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.
I worked out three times a week for 4 months. Here are my results.Hi Reddit!
I shared my progress pictures with my family and friends yesterday. I got nice comments that I thought to write about my fitness progress so far in more detail here.Stats
Height: 5'11" / 180 cm
Starting weight: 125 lbs. / 57 kg
After weight: 152 lbs. / 69 kg
Progress video Edit: Just read that I'm allowed to post a video if it's in relation to the post, check it out! It summarizes my progress.Initial motivation
I always wanted to go to the gym. I was weak and quite underweight. I could only do a few pushups and only one proper pullup. I browsed /sub/fitness and /sub/bodybuilding a lot but never really got around to it. There was a gym in my town but it was quite expensive €38 per month without a free weight area.Training
I started off doing bodyweight training only. My town did not have any fitness parks to workout at. Instead I used different school playgrounds as my main workout area. As the exercises became easier I either added weight through a backpack full of boring school books or moved on to a harder progression which you can see below.Exercise Before After Pullups 1x 3x7 +5kg (+12kg bw) Dips 2x 3x10 +8kg (+12kg bw) Rows 3x4 3x10 one arm incline rows Pushups 3x5 3x12 +20kg Squats 3x12 3x8 +10kg single leg squats Lunges 3x8 5x20 +40kg Abs 30 sec plank 3x10 hanging leg raises Sprints 5x40m 10x90m Basic Workout Breakdown:
This is a basic example of what my average workout looked like. Some days I'll sub in different exercises, but this will give you a good starting point. For example once I got to 15 reps on pushups for 3 sets I either added weight through a backpack or moved onto diamond pushups.Workout A Workout B Workout C Pullups 3x5-10 Dips 4x5-10 Wide Pullups 3x5-10 Dips 3x5-10 Chinups 4x5-10 Dips 3x5-10 Rows 3x8-15 Weighted Pushups 4x5-10 Rows 5x8-15 Pushups 3x8-15 Pause Rows 4x5-10 Pushups 5x8-15 Squats 3x15-20 Leg Raises 4x10-15 Squat Jumps 3x5 Walking Lunges 3x15-20 Hill Sprints 50m x8 Lunges 5x15-20 Diet
I usually eat whatever I want and I make sure to get enough calories and protein at the end of the day. But I know people on /sub/fitness always want the full package so below is an example of what my diet looks like on a school day.Meal Example Calories Protein Breakfast 3 Scrambled eggs, turkey ham, oatmeal and a glass of milk 850 39 Lunch 6 Sandwiches: 2x cheese, 2x PB, 2x ham and a glass of milk 1050 34 Dinner Ground beef with potatoes and veggies 700 30 Snack Bowl of quark, a banana and a handful of walnuts 400 27 Supplements
I didnt take protein shakes, BCAAs, ZMA, etc. Simply because I could not afford it. The only supplements I have taken daily and will continue to do so are:Vitamin C Vitamin D
I feel like that's all I need for now. As my budget increases, I might consider experimenting with taking other supplements.Sleep
I know and feel sleep is important. School requires me to get up at 06:30. This is why I am in bed 22:30 Sunday to Friday. I religiously sleep 8 hours at least and about 8.5-9 in the weekend.Habits
I now workout three times a week on Monday, Wednesday and Friday. I can't remember a moment in my life dedicating to something and being consistent with it before I started fitness.
I also wake up and go to bed at the same time almost every day. Before I would wake up one day at 10 am and go to bed at 2 am.
Last but not least I changed my way of eating from around barely 1300 calories a day to 3000 a day which was necessary for the gainz to be made.Conclusion
Starting to workout has been the best decision in my life so far. I have changed my habits and I have probably laid a good foundation for the rest of my fitness and life journey. I am feeling much happier and more productive in general.
Training wise I came to the conclusion that weighted work is much easier to program progressive overload allowing you to see more consistent gains. Due my dedication my brother bought me a gym membership. The past weeks I started with barbell squats and deadlifts. I missed out on so much fun leg gainz.
Edit 1: Thanks for the nice comments everyone. I've always been paying attention to school and performing well. Only thing that changed is that I am able to do more pullups now.
Edit 2: I'm new to Reddit. Someone gave me a month's worth of Reddit Gold. Can somebody explain Reddit Gold to me?
Nice progress man, keep up this type of routine and dedication and you'll be a proper beast in a few years.
