Getting toned: Overall workout suggestions and the use of protein

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Dec 17, 2008 5:21 AM GMT
    Let me start with, I'm a skinny guy that's quit smoking after 13 years and never touched anything fitness related after HS. Before I started to exercise, I had about as much muscle mass as a gerbil. My daily cardio was running to catch a train and my weight lifting was limited to those really big Long Islands that some bars have.

    I have no real desire to 'bulk' up. I do however wish to tone parts of me such as my abs and biceps. My legs have always been decent since I have pretty much walked everywhere and I'm impatient so I put Grandma and her powering walking group to shame. Plus I was getting these sorta man titties but the push-ups and rowing machine have cleared that situation right up but I wouldn't mind a little bit of perk in my pecks.

    So, I've been going at this for a couple of months now - I started with only cardio because the weight stuff scared me and I've since moved up to more. The workout I have below is what I have been at for just over a month now (it's been like 5 solid weeks). Here is my current routine:

    Mon-Sat:
    Various calisthenic and stability exersices twice a day (e.g. sit-ups, push-ups, lunges, leg raises of different kinds, etc). Reps with a 15lbs dumb bell in different styles with my arms.
    Total: about 1.5 hour a day (45min in the morning and 45 in the evening)

    Mon-Fri:
    I do 15 min of 3 of the following depending on what's available at the gym or what I'm in the mood for (total of 45 min).
    Treadmill HIIT - sorta, you can't really program them well enough. 2 min @ 4 mph, 2 min@ 8.5 mph, repeat and f*** around with the incline up to 5% if I really feel like dying that day
    Rowing Machine I can really abuse myself with this machine (I watched the video before I started using it... I do it correctly! icon_biggrin.gif ).
    Stair Master - I've gotten to the point that I almost run on it. I do intervals low is usually around level 2, high I start out at 15 and work up to 18.
    Bike resistance + speed. I don't know of a better way to word it - it's hard to peddle and I force myself to keep around 100 rpm

    I've seen virtually no change at all. It's not really my diet either - I've gone 28 years eating anything and everything I ever wanted and not gained weight and now I actually watch what I eat.

    I've gotten some muscle but it's not going any further (I can actually hold two cocktails at once!). I've been told I need to start consuming more protein. So how much should I be consuming? I know there isn't a definite answer for this and it all depends on me and my chemistry. I was looking through the bars and drinks today and notice a lot of them focus on 30g. Is that a good start?

    Another question about that is why before and/or after you work out? If it takes roughly 8 hours for your body to fully digest food, why eat it then? Is that how long it takes for your muscles to start repairing themselves and thus you are utilizing the protein you recently finished absorbing?

    I also know that my 'routine' isn't going to be have me to looking like 26mileman, but I should be gaining some muscle instead of staying at this place I am now - man titty free, no abs at all - not even a glimmer, legs that while not bad are not really all that and the ability to carry two - that's right, two! - cocktails at once.

    Suggestions?

    P.S. I tend to 'make light' of things and mock myself which can come off as me not being serious when in fact, I very much am.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Dec 17, 2008 5:16 PM GMT
    As far as protein, I've always read and been told to eat (in grams) the amount in pounds that I want to weigh. Right now, I want to weigh 180lbs, so I try my damnedest to eat 180g of protein per day. If you want to maintain where you're at now, you should be aiming to eat your bodyweight in grams daily. Don't worry, you won't get fat.

    When you work out, you tear your muscle fibers. This is when they need protein the most, so it's better to drink a protein shake with carbs directly after a workout, so that the protein can get to your muscles faster. You also want to eat a protein-rich meal, that will deliver protein over the next several hours to your muscles.
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    Dec 17, 2008 5:59 PM GMT
    if you don't experience "muscle failure" on the last rep, there will be no growth probably. alternatively, any gymnastic exercises are good to grow faster, i.e. gravitron, pull ups, push ups, working with your own body involves multiple joints, makes you work harder to stabilize the balance etc, provides strength along with muscle. but then there is genetics....
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Dec 18, 2008 12:29 AM GMT
    Eat more - more often! Lift more - more strength training (progressively more weight). Do less cardio. Simple recipe for success.icon_biggrin.gif
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    Dec 19, 2008 12:48 AM GMT
    Thank you for the tips. icon_smile.gif I'll definately start boosting up my protein intact and possible start working on actual weights more vs. using the Army's non-weights weight training.
  • vindog

    Posts: 1440

    Dec 22, 2008 6:04 PM GMT
    BTChicagoGuy saidThank you for the tips. icon_smile.gif I'll definately start boosting up my protein intact and possible start working on actual weights more vs. using the Army's non-weights weight training.



    You need lots of carbs more than protein. Only really intense athletes need more. Replacing the glycogen stores in your liver and muscles that you used during your workout will help you recover more quickly.