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Author Topic: Putting injuries and illness behind me..  (Read 13179 times)
Loafman
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Posts: 122


« on: January 07, 2017, 12:38:16 AM »

Hi all, hope all of you are well. I still recognise a number of the names here, although I've been missing from the forum for 6 years or so..  Shocked

Don't know if anyone will remember me.. but I've been on and off the forum for 10 years or more! The reason I vanished is because I had a pretty rough time of things a while back, not that I'm feeling sorry for myself.. quite the opposite actually..  Grin

Over the years I've had quite a few issues with my lower spine, and each time I've decided to get back into training, something has gone wrong.. which is the reason why I vanished from here back in 2011, shortly after returning from a back injury  Roll Eyes

I started a training journal back in 2010, and was making pretty good progress.. until.. I stacked my pushbike whilst off-roading and mashed myself up again. I'm good at doing things like that. At least it wasn't a motorbike this time  Roll Eyes

I was in quite a lot of pain for a number of months, and was unable to do very much at all.. even walking was painful. It was a rather depressing time, and I'm embarrassed to admit that alcohol became my good friend.

For years I found myself drinking on a daily basis, even after my back had become a lot better. It was early last year that I decided I should do something about the drinking, so I went cold turkey and banned myself from buying alcohol. If I'm honest, the main trigger was that a childhood friend of mine died from liver disease in late 2015 after many years of heavy drinking.

Since then I've been getting my life back in order, and to be honest am feeling pretty much back to my old self again. Even my back has been behaving for about 4 years or so. I've been eating reasonably healthily for several months now, and have decided I would like to get back into weight training.. or maybe chomping at the bit to get back to the weights is a better way of putting it!  Wink

I still seem to have a decent turn of strength, despite the 'issues', although my stamina sucks!

I am weighing in at 92.9kg (at 5'9") at the moment, which is less than I weighed the last time I started a journal in 2010, maybe because I've been eating quite healthy for a while now. I'm obviously carrying a fair bit of fat and do have a bit of a spare tyre and moobs at the moment, so that needs to be addressed.  Grin

I haven't set any specific goals as yet, but would like to lose some of the flabby bits first, and then gradually start to up the weights and see where it leads me.

Anyway, I don't do off-roading biking any more, so that's one less thing that can get in my way!  Roll Eyes

It's good to be back.. peace!
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McFly
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Posts: 71



« Reply #1 on: January 08, 2017, 02:01:49 AM »

Good to see you back and turning things around Loafman.  I remember you from way back.

Good luck on the journey.  I'll be following.
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Loafman
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Posts: 122


« Reply #2 on: January 09, 2017, 11:54:07 AM »

Cheers man! It's good to be back, and seeing the progress a lot of the other members (that I remember from years back) have made is an added motivation.

I'm trying a few things differently this time too. Whilst I've been eating healthier foods for a while now, I have decided to try a different approach to nutrition altogether. I've been gradually adjusting my diet over the last few weeks and am aiming for a mostly Palaeolithic diet, as I feel that may be beneficial for my body chemistry.

Now, I know not everyone shares in the idea of body chemistry and genetics being related to somatotypes, where each individual roughly fits along a sliding scale from ectomorph, through mesomorph and onto endomorph. But as the old saying goes, "You never know until you try", and I always like to try things for myself. So I intend to try working my diet and training based on the somatotype that I believe is my make up, that being somewhere in between mesomorph and endomorph (I don't believe I am in any way ectomorph, so I've ruled that out). I've yet to establish where I believe I fit exactly, but I'll start by basing it around 50% of each.

My reasons for doing so are as follows:-

Mesomorph parts: I can just touch my middle finger and thumb around my wrists (with a small amount of squeeze).
I gain muscle and strength easily, and get very strong, very quickly, after only a few months of training. I hold good strength naturally, even with a sedentary lifestyle. looking at myself front on with my arms by my side, I can still see roundness in my shoulders despite not touching weights for 6 years, and my biceps still look big and round when flexed.

