I'm a weakling but want to get stronger...

  • neartheocean

    Posts: 2

    May 20, 2016 12:38 AM GMT
    Okay, so, first post, hello everyone. Long post ahead, be warned of tl;dr.

    I've seen this forum before, but never posted on it. Seems a lot more friendly than a certain other bodybuilding forum that shows up in Google search results *cough*.

    To start off, I've always been a very weak and "soft" guy. Not flamboyant or girly, but still, nobody was surprised that I ended up gay (except my oblivious parents, but, that's another story...). They always called me gay before I even knew.

    Gym class was a nightmare for me, as was anything athletic. I always failed at it. I had no interest. I still don't get the rules of sports like North American football (handegg). I would feel like absolute shit when I would try my damn hardest and even practice a bit and in freshman year of high school only get a 9:15 mile while the kids who didn't even try their hardest got like 7 minutes. I felt so inadequate and worthless. Everything I ever tried was failure.

    Nobody really wants to hang out with such a frail, weak guy like me. Boys didn't because I didn't like sports and was just seen as a faggot. Girls hated me for being unattractive and just "weird" I guess.

    And it scares me- if I get attacked, I'm doomed. I can't defend myself. At least with female victims, people feel sympathy for her (usually). As a male, I'm expected to defend myself and if I can't, I'm a pussy who should kill himself.

    Even working in any job field- as a young male, I'm expected to do the heavy lifting. My struggling isn't an excuse. I have no excuse. If I can't do it, I get yelled at or even fired. I don't go for construction jobs either, but even retail jobs want me to do everything like that. I feel like a failure who won't get anywhere in life.

    I feel like I need to finally change this. The fact that a 10 year old kid can probably lift more than me and defend themself better is pathetic to me. I think I need to start exercising.

    Exercise is complete torture to me though. Whenever gym class made us do weight training, I cringed more than usual. I just completely hated it. Exercise never released the "endorphins" that everyone said it would. I have depression, bipolar, and other mental issues, and everyone says exercise would help, but I can't see how. It just makes me feel worse. It reminds me of how weak I am. It's painful. It's exhausting for a guy who already is constantly sleepy.

    Not to mention, the gay men's fixation on this shit. It's annoying. I don't hit on gym rats or muscular guys, I think a guy who works and trains hard deserves the same body type as him. But any time I post asking for any kind of advice on a gay forum or group, at least 3 people will say "try going to the gym", when my topic has nothing to do with my body. I'm so fucking sick of it! It's like that's all anyone cares about. It seems like such a fad to me too... straight people do it as well. But I never see progress... they just go to the gym as a social status symbol.

    However, I'm also sick of being so weak and not able to physically do anything. I guess I neglected my body for 23 years. I guess it's time to change that.

    My current body type is skinny-fat. My limbs are skinny, I have narrow shoulders and a small frame. I have some excess fat and no muscle at all (you can feel my arm and it's squishy even when I try to make a bicep pose). To give a rough idea, I'm 5'6 and around 140 lbs.

    Before I even ask where to start, I want to know if it's possible. I'd have to do a complete 360 on my personality, on everything I know and think about myself. I'd have to shed any fears I have. I'd have to really motivate myself when my depression has me laying in bed doing nothing 90% of the time. (Yes, I've been getting psychological help, for 8 years now... it's done nothing whatsoever).

    So, I ask, has anyone else been in this scenario or similar and really changed? I just see so many guys who work out for years and make no progress. It isn't something I want to go through if it won't work.

    I'm really not looking for the huge visual changes- I don't hate my body that much. Also, I don't go for muscular guys. I like average guys with some extra fat on them, to be honest. I just want to be able to defend myself and do the tasks I'm required to do without struggling or not being able to. I need mainly to work on my arms, I think, but an expert would probably have to tell me exactly what to work on.

    I know this was a long one, I apologize for that.
  • HarborFighter

    Posts: 32

    May 20, 2016 12:21 PM GMT
    Hello. This will be short and to the point. I was exactly like you as a kid. Skinny, hated team sports at school, was made fun of relentlessly. However, within my psyche was the seed of something that I had experienced back at age 5...I saw boxing on TV and felt incredibly drawn to it. I felt a stirring inside my young little body...a stirring that felt GOOD. I loved those men, shirts OFF, gloves ON, in the ring...BOXING. The gloves really turned me on big time...and the fact that the men were fighting in front of a crowd. I knew in my soul that I wanted to do that. So I did. I didn't actually walk into a boxing gym until I was 30 years old, but I never looked back. I have owned 3 boxing gyms and I now coach guys and train myself for competition. Just the act of teaching and coaching boxing started building muscle on me...without me even thinking of lifting weights or anything. Then, when I started actually competing, my muscle thickened, solidified, and WOW...I became a BOXER.

