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  • Fitness help

    I have been lifting consistently for about a year. Initially I saw results and that kept me going strong. I have plateaued and seemed to have been gaining weight in the process. I started out at 204 and I am up to 214 now. I really want to drop the extra 10 ppounds, maybe even 15. With winter coming it seems that I naturally always put on a little extra weight.

    My workout consists of 3 days per week. On those 3 days I run a mile before my workouts. On the in between days I run 2 miles (usually only once a week though). My reps consist of 3 sets of 8 or 3 sets of 10 on whatever weight I am doing.

    What can I do to drop the extra weight and start seeing results again? How can I tweak my workouts? When I run cardio I do interval running, such as running as fast as I can for 1:30 and then walking for 1:30.

    My diet is probably my biggest issue. I don't eat out alot, however my wife isnt home too often so the cooking is up to me. Often I will eat canned food such as spaghetti O's, ravioli, lots of sandwiches with deli meats (wheat bread, lowfat mayo, lowfat cheese, etc), chicken breasts, grapes, low fat cottage cheese, mac-n-cheese, etc. Things that are easy for me to make because I don't know how to cook. Is this the biggest issue with the weight gain you think (although I have always eaten that way).

    I am 35 years and about 6'3".

  • #2
    As they say, you are what you eat.

    I would definitely recommend cutting down on the pasta intake, mayo, to much bread, alot of cheese etc. That can definitely slow down your results...... also try and up your protien intake. protien is one of the key elements to gaining muscle, it doesn't have to be protien powder, but foods that are high in protien will definitely do the trick (fish for instance).

    You should also try and work each muscle out twice a week if possible, and change up your workouts every other week or so.

    Comment


    • #3
      Yes, your diet is a problem.

      No, don't change your workout every week. If you do that, how will you know if you are making progress? When you no longer are making progress or feel stagnant, then you change the program. Minimum being maybe four weeks, maximum, maybe 12 weeks or a bit more.

      You're 35 , your metabolism ain't what it used to be, you need to eat cleaner foods and then worry about weight when it's additional muscle. At six three and 214 you're skinny
      Moooooooooooo, I'm a goat

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by johnnylawman109 View Post
        I have been lifting consistently for about a year. Initially I saw results and that kept me going strong. I have plateaued and seemed to have been gaining weight in the process. I started out at 204 and I am up to 214 now. I really want to drop the extra 10 ppounds, maybe even 15. With winter coming it seems that I naturally always put on a little extra weight.

        My workout consists of 3 days per week. On those 3 days I run a mile before my workouts. On the in between days I run 2 miles (usually only once a week though). My reps consist of 3 sets of 8 or 3 sets of 10 on whatever weight I am doing.

        What can I do to drop the extra weight and start seeing results again? How can I tweak my workouts? When I run cardio I do interval running, such as running as fast as I can for 1:30 and then walking for 1:30.

        My diet is probably my biggest issue. I don't eat out alot, however my wife isnt home too often so the cooking is up to me. Often I will eat canned food such as spaghetti O's, ravioli, lots of sandwiches with deli meats (wheat bread, lowfat mayo, lowfat cheese, etc), chicken breasts, grapes, low fat cottage cheese, mac-n-cheese, etc. Things that are easy for me to make because I don't know how to cook. Is this the biggest issue with the weight gain you think (although I have always eaten that way).

        I am 35 years and about 6'3".
        I would say you could tweak both your diet and your workouts. First, cardio should always FOLLOW lifting, as it fatigues your muscles. 5 minute warm ups are ideal, save the rest for after the lifting. If you're doing reps of 8-10 and you've plateaued, trying doing supersets for a month. Here, instead of circuiting the gym, you do 10 reps 10x for EACH exercise with 60 seconds rest. Choose a weight that's about 20% lighter than what you're currently doing. Do 2-3 exercises each body part. This should put you at about a 50 minute workout. Now, do bis, tris and chest one week. The next week do legs, back and shoulders. You won't really feel this until you get a nice case of DOMS (delayed onset muscle soreness) 2 days later. Results are amazing.

        Now, when I'm done doing my 4 weeks of supersets, I do my regular month. THEN, I do a month of megasets. These are same as supersets, but INCREASE the weight by 20% more than normal and do 5 sets of 10 reps each exercise. You will feel exhausted in a really good way.

        As for diet, make sure you're eating after your workouts and at least 5x a day. Lower the saturated fats (processed food is loaded with them) and the sodium isn't helping either. I understand what you mean about preparation. For me, protein is my savior. Get a good shake and use that after your workouts or a good protein bar. Keep perdue shortcuts and even lunchmeat turkey on hand. Get low carb wraps. Sometimes I'll just throw the prepped chicken in a bowl, sprinkle it with low-fat cheese and salsa and voila! Get burgers from McDonalds if you must, but TRASH the buns. Even if you do this once a day you will see instant results. Make sure you're eating breakfast. Egg beaters in a pan are so easy and very clean. You can also ask your wife to make you some brown rice for the week. It's great and reheats well (short grain is the best). Here's a pic of me before and after my first superset:

        before:
        after:

        Comment


        • #5
          Limit your carbs preferably to pre and post workout and intensify your workouts such as doing HIIT instead of plain runs, or hill training, etc. Your biggest problem is your diet. Stick with natural whole foods, limit the processed crap, and eat to satisfaction. Good luck!
          Dispatch: "All units be advised, he's on foot in a red dodge pick up truck."
          Me: "Ummm, control..."

