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  1. #1
    Registered User MustangMark83's Avatar
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    Is it even worth it?

    Sorry if this post comes across as a debbie downer. I'm 37 years old. I'm 6'5 220 lbs. A year ago I was 240 lbs. I wasn't happy with how I looked, so I joined a gym, hired a personal trainer, starting eating right, etc. I was lifting 5 times a week. I lost 35 lbs and got down to 205, I looked pretty good but I wasn't totally satisfied - still had a small belly. I was kind of happy with my results because I lost weight, but no noticeable muscle gains. Didn't increase my bench AT ALL in a year. I can only bench like 175. I have really long arms, which might be a problem?

    Then COVID happened and my gym shut down. I'm up to 220 lbs, not quite the 240 I was, but I really want to lose my belly fat. I need motivation to go back to the gym but I am not sure I have the motivation. I honestly wish I would have started lifting in my 20's. I know I'm not old, but I'm not young either. I think I feel really disheartened by the fact that I was taking in 200g-220g of protein a day on average, lifted for 45 min to an hour, multiple times a week, and my arms and chest look no bigger than it used to. I lost weight, that's great, probably from the cardio that is involved with lifting weights, but I honestly just wanted to have a bit more lean muscle. I've done some research, a lot of people on YouTube train for 2-3 hours which I don't have time for, others will eat 4 or 5 thousand calories a day to gain muscle, I can't afford to eat like that.

    Is it pointless to keep trying? Should I just accept the fact that I started too late in life and just start jogging more often to lose some belly fat and call it a day? Ideally I would like to grow my biceps up to perhaps 16 inches, right now they're 14.5. I don't want to ever be huge like the rock, but like I've said, I haven't gained AT ALL. Might be a low T issue? Not sure. Would appreciate any advice.
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    Registered User CommitmentRulz's Avatar
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    What a shame. You joined these forums 16 years ago. Why? You had information at your fingertips at the age of 21.

    In 10 years you'll be 47. Look in the mirror now and decide if you want to look different then.
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  3. #3
    Registered User MustangMark83's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by CommitmentRulz View Post
    What a shame. You joined these forums 16 years ago. Why? You had information at your fingertips at the age of 21.

    In 10 years you'll be 47. Look in the mirror now and decide if you want to look different then.
    I didn't have the drive at the age of 21. I am a formerly obese computer geek. I joined out of curiosity and I barely ever posted once I joined. Heck I honestly didn't even really come back. But you're right, it was a shame. I wish I could turn back time. Thanks for the "advise"
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    Humble Megalomaniac ElrondHubbard's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by MustangMark83 View Post
    Sorry if this post comes across as a debbie downer. I'm 37 years old. I'm 6'5 220 lbs. A year ago I was 240 lbs. I wasn't happy with how I looked, so I joined a gym, hired a personal trainer, starting eating right, etc. I was lifting 5 times a week. I lost 35 lbs and got down to 205, I looked pretty good but I wasn't totally satisfied - still had a small belly. I was kind of happy with my results because I lost weight, but no noticeable muscle gains. Didn't increase my bench AT ALL in a year. I can only bench like 175. I have really long arms, which might be a problem?

    Then COVID happened and my gym shut down. I'm up to 220 lbs, not quite the 240 I was, but I really want to lose my belly fat. I need motivation to go back to the gym but I am not sure I have the motivation. I honestly wish I would have started lifting in my 20's. I know I'm not old, but I'm not young either. I think I feel really disheartened by the fact that I was taking in 200g-220g of protein a day on average, lifted for 45 min to an hour, multiple times a week, and my arms and chest look no bigger than it used to. I lost weight, that's great, probably from the cardio that is involved with lifting weights, but I honestly just wanted to have a bit more lean muscle. I've done some research, a lot of people on YouTube train for 2-3 hours which I don't have time for, others will eat 4 or 5 thousand calories a day to gain muscle, I can't afford to eat like that.

