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S&C UnderGround >> 170LBS TO 180 IN A YEAR - POSSIBLE AT 39?


1/3/12 3:41 PM
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waxwing slain
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 I'm one of those people who just likes having goals for their own sake - just doing crazy shit sometimes like going off caffeine suddenly or becoming a vegetarian overnight (did both of those previously, was a veg for 10 years on a whim and went caffeine-free for 2 years despite a weeklong massive withdrawal of debilitating headaches).

So this year I want to go from 170lbs to 180lbs and maintain or decrease my body fat composition. Is it possible? Have I overreached? Is approximately 10 lbs. of muscle too much?

Background - I'm 39, 5'11, currently 170 lbs. I've only been lifting seriously for about 2.5 years, prior to that I was a runner (cross country in HS, semi-competitive 5K and 10K until the age of 35)

Eating - Based on what I’ve read, I need to be eating as much as 180grams of protein a day. I didn’t realize how fucking much that was until I sat down and looked at my current diet. I’m probably getting 140-160g on workout days, and 120-140g on rest days. Any tips or thoughts on eating? I’m also 95% gluten free right now, as my dad was diagnosed with severe Celiac this year and I’m doing it to support him.

Lifting – I’ve been lifting like a bodybuilder for the most part (5 day split, major compound movements as the foundation of each day followed by more specialized support work; reps in the 4-6 range for the big lifts, 10-15 for the support work). Thoughts?

Any general help appreciated. (PS - getting my BF measured hydrostatically next week to get an accurate baseline measurement)
1/3/12 5:24 PM
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Do you have good muscle bellies?
1/3/12 6:05 PM
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waxwing slain
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How you mean bro? Phone Post
1/3/12 6:33 PM
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Leigh
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after a couple of years serious lifting, 10lbs of muscle is going to be tough I think. It is very individual though - go with the GOMAD and accept you will gain fat with a bulk, then cut it afterwards
1/3/12 7:27 PM
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Flex your bicep with your knuckles towards you and measure the gap between the crook of your elbow and the muscle.
1/3/12 8:02 PM
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None So Blind
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If you're 5'11, you should be able to hit 220 easy, so why aim so low with 180?

I'm one inch taller, was 180 in college and grad school, and at age 40 two years ago started lifting heavy, I'd lifted a lot for years prior, but not CORRECTLY - that means (A) doing the big lifts like squats and deads, (B) using a proper form of progression in weight, (C) eating like an animal, which it looks like you are realizing, and (D) getting proper sleep to recover.

I'm now 220, and I could have hit 230 had I stayed with it for the last third of last year, though I'd say I could drop 20 pounds of pure fat pretty quick (relatively), and then some more after that if I felt like getting cut (which I don't).

I am not athletically gifted in the slightest, FWIW. But I lifted hard, progressed every time according to Rippetoe's "Starting Strength" program, ate like a horse, and got a TON stronger and bigger to where people around me were jokingly asking me if I was on steroids. This was the first 6 months.

If you are starting a new program and are not already squatting 300 pounds, I would think your goal is easily within reach. Age be damned.
1/3/12 8:08 PM
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HERTSWENIP
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How much LBM have you gained since you first started lifting, 2.5 years ago?
1/3/12 8:36 PM
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waxwing slain
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HERTSWENIP - How much LBM have you gained since you first started lifting, 2.5 years ago?
I think somewhere around 15 lbs. I weighed 152 lbs when I started lifting and was predictably very weak and made significant beginner gains. In addition to the size I gained a very small belly but did not change waist size, so I think most of the 18 lbs is muscle. Phone Post
1/3/12 8:37 PM
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waxwing slain
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None So Blind - If you're 5'11, you should be able to hit 220 easy, so why aim so low with 180?

I'm one inch taller, was 180 in college and grad school, and at age 40 two years ago started lifting heavy, I'd lifted a lot for years prior, but not CORRECTLY - that means (A) doing the big lifts like squats and deads, (B) using a proper form of progression in weight, (C) eating like an animal, which it looks like you are realizing, and (D) getting proper sleep to recover.

I'm now 220, and I could have hit 230 had I stayed with it for the last third of last year, though I'd say I could drop 20 pounds of pure fat pretty quick (relatively), and then some more after that if I felt like getting cut (which I don't).

