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  1. #1
    Registered User husseiniakram's Avatar
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    husseiniakram is offline

    looking for advice

    hi all,

    looking for advice on how to proceed from here.
    I started exercise around august 2017 after 7 years of being super lazy and my fat % was around 38% , had all sorts of back pain , neck pain, shoulder pain, knee pain and even wrist pain from using PC way too much and sitting most of the time.

    I did a major shift in life style, and diet, moving to healthy food and following lee labrada's lean body program i am on day 66 right now. I want to share my progress and ask for advice where do i move from here.
    my previews goals when i started was, get rid of all the pains, get some strength, which seems to be on track. how ever, i am not happy with my muscle mass and fat% still. this link will show you my 3rd test i did today : ( hxxps://puu.sh/yAPOO/5bcbeae976.jpg ) ( change the hxxps to https ) ( also put it in attachment )

    So my fat % went down from 38% to 35% in the last 2 months. and my muscle mass from 31% to 30%. i am 167cm tall. I still have a belly problem.
    Today, an 11 year veteran in the gym told me, I need more intense excersise than le labrada plus i need to eat more protein, he suggested to buy iso100, and have 1 scope after exercise and 2 before bed.

    So far my diet consisted of the following :
    breakfast : about 60 to 100g of oatmeal + 1 glass of milk
    lunch : home cooked healthy meals, 1 - 2 cups of rice, steamed veggies , small portions of chicken or lamp with a small salad.
    after excercise : turkey sandwich with brown bread , or chicken shawerma or a burger
    snacks : nuts, carrots or more oatmeal with milk

    Do you think i'm on the right track, or i need to raise my intensity of exercises as the veteran says? he says he wants to show me some more intense exercises tomorrow so i will have to see. keep in mind, i am 44 year of age. and what do you think about starting to take iso100 protein shakes.

    Thanks in advance for any help!
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    Last edited by husseiniakram; 12-06-2017 at 03:40 PM.
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  2. #2
    Clearly Irrational blue9steel's Avatar
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    Good on your for deciding to do something.

    For exercise I highly recommend choosing a beginner routine from the workout program forum.

    For diet you should go read the nutrition stickies, everything in there you'd ever want to know.
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  3. #3
    Focus on yourself kimm4's Avatar
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    You need a proper calorie intake based on your goal. Set your protein amount and divide your remaining calories the way you see fit. Use a wide variety of whole food sources you enjoy. Protein shakes are a personal preference. You can easily get all your protein from whole food sources.

    Your training program should be focused around the important compound lifts. Stay consistent and improvements will continue.

    Good luck!
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  4. #4
    Registered User husseiniakram's Avatar
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    husseiniakram is offline
    thanks to both of you!
    blue9steel, i just checked the beginner's routine you mentioned. my programs has most of them routines.

    and thanks kimm4 for your encouragement as well. i am now leaning to try adding protein shake of iso100 .

    people suggesting me to take 1.8g/kg. so i need at least 150g protein per day for my wight of 85kg.

    so far i have been getting a turkey subway 12" ( 40g ) , or chicken shaweerma sanwitch ( 40g ) at evening. sometimes a 200g burger (34g ? ) . i guess this is the problem here ? not enough protein? for lunch i eat very light chicken or lamp. i have some milk for breakfast but i guess that's not enough....
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  5. #5
    Registered User grubman's Avatar
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    Your "problem" here is that you are trying to accomplish two goals at the same time, reduce fat and build muscle. Now this can be done to an extent but the two goals are often conflicting, and it's always best to choose one...good news is your workout doesn't need to change, as it's almost all about diet.

    To focus on gaining muscle, you have to eat enough calories to facilitate growth, which is usually a bit more calories than you need...which means you also gain fat (which is bad news if you already have excess fat).

    To get rid of fat, you need to eat LESS calories than your body expends. Unfortunately, this means muscle growth will be minimized.

    Most people in your situation focus on the loosing fat part first (as this way is most productive). Lifting weights will help burn calories, get you healthier, and you can also build a bit of muscle while doing this. Sure, you won't gain a ton of muscle during this time, but it's better than spinning your wheels...and once you are leaner, building muscle will be a lot easier.

    So, yes, a protein powder MIGHT be a good idea (either way) to help you get the amount of protein you need to help gain and maintain some muscle. It is also an easy way to help control your macronutrients (and easy way to get enough protein without carb or fat calories.).

    Now, Iso100 is whey protein ISOLATE. There really isn't any good reason to get this (higher priced protein) unless you are lactose intolerant (I am) or have other digestion problems.

    Have you used a macronutrient calculator to get an approximation of how many calories (and what type) you should be eating? If not, there is one right here: https://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/macronutcal.htm

    As far as the advice of your veteran lifter...it's hard to form an opinion without more context. There are a lot of smart people out there...there are also guys who have been lifting forever without any real progress because they are fairly ignorant. I've seen guys with spectacular builds giving really BAD advice, especially to newbies. Without knowing your exact workout, and what he observed you doing in the gym, it's hard to determine if he is giving good or bad advice.

