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2021 Body Transformation Thread


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On 4/5/2021 at 3:40 PM, slorch said:

Hey Bill, I know you as one of the gurus in the bourbon thread.  What is approach to libation while you are working on this weight loss?

I still drink bourbon, about 2-3 oz a night.  I miss beer badly, but the bourbons help me cope( in a good way.)

I drink a lot of sparkling water, and try hard not to drink Sunday - Thursday. This rarely happens, but it’s a goal.  
 

I do whatever I want Friday and Saturday night. I try to limit it to two 2 oz pours if I cave on Thursday and Sunday nights. 

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35 minutes ago, DallasHorn26 said:

For you guys doing Keto, are you hard core measuring everything out? I've done it before and I know that it works well for me.

I do not, when I am doing that sort of thing.  I don't really do keto either.  I have a bunch of stuff that I just don't eat and somewhere along the way during each day I go into ketosis either through IF or low carb consumption. Works pretty well until I get down to those last few stubborn lbs.

Do what works for you but I would try the less work route.

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Picked up 1 LB over Easter week.

Not bad considering I drank alcohol, gorged on pecan pie, peach cobbler, and brownies as well as having two big meals per day...and tiramisu on most nights.

Back to work.

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6 hours ago, Modessit said:
17 hours ago, DallasHorn26 said:
For you guys doing Keto, are you hard core measuring everything out? I've done it before and I know that it works well for me.

Yes.

Thanks, I started back Monday and haven't weighed anything, just avoided carbs. I started tracking with my fitness pal yesterday and managed to only get in 1,100 calories, but never felt hungry.  Percentage wise, it was pretty close to the percentages set in my daily goals. Just for reference I'm 6ft, 300lbs. At my heaviest, I was 350 and had gastric sleeve about 5 years ago and dropped down to around 230 at my lowest. I do still some portion size restrictions when I eat certain things, but I can pretty much eat normal portion sizes. 

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20 hours ago, DallasHorn26 said:

For you guys doing Keto, are you hard core measuring everything out? I've done it before and I know that it works well for me.

I look at one thing: carbs. I keep net carbs below 20.  IDGAf about calories/fat/ anything else.

This is the third time I-have done this diet and it sheds pounds. My bloodwork/ blood pressure/ HDL/ etc has always improved when I do it too.

So you might ask, ‘ Why 3 times?’   Well the first 2 were straight up weight loss contests/ 90 day challenges.  This time I am working to drop weight again and get below 200#.  Then I am going to actively change my diet to something a little more moderate while also incorporating exercise.  I miss beer. I miss Chinese food/Italian/ Mexican/ et al.  When we go out to eat, my choices are very limited.   It is worth it to me though.  I want to drop the weight and take better care of myself.

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I'm not measuring everything out.  I am probably not doing a very good version of Keto but I am losing weight, but I lost a bunch a weight on a non keto path 5 years ago with just portion control and general eating better and exercise.  So I don't think it's the end all be all diet.  The main benefit I find is that it does curb appetite better than a traditional balanced diet.  I'm not doing bloodwork so I don't know the benefits/detriments there.  It won't be permanent for me due to such limitations at restaurants.

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On 3/27/2021 at 11:55 AM, South Austin said:

my key has been a consistent diet. I don’t stick to any particular diet like Keto or Paleo. I just eyeball high protein (including a mixture of whey and plant-based supplements), high fat, low and well-timed carbs, lots of vegetables, avoid sugars and junk food, and a cheat meal once or twice a week. My main vice is alcohol, but I keep it in moderation, with an occasional dinner-party drunk fest.  On those occasions when I give up alcohol for dry January or Lent (which I haven’t done in a while), holy shit I can get shredded.

So yes, your physic is formed largely in the kitchen, not the weight room. 

Truth. Exercise is a big factor but the war is won in the kitchen. The amount of exercise it would require to create a calorie deficit while eating shit is not practical. 

Alcohol while awesome is a detriment. Best enjoyed in moderation and it's best to just avoid beer. I went from January through May without a drop of firewater as a New Years/Lent hybrid and then continued for a little bit out of fear of Covid.

I do primarily eat pescatarian throughout the week but will down some steaks on the weekend. I mainly focus on my macronutrients and things sort themselves out. Occasionally I will get a little obsessive about micronutrients in times of stress. Helps me feel in control I think but the side effect is a very clean diet.

