 16 hours and increase my honor rank in World of Warcraft, putting in the workouts day after day for months on end doesn't seem bad at all. I knew the "endgame" is worth it ahead of me. Even further, as a gamer I learned to never stop learning (strategies, complex game mechanics, min-maxing stats, etc.), find a good "guild" (friends/mentors/online forums/etc.) that could support me through my "quest." I know I know it sounds cheesy to phrase it all like that, but I 100% genuinely did view this entire process with that mindset. I have a million more things to say about it in the future haha
Gamer here. Halfway through the process that you've just finished.
What aspects of your gaming experience contributed to achieving your fitness goals? Can you elaborate on the details of your gaming talk that you mentioned!
Many of us here play a game or two here, and I'd be delighted to hear more.
5'11 male. 140 lbs - 170 lbs in a year. Bitch smacking an eating disorder.
so quick backstory:
former fat kid, got really into exercise early teens and basically developed some kind of eating disorder. I was eating way too clean, eating way too little and exercising way too much. I was basically trying to maintain 4% BF for like...a decade.
needless to say, not a good thing. I was depressed, foggy headed, lethargic and unfocused all the time. a little over a year ago I got sick and I'll spare you the details but had a year from hell. Needed a bunch of surgeries, which led to me not being able to work out, and eat less. I dropped to about 140 pounds.
I came out the other end of all this medical shit feeling like I had a second chance. That sounds corny as hell but its the best way to put it. I started eating way more, eating way smarter and exercising like a real person. (I spent years just fucking around at the gym, avoiding deadlifts and squats, doing too much cardio; led to a really lean frame, but under developed.)
Anyways I am now 170 pounds 5'11. I am still bulking, and hoping to get to about 185-190 before cutting back down to a lean 175. Before and after pictures are about 14 months apart. Keep in mind that before picture was at like the worst, right after 3 surgeries; not pretty.
Diet is not going to be anything you haven't heard before, I stick to mainly whole foods, lots of oats, sweet potatos and rice. Lots of chicken and lots of vegan protein powder (I love whey but cannot tolerate it.) I recently got some food allergy testing done and found I am "sensitive" to dairy and gluten and eggs (!!). While I don't necessarily plan on eating that way forever, I am currently dairy free, gluten free, egg free (kinda fucking sucks).....I want to see how I feel in a couple months and reintroduce foods from there. I am still able to hit my macros, just takes a bit more preparation (no more protein bars, lots of vegan protein powder and real foods: tuna, chicken, potatoes etc)
However the majority of my bulking was done while eating all those goodies; lots of greek yogurt, eggs, some cheese, lots of nut butters, tons of vegetables, whole wheat bread, wraps, granola etc.
I also quit drinking. Or at least am stopping for a long time. I never drank a huge amount, but its all subjective, I definitely had at least one drink every day. I always thought it would be the "last thing to go" but it was okay after a couple days. Its been since January 1st. Definitely notice a difference, feel a million times better, sleep better, no anxiety etc etc..
I'm also off caffeine which kind of sucks too. I just wanted to quit all my vices, see how I feel, then decide which ones I may want to re-introduce.
I follow a IIFYM style of eating but don't really go overboard. The last meal of everyday is usually some "healthy" style of dessert, typically a protein ice cream (protein powder, ice, nut milk in the vitamix, then depending on my remaining macros for the day, i will top that with granola, trail mix, chocolate chips, dates etc etc) this daily "treat" keeps me very satisfied.
I started on a PHUL program, before transitioning to 5/3/1 and I am currently on my 4th week of nSuns which i think is my favourite so far. It offers tons pf variety and I enjoy the volume.
squat 270 bench 210 deadlift 350 ohp 140
unfortunately I don't know my "before" #'s since I didn't really track them (fuckarounditis) I track everything now like a god damned maniac though. Makes all the difference in the world.