    Now...I am talking about years of being a coach, a trainer, and a boxer. But damn if it didn't give me a body that I LOVE. And I now LOVE to show it off. I am 63 years old now and I am still going strong. I am fortunate in that I get to travel a lot for the sport and meet lots of guys. And let me tell you...boxing is an incredible bond between men. I have NEVER, even when I first started, had any kind of problem with anti-gay stuff or feeling of inadequacy. It has saved my life. I mean that. When you train in boxing, if you do it seriously and you really want it, the other guys will respect you and you will have no problems! I promise. If we lived close I could give you private training and you would see and feel the change start to occur within you.

    That is my story in a very concise nutshell. I could write for hours about it, but that is it for now.

    I wish you the best. Get active and stop thinking about how weak you are. Think about how strong you CAN be.

    COACH TOM
  • okaces91

    Posts: 33

    May 20, 2016 2:01 PM GMT
    As someone who has gone through depression, self-esteem issues, obesity and lack of initiative, I can say that it never, NEVER hurts to try. To take small steps, no matter how insignificant they may feel. Those steps create motion, and once you are moving, you can surprise yourself with what you're capable of.

    On the fitness side, I started with Shaun T's Insanity program. I was 190lbs about four years ago, and none of it was muscle. That program was the catalyst that started me on to weightlifting and different types of exercises. Not to mention, Shaun T is one of my greatest inspirations right now. He's down to earth, hilarious, driven, and demonstrates what a gay man (or anyone, for that matter) can do when they focus on what they want. I strongly suggest you listen to his podcasts, Trust and Believe, and Define Your Life (older one, but some amazing talks!). He talks about subjects that I think would be quite beneficial to you.

    On the other side, subscribe to your interests, find what makes you passionate, and try to build a support group around you. Long lasting health is mental and emotional too, and we tend to forget that a lot of the time. It will make the journey towards a better physical condition much smoother.

    Hope this helps. All the best to you!
  • Destinharbor

    Posts: 4434

    May 20, 2016 3:40 PM GMT
    Enough wallowing in your self-pity. I never had your self image problems but I was never proud of my body. I liked the way I looked in clothes but not in a bathing suit. I wished and prayed (though I'm atheist) that some miracle transformation BANG would turn me into a hunk and thought that was how I was going to escape being trapped in the straight world and start living my life as a strong, gay man.

    Well, yq know what? It never happened. Surprise! You make excuses for everything under the sun and just wallow in your woe is me until you're soaked with it. Ya gotta dump that thinking and take action.

    Here's what you do. Fix your diet. Yes, that means read and learn to cook and stop eating processed foods and soda and McDonalds. Totally. A simple, healthy diet that keeps calories at about 2200/day and is rich in veggies. No white anything except milk and cauliflower. You figure it out but no fad diet. Something you can live with the rest of your life and tastes good. I recommend spices, from Asian to Morocco to keep it interesting.

    Start going to the gym. Every damn day. If you can't afford it, cut back on your therapist. Each day, concentrate on one muscle group: Chest, Arms, Back, Shoulders, Legs. Get a book from Men's health that catalogues exercises by muscle group and keep it with you all the time. Figure out four different exercises you can do for each muscle group from the book, then each day do those four in three sets of ten. Rest about 90 seconds between sets and a little longer between different exercises. Try to stay on dumbbells as much as possible, avoid machines (Hammerstrength is OK), do each rep at a moderate pace and at a high enough weight to make you unsure if you can finish ten reps, but you do.

    After five days, take a day off then start the routine over.

    Stop being an asshole about guys in the gym. Most of them are nice guys doing their work, not socializing. Try to find a gym that is mostly guys, a serious gym. Golds is usually good. You do your work and don't talk. Don't feel like anyone is watching because they're not. And if they do notice you, it is just to remember when they were first starting and how daunted they were to begin.

    Get some decent gym clothes that aren't cute or flashy. Nike is good.

    But a giant bottle of whey protein powder with 23 grams protein/scoop and no more than 180 calories. and make yourself a drink of it immediately after your workout.

    You'll see the weight you can lift go up fast for a while as you get tone and then it slows down but very couple of months, make sure the weight you're lifting is rising. Think of this as a five year plan and where you want to be in five years.

    You can get more sophisticated with your routine after honing this basic stuff. Don't waste money on a trainer (unless you see a really cute one you want to pay for an hour so you can gaze on him).

