I just joined a few days ago and I've had a rough start, lol. I couldn't post on the forums because of the site issues, so I posted on Scott's board instead. But now that's gone because I guess the site has been rolled back. Also, my account must have gotten deleted as well. Anyway, I created my account again from scratch and then re-entered my information and re-uploaded my pictures. I hope that's okay. I wasn't trying to scam a few extra days of free Platinum. :)
I will paste my original post below.
I’m looking for some advice from Scott or anyone else who would like to chime in. This seems like a really knowledgeable and supportive place. :)
Over the last three days, I’ve spent a good bit of time watching all of the workout videos in the PPL and 5-Day Bodybuilding Split programs. I’ve also read all of the comments that were posted after each video (on this site and on YouTube). After Easter, I’m going to start one of the programs for sure. However, I don’t really know which one I should do and I’m also undecided as to whether I should bulk or cut.
I have posted some pictures in my profile. Please check them out if you think that it will help you to help me.
Now, I suppose I should just list as much relevant info as I can, so that you’ll be better able to point me in the right direction.
Age: 35 (definitely not old, but starting to get that “running out of time” feeling. Like, if I don’t get serious NOW and stay consistent, it’s only gonna get harder and harder to do so the older I get.)
Weight: 150 lbs.
Body Fat %: I’m thinking somewhere between 15-20%. I’d probably say 18% if I was forced to pick a number. But do I really have any idea? No! :) I used an online calculator and it came back with 19.64%. I also used calipers and got a result of 16.7%. I ordered a Chisel last week, so hopefully that’ll be more accurate. Although I’ve certainly read mixed reviews on that front.
Weightlifting Experience: I’m one of those guys who has done enough weightlifting over the years to know that he can obtain positive results from it, but who has never really stuck with it for much longer than a year or so. Generally, I’ll be pretty consistent at first and then life will get busier, causing me to miss some workouts. Then, with each workout I miss, it will become exponentially easier to miss yet another, and I will eventually end up dropping the routine altogether. Not good. Obviously, I’d like it to be different this time. Watching Scott’s videos and seeing all of the interaction between him and the rest of you makes me feel like this website might possibly be the last piece of the puzzle that’s finally clicking into place. I need structure, support and a knowledge base. And I think I may have found all three here.
Goal: I’m not really sure what’s realistic and what’s not. Obviously, at just 5’5”, I haven’t exactly been blessed with the greatest genetics in the world. But I suppose my ultimate goal is to be muscular and lean (i.e., visible abs, with no belly fat or love handles). I’ll never stand out in a crowd and that’s fine – I’m not even sure I would want to. But I would at least like to have the kind of body where someone can look at me and tell that this guy’s in shape, looks strong and obviously lifts weights. Now, maybe that means I’m 145 lbs. or maybe it means that I end up being 155 or 160. Again, it depends on what’s feasible and what’s not. But yeah, a ‘lean and muscular’ look is my ultimate goal.
Strength: I’m not sure if this really matters. I mean, it’s not about how much you can lift but how hard your muscles are working, right? But, just in case: for my last chest workout, I flat-benched 160 lbs. for 4 sets of 7 and then did 190 for just 2 reps. The last time I did deadlifts, I did 4 sets of 7 with 190 lbs. and then got 2 final reps with 230. And, finally, on my last leg day, I squatted 165 lbs. for 4 sets of 7 and then got an additional 2 reps with 195. I did other exercises during these workouts as well, but I just listed these to give you an idea of where I’m at right now. Again, it probably doesn’t even matter.
Workout Partner: No one. It’s just me. My three year old might pop in at some point, but she’s pretty much useless when it comes to spotting. So this means that I need to reign it in sometimes. If I decide to get overly ambitious and go for one rep too many, I could end up spending the rest of the night lying down on the bench with the barbell across my chest. :)
Equipment: I am working out at home. Here’s what I have:
- Bench. Can be flat or go on an incline.
- Rack. The height of the barbell can be adjusted here. So I can raise it up and do squats. No safety bars, so I don’t think I can do the Pin Press exercise. Although, I’ve been wondering about using my dip bars for that. I’m thinking if I put a dip bar on either side of the bench, then the barbell will bring up in them before it reaches my chest. Do you know what I mean?
- I have over 400 lbs. in free weights.
- Dumbbells (5s, 10s, 15s, 20s, 30s, 40s). I also have the ones that allow me to add my own weights, so I can make 25s, 35s, 45s, 50s, etc. if I need to.
- There’s a leg attachment on the bench, so I can do leg extensions and leg curls.
- Preacher curl attachment
- Dip bars, as I mentioned above. ‘Adjustable Power Brackets’ are what they’re actually called. I guess I could do inverted rows with them as well.
- Ab Roller
- Pull up station (the kind that goes on the top of a door frame)
- Last night, I ordered some Bodylastics resistance bands. I decided to do this so I could use them for the exercises that require cables (woodchoppers, lat pulldowns, tricep pulldowns, face pulls, etc.) Do you think this will be okay?
Well, that’s all the information that’s occurring to me at the moment. If anyone needs anything else, please just let me know. I very much appreciate any help I can get here.
TL;DR: I am mainly looking to decide TWO things: (1) Should I start PPL or the 5-Day Bodybuilding split? (2) Should I cut the belly fat/love handles first and then focus on bulking up and adding lean muscle….OR, should I bulk up first and then cut out the fat later?
Once I make these two decisions, I will use the Meal Plan part of the site to find out how I should be eating. Then I’ll likely post back here again and let you know the meal plan macros and see if you have any additional input on that. And, of course, right after Easter weekend, I will start one of the programs.
Thanks again. I really appreciate it. I’ve read so many words from some of you over the last few days, that I already feel like I know ya! :)