My current macros are
2800 calories 62 fat 175 protein 385 carbs
I weigh myself everyday to get a weekly average and make sure to gain around 1.5 pounds a week, I typically change my macros slightly every couple weeks depending on the scale #'s
I think thats it? Any questions, fire away. Thanks to all you guys, this place is an incredible wealth of information.
You have gone from looking like Christian Bale to looking like Christian Bale!
Yo I'm a straight dude but you wild. how you doin?
Seriously tho that's an amazing transformation. You look like captain America before and after he got in that magic science tube.
R u single
100lbs down! (M, 300lbs down to 195lbs, 27y.o.) The story so far...
Hey guys! I wanted to re-introduce myself to the sub! My name is Ian and I have posted a couple progress photos in the past but have never really been active on reddit until more recently. A little background about myself and my story:
This is a photo of what I looked like at 300lbs and where I was after I cut sugar out of my diet at 195lbs.
This is a year later, June 2017. I still weigh 195lbs but can see the difference in definition and have thinned out.
This is what I look like without a shirt on now (Sorry my closet is pretty messy ;P)
I was always too ashamed to take a picture with my shirt off before so I don’t have one for reference. My problem area has always been my mid section and my body is holding on for dear life.
About ten years ago I hit 300lbs and was at my worst. I bought a gym membership and quickly saw 40lbs drop as I began watching what I ate and started doing more aerobic activity. Soon after I hit a plateau and fell off the wagon. I struggled up and down for the next eight years going up and down between 240lbs- 260lbs.
Mentally I had started to accept that I was just “supposed to be big” for the rest of my life. I had been pretty active throughout that time but I wasn’t seeing results – or the results that I did see would come and go in a blink of an eye.
I was 24 years old and about two years into started my career in the entertainment industry. It isn’t a lie – that is an industry where people treat you based on how you look. Not that people would ever put me down or be rude to me but it was obvious that I was overlooked for certain things or people would be short with me. I was on the cusp of my 25th birthday and took a job where I was responsible for dropping off the shows footage to post-production at the end of the night. The problem was I would most likely run into OT so production gave me money to get a meal at the end of the night. So at the end of the night I would drop the footage off and drive-thru somewhere to grab a bite that was paid for (They gave me $7 so it usually ended up being jack in the box – a Large Jumbo Jack meal with a Dr. Pepper to be exact. Two sides of Ranch).
One night in particular I came home – got Jack in the Box, headed to my apartment and started to eat. In the middle of my burger I stopped and realized that I wasn’t even hungry. I was eating the burger routinely and didn’t even think twice about the fact that I didn’t need to eat – I just did because hey, the food was covered by production and why wouldn’t I?
It was in that moment that I realized I needed to take things more seriously in my diet. I knew that my weight was an obstacle for me not only personally – but it was actually affecting my long term goals in my career. I was 24, turning 25 and I was unhappy. I thought to myself “My twenties are supposed to be the best time of my life and look at me, I'm miserable.” I know it sounds harsh but I had hit a low point and it was in that moment I decided I needed to make a change.
Now – I want to just put it out there that I had always been a bigger kid and never really had a grasp of nutrition and was looking for a way to retrain myself how to eat. I had no sense of moderation because I never had to – it was always a “Large number fill in the blank” or an entire bag of chips. I knew it wouldn’t be easy and I would need help. I asked my roommate to do something for me that I wouldn’t suggest anyone just doing – to be ruthless with me. Now I want to make it clear that for me – I had to go to the extreme because I didn’t know any other way. I asked her to be on top of me when it came to eating – be harsh. Make a comment if you see me slipping up – point out that I am messing up. This really helped ME a lot (again I don’t suggest this for anyone). I had spent my entire life dealing with people bullying me and my weight and I wanted to use that as motivation and she did it. I told myself the next morning that I would cut out dairy and bread and that is where I would start.