With that said, all the jelly bellies should take up compound lifting. A clean diet and strength training will have a huge impact on your body.

 

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11 hours ago, F250 said:

Truth. Exercise is a big factor but the war is won in the kitchen. The amount of exercise it would require to create a calorie deficit while eating shit is not practical. 

Alcohol while awesome is a detriment. Best enjoyed in moderation and it's best to just avoid beer. I went from January through May without a drop of firewater as a New Years/Lent hybrid and then continued for a little bit out of fear of Covid.

I do primarily eat pescatarian throughout the week but will down some steaks on the weekend. I mainly focus on my macronutrients and things sort themselves out. Occasionally I will get a little obsessive about micronutrients in times of stress. Helps me feel in control I think but the side effect is a very clean diet.

With that said, all the jelly bellies should take up compound lifting. A clean diet and strength training will have a huge impact on your body.

 

What you said about compound lifting for jelly bellies is spot on.
 

Weight loss is 90% of what you put in to your mouth. You can’t outrun a bad diet. The other 10% is exercise (weight lifting, CrossFit, HIIT).

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43 minutes ago, pearlandhorn said:

What you said about compound lifting for jelly bellies is spot on.
 

Weight loss is 90% of what you put in to your mouth. You can’t outrun a bad diet. The other 10% is exercise (weight lifting, CrossFit, HIIT).

Any advice on how to ease into this or develop a workout routine? I've done very little weight lifting in my life. Most of my weight is carried in the gut.

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One of my son's just started a cut after bulking for the last 4 months.  He was on a clean bulk for the majority of the time but then went on a dirty bulk for the last 6 weeks. I warned him about the dirty bulking but he just went on about "it's all just a calorie surplus, bro." He definitely added a shit ton of mass and the accompanying belly which is to be expected. While he is right that any calorie surplus will result in gains the transition off a shit diet is going to suck.

Now that he is cutting and eating clean he is having some withdrawals from the junk food. Greasy salty simple carbs are a hell of a drug.

 

 

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37 minutes ago, DallasHorn26 said:

Any advice on how to ease into this or develop a workout routine? I've done very little weight lifting in my life. Most of my weight is carried in the gut.

Do a lot of research before starting any program. If you are out of shape spend the learning period acclimating your body to resistance training with simple self resistance exercises and some basic cardio. If you are the age of the average Surly poster your muscles, ligaments and tendons will revolt if they have been sitting on the shelf and are suddenly thrown into strength training.

I am a fan of Rippotoe so I would recommend his beginner program but take the time to learn before starting his or any other program. Focus on understanding the purpose of each lift and the proper form and practice without weight until you get the form down.

https://startingstrength.com/get-started/programs

 

 

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1 hour ago, DallasHorn26 said:

Any advice on how to ease into this or develop a workout routine? I've done very little weight lifting in my life. Most of my weight is carried in the gut.

If you are eating properly, and Keto certainly qualifies, and getting good sleep, and reducing stress, and getting an appropriate amount of water and various essential minerals from eating properly,then the workout requirements are pretty minimal when considering time spent and bang for the buck towards optimal health.

I have mentioned Mark's daily Apple before and used their workout set up for years with pretty incredible results.

I will Reader's Digest it here, but there are progressions to each of the exercises and you can go beyond mastery levels, but it is not necessary.

Move: 3-5 hours/week of general movement but not to exertion, think being able to breath and carry on a conversation (yard work, walking, house cleaning, car washing, hiking etc.)

Sprint every once in awhile:  Do a series of sprints from 8-15 seconds 8-12 reps with plenty of rest in between once every seven to ten days.  Maximum effort, full recovery for each rep.  For most people who are overweight and have not been exercising, this could be laps in a pool, bike or elliptical. It is all relative.

Lift heavy things: You do this 2 times per week.   

Mastery is 2 sets of 50 push ups, 2 sets of 50 air squats, 2 sets of 2 minutes forearm knee planks, 1 set of 12 pull ups and 1 set of 12 chin ups.

Remember that those numbers are Mastery and there are much easier variations that you start with for each exercise as well as harder variations should you wish to go beyond mastery.  At Mastery is where they determined the most optimal expression of health for time spent occurred such that they posited that you will achieve ~90% of your genetic potential at mastery.  Beyond mastery takes exponentially more effort and might be geared to specific sport training or specific fitness goals.