    Is it pointless to keep trying? Should I just accept the fact that I started too late in life and just start jogging more often to lose some belly fat and call it a day? Ideally I would like to grow my biceps up to perhaps 16 inches, right now they're 14.5. I don't want to ever be huge like the rock, but like I've said, I haven't gained AT ALL. Might be a low T issue? Not sure. Would appreciate any advice.
    37 is late in life?

    Your Debbie Downer approach is hurting no one but yourself. First, the weight loss issue has nothing to do with gym or no gym. It has to do with the kitchen.

    You did some research, and your takeaway is that you need to train for hours a day and eat tremendous calorie volumes... to lose weight? I suggest your research skills need improvement.

    On this forum, go to "Main Forum", and check out the "Nutrition" subforum. There are stickies there relating to the diet approaches for weight loss. THAT's what you should be reading. But really, it's not that complicated, because I would wager you already KNOW what you need to do, you just haven't made the commitment to do it. Make that commitment.

    As for bench press strength and the gym... If there's no gym, there's no gym. There are plenty of bodyweight exercises you can do. One site among many that you can go to for ideas is https://exrx.net/WeightTraining/Instructions. They have a couple of bodyweight training templates that might help.

    You can do it. You're young, believe me. There's nothing holding you back but you.
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  5. #5
    Humble Megalomaniac ElrondHubbard's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by MustangMark83 View Post
    I didn't have the drive at the age of 21. I am a formerly obese computer geek. I joined out of curiosity and I barely ever posted once I joined. Heck I honestly didn't even really come back. But you're right, it was a shame. I wish I could turn back time. Thanks for the "advise"
    Yeah, so do I. I started lifting at 22, got semi-buff for a few years, and then let it slide. I didn't make a real commitment until I was 59.

    59 was not too old. I'm 65 now, and not too old. If you can get out of bed, move around, and lift a beer, you're not too old.
    I'm out, standing in my field.

    65 and still a newbie.
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  6. #6
    Registered User Payton1221's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by CommitmentRulz View Post
    . . . Look in the mirror now and decide if you want to look different then.
    No disrespect to MustangMark, but I can almost guarantee that he'll look different: he won't be 220 lbs. If he follows the path of eating right and exercising he'll weigh less with more muscle and look much better than the average 47 year old. If he chooses to maintain his current course, he'll probably weigh 250 lbs or more with metrics such as cholesterol values and blood pressure worse than ever. CHOOSE THE FORMER!!! You can do this
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  7. #7
    Registered User MustangMark83's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Payton1221 View Post
    No disrespect to MustangMark, but I can almost guarantee that he'll look different: he won't be 220 lbs. If he follows the path of eating right and exercising he'll weigh less with more muscle and look much better than the average 47 year old. If he chooses to maintain his current course, he'll probably weigh 250 lbs or more with metrics such as cholesterol values and blood pressure worse than ever. CHOOSE THE FORMER!!! You can do this
    Thanks dude.
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  8. #8
    Registered User MustangMark83's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by ElrondHubbard View Post
    37 is late in life?

    Your Debbie Downer approach is hurting no one but yourself. First, the weight loss issue has nothing to do with gym or no gym. It has to do with the kitchen.

    You did some research, and your takeaway is that you need to train for hours a day and eat tremendous calorie volumes... to lose weight? I suggest your research skills need improvement.
    I guess I wasn't clear. I was eating right, in my opinion, to lose belly fat AND ALSO put on muscle. I wanted to look shredded. I lost some weight, but gained no muscle. So I got one of the two things I hoped for. I was simply curious that me not eating enough contributed to the lack of muscle gain, or if it really was me starting this too late in life. I guess just saying "I'm too old and have low T" is the easy excuse, right?
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  9. #9
    169 11% in avi ezra76's Avatar
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    Not too late. I'm starting back at 44. My pics from my avi and bodyspace were at 35-36yrs. old.