    If you continue to feel better, and are getting stronger, aren't getting hurt, are generally seeing progress of some sort, and you like the workout you are on...and you are following it to the letter with dedication and determination...there probably isn't a pressing reason to switch as long as you are following the progression scheme to the best of your abilities.

    Just some opinions.
    My 6 years of progress (with pics) thread: http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=173360231
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  6. #6
    Registered User grubman's Avatar
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    grubman is offline
    P.S. I was 42 when I started again, 2 years younger than you are now...so 44 isn't "too old" yet to make some improvements.

    Good luck
    My 6 years of progress (with pics) thread: http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=173360231
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  7. #7
    Registered User husseiniakram's Avatar
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    husseiniakram is offline
    thank for your reply grubman. this is really helpfull.

    Yes i understand i can't have it both ways. so gain muscle means i will gain some fat with it. and lousing fat means i will also loose some muscle.
    considering my high fat percentage right now of 35% i guess the healthy option is to loose fat first, which is more important than gaining muscle. but, still need enough protein to avoid lousing too many of my muscle mass along the way. i will shoot for 150g of protein from the given suggestions according to the formula 1.8g/kg. using the calculator you linked, i can only categorize myself as "Lightly active (moderate exercise but sedentary job)" so i should be shooting for 1600 to 1700 calories per day.

    when i think about my goals, I think i should be thinking of my general health before anything else. I have gotten ridden of most of my pains like neck/shoulder/wrist from my previews life style. which i think is still a good accomplishment. i still need to get rid of some lower back pain, and lower right thigh ( where the leg connect to the hip ). and get my belly eventually smaller, but i am not in a real hurry . I want to continue to be active in the gym and get long term results, with a balance in workout and diet.

    and about my age, no 44 does not actually feel old. I felt older when i was in my 30s because of my bad lifestyle . and pains last year, specially lower back and i had to get hospitalized. there was nothing psychically wrong with my back ( I was worried about Spinal Disc Problems ) , even after MRI scan, the doctor just said i just lack exercise and he gave me a muscle relaxant which reduced the pain in around 2 weeks. so that's why i finally decided this year to to be committed to a healthy life style, hopefully for the rest of my life if nothing comes in the way.

    about the veteran and his suggestions, i will check what he wants to show me tomorrow, i guess i don't loose anything by doing that. I will take notes of what he will show me and i can share it here if if you like .

    about my current training routine ( le labrada 12 week lean body program ) , it looks something like this ( there is some variations ) :

    Back & biceps day : Bent over Barbell rows, Underhand lat pulldowns, Barbell Deadlift, Alternating Dmbell curls, preacher curl
    chest , shoulders & triceps day : Dumbell bench press, Dumbell Flyes, side lateral Raise, Machine shoulder ( military ) press, Dips - check version, Lying Trcieps Press
    Legs and abs Day : Leg Press, Leg Extensions, Seated Leg Curls, Stiff-Legged Barbell Deadlift, Seated Calf Raise, Calf Press on the Leg press Machine, Crunches

    Exceptions: some leg days have lunges and squats which seem a little hard for me ( because of the pains i mentioned before ), but i do them anyway.
    warm-up: i like to do 10 to 15 minute of jugging / running to get my heart rate up and start sweating, before lifting any weights.
    cardio : the program suggest to add 30 minute of interval training after certain days which i do. it also suggest to do it on my free days, but i usually skip doing anything on my free days for various reasons ( traffic, weather, wanting todo other things in my time ) .
    special notes : lately pain in the lower right thigh ( where the thigh connect to the hip ), and right lower back pain cause me to take 1 or 2 day break to avoid hurting myself. I am not sure what is the cause of this, but resting for 2 days seems to work for me if it's getting out of control.

    the 11 year veteran said : the exercises i do are not intense enough in his opinion. he said he had to cut a lot of wight himself when he started, and that he was around 145kg then burned it all. from what i can see he has a pretty nice built body ( pretty huge actually ) but it would not be my choice of body as it's too huge. i just want a healthy looking body, without a belly to be honest.

    and lastly, thanks for the link to the calculator, I just used it, it's helpful.
    Last edited by husseiniakram; 12-06-2017 at 06:16 PM.
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  8. #8
    Banned GentlemanBig's Avatar
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    Great information. My input since you were basically not active, is to keep moving. Stay active. If you don't run, walk 3 to 4X per week. Don't let minor pains prevent your gains. Many times I don't feel that great going to workout, but I feel much better after I workout.
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  9. #9
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    Losing more weight will eliminate a large share of those joint pains. It sure did in my case. Congratulations for getting onto the right track!
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    Registered User husseiniakram's Avatar
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    husseiniakram is offline
    Thanks GentlemanBig yes i agree on feeling better once i start warming up, unless it's a sharp kind of pain etc. that's why i focus on warming up properly first, it helps me get through some pain,

    and thanks elrondHubbard, hope so. only lost 6 kg or so since i started back in august. let's see when i reach 10kg or more, i have been lousing 1kg every week the last month or so.
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  11. #11
    Registered User husseiniakram's Avatar
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    husseiniakram is offline
    ok i tried the veteran's suggestions today, i had planned todo back and biceps today. i tried to keep note of what he asked me todo. the main difference is intensity and adding cardio. I was out of breath constantly and he said that is a good sign. the whole thing was done in under 1 hour.