BTW, That has to be the most well organized and formatted reddit post i've ever seen.
I actually Laughed at the 6 sandwiches thing.
Glad someone noticed. Formatting gains I guess.
The fact that you're 16 and showed this much dedication deserves massive credit. The amount of people I know that complain, "Oh, I can't afford the gym" or "I don't have weights," is ridiculous. You put them to shame hahah. Keep it up.
As you get older, the gym, weights, and $$ for supplements will all come with time, but the dedication is something you have to achieve on your own. You did that.
also great job on organizing your post, first and most organized one ive ever seen
Look to the horizon when running, not down - better posture, easier breathing, more pleasant views.
A marathoner friend told me this. I'm a light runner, usually I'll run 3 or 4 miles every weekend. Before learning this, I used to have trouble breathing.
Gotta look out for dog poop every so often
Great view of the horizon suddenly rising above you as you fall in a lava hole
I like to live dangerously.
What if I don't want to kill bugs by stepping on them?
… Or injure myself tripping on things.
4 year, 60 lbs gained transformation post. Really skinny to a lot less skinny.
Hey guys, Ive been lurking this sub for awhile and a lot of the transformation posts helped inspire me to focus on my own fitness more. So after years of on and off lifting, I finally cracked down in the past year and really went for it. So here's my own transformation post...
First off: everybody loves pictures, so here's what I've got. Unfortunately I didn't take many when I was so skinny because I hated the look of my body that much. But here's a few to get an idea...
A little backstory: I was very skinny and underweight all throughout high school, my driver's license actually still says 6'0" tall and 125 lbs. While I was always athletic, playing competitive soccer my entire life, I was never big or strong. Once I started college I actually became more introverted and less fit and struggled a lot with self image. Eventually, due to a number of reasons, I dropped out of college after 2 years to chase after the long long goal of becoming a Navy SEAL (laugh all you want) and this is where my actual fitness journey really begins.
I had friends who were SEALs and knew everything there was to know, so I trained for the physical fitness test in order to get selected for the SEAL program. The test consists of a 500 yd swim, max push ups in 2 minutes, max sit ups in 2 minutes, max pull ups untimed, and then a 1.5 mile run. The pass/fail times were rather low, but you're fighting for a small number of slots against a very large amount of people, so you need good scores. Eventually I succeeded in getting selected and left for boot camp. At this time I was around 155 lbs. After completing boot camp I went to the BUD/S preparatory course, which would be a wet dream for every one of you here. 2 months of just working out with Olympic level trainers and athletes. At the end of that we took another fitness test similar to the first one, except with a 1000 yd swim and 4 mile run, with much tougher pass/fail guidelines. I passed that with a 17:26 swim, 82 push ups, 96 sit ups, 14 pull ups, and a 27:46 run. I was definitely fit at this point, but still very skinny.
Skipping through the details, I did participate in quite a bit of BUD/S but did not pass. However, I did do well enough to get selected immediately afterwards to another special operations type job in the Navy which I successfully passed and currently work in today. After always being the skinny guy and never as fast/strong as my peers, I finally buckled down and started lifting heavy a year ago.
Programs: I started with 5x5 stronglifts for about 4 months, then switched to Arnold's blueprint just to try to put on some mass for another 4 months, and have been doing Wendler 5/3/1 since then. The "less boring" version of Boring But Big.
TL;DR Here's my changes Height: 6'0"
Starting weight: 160 Current weight: 185 Starting arm size: 13" Current arm size: 15.5"
Lifts: Starting lifts were pretty damn weak. All 1 rep maxes. Squat: 165 Deadlift: 225 Bench: 125 Overhead Press: 95
Current lifts: Squat: 295 Deadlift: 345 Bench: 220 Overhead Press: 135
Diet: I'm terrible with diet, always have been. I just eat as much as I can whenever I can. I've made the most gains when I force myself to eat every 2 hours and just crush peanut butter and whole milk with every meal.
Goals: Long time goals have always been 2 plate bench, 3 plate squat, 4 plate deadlift. Not quite there yet but at least I'm not completely embarrassed of my lifts anymore.