    Have a goal and stay consistent with it.

    Also if you think you have a low T issue then go to doc, get a physical and have it checked. Why not?
    Last edited by ezra76; 10-01-2020 at 07:06 PM.
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  10. #10
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    OP, I wonder if you had suboptimal programming. Working with a trainer 5 days a week doesn't guarantee great muscle building. What exactly were you doing in the gym for all that time?

    You might just need to start a barbell-centered program. Several good free ones are Fierce 5, Candito Linear, AllPros, Stronglifts, Starting Strength, and others.
    Currently running Calgary programming again: https://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=175647011&p=1618375061&viewfull=1#post1618375061
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    Originally Posted by MustangMark83 View Post
    Is it pointless to keep trying? ... Would appreciate any advice.
    It's pointless to keep whining. You're coming up with BS excuses so you don't have to work out (long arms, COVID, no motivation, started too late in life, low T).

    Come up with all the reasons to work out and get to it under a proper program - you're barely old enough to be in this sub-forum. And be realistic on how optimal your diet/nutrition and workout program was for building muscle before, esp if you were cutting.
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  12. #12
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    It's worth however much value you apply to it phaggot
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    Registered User LWW's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by ezra76 View Post
    N
    Also if you think you have a low T issue then go to doc, get a physical and have it checked. Why not?
    Not really directed at you, but like many people he talks about what he can only bench which is typical status quo behavior in the mysterious path to get into shape.

    Naw, the problem with benching is that it only targets the upper half of the body, this guy needs some Full body program that involves some squatting, I don’t care if it’s one legged squats ( pistols) or just BW squats, that’s a good place to start, plus it’ll raise the T levels naturally.

    That’s my say, and I’ll say no more.
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    169 11% in avi ezra76's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by LWW View Post
    Not really directed at you, but like many people he talks about what he can only bench which is typical status quo behavior in the mysterious path to get into shape.

    Naw, the problem with benching is that it only targets the upper half of the body, this guy needs some Full body program that involves some squatting, I don’t care if it’s one legged squats ( pistols) or just BW squats, that’s a good place to start, plus it’ll raise the T levels naturally.

    That’s my say, and I’ll say no more.
    100% agree. I'm starting back and can only bench 135lbs. right now. Not worried about it, it'll go up and has always been my weakest lift. I do deadlifts, powercleans, clean and press in my outdoor area. Those are the workouts I feel like Rick Flair "Whooo!" after a set.
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    You either have the drive or not, it's entirely up to you. As far as gyms, you don't need them.
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    Originally Posted by MustangMark83 View Post
    I need motivation to go back to the gym but I am not sure I have the motivation. I honestly wish I would have started lifting in my 20's
    1) You don't need motivation, this is a fallacy. You just do it until the habit forms.

    2) People who started in their teens like me still have life/health issues and de-trained points. Stop feeling sorry for yourself, nothing good will come of it. The grass is not greener and we don't have it easier than you.

    3) Get to work, start right now.
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  18. #18
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    If you want to feel like a debbie downer, imagine what you'll look like as you age from this point into your 40s and 50s, with every downside that comes with it....while you're NOT doing anything to combat it fitness-wise. Especially being a former large guy, if you don't curb certain habits or make new ones at minimum, you're in for trouble. You mention lack of motivation, but that should be enough. It doesn't take much to improve yourself a bit, your routine and/or nutrition must be off the wall or useless if you're not getting anywhere in all that time.

    If you think you have Low T, get w/your doctor and check it out. There should be no reason why you can't add any strength to your lifts in an entire year, that's just ridiculuos. Your trainer should be beaten for allowing you to waste even a month without ANY progress, let alone many. I've trained women in their 50s and got them stronger, leaner, and in the best shape of their lives, and that wasn't even as a personal trainer but a friend giving routines and guidelines.
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  19. #19
    Humble Megalomaniac ElrondHubbard's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by StinnerOzz View Post
    If you want to feel like a debbie downer, imagine what you'll look like as you age from this point into your 40s and 50s, with every downside that comes with it....while you're NOT doing anything to combat it fitness-wise. Especially being a former large guy, if you don't curb certain habits or make new ones at minimum, you're in for trouble. You mention lack of motivation, but that should be enough. It doesn't take much to improve yourself a bit, your routine and/or nutrition must be off the wall or useless if you're not getting anywhere in all that time.