    group 1 : bent over barbell rows , lat pull down , cardio : step-ups with knee lifts or squats 1m ( 4 sets, with 9 to 11 reps each )
    group 2 : bent over dumbbell rows, underhand cable pull downs, cardio : a lap of lunges, jugging when tiered ( 4 sets, with 9 to 11 reps each )
    group 3 : back rows, pull down rows, cardio : jugging 1m ( 4 sets, with 9 to 11 reps each )
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  12. #12
    Registered User daudi81's Avatar
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    Seems easy enough.

    1) Get on a good beginner routine and follow it as directed (I am on Fierce 5 and love it). Don't overcomplicate it by following the advice of "gym vets". Pick a good NOVICE program from the forums. They are simple for a reason. Get in the gym (30-60 minutes), and get out.

    2) Assuming you want to lose weight/fat: Lose 1-2lbs per week by eating at a caloric deficit. Read the stickies in the nutrition section to get an idea on how to best do that (counting calories/macros, eating below maintenance to lose fat, etc).

    3) Rinse repeat.

    That's it.

    A few tips that have helped me:

    Don't overcomplicate things by sweating the small details: overthinking your workout plan or meal timing mumbo jumbo. Keep it stupid simple: Stick to your macros, Calories in vs Calories out, and Follow a simple workout regimen (i.e. Fierce 5, Starting Strength, etc). Your fat loss mostly comes from your diet plan, not how many hours you put on the treadmill per week or doing 10 sets of bicep curls.

    Track your calories / macros vs weight loss/gain. Not losing weight? Lower your calories a bit. Losing weight too fast? Up your calories a bit. It seems daunting the first few days, but it's so unbelievably easy with technology. Get an app like MyFitnessPal and it makes tracking everything stupid simple (I spend 2-3 minutes TOTAL out of my day inputting my meals into it).

    Don't focus so much on "eating super clean." You don't need to live off brown rice and chicken breasts - you'll end up getting sick of it and quit after 2 weeks (I know I would). Just try to get your calories as much as you can from whole non-processed foods. By FAR the more important factor is meeting your macro minimums (protein/fat) and daily calorie goals. Once I stopped worrying about eating super clean, and started implementing the food I ACTUALLY LIKE TO EAT in my calorie/macro plan, my diet became so much easier to stick with. I fit ice cream and pizza into my macros several times per week, and my progress is great.

    If you're like me you'll want to TRACK YOUR PROGRESS. Take pictures. Track your strength increases in the gym. Track your weight weekly. This will help motivate you to continue. A good plan requires patience out of the gym, so don't lose hope 4 weeks into it. Staying motivated is/was a HUGE factor for me, and being able to SEE my progress in the mirror and strength gains on paper was a massive help. You won't notice a day-to-day difference, but when you go back and look at your pictures 30,60,90 days from now - it will be a big motivator (assuming your following the plan correctly).

    I am by no means an expert and I just starting lifting again after a LONG hiatus, but these things have helped me a lot.
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    Don't go too intense. Already you have had to take a few days off (very wise) due to pain.

    The old analogy is the sun tan theory of exercise... OK it's a bit complicated and unrealistic, just roll with it ok.

    Suppose you have zero tan, whiter than a glass of milk. You want a dark tan.
    If you go out you will burn in 15 minutes.

    If you try to lie out as much as possible in some crazy sun marathon you will get burnt and that's counter productive.

    So you go out for 10 minutes (comfortably less than 15) every day, never getting too much sun. After a while you adapt and start to tan.

    If you just do 10 minutes every day you get a 10 minute tan. Continue like that even 10 years you'd still have just a 10 minute tan. So you need to *very slowly* increase the stimulus to get the adaption.

    So what you need to do is start really easy 8 or 10 mins every day, easy, never feel sore never too much. As you adapt you gradually slowly increase.

    After a week you go to 10 minutes a day, after another week 12 minutes a day, and so on. After a month or two you have adapted and do 20 minutes a day maybe, after a while 30 minutes a day, now you are getting a real tan

    So you see how exercise works. Yes you need to increase the intensity, but this needs to be done really gradually or expect to get a lot of pain and have to take more days off.

    Save yourself the $8.99 a month or whatever for following Lee Labrada. Forget spending money on shakes that are designed to build you up (are you trying to get heavier?)

    Eat a good diet rich in fresh vegetables and healthy amounts of eggs, milk, fish, meat (if you eat these). Count the calories and don't go into a huge defecit, only go up to 500 a day in defecit. I think your current diet is too strict.

    Try a gradually increasing program like Stronglifts5x5 (free phone app, Google it!).

    Enjoy... Good luck
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