The next day on set our Crafty crew had done the unthinkable – they made home made pizza bagels and walked around set offering them up. I had told my coworker that I had given up bread and dairy in hopes to drop weight and he scoffed saying that he would believe it when he saw it. If he hadn’t been there in that moment to tell me that he didn’t think I could do it, I’m not sure I would have turned down that pizza bagel but I knew I couldn’t budge. Time to prove people wrong.
I spent the next 3 months without dairy or wheat of any kind and I saw 20lbs drop pretty quickly. That show came and went and it was on to the next, as did my 25th birthday. I had noticed that my sugar intake skyrocketed in the coming months. Sure I had dropped weight but I found myself replacing those things with sugar and soon my body stopped dropping weight and I started gaining again. It was at that time that I had read an article about sugar and the effects it had on your brain. The article noted that coming off sugar was very similar to breaking a meth addiction – I knew I had to see if I could do it.
It is interesting how my brain changed in this moment. When people start asking you how you dropped weight and what you did many of them were shocked to learn that cutting dairy and bread helped a lot (I hadn’t really started working out at this point). I knew that I had to try.
Cutting sugar out of my diet was one of the toughest things I think I have ever done. It is NOT easy. The first two weeks are by far the most grueling – headache-inducing things I have ever had to do. Mood swings, depression, anger, HUNGER, cravings, anything you could imagine. 25 years of my body were dependent on sugar and removing that put me through hell and back.
After about two weeks of no sugar and feeling like I was ran over by a bus every day I woke up one day and felt…amazing. My head was clear and I had more energy than I had ever had before. I spend about 2 months without sugar, diary, or wheat in my diet and dropped 45 more lbs. In this time I had started working out 4-5 days a week after work. I was exhausted but I knew It was what I needed to do to drop the res of this weight.
Eventually I reintroduced sugar, diary, and wheat into my diet within moderation. One thing that hasn’t changed is my ability to eat. I try and keep these things out of my diet because I tend to binge on them now. I was 260lbs when I decided to give up dairy and sugar and today I weigh 195lbs. In total I am down 105lbs and never have felt better in my life.
But it isn’t over and it never will be. I still binge eat, I still crave, but I have learned to tell myself no or stop myself from over eating.
Now my workout consists usually of running 3-6 miles, 3 if I am circuit training, 6 if I am not. I follow that up with swimming 400-700 meters depending on whether or not I circuit train.
You absolutely killed it! You lost so much weight but gained so much more in return. Great job! Continue to progress and see where it takes you.
That's gotta be torturous. You never have learned healthy food habits when you were young so now you have to now. My 10lb cuts make me miserable; I commend you for all your hard work and effort. You're doing increíble!
Thanks man! I appreciate it. Your progress was crazy in just a short amount of time. Congrats!
I can't stop now, too much work to do! Haha.
I'm in the same boat you were. Started at 335lbs, cut sugar, wheat and processed food from my diet and am down to 302 today. It's been about a month and a half. Those first 2 weeks were hell. My goal weight is 170 but I'll be happy to be the 200 I was in high school. Way to go, it's stories like yours that motivate me past the hard days.
From never going to the gym to going to the gym every day for 90 days. Transformation results
I notice someone else has done the 90-day challenge thing as well and looks insane! Awesome job dude (if you see this) :D
Before and after pictures: http://imgur.com/a/8fmJw
Background information: I work as a web developer. 9 - 5 behind a desk all day though I usually work later so it's more like 9 - 7 and when I get home I'll either be on my laptop again or on the ps4. Basically very unfit and I had never been to the gym before.
I used to watch a lot of fitness YouTubers to learn about working out (in the hope one day I'll get enough courage to get into the gym - since I was skinny but had a bit of a belly as well I didn't know what to do and yeah just felt embarrassed). A YouTuber did a 90-day transformation challenge. I took it up. These are my results.
Starting weight: 153.8lbs Dumbbell bench press (starting lift): 12kg (on each arm) for 8 reps. Bench press (starting lift): Just the bar with 2.5kg plates on. Squat (starting lift): Smith machine bar for 8 reps.
