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  • Starting out and looking for some advice on how to reach my goals.

    Hello everyone,

    I'm just starting out and I wonder if you could give me a bit of help and some advice on how to reach my goals (defined below)?

    I know nothing about training, and come from a "culture" that is very negative towards training (IT) and therefore I'm just taking my first stumbling steps.

    First of all, let me tell you a bit about myself. I'm 29, 5 ft 10 inch, weighing ca 123 pounds, and my athletic activities stopped right before college.

    To be honest, I seem to be blessed with good genes, since I can eat anything and not gain weight, but this also works the other way around, since I can train a lot (well at least before college) and not gain any weight as well.

    However, I now suspect that this special circumstance will not last for the rest of my life (getting closer to my 30 year crisis for sure... =( ), so I'm thinking about trying to train again in a proactive way, and not wait until the years and my diet habits force me to train. Also I do not eat any paleo food, except that by pure chance I have always disliked potatoes and vegetables and focused more on meat. But I still eat cereals and pasta though.

    My overall goals are:

    1. To remain fit and active.
    2. To gain 14 pounds of muscle, since I think I am a bit skinny.
    3. Over the long term, to learn the more advanced exercises below.
    4. 6 pack. Not so much for me walking around naked, more because it is some kind of visible progress, and it seems like many people find it difficult and I like a challenge.

    So what do you think about my current program which I do 2 times per week since 3 weeks?

    30 x Hindu pushups
    25 x Bicycle crunches
    2 min plank, front + side
    70 squats
    (I currently have no possibility of doing pull ups, but will in about 4 months)

    My long term exercise goals are to learn:

    Hand stand pushus
    One leg squats
    One arm pushups
    L-Sits
    Planche

    Now for my questions...

    1. How often should I increase the difficulty of my exercises? Every 2, 4, 6 weeks, or just when I feel like it?

    2. Since I started with this program, I've noticed that I sweat a LOT, sweat starts dripping onto the floor. Is this normal?

    3. I read somwhere about taking cold showers to accelerate fat burning, is it true or not?

    4. I have considered some kind of BBS like program to gain my pounds of muscle, however I _hate_ going to the gym or any other scheduled classes. Is it possible by just using body weight exercises to gain 14 pounds of muscle?

    5. Should I add some kind of kreatin or protein shakes to accelerate muscle gain, or is it enough if I just change my dinners more towards eggs, tuna and meat (I really don't like chicken)?

    6. Finally, once I've reached my goals, how does maintenance training work? Do I just stop increasing the difficulty of the exercises and stay on one level? Or do I occasionally increase the difficulty and then revert back to my "final" program?

    Besides the above, my plan is to incorporate some kind of Yoga practice, just because I am curious about it.

    Thank you very much for your time.

    Best regards,
    Dan

  • #2
    You're 5-10 123 male and you think you might be a bit skinny?
    Is there a typo somewhere?
    I'm not in the 'bulk up to 200 or you're a pussy' crowd but DAMN!

    Setting goals of gaining 14 pounds of muscle and having a 6 pack for the same program is guarantying failure.
    Gain the weight with some fat then lean back down. At your height-weight some fat may be GOOD for you.
    You can do it with bw training but I'll leave the local experts to help you with that.

    Sweat is fine as long as you don't dehydrate or get into heat stress.
    Cold showers probably technically do burn a few calories but not enough to bother doing it. You need to gain weight anyway.

    Just eat a lot of healthy food and probably drink a lot of whole milk.

    Download the free ebook from the sticky in this forum.

    Comment


    • #3
      I know nothing about training, and come from a "culture" that is very negative towards training (IT) and therefore I'm just taking my first stumbling steps.
      Internet Technology?
      Crohn's, doing SCD

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by h4890 View Post
        First of all, let me tell you a bit about myself. I'm 29, 5 ft 10 inch, weighing ca 123 pounds, and my athletic activities stopped right before college.
        Mike Mentzer's Underground Seminar Part - IX - YouTube

        Originally posted by h4890 View Post
        4. I have considered some kind of BBS like program to gain my pounds of muscle, however I _hate_ going to the gym or any other scheduled classes. Is it possible by just using body weight exercises to gain 14 pounds of muscle?
        All Muscle, No Iron

        Comment


        • #5
          My 2 cents is to increase the difficulty when ever you can. If you can only just do all of the harder progressions, thats the perfect step up. Make sure it stays hard but do-able.
          www.back-to-primal.blogspot.com or on Facebook here

          My training journal if anyone is interested

          Be strong to be useful

          Comment


          • #6
            Hello guys, and thank you very much for your feedback! I really appreciate it!