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by JenInNJ View Post
            I would say you could tweak both your diet and your workouts. First, cardio should always FOLLOW lifting, as it fatigues your muscles. 5 minute warm ups are ideal, save the rest for after the lifting. If you're doing reps of 8-10 and you've plateaued, trying doing supersets for a month. Here, instead of circuiting the gym, you do 10 reps 10x for EACH exercise with 60 seconds rest. Choose a weight that's about 20% lighter than what you're currently doing. Do 2-3 exercises each body part. This should put you at about a 50 minute workout. Now, do bis, tris and chest one week. The next week do legs, back and shoulders. You won't really feel this until you get a nice case of DOMS (delayed onset muscle soreness) 2 days later. Results are amazing.

            Now, when I'm done doing my 4 weeks of supersets, I do my regular month. THEN, I do a month of megasets. These are same as supersets, but INCREASE the weight by 20% more than normal and do 5 sets of 10 reps each exercise. You will feel exhausted in a really good way.

            As for diet, make sure you're eating after your workouts and at least 5x a day. Lower the saturated fats (processed food is loaded with them) and the sodium isn't helping either. I understand what you mean about preparation. For me, protein is my savior. Get a good shake and use that after your workouts or a good protein bar. Keep perdue shortcuts and even lunchmeat turkey on hand. Get low carb wraps. Sometimes I'll just throw the prepped chicken in a bowl, sprinkle it with low-fat cheese and salsa and voila! Get burgers from McDonalds if you must, but TRASH the buns. Even if you do this once a day you will see instant results. Make sure you're eating breakfast. Egg beaters in a pan are so easy and very clean. You can also ask your wife to make you some brown rice for the week. It's great and reheats well (short grain is the best). Here's a pic of me before and after my first superset:

            before:
            after:
            Thanks for the advice. I like the idea of the supersets, I might give that a shot. You look great in your pics keep up the good work.

            My biggest problem is the diet and I know it. I don't know how to cook and have no desire on learning how. I don't know what to look for in foods at teh store and I don't want to eat like a bird everyday either. Somebody said I need to eat cleaner foods, what does that even mean?? I do eat breakfast but its usually a bowl of cereal (whatever we have in the house). I have heard people preach about protein, I have some protein mix that I mix with water or milk, I stopped taking it. It made me feel really full and actually made me feel fat and bloated after taking it. Is is because it acts as a filler (makes you feel full)?

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by johnnylawman109 View Post
              Thanks for the advice. I like the idea of the supersets, I might give that a shot. You look great in your pics keep up the good work.

              My biggest problem is the diet and I know it. I don't know how to cook and have no desire on learning how. I don't know what to look for in foods at teh store and I don't want to eat like a bird everyday either. Somebody said I need to eat cleaner foods, what does that even mean?? I do eat breakfast but its usually a bowl of cereal (whatever we have in the house). I have heard people preach about protein, I have some protein mix that I mix with water or milk, I stopped taking it. It made me feel really full and actually made me feel fat and bloated after taking it. Is is because it acts as a filler (makes you feel full)?
              Diet IS the biggest problem for most people. I am not a fitness freak, and I hate dieting. Who cares about a six pack IMHO when you can have steak and beer and workout 10 hours a week but still LIVE. But I AM a powerlifter, so I have to minimally make sure my protein intake is adequate. Like you, I'm always looking for shortcuts. I'm not a personal trainer with the kind of flexibility to eat clean 24-7. I eat clean for breakfast 4-5 days a week. Never for lunch (love my pizza) and a clean dinner 2-3 times a week. CLEAN simply means high protein, high fiber, low saturated fats. A clean diet teachnically consists of brown rice, boiled chicken, green veggies, oatmeal and lots of eggs. Now, I eat CLEAN for breakfast because it's easy. Egg beaters in a pan takes 5 minutes. So does oatmeal. I eat the steel cut kind because it sticks with me longer. When I'm at work, I actually eat grilled (boiled, gross) chicken for breakfast. And I save some for a snack. Eating 5-6x a day will speed up your metabolism even if it's the EXACT SAME amount of food you're eating now just broken down over a longer period of time.

              I don't know if you have a Trader Joe's near you, but they have some excellent options for eating clean. Veggies, rice and meat already prepared. You just nuke it. If not, you might want to try hungrygirl.com. She has some fairly simple low calorie things for people eating for one and who don't like to cook. You can adapt some of that stuff to fit your needs.