I am not athletically gifted in the slightest, FWIW. But I lifted hard, progressed every time according to Rippetoe's "Starting Strength" program, ate like a horse, and got a TON stronger and bigger to where people around me were jokingly asking me if I was on steroids. This was the first 6 months.

If you are starting a new program and are not already squatting 300 pounds, I would think your goal is easily within reach. Age be damned.
This is the kind of motivation I need! Thanks bro! I don't think my wife would dig it if I got too big but I'm not going to limit my gains so we will see what happens. Phone Post
1/4/12 2:53 AM
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Easytarget
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I would say yes, esp if you focus on big lifts, eat and rest.

1/4/12 3:57 PM
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cdueck
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 At 39 unless you want to get fatter then not a chance. 
1/4/12 6:56 PM
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WidespreadPanic
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Though I applaud those who have 'seemingly' done it, the most you can hope for, lean muscle, measured in a dunk tank is 4lbs.

Look at 4lbs of 80% lean hamburger. That's a LOT of hamburger. If you put that on your arms and legs like 'clay', you'd be hyoouge.

The leanest muscle you can add without steroids or PEDs is only 80-85% muscle.

So aim for lean and try for 3-4 lbs. Reduce your waist size as you go and you will be sure of not adding too much fat.

HTH.

1/4/12 7:49 PM
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None So Blind
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A 5'11 guy, in a year, only 4 pounds?

Just curious - what is your reasoning/experience to that?

I doubt you're flat out calling me a liar in your post ;-) but I'll be blunt - I put on about 25 pounds that first year of lifting, and if you think it was at least 21 pounds of fat, I must tell you I *dropped* a size in my jeans (36 to 34), so I'm curious where that fat went :-) Though TBH, my upper body only got s/w bigger, it was my legs that exploded in size.

And while it doesn't apply given the several factors - height, age and prior history (5'11, 39 and some lifting vs 6'1, 25 and a complete newbie), Rip had one of his proteges put on ~70 pounds in 6 months, and with fat-caliper measuring of the guy's BMI, he calculated the kid gained about half of that in lean muscle. Of course, the rest was fat, and the bodybuilding folks tore the kid up for looking chunky, but the easy rejoinder was that he now had an extra 35 pounds of muscle (and was strong as shit, squatting 365 for 5 sets of 5 easily) and once he lost the fat after going on a cutting phase, he'd be much bigger and in a much smaller timeframe than if he tried to gain the muscle with no fat gain at all along the way. I am curious if in fact getting just a little bit older can prevent such progress :-/

1/4/12 9:01 PM
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Not everyone has the same potential to add muscle. It depends on frame, muscle bellies, etc.
1/4/12 9:10 PM
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cdueck
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At 39 your body wouldn't produce enough testosterone to build that much muscle. I have seen guys that gain a pile of weight and look lean but when put to a good quality body comp test the only thing that went up was there body fat. Some people carry there fat more externally and some are more internal. I carry most my body fat on top of the muscle so I appear to be much fatter than I am. 
1/5/12 4:15 AM
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Leigh
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None So Blind -

A 5'11 guy, in a year, only 4 pounds?

Just curious - what is your reasoning/experience to that?

I doubt you're flat out calling me a liar in your post ;-) but I'll be blunt - I put on about 25 pounds that first year of lifting, and if you think it was at least 21 pounds of fat, I must tell you I *dropped* a size in my jeans (36 to 34), so I'm curious where that fat went :-) Though TBH, my upper body only got s/w bigger, it was my legs that exploded in size.

And while it doesn't apply given the several factors - height, age and prior history (5'11, 39 and some lifting vs 6'1, 25 and a complete newbie), Rip had one of his proteges put on ~70 pounds in 6 months, and with fat-caliper measuring of the guy's BMI, he calculated the kid gained about half of that in lean muscle. Of course, the rest was fat, and the bodybuilding folks tore the kid up for looking chunky, but the easy rejoinder was that he now had an extra 35 pounds of muscle (and was strong as shit, squatting 365 for 5 sets of 5 easily) and once he lost the fat after going on a cutting phase, he'd be much bigger and in a much smaller timeframe than if he tried to gain the muscle with no fat gain at all along the way. I am curious if in fact getting just a little bit older can prevent such progress :-/

This isn't his first year of training

Also, people are individuals. Just because you did it, doesn't mean he can. As an example, Dorian Yates is 5'10 but you will NEVER be ripped at 300lbs, even with drugs.