            Especially the one about just focusing on gaining weight in the beginning, and once that is done, losing fat. I think I was about to commit the classic mistake of "doing everything at once"! =)

            So to summarize your replies:

            Eeating healthy according to the eBook in the sticky.
            Upping the difficulty when I can, not based on a strict schedule.
            Start with focusing on gaining weight, then think about fat loss, abs, etc.
            Drink lots of milk
            And finally, have a look at the All muscle, no iron + mike menzer links.

            What about maintaining your fitness level once you reached your goals? Is it as easy as no longer increasing the weight or is there anything I should keep in mind?

            Again, tank you for your feedback.

            Best regards,
            Dan

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Knifegill View Post
              Internet Technology?
              Yes, or Information Technology, but internet is a part of that as well. =)

              Comment


              • #8
                The ebook is about exercise not nutrition.
                It has a bodyweight program with specific ways to deal with progression.
                For nutrition read the original book, this site and other paleo sites and books.

                I'm an IT guy too. I had a co-worker who did triathlons another at another company who ran marathons..
                Another chasing a 300 pound bench.
                One place golf league was super popular at another we played lunchtime tennis.
                I guess that was mostly business applications folks, not your stereotype hardcore techies.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by bcbcbc2 View Post
                  The ebook is about exercise not nutrition.
                  It has a bodyweight program with specific ways to deal with progression.
                  For nutrition read the original book, this site and other paleo sites and books.

                  I'm an IT guy too. I had a co-worker who did triathlons another at another company who ran marathons..
                  Another chasing a 300 pound bench.
                  One place golf league was super popular at another we played lunchtime tennis.
                  I guess that was mostly business applications folks, not your stereotype hardcore techies.
                  Wow! How do they have the time to work?

                  I think you are completely correct though... Those business oriented types have a bit of a different culture, than the unix crowd!

                  Best regards,
                  Daniel

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by h4890 View Post
                    Wow! How do they have the time to work?
                    From all I've read (here and elsewhere) as well as in my personal experience, you don't have to put in tons of time training to get great results in strength/fitness. I agree w/ the pp who mentioned downloading Primal Blueprint Fitness and trying that out. (If you can't do pull ups anywhere, you could try body rows on th edge of a table etc--playgrounds are a great place to try pull ups or rows though as well. Sometimes you've got to get creative--or even just buy a 20-30 dollar pull up bar from walmart...will fit in any doorway...)

                    So your long distance fitness goals are:
                    Originally posted by h4890 View Post
                    Hand stand pushus
                    One leg squats
                    One arm pushups
                    L-Sits
                    Planche
                    I think its important to practice the basic levels of each of these things to work your way up to them.

                    So, I would be sure to incorperate overhead press work (you could use the breakdown in PBF for this) towards Handstands then HSPUs.

                    I would also practice 'regular' push ups (plank position then down) in addition to the hindu pushups. More on push up variations: Al Kavadlo We're Working Out! All Kinds of Push-ups (Part One) and Al Kavadlo We're Working Out! The One Arm Pushup

                    You can start practicing the progression towards L-sits and Planche NOW. See Building an Olympic Body for how to start working on the planche (the gymnastic bodies site and forum is a wealth of info on bodyweight stuff). Also here is a link about the best (functional) ab exercises: Al Kavadlo We're Working Out! The Best Exercises For Abs

                    Here is some stuff from Al Kavadlo on getting to a SLS/pistol squat: Al Kavadlo We're Working Out! Pistol Squats More on squats in general: Al Kavadlo We're Working Out! All About Squats

                    Obviously I find Al's site very helpful (most of the links are from there. ) This link might be helpful in figuring out where you are and how you should progress to reach your goals: Al Kavadlo We're Working Out! Mastering Your Body Weight

                    HTH! Good luck with it all!
                    Last edited by FairyRae; 08-21-2011, 09:45 AM.
                    My Before/After Pics
                    Are you new here? Be sure to check these links FIRST, before reading anything on the forum! Succeed & PB 101

                    "I am a work in progress." -Ani DiFranco

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by h4890 View Post
                      Especially the one about just focusing on gaining weight in the beginning, and once that is done, losing fat. I think I was about to commit the classic mistake of "doing everything at once"! =) \
                      Or you can just be patient and focus on gaining lean tissue. I'm not sure what the benefits of gaining fat are.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by js290 View Post
                        Or you can just be patient and focus on gaining lean tissue. I'm not sure what the benefits of gaining fat are.
                        Hello js290, and thank you for your feedback.

                        Could you elaborate a little bit? I thought that according to the previous post (maybe I misunderstood), I am supposed to focus on gaining some fat and muscle, and then focusing on getting rid of the fat.