Endomorph parts: I carry an unsightly layer of insulation (I like this description, it's better than saying I'm a flabby sod). Although my arms, shoulders and traps are a lot leaner than my belly and moobs.
I have enormous thick lower legs (calves) and ankles which are very thick set.

It's almost as though I have the upper torso of a mesomorph and the legs of an endomorph. The in between bit (mid torso) is a mix of the two.

So based on these findings, I am going to be designing my training and nutrition to suit the theory that my somatotype is around half endomorph and half mesomorph, which will mean a macro-nutrient intake based on (approximately) 35% of calories coming from proteins, 35% of calories from fats and 30% of calories from complex carbohydrates and fruits. This is an approach I have not used before, so I will see how it goes.  Smiley
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Loafman
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Posts: 122


« Reply #3 on: January 10, 2017, 09:03:11 AM »

Since Monday the 2nd of January (not a new years resolution by the way, just seemed a good time to start), I have been consuming a Palaeolithic based diet and have been very strict with it. I am consuming no grain like wheat, oats or barley (other than a little wholegrain rice), and have eliminated all other refined carbs and sugars (except fruits) from my diet. I have not actually started any exercise program yet, although I do have a bit of a home gym setup which I am currently preparing.

I have been consuming around 2000 calories a day, split into 4 meals. I will be breaking this into maybe 5 or 6 meals once I am into my training, but am currently finding it easier to digest just 4 meals a day until I start on the iron - so to speak.

I wake up between 6am and 7am most days, and hit brekky about an hour after waking (I will reduce this gap over time).

Breakfast usually consists of:-

(all weights are uncooked weights)

3 whole eggs
3 egg whites
30g of wholegrain rice or 100g sweet potato (this alternates between meals)
50g of kale
50g of broccoli
150ml semi skimmed milk (not technically Palaeolithic I know)
10-15g of sunflower or pumpkin seeds
I may throw in an apple or satsuma too.

I then have a meal every 4-5 hours or so, which will be along the lines of:-

150g skinless chicken breast fillet
30g wholegrain rice or 100g sweet potato
100g broccoli or 100g kale (or a combination of both)
25g sunflower or pumpkin seeds
1 apple or satsuma

I rotate the chicken breast fillet and seeds for a 150g minced beef burger (home made from 10% fat minced beef), or 175g of trimmed pork loin steak, or 150g of skinless/boneless chicken thighs or sometimes tuna/salmon. Compensating for any macro/calorie shortfall with seeds, nuts and fruit.

I'm obviously drinking a lot of water as well.

I really think this diet is working well for me already, despite the fact that I haven't started training yet. And it is displaying some pretty remarkable anabolic effects. I have noticed a dramatic increase in my libido (which wasn't low to begin with), waking in the night for a pee can be quite an awkward affair, I need to be a bit of a contortionist so as not to pee on the ceiling (you guys know what I mean!), so I wonder if it has upped my natural testosterone levels?

The other remarkable effects are a noticeable improvement in my mood and energy levels (although I accept that with any new regime this can be a placebo effect), but one thing that isn't a placebo effect is the fact I have a flatter stomach/gut, and my initial weight when starting this diet was 92.9kg, but yesterday I weighed 91.4kg. I can't say how reliable that is, although both measurements were taken at about 7pm.

I have also noticed that I am not (not yet at least!) having any simple carb cravings, although I will resist them should they rear their head.

So, all in all I've had a rather interesting start to 2017.. and I am looking forward to all the further benefits to come.
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Loafman
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Posts: 122


« Reply #4 on: January 11, 2017, 09:21:39 AM »

Last night I started the exercise part of my new lifestyle, having already implemented my new diet. It felt so damn good to be lifting weights again. I'm not going to lie, last night demonstrated to me just how desperately out of shape I am, I really wasn't prepared for just how much if I'm honest. On a positive note, it just means I will need to make even more gains to get where I want, which is the whole purpose.  Wink

I did a brief session because I did not want jump in too hard and give myself DOMS to the point of being physically dysfunctional for the next day or two,. Slowly, slowly, catchy monkey.

I did some basic stretching, followed by some basic callisthenics like press ups and sit ups.

