My fitness journey started by accident, around 20 years ago..
At that time I had finished college and was not involved in any exercise program. Having a full time job made me indulge in things I couldn’t do before, like eating out in fancy restaurants. I slowly grew a protruding stomach, which I let get out of hand.
It didn’t effect me as I was dating an attractive petite blonde, who had no complaints about my body.
One day, my mother saw me without my top on and commented that my belly was getting close to my heart. I should be careful because I didn’t want any future health problems, my mother was a nurse so I took her advice seriously.
Shortly after, I began a weight loss regimen. I took up playing squash for fun, I would play for hours and over a year or so the weight came off.
I decided at this time to join a gym, I always wanted to have a good muscular body but figured it was too much work. At the gym, I made a friend who had similar aspirations on getting some size. He became my training partner and we ended up working out together for a very long time, until he got married.
Like all newbies, I focused on chest and arms.
Luckily, we read a lot of material on bodybuilding.com and other forums to get proper workout information.
My training partner would always find new ideas and we would try it. One time he read about doing 10 sets of squats, that was probably the most gruesome exercise routine I ever did. Afterwards, I was seeing stars like a character in a roadrunner cartoon.
The main thing that helped my development, was being consistent. Even after seeing results, we always kept pushing and changing up the routine.
Today, I see a lot of programs that people love to talk about. The 5 x 5 workout comes to mind, I have tried it but felt the power moves aren’t always the best for me.
Starting out, I would be realistic with what you are trying to achieve in the gym. My body shape was that of an ectomorph’s, which is basically a skinny guy. It wasn’t easy for me to put on size, I had to complete a lot of compound movements.
It takes years and lots of time in the gym to get a decent body with some size. There is no shortcut, which means don’t mess with steroids. I have tried them myself, so I don’t want to be a hypocrite. The problem is the gains you get from them will not last, plus guys get hooked onto the feeling of being on them and don’t want to come off. I know many guys who fall under this category and to top things off, their penises doesn’t work without the blue pill. I consider that a fate worse than death, many guys enjoy the bonus effects of attracting lizards for sex with their chiselled bodies. However, a lizard will be very disappointed if your wood fails to start the needed camp fire. For her that would be like getting into a Hummer that has a dead ignition.
For any newbie or young guy starting out, I would recommend mastering exercises like push-ups and pull-ups.
These two movements will give you impressive results for your upper body. I would suggest different grips like supinate and pronate (palms facing in or palms facing out) for pull-ups. For push-ups, there is diamond style (hands together forming a diamond), close and wide stance. For legs I would recommend doing air squats, which is squats without any weight. Til this day I still do them in sets of 25 and 100 in total. I like choosing a nice round number like 100 as a target.
I wouldn’t recommend doing heavy deadlifts or squats. Talk to any old guy in the gym and they will tell you that they cannot do those exercises any more, due to injuries or in my case arthritis. I found this out by accident from my doctor, who told me arthritis is simply the wear and tear of your joints.
Once you have mastered these movements, then you should join a gym and start out with free weights (dumbbells). Free weights gives you a better range of motion and most gyms should have weights up to 100llbs (45kg).
Again, be consistent in the gym and get a good workout partner if you can. I know a lot of guys fall off if they don’t see the results they expect. We all have different body types and the truth is some guys can put on size easy, but they cannot get cut as easy as the next guy. It isn’t all about genetics, as they fcuk genetics and train hard. It is a lifestyle that will help you in the long run.
Depending where you live, I don’t believe it is a must to join a gym. Obviously, people in colder climates cannot workout in the cold.
My point is that if you live in a warmer climate, you can go to your local park and do many exercises in the playground. I am a big fan of barstarzz(playground exercises), which started out in the inner-city of New York and has developed into a worldwide craze.
Something I should have mentioned earlier, is that I am not a big fan of supplements. I do not buy expensive protein powders, the few times I have used them they have caused me to have a bloated stomach and pass gas (fart) a lot. I have never tried creatine either, I had friends who tried it once and had a bad reaction to it. As I mentioned before, I have dabbled with steroids, Testosterone being the main one. I am not a “juicer” and even though I am in my late 40s, I no longer feel the need to use them or any TRT (testosterone replacement therapy). I am more into proper nutrition now, which I will discuss further at a later date.
I am no longer concerned about size, it is all about the definition. I don’t believe it is healthy to carry too much weight, I am hovering around 200lbs at 5 feet 11. I am more than happy with my body, I have never missed more than a month in the gym in over 20 years. It is a good way to relieve stress.
As a older guy, I suggest doing lots of stretching. This will help you avoid injuries and make you more flexible in your day to day life. The main thing is to protect your joints, lifting heavy weights will not do that.
My current routine consists primarily of pull-ups, push-ups and some core movements using the gymnastic rings. As a man of colour I was not blessed with great calves, so I spend a lot of time on them (black man curse).
I train 3 days a week, chest/shoulder day, back/legs day and what I call lagging body part day. As you can see I don’t do an arms day, they get plenty enough action from doing pull-ups and push-ups. My abs get trained during core movement day, but I don’t believe you can overtrain abs. This is the one body part I believe sets apart the men from the boys. Sadly, abs are made in the kitchen and food is just as important, if not more important than exercise.
I hope this has helped you or at least motivated you to workout properly. The right body can have her wet.
Please let me know if you have any questions or concerns (by Rudebwoy).