Ending weight: 149.2lbs Dumbbell bench press (ending lift): 30kg (on each arm) for 8reps. Bench press (ending lift): The bar with two 25kg plates on (I think it comes to around 70kg total with the bar). Squat (starting lift): 40kg Smith machine for 8 reps.
My journey consisted of a 60-day bulk and then a 30-day cut. So I'll break these up below.
First 60-days. My maintenance level was around 2400 calories so I bulked for the full 60 days eating around 3000 calories a day. I struggled to hit my target goal everyday (since I wasn't used to eating so much) so I'd have a lot of smoothies that consisted of peanut butter, blackberries, blueberries, strawberries, banana and a mix of yoghurt or water with protein powder. I did the PPL split I found on this subreddit and followed that religiously without changing anything up. I hit the gym 6 days a week and on the 7th day, I'd just hit whatever wasn't hurting. My end bulk weight was 158.8lbs
Last 30-days This is where I had learnt the most from reading through this subreddit, Googling and as a result changed things up a bit. I began my cut. I spent the first few weeks at 1850 calories but I was drinking a lot of Dr Pepper to fill my hunger (not understanding you count calories in drinks thus I wasn't losing a lot). So I cut the drinks out and dropped to 1600 calories a day and began losing weight. I mixed my PPL up. Since my chest was lagging. I'd hit my chest close to three times a week (if I felt like I could - if not I'd just do another body part). I started to superset everything with core work. So I'd do my lifts then immediately go onto some hanging leg raises or something then give myself 30second rest. I did this because of the lack of cardio in my routine and I wanted to cut quicker (I found cutting weight a lot harder than gaining it). So 6 days a week consisting of a PPL while super-setting every set with core work. On the 7th day, I'd do some very light cardio. Walking on a treadmill at a 10% incline at a speed of 5 for 30minutes usually resulted in me burning around 300 calories. My end cut weight was 149.2lbs
Things that helped me/I learnt along the way:Super-setting everything with core work made my workout a lot more fun and intense. Next time, leave more time to cut. First time cutting so didn't realise how hard it was to lose weight. Go every day no matter what and make a routine out of it. Many times I'd get in late from work, around 11 pm. I'd get into the gym for 11:45 pm and leave around 1 am. But I made sure every single day I went to the gym no matter how tired I was the next day. Now, I was on holiday for the past week and all I could think about was the gym lel Googling a lot, read a lot and ask questions on this subreddit. I learnt so much from doing just that. Once a week on each body group I'd lift the heaviest I could for 4 reps. I'd up this by the next weight possible each week. Really helped me feel a better sense of accomplishment. Be nice and genuine to people in the gym. Since I was a noob and all I was always apologetic and polite when asking people stuff in the gym whether it's questions or just asking for a machine. A few times people have just asked do I want to workout with them and they've ended up really pushing my limits which were nice (I usually workout alone).
I know it's not the best transformation ever. But I feel a lot better. My sleep has improved massively. I have more energy. I just all round feel a lot better about myself.
Advice My single advice would be to go every single day to form a habit. Regardless of what you work on just get in the gym every day and once you're more comfortable in the gym then you can start worrying about what's what.
I hope a few people try this 90-day challenge thing. It really is amazing!
EDITI seen someone ask and figured I'd update the post. Here's some pictures of the workout PPL I followed for 60-days. After that I started playing around a bit more with what I did: http://imgur.com/a/cqcbL
Nice work dude. Im going to the gym tomorrow for the first time in 2 years, massive motivation and you look much healthier :)
Thanks man :)
And well played! You should try setting yourself a 30-day or so challenge. Take some before pictures and after. See progress in pictures really helps I found :)
And goodluck dude!
I do that with my tongue when I'm performing triceps extensions. The number of times I've licked that fucking cable.
Keep the good work up.