Press ups: 3 sets x 10 10 9
Sit ups: 3 sets x 10 9 7

I then set up some 14kg dumbbells.

Standing overhead press: 2 sets of 10
Standing bicep curls: 2 sets of 10
Bent over rows (each arm): 2 sets of 10

And if I'm honest, by this point my upper body was feeling really pumped! I gave it about 20 minutes until the pump had subsided and hit the exercise bike for 25 mins on a low intensity.

Some of the above felt like I was nearing failure, which shocked me a bit, as it's such light weights. My stamina needs some serious work.

I am feeling it this morning, especially in my front delts, although it's not too bad, just a nice amount. Oh how I've missed DOMS! It truly is a pleasurable pain..  Grin
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Loafman
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Posts: 122


« Reply #5 on: January 13, 2017, 09:35:29 AM »

Had another pop at some starter weights last night (was waiting for a friend to join me, but he pussied out, so it was nearly 9pm by the time I started). Set up a 30kg barbell and did several sets of flat bench, seated shoulder press and dead lifts, doing sets of 12 with minimal rest periods of maybe 15 to 20 seconds until fatigue was starting to set in (didn't push too hard as I'm still easing into things). Also did some dumbbell (14kg) and EZ bar (22kg) work like bent over rows and bicep curls etc. All of this gave me a great pump again. These weights do feel really light, but I am mainly working on my endurance for now, which is currently pretty darn dismal.

After training I had a home made burger (Pro 29.3g, Fat 11g, Carb 1.6g) and had a bag of mushroom stir fry with 10g of oil. This was followed by about 200g of strawberries. Total Macro content was approximately 36g of Proteins, 23g of fats, 30g of carbs. This gave me that gorgeous feeling that you get where you can 'feel' all the nutrient loaded blood flowing around to the muscles you've just worked.. holy sh*t! I'd forgotten just how blissful that feeling is! DOMS are just starting to kick in now (11 hours later), hopefully they are at a good level but not too heavy as I have a busy afternoon today.

Diet has been as strict as a dominatrix, and I've been trying out new recipes like home made burgers etc. I haven't weighed myself for a few days, I'm trying to resist the temptation. I want to weigh in once a week max so that I can see the real difference, I don't want to be misled by daily fluctuations. I definitely do feel more energetic, lighter and bouncier if you know what I mean?

I can't believe that for months I kept making excuses to myself to put off this diet and exercise change, I needed this in my life so much! I've always been in love with the iron, I guess I've just been playing hard to get!  Grin

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Loafman
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Posts: 122


« Reply #6 on: January 14, 2017, 09:00:27 PM »

When I started my fat loss program I had the idea of implementing some intermittent fasting into my diet, to try and get things motoring nicely for fat loss. Of course, I realise not many on this forum would likely use intermittent fasting due to the potential negative effects while holding lower levels of body fat.. I, on the other hand, don't really have that problem  Tongue

I have also adopted a predominantly Palaeolithic diet (with a tiny bit of dairy and a little rice added now and then).

So at the start, I weighed in at 92.9kg (that was recorded on the 3rd of January), by the 9th of January I had shed 1.5kg, and was down to 91.4kg. I decided at this point that I didn't actually need to start intermittent fasting because my losses were very rapid anyway. I am now reconsidering this as I naughtily weighed myself tonight (at 7pm), and whilst I have lost a little more, now 90.9kg, it seems the initial loss was significantly faster (could it be due to the change of diet?). I have been completely strict with my diet and do not want to drop calories any further as I estimate my BMR to be around 1850 calories a day (using the Katch-McArdle equation), and with that I estimate my TDEE to be around 2400 calories a day (possibly a little more now I'm hitting some weights). I am currently consuming around 1800 calories a day, so as you can see, quite a deficit. I do feel I have a lot of body fat to lose, maybe 15kg or so, before I get to where I want (aiming at around 10-12% BF). I'd like to get there by early May, for my 44th birthday, as I am off to Lanzarote for a week. So around a kilo a week would be great.  Wink

I'm thinking of doing a 16-8 split, 16 hours fasting, 8 hours to eat. Shouldn't be a problem to gobble down 1800 calories in 8 hours! I wake at about 7am and hit my pit at about 11pm, so I think I will eat between 1pm and 9pm, that sounds reasonable to me.