Tips: I am by no means any kind of fitness expert, but I'm sure I've struggled in areas that a lot of others have also struggled with. A few things that helped me push myself and actually stay motivated to keep going back to the gym:
I used to always do a set at a certain weight and say "man that was hard, I think I'll stay at that weight." Eventually I decided I couldn't actually know what my limits were unless I actually found them. So even if something seemed hard, I would add more weight to the next set anyways. I was always surprised at how much weight I could add before I actually reached a point where I knew I was definitely at my limit. For motivation: I remember reading a Terry Crews AMA awhile back where he said the best way to keep going to the gym is to make it your happy place. Just get there. You might get there and not even work out, just read a magazine, but just be there and be comfortable with the place. For some reason that really struck a chord with me and helped me a lot. I make it a habit to go to the gym every single day, even rest days, so it's always a part of my schedule and my second home. I used to always be embarrassed to go to the gym because I was so skinny and everybody was lifting way bigger weights than me. But fuck that. If I see a fat person hating their life while running on the treadmill I have 1000x more respect for them than the fat person riding a mobility chair in wal mart. Everybody recognizes you're taking the steps to better yourself and respects you for it. As embarrassed as you may be, more people are looking up to you than looking down on you. And those who are looking down on you are probably fucking losers anyways so fuck em.
Edit: realize now I should've put my age on here. Started at 21, currently 25.
Current lifts: Squat: 295 Deadlift: 345 Bench: 220 Overhead Press: 135
I want to point out that this guy's actual lifting numbers in-and-of themselves are not phenomenal.
But he's in better shape than most people here. This bad-ass can run, swim, and fight. Add he looks great!
We tend to forget that fitness is not measured by a few extremely heavy PR's.
He does oblique twists as he opens his fridge door
Congrats. 82 push-ups is very impressive, at least for me who is currently struggling at 32. You have great obliques also, do you work them specifically?
I'm a firm believer of "abs are made in the kitchen."
Diet: I'm terrible with diet, always have been. I just eat as much as I can whenever I can. I've made the most gains when I force myself to eat every 2 hours and just crush peanut butter and whole milk with every meal.
Bit of a contradiction?
You're not average, but you're still normal.
There's one thing I encounter pretty frequently when browsing /sub/fitness (and pretty much any online lifting/fitness community) that bugs me from the scientific perspective.
Most people assume that everyone is more-or-less average: sure, there's a range, but the range is reasonably small except for maybe some incredibly rare outliers.
This assumption plays out in a variety of ways.
1) Is someone still pretty weak after two years of training? Well, they're just lazy.
2) Did someone make exceptional gains in a progress post? Well, they must be on steroids.
3) Countless threads where the poster is asking a question along the lines of, "I heard that when I did 'x,' 'y' was supposed to happen. When I tried 'x,' 'y' didn't happen. What's wrong with me?"
Here's the deal, though: you can be a long way from average while still being perfectly normal. The assumption that people cluster really close to the average (for pretty much anything related to lifting, at least) is wrong.
Let me give you an example.
I recently snagged a huge dataset with all of the USAPL's competition results since 2008. I was curious to see whether someone's level of strength is predictive of how quickly they'll continue gaining strength (we assume that weaker people predictably have a pretty easy time getting stronger, whereas stronger people take a lot longer to see meaningful progress). So, I narrowed it down to the people who showed up in the database multiple times, and calculated their average rate of strength gains per day.
When I plotted every individual result, there was actually almost no relationship between how strong someone was and the rate their strength increased between meets. However, when I grouped people together by strength level, group averages were almost perfectly predictive of how quickly someone could gain strength.
You can read about all of that in more depth here to see that dichotomy graphically. The difference is pretty striking, really: Group Data Don't Tell You Much About Individuals
Here are a couple other examples from published research:
HUGE sample size (585 people). On the same training program, average increase in muscle cross-sectional area was 19%, but there were people with increases of 50%+. Over 1/3 of the people gained muscle at less than half the average rate, while quite a few people gained muscle at over twice the normal rate. Ditto with strength. Average increase in 1RM was 54%, but quite a few people had increases of 100%+ and a lot had increases of less than 25%.
Also a pretty big sample (66 people). In this study, they grouped people based on how well they responded, with low responders being roughly the bottom 1/4, high responders being roughly the top 1/4, and modest responders being the middle ~half of the group. The low responders didn't have a meaningful increase in muscle fiber size, and the high responders made double the gains of the typical modest responder.
In both of these examples, you can see a lot of people who were a long way from average but who were still perfectly normal. The second study is a particularly good example – the high responder and low responder groups weren't anomalies – they combined to make up almost half of the subjects!