              Honestly, if I were you, I'd make two simple quick changes to my diet which will shed that little bit extra you need. I'd cut the carbs entirely from ONE MEAL for two weeks, and I'd eat 5-6 times a day. Even if it's a handful of peanuts or raisins, or some lowfat lunchmeat for a snack. If that works for you, which it does for most people with your current diet, you'll know how your body responds. If it doesn't respond, then perhaps you don't have a problem with carbs, but fats. Then post back and I'll give you some advice for that. But I can almost guarantee you with these two small changes...noshing and ditching the bread on your sandwich once (or if you're brave twice) a day, in 2 week's you'll be 8 lbs lighter at least.

              Best of luck!

              -Jen

              Comment


              • #8
                Jen, awesome advice, I will give it a shot. So if I eat 5-6 times per day, I should make sure one of those meals has absolutely no carbs (is that what you meant)? If not explain more please.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Another question Jen, what is boiled chicken and egg beaters. Is boiled chicken the same as grilled chicken? When you say egg beaters do you means just frying a couple eggs in a pan?

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Yes, at least one of those meals carb free. Weight loss will increase if you lower your glycemic intake which means white carbs like white bread, white rice, white potatoes. So if you eliminate carbs from one meal and substitute whole grains in others, you're golden. I don't EVER eat white bread unless it's a special occasion like a cheesesteak or PB&J. Everything goes on whole wheat or whole grains. Sweet potatoes/yams are considered good clean food as is bananas. I eat a banana as one of my meals almost every day. Usually it's my pre-workout meal.

                    Think of it like this. The longer a food takes to digest, the better it is for weight loss because it takes the body longer to break it down. So if something is super processed, you might as well be eating pure fuel (sugar)...which is great for a pick me up (and quick let down), but BAD for weight loss. Some people argue it's actually better to eat a loaded baked potato than a plain one simply because white potatoes are evil on the blood sugar levels.

                    Interesting factoid-- the body goes in fat storage mode ONLY when insulin in spiked too high. Therefore, if you eat anything highly processed or high in sugar or even just a big ole meal, you're asking for weight gain. Think of keeping blood sugar levels consistent.....never letting them dip too much (hungry, tired) or shoot up too high (weight gain). 5-6 small meals are best. WHOLE foods. Foods that haven't been altered are best. Nuts, seeds, raisins. Stuff you'd pick off a tree or from the ground over chemically altered crap.

                    Think of it like any racing game. You know how in order to win you have to keep the gas at just the right level so you don't spin off the course when you hit a curve? Eat like that. You'll never be so hungry you grab Cheetos and veer off course

                    Also, pay attention to what you're drinking. If you're drinking juice, soda, sweet tea...THAT can be a huge culprit in the diet.

                    Boiled chicken is chicken that's been put in boiling water. Egg beaters are egg substitutes. You can find them with the eggs in the grocery store in a quart container like milk.

                    I spray the pan with some Pam, pour them in and it's an omelet waiting to happen. You can add fat free cheese, turkey bacon, salsa, or if you want to eat "clean" eat 'em plain with salt n pepper. I just can't do that 5 days a week without getting bored.

                    On my other two breakfasts I eat Jimmy Dean Lite sandwiches. They're egg whites, low fat cheese, low fat ham on a low cal english muffin. VERY processed, don't stay with me long, but sometimes I'm late for work and it's a LOT better than not eating.

                    You can do regular eggs in a pan, just no butter! Super clean freaks eat them raw or put them in oatmeal or protein shakes. Crazy.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Jen, you are very knowledgable it seems, thanks again!

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        I tend to eat alot of sandwiches with whole wheat bread, deli meat, and light mayo......is this not good or would that be ok for one meal? Should I add or delete something from that (i.e maybe add leafy lettuce or tomatoes)?

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          That's fine. Mayo=no cheese! Adding lettuce/tomatoes optional. Doesn't do much for overall healthy except add lycopene. Lettuce is pretty much water wafers. If you're getting it from the deli, I'd do double the meat, eat half and eat the other half two hours later. Less carbs and you'll be equally as full AND get two meals out of it.

                          As for the knowledge..well, women are born dieting. I just had to work harder than most!

                          Keep me posted on your progress. And mix it up! Remember, the secret is to trick your body into losing weight. From a biological standpoint, those 15 lbs ensure your survival. It doesn't know you live 10 mins from McDonald's If your body sees you trying to get rid of them it will rebel! So make sure you occasionally cheat.

                          Same thing with exercise. Even though you're doing HIIT training, which is great, if you're doing the same mileage on the same days, etc....your body just adapts. I do HIIT one day and alternate with some steady distance running, the eliptical, etc. That's what works for me. The more you can fake it out the better. It should NEVER know what to expect!

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            My rule of thumb for eating clean: If you can't pronounce the names of the ingredients, its probably not good for you. Try to avoid processed foods and you're well on your way to a better diet.
                            It was like that when I got here.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by The Pike View Post
                              My rule of thumb for eating clean: If you can't pronounce the names of the ingredients, its probably not good for you. Try to avoid processed foods and you're well on your way to a better diet.
                              Pike--

                              I used to use that as my rule of thumb too. Then Hagen Dasz had to make that damn all natural ice cream

                              -J

                              Comment

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