Any thoughts, ideas, criticisms etc. gratefully received.  Grin
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Loafman
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Posts: 122


« Reply #7 on: January 15, 2017, 09:32:32 PM »

Woke up this morning feeling like death warmed up, had a headache and felt very weak. The first thing that I thought was that due to my lowish carb diet it might be a minor hypoglycaemic episode, although my heart rate was normal, I was not at all hungry and I didn't have the sweats (I'm not diabetic by the way, although I have had minor hypoglycaemic episodes once or twice before, but only after great bodily exertion and no food) . But upon speaking to my brother it became obvious that he felt pretty much the same this morning, and he had attributed it to a cold he had (he is eating the same diet as he always has). I had noticed I had a cough and sore throat creeping in over the last few days, so thankfully I think it seems to be that.

Anyway, long story short, the last thing I fancied this morning was food, as I felt it would probably come back to haunt me. I rode the morning out without problem and had some food at about 2pm, once I felt a little better, and have since been round my mums for a roast lamb dinner (first sort of cheat meal since I started my diet). So my first day of intermittent fasting worked well, despite feeling like crap this morning.

No training today because of the above, hopefully I will feel better tomorrow and can get back to it as my upper body DOMS are gone and I need to chuck some weights around!  Grin
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Loafman
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Posts: 122


« Reply #8 on: January 18, 2017, 11:45:50 AM »

Had a very good upper body session on Monday evening. Weights were quite low, but intensity was good and managed my goal of 5 sets of each exercise with the reps I wanted. I haven't had much in the way of DOMS though, so I think I'll need to up the weight a bit.

Yesterday was cardio day, so I did just over an hour on the exercise bike (a NordicTrak C5 ZL, which I picked up nearly new for about 100). It offers various programs, some of which can be quite challenging, especially to an unfit brute like me. It indicated around 600 calories burnt in total, although I don't know how much to read into that.

Following this I noticed a slight issue with the diet, training and intermittent fasting combination I am following at the moment. I play pool in the Bedfordshire league, and Tuesday evening is match night.
So last night I turned up as usual, maybe 1.5 hours after training, following a quick shower and some food. We had a home game and the other team were running rather late.
By the time my first game came round, I had started feeling a bit jittery, my hands were cold, and I felt like I had just done some high intensity training that had depleted all of my energy.
I started my game quite well, I managed to get down to the black ball, and then lost the ability to focus on the object ball. I looked a right mug, I had 3 really easy chances to pot the black and flunked them all! I ended up losing the frame.  Embarrassed

I think that due to my lowish carb/low calorie diet that incorporates weights and cardio, I had totally depleted my glycogen stores, which led to the above.

I knew I needed something with carbs in, and of course, straight after my frame came the food, as they feed us all some form of junk food at a game, ranging from deep fried sausages, chicken nuggets, onion rings etc, which I usually decline. Tonight it was quiche lorraine and chips. I'm a little partial to quiche, so I had 3 slices, just to give myself a boost. I washed it down with a pure orange juice and within several minutes was feeling a whole lot better again.

I played my next game shortly after and won with ease.

I really think I should have a raised carb day maybe twice a week, just to replenish my glycogen levels. It will probably help with training too.

Well, live and learn, onwards and upwards!  Grin

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Loafman
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Posts: 122


« Reply #9 on: January 19, 2017, 12:01:05 PM »

Last night marked the first leg session of my return to training. Did the usual warm up, and decided to start with barbell squats. I don't have a squat rack at home and was training alone, also, as it was my first lower body session since starting up training again I kept the weight very low, around 31kg inc. the bar. This way I could just easily press it over my head and lower it onto my shoulders (and the reverse to offload it).

I did 5 sets, 10,10,10,10,15 still had plenty in the tank of course, but didn't want to overdo the first session in 6 years.

I then did dead lifts using the same bar/weight (keeping a close eye on my lower spine which has been a very big issue in the past).