Now I don't know if all of this is true, but I can relate my specific experience with was very positive.  Between diet and exercise I went from 200lb to 174lbs and obtained mastery levels after about 4 months.  I was very close if not under 10% BF and was very competent in many crossover activities (play if you will) like kayaking, ultimate Frisbee, basketball, playing with my kids, and rock climbing to name a few of the more rigorous activities and this was at age 45+.

I eventually started to push on the body weight exercises and moved on to more difficult push up variations, pistol squats, muscle ups, and different forms of planks.  It is a natural progression as I found doing 50 reps of anything eventually got really tedious and the more difficult variations greatly reduced the reps. Alas, I did start to develop nagging injuries from the more difficult variations.

The point is that if you are below this 90% threshold of optimal expression, then a very simple workout routine will suffice.  I did all of my work in the driveway or on my kids playground set.  This point lends to the notion that diet is anywhere from 75% to 90% of the equation.  I tend to think exercise is more on the high side of the range as I tend to eat better when I want to perform well on my sprinting or body weight stuff, so it is kind of a circular thing.  It is also of great help if there is a particular sport or activity that you want to improve.  Instead of saying no to certain things I think of this  a bigger yes.

Also, I have posted before the benefits of mini workouts, such that you perform all of the mastery exercises but do them in small increments throughout the week/day.  At the end of the week you have completed mastery levels of work, but did it in small increments.  For example, perform 1-3 pull ups perhaps hours apart on not every day, but at the end of the week you have done the required 24 pull ups.  This is the route I would recommend with perhaps starting at easier variations. It is especially rewarding as you lose weight, because although you are getting stronger you are also getting lighter at a much faster rate and your performance gains/reps appear to happen much faster  than just with wight training. 

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1 hour ago, DallasHorn26 said:

Any advice on how to ease into this or develop a workout routine? I've done very little weight lifting in my life. Most of my weight is carried in the gut.

If you haven't lifted in a long time, I'd suggest the simple 5x5 barbell routine.  It starts off very slow, allowing you to practice form on the main 5 core lifts (bench, squat, deadlift, barbell row, and overhead press).  It's 3 days per week.

https://stronglifts.com/5x5/

With those core lifts, after you've mastered form to the best you can, you can move in to a PPL (push, pull, legs) routine and use those lifts as the foundation to your strength training.  That's what I have done and a lot of other people do.  Compound exercises work various muscle groups at the same time, engage the core (abs, obliques, lats) to support the main muscle focus of the exercise.  Bench and overhead press would be your compound lift for push days, row for pull days (you can throw deadlift in here as well), and squat would be your compound lift for leg day (you can throw deadlift here also).  Fill in your remaining hour or hour and a half at the gym with ancillary exercises (I do incline dumbbell press, dips, chest fly, a tricep exercise or two for push days).

I've built my own program to cater to my time commitment I have.  However, my main lift for each day at the gym is a compound lift with the barbell.  It's safer than machines in my opinion and you engage many muscle groups while hitting the target one hard.

If you want to cut, throw in some cardio a few days a week subsequent to your work out.  Eat well.

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One of the top rules in getting back into shape, or getting into shape the first time in your life, is checking your ego at the door. 

No matter your age, but especially as you approach your late 30s and early 40s, take it easy, and if you're in the gym, don't give two shits about others who might be lifting more than you (and honestly, most of the folks in the gym don't really care).  Focus more on good form.  Get on sites like bodybuilding.com and check out the video clips showing each kind of lift.  Sure, those guys are are usually lifting heavier weights and are more ripped than I am, but they demonstrate good form.  Slowly but surely you'll graduate to greater resistance, but always make sure you're not lifting too much weight that you're sacrificing form.  Employing bad form to lift heavier weight for the purpose of trying to impress the guy or girl next to you or giving your own confidence a boost is a sure way to get injured.  

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I learned to ignore the gym bros a long time ago. I'll just be working out at my apartment gym, which is usually empty anyway. I've lifted weights in the past, but not since high school, which at this point is 20 years ago.

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When you get to 58 you don’t give a rat’s ass about other guys in the gym. It’s about staying in shape and not about bulk. I’m trying to maintain weight and staying fit.

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3 hours ago, South Austin said:

One of the top rules in getting back into shape, or getting into shape the first time in your life, is checking your ego at the door. 