    You need to take charge of your life. Do this.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    May 20, 2016 3:46 PM GMT
    The first step to any kind of change begins with the mind and your mentality. You have to actually WANT the change to become a commitment in your life. You have to find the motivation. And if the motivation is strong enough, it'll give you ambition to strive for it.

    I understand the depression and the past pain. But everyone gets treated like garbage at some pointin their life. No one is immune. The younger the better. Now, realize the issues and try to fix and work on it, each and every single day.

    It's hard, speaking from personal experience. But I like to think that one day I will die, and I don't want to be on my beathbed reflecting on all the things that I DIDN'T do. But rather smiling at the things I DID do, being able to tell my children or nieces/nephews of my life experiences.

    Best of luck. PM me anytime icon_smile.gif
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    May 20, 2016 8:46 PM GMT
    I think the place to start is in your next-to-last paragraph, where you said:

    I just want to be able to defend myself and do the tasks I'm required to do without struggling or not being able to. I need mainly to work on my arms, I think, but an expert would probably have to tell me exactly what to work on.

    I agree completely with that. You're exactly right. Start with a goal that's relatively simple and clear. I began lifting weights in college. Before that I was really scrawny. I started doing mostly things for my arms. . . bicep curls, etc. Within a few months I noticed changes. Within a year, people were complimenting me on the size of my arms, etc. It was really good for me and gave me confidence. It will also make you way stronger. You'll never again have to worry or wonder about your ability to lift things, etc.

    Again, I'd start simple.

    Join a gym and get a set of 110-lb weights (barbells) for home use.

    Start with bicep curls. Pick up the bar with an underhand grip, curl it up to your chest, then lower it and repeat. Lots of online videos will show you how. It's very easy.

    Also do pushups. Great for biceps, triceps, shoulders and chest. Do these at home too.

    At the gym, do pullups. . . underhand and overhand.

    Make it easy. Start with really light weights. . . maybe, for the barbell, just the bar at first, without any weights on the side. Don't push yourself too hard or do too much. Make it as fun as you can. In time, you'll be doing lots of curls, increasing weight, etc. Just give it time.

    At the gym: Don't worry if you can only do even one pullup at the start. Don't be reluctant because most of the other guys there will be bigger than you. No one cares. If anything, guys will be extra nice to you because they see you're in there trying to improve yourself.

    I'd also recommend looking into therapy. A psychologist or therapist will understand the problems you outlined and they can help you immensely. Although that takes time too, you will learn things and probably feel like you're making progress even after the first session.

    So my suggestions, to recap:

    1) Order online a set of weights. . . barbells, the 110-lb version is probably best. . .

    2) Work mostly on arms at the beginning. . . do curls, starting with light weights. . .

    3) Supplement with pushups. . . as you go along, you can add other things to round out your workout. . . but for now, keep it really simple and get good at just the curls, the pushups, and the pullups.

    4) Join a gym. Introduce yourself to the various machines slowly. Do your pullups there.

    5) See a therapist. And get the toxic people out of your life.

    In a year, if you are consistent, and work out every day, or most every day, you'll see major changes, both physically and psychologically. You'll see how they feed off of each other. You'll also start to figure out ways regarding rounding out your workout to include focus on other body parts, a better diet, etc.

    Feel free to message me if you want to talk more. I know how you feel, I was sort of in that place many years ago. You can definitely get out of it, but on this one, you've got to make the first move.
  • JackNNJ

    Posts: 1051

    May 21, 2016 1:49 AM GMT
    Lift weights. Eat meat. Repeat.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    May 21, 2016 12:58 PM GMT
    First of all, you are saying things about yourself that would anger you if someone else said them to you. Take up meditation. Here's your mantra: "that's not true." Every time you catch yourself making negative statements about yourself, say "that's not true." Eventually after you repeat your mantra you can tell yourself the truth. Negative thought "I'm too skinny." Mantra "That's not true." Truth "I am the perfect weight right now."

    Second, all of us are skinny or fat or weird or weak or something. Sorry bro, you're not special.

    I know that what one guy considers a baby step may be chasm for another guy. If you can do this: over the next few weeks, visit a gym in your area at 5:00 on Monday. Ask for a tour. Get all the propaganda (advertising) available. If that is too big of a baby step, then just park in each parking lot and have a look around and write down all the reasons you can't go inside.

    If you can't defend yourself with muscles, use your mind. Don't walk alone at night. Have a friend ring your phone every 30-45 minutes. Don't have a third drink. Don't go home with a stranger.

    There are a bunch of other really great suggestions above. So keep us posted on your progress. YOU ARE NOT ALONE!!!