                        Are you telling me that it is equally feasible to just train without the "fat cure"? If so, I would be a lot more comfortable with that, than having to force myself to eat and drink abnormal amounts to gain fat, and then train, and then try to get rid of the fat once I gained muscle.

                        How would I go about gaining lean tissue only? Is there something special to it or just the paleo diet + training without the excess food intake? You see, I tend to eat when I am hungry and that's it. Could I gain lean tissue without throwing in protein shakes and so on?

                        Thank you for your feedback! =)

                        Best regards,
                        Daniel

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by FairyRae View Post
                          ... Sometimes you've got to get creative--or even just buy a 20-30 dollar pull up bar from walmart...will fit in any doorway...)
                          Hmm, so I guess pull up bar it is! =)

                          Originally posted by FairyRae View Post
                          I think its important to practice the basic levels of each of these things to work your way up to them.

                          So, I would be sure to incorperate overhead press work (you could use the breakdown in PBF for this) towards Handstands then HSPUs.

                          Obviously I find Al's site very helpful (most of the links are from there. ) This link might be helpful in figuring out where you are and how you should progress to reach your goals: Al Kavadlo We're Working Out! Mastering Your Body Weight

                          HTH! Good luck with it all!
                          Thank you very much for the advice and the pointers, your advice has been written down in my little training spread sheet as well. Lots of sites to cover now! =) Mentzer HIT, Al Kavadlo, Building an Olympic Body I'm feeling like I could read and read forever!

                          I also detect some different philosophies I think, and that would be on the one hand, loading up on the correct nutrition, going to the gym a la mentzer and focusing on muscle gain, and then weight loss.

                          On the other hand, there seems to be another philosophy of just going with the body weight path, and to stick with it. No special shakes or bars.

                          I like the mentzer way because it seems like you can get loads of results, fast! And I can be quite impatient and I am afraid that if I don't get results in say a year, I will get bored and stop training. So that would be a great benefit with the Metnzer/HIT way.

                          On the other hand, I hate going to scheduled activities in my spare time, and the anywhere/anytime approach of the body weight philosophy really appeals to me, but I get the feeling that the results will not be as quick.

                          And finally, when it comes to proper amounts to proteins, carbs and fat, I feel like I cannot change everything at once. I have to select one approach to training, and get started. If I change my life style, training, diet habits all at once, I fear that everything will just be done without serious intent, some kind of "overload".

                          Well, I'll be sure to check out the sites you gave me. Have a great evening! =)

                          Best regards,
                          Daniel

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by h4890 View Post
                            Hello js290, and thank you for your feedback.

                            Could you elaborate a little bit? I thought that according to the previous post (maybe I misunderstood), I am supposed to focus on gaining some fat and muscle, and then focusing on getting rid of the fat.

                            Are you telling me that it is equally feasible to just train without the "fat cure"? If so, I would be a lot more comfortable with that, than having to force myself to eat and drink abnormal amounts to gain fat, and then train, and then try to get rid of the fat once I gained muscle.

                            How would I go about gaining lean tissue only? Is there something special to it or just the paleo diet + training without the excess food intake? You see, I tend to eat when I am hungry and that's it. Could I gain lean tissue without throwing in protein shakes and so on?

                            Thank you for your feedback! =)

                            Best regards,
                            Daniel
                            Resistance training is the best known way to stimulate protein synthesis. How much additional lean muscle you'll be able to synthesize is dependent on your genetics. So, have some realistic expectations.

                            BODY BY SCIENCE TRAINING VIDEO 2 — TODD BEARD

                            Eat real foods. You don't need as much protein as is commonly believed.

                            Health Correlator: How much dietary protein can you store in muscle? About 15 g/d if you are a gifted bodybuilder
                            Health Correlator: Does strength exercise increase nitrogen balance?

                            If you're going to give HIT a try, Mentzer's Workout A and B would be a good routine to start with. I'd recommend finding a good HIT trainer who can coach you properly on going to failure. The brutal effort in HIT is what's important.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Rule 1 is simple and should be obvious but people get confused.
                              You can ONLY gain weight by eating more. (aside from water fluctuation or constipation or some other silly thing)

                              No exercise program can get your body to pull new mass out of the air.

                              In order to lean bulk you would have to miraculously eat exactly the surplus that you triggered your body to gain in muscle.
                              If you miss low you starve your gains away.
                              If your priority is never being fat that approach is ok.
                              You get stronger and harder and maybe you gain significant mass maybe you don't.

                              If you have a real priority to gain muscle then you have to set your calories definitely high enough to cover the growth you want.
                              Some WILL be fat. There is room for argument about just how high to set your surplus but it seems like the overall experience of the bodybuilding world is that skinny guys do a lot better at gaining muscle if they are willing to accept quite a bit of fat gain at the same time.

                              l

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