This guy is 39 - his body has settled at a comfortable weight and is not going to want to change that much Phone Post
1/5/12 7:52 AM
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banco
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Edited: 01/05/12 7:52 AM
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None So Blind - If you're 5'11, you should be able to hit 220 easy, so why aim so low with 180?

I'm one inch taller, was 180 in college and grad school, and at age 40 two years ago started lifting heavy, I'd lifted a lot for years prior, but not CORRECTLY - that means (A) doing the big lifts like squats and deads, (B) using a proper form of progression in weight, (C) eating like an animal, which it looks like you are realizing, and (D) getting proper sleep to recover.

I'm now 220, and I could have hit 230 had I stayed with it for the last third of last year, though I'd say I could drop 20 pounds of pure fat pretty quick (relatively), and then some more after that if I felt like getting cut (which I don't).




Presumably at 5'11" and 220 you'd be carrying a fair bit of bodyfat though? (assuming you are natural)
1/11/12 1:00 AM
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Shortkick
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cdueck -  At 39 unless you want to get fatter then not a chance. 
Don't take this post to heart

With what your trying to accomplish yes it can be possible... I'm in this field and believe it possible.

Most importantly don't let anyone tell you "no that won't work.. Blah blah blah". Follow what's in your heart.. Train your butt off, even if you don't hit your goal you will still be in a better place physically than you were before Phone Post
1/11/12 11:21 AM
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waxwing slain
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Shortkick -
cdueck -  At 39 unless you want to get fatter then not a chance. 
Don't take this post to heart

With what your trying to accomplish yes it can be possible... I'm in this field and believe it possible.

Most importantly don't let anyone tell you "no that won't work.. Blah blah blah". Follow what's in your heart.. Train your butt off, even if you don't hit your goal you will still be in a better place physically than you were before Phone Post
Thanks man. 180 is a goal but if it takes 2 years to do it right, then that's fine. Phone Post
1/11/12 12:01 PM
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Shortkick
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No problem!
1/11/12 12:38 PM
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Shortkick
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I will say that at "our" age you do have to train smarter... I am right behind you at 37. Find a decent program and stick to it. Remember with resistence training sometimes less is more. Focus on the basics squats, presses, deadlifts
1/11/12 2:04 PM
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None So Blind
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cdueck - At 39 your body wouldn't produce enough testosterone to build that much muscle. I have seen guys that gain a pile of weight and look lean but when put to a good quality body comp test the only thing that went up was there body fat. Some people carry there fat more externally and some are more internal. I carry most my body fat on top of the muscle so I appear to be much fatter than I am. 

 Ah, thanks for reminding an old fart who has Alzheimer's apparently :-) I did in fact start taking T when I started lifting. That was actually why I started lifting - my doc put me on that shit, and I thought to myself, "Well, if I gotta take this stuff, may as well get the best out of it...." IIRC, the test he used said my T was 191, and 200-800 was the normal range for guys my age, and after being on it for 3 months, my levels were ~450. Not sky high by any means, but a meaningful difference.

However, I got off it a year later (made me infertile, and I wanted more kids), and I'm still the same size, and after 7-8 months of being off it I was still as strong if not stronger.

Still, that initial phase clearly could have been helped by that.
1/11/12 2:08 PM
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None So Blind
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Leigh -  This isn't his first year of training

Also, people are individuals. Just because you did it, doesn't mean he can. As an example, Dorian Yates is 5'10 but you will NEVER be ripped at 300lbs, even with drugs.

This guy is 39 - his body has settled at a comfortable weight and is not going to want to change that much Phone Post

 True, but at 6 foot and 180 he's still likely pretty skinny - I've seen Rip argue (and argue and argue and argue!) that damn near anyone who is 6 feet tall and under 220 is likely underweight for someone doing serious strength training, even into the late 30s.

That said, I have a buddy who is 6'4 and probably 160 at best, that guy could eat a horse a day and deadlift like a maniac and never cross 200, his frame is so startlingly narrow :-P
1/11/12 2:29 PM
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waxwing slain
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I'm a lanky dude. My frame isn't the type to hold an enormous amount of bulk. My best case scenario would be a build like Daniel Craig. Phone Post
1/11/12 7:14 PM
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419
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Is there a large gap between the crook of your elbow and your bicep when you flex with your knuckles facing you?

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