    If you think you have Low T, get w/your doctor and check it out. There should be no reason why you can't add any strength to your lifts in an entire year, that's just ridiculuos. Your trainer should be beaten for allowing you to waste even a month without ANY progress, let alone many. I've trained women in their 50s and got them stronger, leaner, and in the best shape of their lives, and that wasn't even as a personal trainer but a friend giving routines and guidelines.
    On spread, but it could not have been said any better.
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  20. #20
    Registered User kyle38's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by ECGordyn View Post
    OP, I wonder if you had suboptimal programming. Working with a trainer 5 days a week doesn't guarantee great muscle building. What exactly were you doing in the gym for all that time?

    You might just need to start a barbell-centered program. Several good free ones are Fierce 5, Candito Linear, AllPros, Stronglifts, Starting Strength, and others.
    Kinda of thinking the same thing. If your doing high sets and high reps, where is the recovery time for the muscles to grow? Regardless there seems to be a major lack of goals... I'd figure out what you want first. Skinny tummies don't mean much unless your competing to be honest. Most guys aren't going to put on muscle without putting on fat either. My honest thought is get a trainer and gets some goals. Maybe set the first goal to bench 200lbs in 6 weeks, and start tracking your progress. If you take it seriously and work at it the right way, by week 6 your mind set will be completely different.
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    1) Decide if you want to look better
    2) Decide if you're willing to put in effort to accomplish that goal
    3) If you are then find the right way to do so
    4) Carry out your plan

    Currently you seem to be having problems with #1 and #2, we can't really help with that part. When you're ready for #3 let us know.

    FYI, you're not the only one around here who started later and many of them look amazing now.
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    You know, I get it. I used to be a big guy myself, lost some 60 lbs from my peak. But there are guys on here who in their 50s decided to drop a hundred or more pounds, and then get jacked.

    You think they started with a big bucket of motivation? No, just like you and me, they were sitting around doing all the wrong crap, many of them feeling sorry for themselves. Then one day, they decided to do something about it.

    It sucked. It hurt. It meant doing things they didn’t want to do, like sticking to a nutrition plan, skipping the bar, or going out in -10 degree weather for another 10km run. But they (I) did it, not because they (I) were motivated, but because they (I) were determined to change.

    You’ve got the knowledge in this forum. We’ll help with advice. But only you can decide that you want to do it.

    So choose now: feel sorry for yourself, or fix yourself. It’s all on you.
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  23. #23
    Registered User xTeTe's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by MustangMark83 View Post
    I guess I wasn't clear. I was eating right, in my opinion, to lose belly fat AND ALSO put on muscle. I wanted to look shredded. I lost some weight, but gained no muscle. So I got one of the two things I hoped for. I was simply curious that me not eating enough contributed to the lack of muscle gain, or if it really was me starting this too late in life. I guess just saying "I'm too old and have low T" is the easy excuse, right?
    Okay, so it sounds like you know how to cut, that's good. But, you want to build muscle too right? Then be okay with carrying extra weight for a while. Keep eating extra calories, lean food high in protein, and not junk.

    So, with issue being not being to build muscle what it your program like? Are you progressive overloading? Are you giving your muscles enough time to recover? What kind of exercises are you doing?
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    Originally Posted by xTeTe View Post
    Okay, so it sounds like you know how to cut, that's good. But, you want to build muscle too right? Then be okay with carrying extra weight for a while. Keep eating extra calories, lean food high in protein, and not junk.