If I'm trying to get one thing across in this post, this is it: average and normal are two entirely different things. "Average" is a single point and "normal" is a range. Crucially, it's a MUCH bigger range than most people expect. The range of perfectly normal responses to training is enormous.
I'm not sure how much this post will change the day-to-day conversation in this sub, but hopefully it'll help at least a little bit. If you're making slower gains than average but you're training your ass off, don't worry about it too much – you're below average, but you're still normal. If you are a lot stronger than most other people, you may be better than average, but don't get too big-headed about it – you're still normal (unless you're winning world championships, but that's not going to apply to many people here).
Focus on what you can control, advise other people to focus on what they can control, and let the results take care of themselves. Those results may differ substantially from average results, but that's...normal.
As someone who has struggled tremendously to gain strength and size over many years, I approve of this post. :) But I'm probably also lazy and don't eat enough.
Well one of the big problems on this sub is that we don't know any of the individuals, so we give advice based on the average. Granted everyone will respond different but I cant see all of what \u\COCKSMASH69_420BLAZEIT does so I give him advice based on what works for most.
The rest is just confirmation bias. We see people making glaring mistakes so most assume whoever is posting is doing the same.
I'm guessing that's my problem too. In 2 years of on and off working out (the on and off is probably also a huge problem for me), I've gone from 150 to 170 lbs and:85lb to 140lb bench 125lb to 255lb DL 135lb to 195lb Squat
Seems like there are people on this sub posting gains like this in a span of a few months.
Be fat and start lifting. That way you only need to train consistently and will never worry about eating enoughshittyadvice
But seriously. Can't deny the fatman legs. Those muscles are real.
I Never Quit. One Nerd's 6 Month Quest For Self-Respect and a Better Life. (transformation)
6 Months, 24 yo, 5'7, 137lbs -----> 160lbs
Abs Transformation: http://imgur.com/a/9KVqd
I know DEXA is not super accurate, but according to the scans.. I have more or less an identical bodyfat percentage in the before and after. That's CRAZY!
Deadlift 155lbs --------> 425lbs
Squat 145lbs -----------> 315lbs
Bench 95lbs -----------> 155lbs (weak af!!!)
I have gone through a few routines in the past 6 months. I did my own version of Madcow and Greyskull and just recently started Korte 3x3. However starting on Monday I'm excited to transition to Wendler 5/3/1 BBB as I've determined it will suit my needs the best.
I have a ridiculous ability to recover from workouts immediately, and because of this I've gone for 1RM PRs almost every week... one time I went for deadlift PR 3 days in a row. I would consider all that PR chasing to be a mistake, and now I'm going to follow my routine to the letter. I have never once experienced DOMS regardless of what I do.
People seem to like my workout outfits so here's one recently of me failing a lift. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OXwQQ2_BKXs Why do I dress like this? Because life is about having fun! I used to be so scared to step out of line or be silly. Lifting has given me confidence, it has opened new doors. It's also comfortable as heck, haters gonna hate. (My mom has a horse ranch, so the cowboy hat is not totally out of place lol)
I have been a vegetarian for the past 11 years. I honestly think it is suboptimal to an omnivore diet. But animals are my homies so I'm not comfortable eating them. I don't judge anyone for their personal choices. I'm not one of those holier than thou people.
I take multivamins and 5g creatine daily. I don't take any protein powders (allergic to most it would seem).
Almost half a year ago I posted my first ever thread onto Reddit. It was my '6 week transformation' and it was pretty insane. I was overwhelmed by the support that I received. I've long since deleted that account, but I'm back for my 6 month Update.
I was so touched by the kindness and support of complete strangers that I curated among the 100s of messages that I received and had them laminated. http://imgur.com/a/2RRtc
Whenever I feel down, I reach for those messages and they help me push on.
For 6 months I have been fighting like hell every day. To be a build a better body and to become a better person.
Growing up I didn't have it easy. I spent many weeks in and out of hospital, month after month, year after year. The Children's Hospital was my second home. I was always the skinny kid, the sick kid, the weak kid, the worst kid.
I remember always being picked last for sports (except hockey hehe). I remember one particularly hurtful day when I stepped up to the plate to swing at a baseball and I heard my coach tell his friend: 'This kid Ryan is by far the worst on the team.. well besides _____'... and that kid he was referring to was a disabled boy in our class. Talk about soul crushing.
And so it went year, after year. Every day it would be reinforced into my brain that I was worthless and of little value to anyone. Every day. And you know what? After a while you start to believe everything that they say.