I did 3 sets 10,10,10 and decided to call it a day at that as my quads were burning.. not a long session, but very satisfying.

I'm glad I stopped when I did because my quads are completely dead this morning, and I'm walking every where like a penguin! Haha..  Grin

Feels ace though! Really enjoyed the session, and look forward to adding some more weight as time progresses.  Cool
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Loafman
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Posts: 122


« Reply #10 on: January 20, 2017, 03:30:42 PM »

Following my squats and dead lifts on Wednesday evening, my quads are in bits! They were sore yesterday, but today they are even worse. I might have overdone my first leg session a little.  Grin

Even sitting down is painful due to bending my knees with weight on my quads. I can't get down low enough to get into my car. In fact I am walking almost straight legged because of the DOMS! I can feel it a tiny bit in my glutes too, but nothing like in my quads.

I can imagine I am in for quite a few days of this before I am back to normal.. good job I really enjoy the feeling of DOMS.. haha!  Cool Tongue
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McFly
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Posts: 71



« Reply #11 on: January 20, 2017, 11:05:37 PM »

Following with interest buddy.  Sounds like you're making great personal progress.  Keep learning from the hiccups and stay at it!
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Loafman
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Posts: 122


« Reply #12 on: January 21, 2017, 04:04:59 PM »

Cheers fella, and yeah, it's a bit of a learning curve again after 6 years out. But I'm adapting to things very quickly and have a good idea of how to listen to and understand my body having been in this position before.  Smiley

When I got up this morning my quads were a lot better, so I am walking properly again and can get in my car again now! Haha!  Grin

I have made a few adaptations to my diet over the last 3 days or so. I am still consuming 1800-1850 calories a day, and still doing intermittent fasting (16  hrs of fasting, 8 hrs of eating per day) but I have adjusted my macro's from 35% protein, 35% fat, 30% carbs to around 32% protein, 32% fat, 36% carbs due to the carb depletion episode I had the other evening. So far it seems to be working well. I have also introduced white potatoes back into my diet for a little bit of carb diversity now I've upped my carb intake. I am still avoiding all grains (bar 50g of wholgrain rice a day), and I'm avoiding all processed foods.

A major positive side effect of this new lifestyle that is becoming very noticeable (not just since the adjustments to my diet as mentioned above, but since my original diet and lifestyle change) is the large improvement in mental clarity that I am experiencing. My brain seems able to process things much faster and more effectively than before, especially where lateral thinking is concerned. Strange, but it definitely seems to be happening.

Well, tonight will be upper body (should have been last night, but the quads were too off putting!) and I will be increasing the weights a bit, maybe 20% on some exercises, because the last upper body session didn't tax me enough.

 Smiley
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egg-custard
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Posts: 1673



« Reply #13 on: January 21, 2017, 06:29:11 PM »

great journal...very inspirational and il be following with interest

great work...eggy..(andy)
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Loafman
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Posts: 122


« Reply #14 on: January 22, 2017, 12:41:59 PM »

Cheers Andy, I'm glad it's of some interest to others too. I am detailing things so that in the future I can look back at my journey as a kind of story, it'll be interesting to read back through it in a year or two after I have progressed quite a bit. And if it help inspire anyone else on the way then all the better.  Smiley

Upper body training went well last night, with good intensity throughout all the exercises. I can definitely feel it, especially in my biceps and delts at the moment, they are feeling quite spent still although DOMS hasn't set in much yet. Total weight lifted (between all exercises) in about 40 minutes was 6107kg according to my calculations. It was 5656kg in 55 minutes on Monday 16th Jan. Only my fourth upper body session since I've been back training, so working into it nicely.

Diet is working well since I made the recent adjustments, so that will remain unchanged unless any other issues arise. I weighed in at 90.2kg yesterday evening (0.7kg loss in a week), although I have been loading with creatine monohydrate for the last 3 days, so I may have gained some water weight which may have skewed the result somewhat and have probably lost a fair bit more than 0.7kg, because I may have gained a pound or more due to creatine loading. So I'm more than happy with everything at the moment.

Not much more to report right now. Onwards and upwards!
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