    So, with issue being not being to build muscle what it your program like? Are you progressive overloading? Are you giving your muscles enough time to recover? What kind of exercises are you doing?
    Don't think I agree with the "extra calories" part. They don't want to be TOO low, but if one is starting out overweight and not properly trained, then one can build muscle and lose fat at the same time while remaining in a moderate deficit. With the surplus, he may build muscle, but it will likely continue to be invisible under the fat. The first priority should always be a healthy body weight, aesthetics is secondary to that.
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    Registered User xTeTe's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by ElrondHubbard View Post
    Don't think I agree with the "extra calories" part. They don't want to be TOO low, but if one is starting out overweight and not properly trained, then one can build muscle and lose fat at the same time while remaining in a moderate deficit. With the surplus, he may build muscle, but it will likely continue to be invisible under the fat. The first priority should always be a healthy body weight, aesthetics is secondary to that.
    Fair point. I guess it comes down to where you're starting from. If he's back at a higher weight than he's comfortable with, then I'd dial back the intake a bit.
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    It wouldn't hurt to get test checked out op.
    If you are low T for whatever reason this won't help at all.
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    I had low test and saw a specialist. Your general practitioner may be one of those that thinks that you're ok at 200 or some such silly thing.

    First thing you do is go in your gym of choice and get to know some of the big guys and ask a few of them what doctor they use for test. Some will deny they use it and some really don't but you can be that a lot of them use it either via prescription or they get it in the mail illegally.

    What you want to do is find a doctor that is sold on the benefits of testosterone and who will be comfortable with your test levels in the 600 to 1000 range. Don't be duped by people that say taking test is bad for you. That's pure BS. As long as you get it under a doctors care you should be fine.

    I've been taking it for almost 10 years and know guys that have been for over 20 years and we're some of the healthiest people you could ever hope to meet.

    The statistics are that about half the men over 50 are low on testosterone and many men are low all their lives and there's nothing to be ashamed of if you get supplementation.

    It's just a hormone. But it's the essence of what makes a man a man and putting on much muscle without high levels of it either naturally or with injections (forget the silly cream) is an exercise in frustration. If you really want to know more about testosterone get the book from ebay that's out of print but still available for cheap called "The Testosterone Solution" and by the time you're half way through it like most of my friends I loaned the book to you'll run out and find a good specialist that will help you achieve beast levels of performance.

    You still have to do the hard work but it's so much more fun when you can see steady gains and you recover much faster from your workouts and have better mental clarity etc... Not to mention your sex drive will go through the roof...

    Nuff said........
    Working out is both and art and a science and although I love to learn as much as I can about it I try to never lose the sheer joy of just doing it. I feel that many people over complicate it and feel that their way is the best or only way.
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  28. #28
    Registered User xTeTe's Avatar
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    I just did one of those saliva mail in kits that measures free test for like $40. Super easy to order and they send you the kit... Spit in the vail and ship it to the lab. They get your results in about a week. They measure it in picograms/mL though.
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    Originally Posted by xTeTe View Post
    I just did one of those saliva mail in kits that measures free test for like $40. Super easy to order and they send you the kit... Spit in the vail and ship it to the lab. They get your results in about a week. They measure it in picograms/mL though.
    You sgould do an update when you get results back. I'd be interested in seeing the processes. Do they upsell without regard, or is it legit... That'd be interesting to see.
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  30. #30
    Registered User xTeTe's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by kyle38 View Post
    You sgould do an update when you get results back. I'd be interested in seeing the processes. Do they upsell without regard, or is it legit... That'd be interesting to see.
    I did it a while ago. They said the top of the range was 185 pg/ml and I was at 158. I think the low end was like 49 pg/ml

    No upsells at all. The kit was through everlywell. They have like 25 different types of home tests you can do.

    I can pm you a link directly to the results if you'd like to see what it looks like.
    Last edited by xTeTe; 10-04-2020 at 11:46 PM.
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