    Good luck


  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    May 21, 2016 4:11 PM GMT
    jimib saidFirst of all, you are saying things about yourself that would anger you if someone else said them to you. Take up meditation. Here's your mantra: "that's not true." Every time you catch yourself making negative statements about yourself, say "that's not true." Eventually after you repeat your mantra you can tell yourself the truth. Negative thought "I'm too skinny." Mantra "That's not true." Truth "I am the perfect weight right now."

    Second, all of us are skinny or fat or weird or weak or something. Sorry bro, you're not special.

    I know that what one guy considers a baby step may be chasm for another guy. If you can do this: over the next few weeks, visit a gym in your area at 5:00 on Monday. Ask for a tour. Get all the propaganda (advertising) available. If that is too big of a baby step, then just park in each parking lot and have a look around and write down all the reasons you can't go inside.

    If you can't defend yourself with muscles, use your mind. Don't walk alone at night. Have a friend ring your phone every 30-45 minutes. Don't have a third drink. Don't go home with a stranger.

    There are a bunch of other really great suggestions above. So keep us posted on your progress. YOU ARE NOT ALONE!!!

    Good luck









    Agree totally with all of the above, particularly re: meditation and taking small steps.
  • badbug

    Posts: 800

    May 21, 2016 10:26 PM GMT
    I have depression, bipolar, and other mental issues


    As a fellow crazy person, BPD and OCD and depression, i can understand how much harder it can be at times to do the work we should be doing. I imagine the answer for everyone isn't the same, for me a big part of it was diet and having a pretty simple clear goal that i was working towards that related to my difficulties.


    You seem to have fixated on your arms. So maybe make that you medium-term goal that you focus on above anything else in your life. Become an "arm" expert and google a bunch of shit about how to get bigger arms and google some shit about the diet requirements for adding muscle, then go out and get the basic supplies you need. (don't fall in the trap of buying expensive supplements, protein powder if it's easier and a basic vitamins are all that are needed).


    Then start the process of making bigger better arms your number one focus for a year. No matter how tired you are or how depressed you feel or how much you want to not do it, make eating the proper foods and working out your arms 1-2 times a week something you do rain or shine, vacation or no vacation, suicide attempt or no suicide attempt...i gotta go home and do my biceps!


    Eating properly and getting good nutrition will help you feel better. How much better? Who knows. But it will help. And you will have a reason to eat better, to help build your arms. You'll also have a reason to workout, an easy to see one, you want bigger arms. Not even that you want bigger arms, it's that you set a goal and for the next year you are going to do things that lead to you achieving it despite your massive desire at times to not do those things.

    Keeping it simple. Staying focused and building discipline in just one small area where you can see results. Just sticking with it, is a good result. Just taking the time to google the information and going out and buying the shit you need, is a good result. Just actually working out 1-2 week, is a good result. It's all steps towards the goal of being able to set goals and work to achieve them, whatever they are. But it's small, it's just your arms and it doesn't require much more than eating protein every 3-4 hours and doing bicep curls 1-2 week, depending how fast you recover.

    i don't want to do it if it won't work

    The people you see workout for years and make little progress are the ones who don't learn. They might all be making the same mistake or different mistakes, but their main mistake is they don't have enough knowledge and are unwilling to learn and employ anything new.


    Remember the real true thing of value you are building here, is your ability to formulate a plan and to stick with it, day after day. That's a big part of main reason your mental health holds you back in this and likely many other areas.





  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    May 21, 2016 10:33 PM GMT
    Every body responds differently.

    It may take you longer to get there than others, but you'll get there.

    Or, you may get there surprisingly soon. It's amazing what proper nutrition and training can do to an untrained and undernourished body.

    Join a gym and change your diet. Don't be worried about anyone looking at you, they're too busy looking at themselves. If anything you'll be INVISIBLE to everybody. When they start looking at you it's a GOOD thing - it's because you're doing something right, they're feeling competitive, or - gasp! - they're interested.

    The only reason anyone would bully you at the gym would be if you cockblock them from the equipment by texting obliviously. Serious people lack patience for those who aren't serious.

    Everyone at the gym who counts respects members who work hard, even the skinny and fat ones.

    Finally, don't let anxiety or mental health issues be a deterrent. Check out THIS guy:
    11gsgvt.jpg

    He was diagnosed in 2011 with bipolar type 1 with schizoaffective disorder, social anxiety, a digestive disorder and related anorexia, who in only two years went from 107 to 165lbs! His story in his own words here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c_OuvwGlKj8
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    May 23, 2016 3:57 AM GMT
    Taking small steps is the best. just start with eating a bit healthier and exercising a bit more and u can increase it overtime. It takes time but every little bit will help u.