No matter your age, but especially as you approach your late 30s and early 40s, take it easy, and if you're in the gym, don't give two shits about others who might be lifting more than you (and honestly, most of the folks in the gym don't really care).  Focus more on good form.  Get on sites like bodybuilding.com and check out the video clips showing each kind of lift.  Sure, those guys are are usually lifting heavier weights and are more ripped than I am, but they demonstrate good form.  Slowly but surely you'll graduate to greater resistance, but always make sure you're not lifting too much weight that you're sacrificing form.  Employing bad form to lift heavier weight for the purpose of trying to impress the guy or girl next to you or giving your own confidence a boost is a sure way to get injured.  
 

Last Spring I injured myself doing box jumps with my sons. I had already lifted during the day and they were talking trash so I gave in and did the box jumps. Finished the workout but ended up pinching a nerve near my hip. I was out of it for a couple of weeks. My ego was put in checkmate.

There is a lot of shit talking when they lift with me and I don't have an issue keeping up with them on the weights but anything beyond that I don't even try anymore. Afterwards, I'll do a light run and hit the shower, they will play basketball and try and get me to play. "No, I am old and tired, leave me alone." Is my response these days. I know my limitations.

 

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Don't get me wrong, guys.  There's some ego and vanity involved.  When I went back to lifting at 40, after several months at my routine I had significantly increased the amount I could lift, and it felt good.  A nice boost of confidence.  But at some point I stopped caring about trying to lift any more weight.  I'm in the relatively high rep range (8-12 reps each set), with a short time in between sets.  And at 46, I'm a hell of a lot better looking than I was at 36. 

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1 hour ago, South Austin said:

hen I went back to lifting at 40, after several months at my routine I had significantly increased the amount I could lift, and it felt good.  A nice boost of confidence.  But at some point I stopped caring about trying to lift any more weight.  I'm in the relatively high rep range (8-12 reps each set), with a short time in between sets.  And at 46, I'm a hell of a lot better looking than I was at 36. 

Novice gains. Once you move beyond the beginner effect and the increase in strength becomes very gradual that is where the grind of lifting starts. A lot of people get discouraged once the quick rewards fade out.

Congratulations on grinding it out for 6 years.

 

 

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I bought a barbell, bench, squat rack and set of plates to add to the backyard gym. My 14 yo will start HS football this fall and he was wanting to start to lift. It has been great working out with him and also just using the equipment myself. I have dumbbells, KB etc but actually being able to do deadlifts, cleans, bench etc has been great. Just a different type of sore/fatigue than other workouts.

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If i tried box jumps, it'd be right into a coffin...

FWIW, today I weighed 229.2.  First time I have been below 230 in forever.  More than halfway to my goal of 200!!!

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5 hours ago, BrazilHorn said:

I bought a barbell, bench, squat rack and set of plates to add to the backyard gym. My 14 yo will start HS football this fall and he was wanting to start to lift. It has been great working out with him and also just using the equipment myself. I have dumbbells, KB etc but actually being able to do deadlifts, cleans, bench etc has been great. Just a different type of sore/fatigue than other workouts.

Awesome. Best investment I ever made was setting up my home gym with equipment for compound lifting. I have kettle balls and a bunch of those of other things that my ex wife would use and kids used for sport specific workouts but the barbell, squat rack and bench is where the magic happens.

14 is when I introduced my son's to weightlifting and they all still lift. The high school years are a little tricky for multisport athletes. Baseball players don't lift like football players, particularly pitchers.

Between 14 and 16 you will feel like Superman and then around 17/18 you are impressed by their strength and at 19/20 you will start to feel your age. When they hit 21 you might start pondering what science can do for you.

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On 4/9/2021 at 4:24 PM, F250 said:

Awesome. Best investment I ever made was setting up my home gym with equipment for compound lifting. I have kettle balls and a bunch of those of other things that my ex wife would use and kids used for sport specific workouts but the barbell, squat rack and bench is where the magic happens.

14 is when I introduced my son's to weightlifting and they all still lift. The high school years are a little tricky for multisport athletes. Baseball players don't lift like football players, particularly pitchers.

Between 14 and 16 you will feel like Superman and then around 17/18 you are impressed by their strength and at 19/20 you will start to feel your age. When they hit 21 you might start pondering what science can do for you.