Fast forward to November 2016. 24 years old, virgin, never kissed a girl, never been on a date. Basically the stereotypical redditor! (lmao) Something just snapped in me one day in November. I decided that either I was going to take my own life, or take a chance and be the best damn person I could be.. regardless of whether or not I believed I could do it. (I totally didn't believe that I could, but I went for it anyway)
I'm not ashamed to say that girls were the only reason that I started my fitness journey. Sitting alone in my apartment for the millionth night in a row I googled 'how to get a girlfriend'. I read 3 dozen articles and they all mentioned 'go to the gym, lift heavy weights.' So that is exactly what I did. Life changed forever. And my goals/motivation transformed as well.
While I still have my V card and all that, I have made good improvements. I have lots more female friends than male friends, whereas 6 months ago I couldn't even talk to girls or look them in the eye. Prior to working out the last time I got a hug from a girl was literally September 2012. I still remember it lol. Sad. But nowadays life is better! I'm always getting hugs and my female friends are always touching me (shoulders/arms/back)...even my hair lol. It's bizarre to say the least, but I like it and I'm grateful.
Here's something that illustrates just how far I've come. I used to never have dreams, and only nightmares. In these nightmares people would usually be trying to hurt me. Well, last night I had my first ever really really good dream. I had a really nice dream involving one of my friends that I care a lot about.
I'm still freaked out by the prospect of actually going on a romantic date (I go out one-on-one with my single female friends quite a bit, I don't consider those dates though).
It's hard to shake those years of everyone bringing me down. I look in the mirror and I always see something that needs to be changed, and I just never feel that I could be 'good enough' for a girl.
For example the girl I dreamt about last night is everything I could ever want in a girlfriend, but I'm terrified of ruining our friendship if I tell her how I actually feel. I mean, she literally touches me all the time, laughs at the stupid shit that I say, has nicknames for me.. but then again so does every other girl that I know these days so it's impossible to know what's going on. She's a year or two older than me which I kind of like too. But realistically I don't think I could ever muster the courage. I'm taking her to a concert for her birthday, and she was super happy when I surprised her at her work with the tickets. That was really nice to make her happy.
Anyway, I will continue to fight on, I will continue to get stronger, I will continue to improve every facet of my life. And Lord knows I've got a lot to work on yet. Never give up my friends, there are better days ahead for you if you commit and put in the time.
My heart skips a beat any time someone asks me 'have you been working out, you look bigger?' or just nice things in general. Random girls will come up to me in public or at the gym and say nice things which makes my day so much better. (I give out sincere random compliments as well, it's nice to make someone's day better). The other day I was deadlifting and this girl walks up to me in an amazed voice and said 'WOW, that's A LOT!'.. I was riding that high for daaayyyyys haha.
I've come a long way, and you all have helped tremendously, so I'm forever grateful. Truly.
you should be really happy with those squat and deadlift numbers. don't worry about the bench it'll come.
Mate everyone here is admiring your progress (and for good reason), but I'm here to tell you that you should try asking that girl out.
Just my 2c, and I'm just an internet stranger, but the way I see it, I'd rather not live with any what-ifs :)
EDIT - I'd never imagined that my response (and OP's post) would get so popular. Maybe my hypocritical ass should get back in the game too haha.
jesus man, you are the reason i still lurk reddit all the time
its posts like this that make me pumped for my next gym session and keep me going strong through everything.
I want to thank you for sharing, i am truly inspired.
ps. ask that damn girl out! ur a good looking guy, u have literally nothing to lose and everything to gain
Edit: don't ever get rid of that beard, it is epicccc
Agreed. My jaw dropped when I saw that deadlift number. Very very impressive!
Website where you input your diet and it tells you what vitamins etc you are lacking.
Sorry if this kind of post isn't allowed here. I think I came across this website a while back on here but for the life of me am not able to find it again.
Any help in finding it again would be greatly appreciated.
Cronometer dot com
It's free, but the paid version has some more features and isn't very expensive.
For anyone curious, CRON is indeed an acronym. Stands for Calorie Restricted Optimal Nutrition. Or Command Run On of course (the UNIX scheduler).
AND IT SYNCS WITH FITBIT!!
This is amazing. Thank you for introducing this to me.
Creator of Cronometer here if anyone has any questions. We also have a /sub/cronometer subreddit but it's a bit of a ghost town.