You look soo much younger
7 month transformation: 200 lbs down to 172 lbs
I started at around 200 lbs in the first pic, 175 lbs in the second, and 172 in the third. The first and second pictures are roughly 6 months apart, and the last two pictures are about a month and a half apart.
In the first picture, I was entirely focused on strength gains and putting up bigger numbers in the bench, squat and deadlift. After ballooning up too much, I decided it was time to lose some weight.
I decided that I would try a ketogenic style diet for my cut. I say "style" because I didn't really care much about being "in ketosis" - I quickly discovered that simply by eating fat and avoiding carbs I was much more satiated and able to stay out of the kitchen and snacking throughout the day. I also kept my protein intake at 1g per lb of bodyweight, which according to the keto bible will knock you out of ketosis. The protein intake didn't seem to affect me too greatly.
I ate 3 meals per day, and tried my best to stick to the eating hours of 12pm-6pm, though this didn't always happen.
As this was a low carb diet, I ate plenty of fatty foods. Breakfast would be something like this:
4 slices of bacon
1 oz cheddar
8 oz ground beef
1 oz cheese
Serving of veggies
Dinner was similar to lunch.
For snacks, I drank protein shakes to fill in my protein requirements and ate quest bars for the fiber and protein as well. Occasionally I would have some full fat Greek yogurt (Fage brand is relatively low in carbs) or whole milk (Fairlife Milk is relatively low in carbs).
This all added up to somewhere between 1900-2100 calories daily.
During this whole cut I followed nsuns 531 5-day variation.
Despite losing weight, I did gain some decent strength in the deadlift and squat using this program, though my bench/OHP didn't increase quite as much. My numbers went from:
Squat: 340 lbs > 370 lbs
Bench: 230 lbs > 240 lbs
Deadlift: 385 lbs > 440 lbs
OHP: 145 lbs > 155 lbs
For the first 6 months (from first to second pic) I did absolutely no cardio. For the past month and a half, in hopes of losing the final 5 lbs to get to 170, I've been incorporating 3-4 days of steady state cardio for ~20 minute sessions. On off days I will also do some kind of circuit training with light weights.
Overall, I really enjoyed the keto style diet, although I acknowledge the most important factor is achieving a caloric deficit. For my eating preferences, I was able to achieve a sustainable deficit by eating fatty foods and feeling satiated, and that's enough for me. I don't believe keto is "magical" or superior to a traditional style diet, but it certainly worked well for me. If you're curious about the diet, check out /sub/keto and /sub/ketogains - they were great resources for me along the way.
TL;DR: Keto style diet + powerlifting style training = better physique
Thanks for reading!
Edit: I guess it is also important that I mention in the first picture, I had been training consistently for over a year, and I had a decent strength base. My muscle gains did not all come in the last 7 months. I don't wish to be misleading.
Edit 2: Apparently the nsuns link isn't working for some so here's a link to the spreadsheet.
Edit 3: Alright since I'm getting a lot of questions, let me give you guys some important info regarding my abs. No, I do not train abs directly, but that does not mean that you can necessarily get abs without training them directly. Ever since I was 12 years old, I was obsessed with the idea of a 6 pack, and would do ab exercises almost every day throughout my teen years. I had a horrible physique, but was convinced getting a six pack was the answer - it wasn't. Even when I was skinny fat, I had some abs under there (this pic is about 4 years old). I don't train abs because I had already developed them as a teen, and heavy compound lifting is enough to maintain them. Going on a huge cut and losing 30 lbs is not going to give you abs if you don't already have them!
Fuck yeah man, you're looking great! You turned into a total hunk
Awesome pics. Great size. Look thick. Solid. Tight. Keep us all posted on your continued progress with any new progress pics or vid clips. Show us what you got man. Wanna see how freakin' huge, solid, thick and tight you can get. Thanks for the motivation.
I think I just became homosexual.
Awesome stuff! I'm currently at the same weight as you but nowhere near have the same physique. I will eventually be on this subreddit with my own inspiration for someone else to use, you're mine atm.