tanlines saidOk, here's my dilemma...I'm in my 40's, been thin all my life and haven't ever worked out much. Now I am starting to get a little soft in the mid section.
I just joined a gym and I hope to get into the groove of working out. What type of diet should I be following to supplement my workouts? I basically want to bulk up my chest, arms, back and shoulders....oh, yeah...abs would me nice too. I know, I know...I want what all guys want. Is it too late at my age? And I assume that I should be eating alot, to fuel muscle growth...but what about the midsection I have already got...won't that just add to it? Never been a big fan of cardio in the past since I was skinny and avoided it like the plague or else I'd lose weight. Any suggestions would be appreciated guys!
First of all, this is the start of a brand new life for you, so congrats on deciding to start this new journey! No, it's not too late; I was NEVER athletic and also started my life change in my 40's and if I knew now what it meant, I would have started out much, much earlier!
First of all, you did not say whether you're using a trainer. If not, I would HIGHLY recommend getting a trainer for at least several weeks, have several sessions for him/her to point you in the correct direction in terms of what and how you need to do in terms of strength training. Once you have the proper techniques and the necessary exercises you can do it on your own.
With regards to diet, PLEASE remember that it's a TOTAL change, and you should do it gradually. A good place to start is what you drink. Your goal would be to COMPLETELY ELIMINATE sweet, sugary drinks such as soda, both diet and regular, and most fruit juices. Learn to drink water and UNSWEETENED ice tea as your main beverages. Learn to eliminate adding sugar to teas and coffee. How do you do all this? GRADUALLY. You do a gradual elimination. If you drink 4 sodas a day, try only drinking 3 a day for 2 weeks, then 2 a day for 2 weeks, and so on. If you put 2 sugars in your coffee, try putting 1 1/2 for 2 weeks, then 1, etc. Will all this taste not right or have you craving more? Of course, but no one said that it would be easy.
IF you drink whole milk, try to switch to skim milk. Gradually eliminate fried foods from your diet. Slowly add more fish, fresh fruit and vegetables to your diet. Gradually eliminate snack foods from your diet.
MY personal opinion is that it's NOT NECESSARY to take any kind of shakes, protein supplements or any of that stuff to have a nice, fit appearance. If you eat the right foods and do the right amount of exercise, you will develop a nice, lean but proportioned physic that will be easier to maintain than anything you get from taking all those protein supplements. They cost money, and more importantly make you this bloated looking mess.
I also DO NOT subscribe to this bulking/cutting phases BS. Maybe if you want to be a professional bodybuilder, but for the average person it's definitely NOT the right approach.