It happens early too.  My 13 and 15 yo boys, will do this work out after rock climbing practice where they add a pull up-up to ten and then count down so they end up doing 110 pull ups.  The numbers are not as impressive as the type of pull up.  One the way down they switch to these one finger pull ups on these tiny pocket holds and they switch between ring, middle and index finger.  They are working on the pinky but still do the pinky with the ring finger.  My pulley tendons scream just watching them.

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1 hour ago, Jiggy-Z said:

It happens early too.  My 13 and 15 yo boys, will do this work out after rock climbing practice where they add a pull up-up to ten and then count down so they end up doing 110 pull ups.  The numbers are not as impressive as the type of pull up.  One the way down they switch to these one finger pull ups on these tiny pocket holds and they switch between ring, middle and index finger.  They are working on the pinky but still do the pinky with the ring finger.  My pulley tendons scream just watching them.

I’m going to say what everyone over the age of 30 is thinking when they read that:

Yeah, fuck that.

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Any advice on how to ease into this or develop a workout routine? I've done very little weight lifting in my life. Most of my weight is carried in the gut.

What are your goals? Short term and long term? Cycling? Body building? Power lifting? Functional bodybuilding?

The 5x5 advice is a great place to start for any of the above. Get that rolling and come back for more suggestions after you have some other goals in mind beyond getting going. Good luck!!
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I think it’s important to have stuff to look forward to keep your eye on the ball. Vacations, social events, family gatherings. I don’t want to show up fat for any of that stuff. 
 

Workouts are easy. Not eating all your wife’s leftovers after you’ve had a few is hard. 
 

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6 hours ago, billfromlaketravis said:

I think it’s important to have stuff to look forward to keep your eye on the ball. Vacations, social events, family gatherings. I don’t want to show up fat for any of that stuff. 

To be honest, vanity is still a big motivator. We’ve had a Rosemary Beach vacation with two other families on the books for a year and I don’t want to show up packing some extra COVID weight.

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Cheat meals and their frequency depend on your goals, and if timing is a part of them.

I've had one cheat meal( tacos and a big schooner of beer) since Super Bowl.  I know in 10 more days, I will be completely off the program for a week because of family travel/ vacation.  I have already decided I'm not even going to fucking try while that is happening.  I did New Orleans on Keto a few years back, and that shit was hard.

In the positive column for cheat meals, I've used them to kick myself out of plateaus before and do believe they work.  Maybe so, maybe no; but as others have said, the psychological payoff can be worth it.  Personally, the results on the scale motivate me not to cheat. See also:  I put on some jeans on Friday that had gotten uncomfortable, especially right under my gut/ when I leaned over to tie my shoes or whatever.  Those fuckers were baggy and I was joking that i needed a belt.  That shit is better than the pizza, nachos, ice cream, and lasagna that I crave.

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I stopped running in 2019 when my knees and hips started giving me problems. After that, I pretty much gave up on working out, and had a lot of joint problems; cholesterol and blood pressure both shot up. I kept telling myself that I would work out more after I get a rowing machine.

Fast forward to February of this year. I got a rowing machine so I had no more excuses. It also helped that my friends and I started tracking our workouts using google sheets (excel) - to encourage and shame as necessary.

So far I haven't lost any weight, but I've seen the love handles shrink, my joints don't hurt as much, and in general I just feel a whole lot better. I'm working out 5 days a week - usually a 300 calorie rowing session with 20 solid minutes of body weight exercises.

As someone mentioned above, it's easy to eat another full meal after a workout. I'll need to figure that one out before we go to Hawaii during the summer. 

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On 4/18/2021 at 1:55 PM, 4th&Five said:

Same. Every 7-10 days you gotta splurge a bit. 

For me I have found it to be a natural cycle for cheat days/meals.  Sometimes I am inexplicably hungry or tired and just need to eat what I crave.  Granted I am not talking about eating a box of twinkies, more like a late evening bowl of cereal or some venison breakfast sausage at odds times....and of course a few beers when the time is right.

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Weighed in at the VA this morning. 209. 2 years ago I was 249. Doc told me my target was what I weighed at boot camp +20. I weighed 180, so I'm within 10 pounds of my target.

I don't workout, but I get a lot of exercise at work. I switched to diet and zero sugar sodas. I really don't eat many sweets, but I eat a box of Little Debbies oatmeal cookie sandwiches every few weeks. If I stopped drinking it would cut tons of dead calories and no doubt help my liver functions, but I think I'll just stick with the sodas.

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