How to build muscle and lose fat with Strength Training

Last year I had a good reason to workout. I was looking forward to fitting into my wedding suit in January 2009. But ever since the big day, life has been one big party. Couple of months have added more than a couple of inches on my waist already.

But now i ready to get back on the wagon. Life is all about 1 step backward and 2 steps forward. I think i have found a routine which embodies this very philosophy. The fact that it revolves around my favourite number 5 is just an added bonus and and motivating factor for me. This program is called the Stronglift 5×5 and you can the whole low-down Stronglifts.com

I know this is against a lot of what i was reading and doing in the past. This is not about body-building. This is about gaining strength and improving your physique. You may not have the pump of a builder but you will be a lot stronger than quite a few of them.

What i liked most about this program is the simplicity.

3x 45 minute workouts per week.
5 exercises. All barbell exercises to be done for 5 reps and 5 sets.
Progression in each and every workout.
Can be done easily from home as well (which was an important priority for me since i work out at home)

I am not going to say much, but post my progress. I just finished my first workout today. It was good. Consistency is going to be the key. Wish me Luck!!

This program promised to build muscle and lose fat and gain strength in then bargain. Looks promising and I am will to give a shot!!

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How to calculate your Body Fat Percentage

One of the most important ways of calculating your progress when you are on a fitness program is to know how to calculate your Body Fat Percentage.

Anyone who has been on any sort of a diet or an exercise program knows how frustrating it is to step on the scale after a week and see no change at all. But one should not fret. There are some things that a weighing scale cannot accurately measure and that is the small changes in your Body Fat Percentage.

Weekly monitoring of your Body Fat Percentage is a surefire way to keep oneself motivated.

Learn How to Calculate your Body Fat Percentage here.

My Six Pack Journey – Update Feb 2009

Wedding_Lloyd Pinto

Well I’ve been out of action for several months now. Got married in January 2009. The leadup to the wedding was very hectic. But now i plan to get back on track and resume my journey once again. Will keep posting regularly.

Cheers!

My Six Pack Journey – Week 2 roundup

Hey Folks,

It time for a lookback at week 2.

I had promised to improve upon my performance in week 1. I believe I have. Perhaps not so much as i would have liked but definitely better than week 1

Nutrition – again was probably something at par. So perhaps here i would again rate myself at 2/5.

Cardio – This was perhaps my greatest improvement over week 1. Last week I didnt get any cardio workouts. I was determined to change this somehow during this week and i sure did. Had two cool cardio workouts. One of them manufactured out of a dance party. Adversity turned into opportunity. Check out my post on Day 12. 4/5 rating here. Didnt do any intervals. Can you consider dancing as an interval workout. Pehaps you can, but still i would go for the full rating here.

Weight training – Here i had kept up the enthu during the earlier part of the week. Got through 1 workout early in the week. But somehow didnt keep up during the rest of the week .

Motivation – Have been working on this throughout the week. I somehow tend to believe that this is perhaps the most important part of getting fit. Whenever i require motivation, as you would know by know – I revert to my favourite author – Robin Sharma

There is this particular book from Robin Sharma called Daily Inspiration. This book has got 365 days of inspirational quotes. I keep this book along with me and make it a point to read it atleast once during the day. It keeps me filled with inspiring thoughts throughout the week. Daily Inspiration really helps you with thought provoking insights and helps you to keep your batteries charged all day long.

And i sure did make the most of in week 3. Check out my next post for my exploits in week 3. I am also going to post some pictures. That should give us some idea of the progress still to be made.


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My Six Pack Journey – Day 13

 Week 2 – Day 13 – October 4, 2008

 

Second day in a row – I was dreading the evening.More since it was a family outing and I wouldn’t be able to say no to eating. So I decided not to pressurize myself too much. I had a clean breakfast & lunch and protein shake.

The fun actually began at night. Ate a heavy dinner. But then felt very guilty about it and I went for a walk. What started out as a 15 minute walk – slowly got better and better and by the time I came back home, I had walked for about 40 minutes and a very brisk pace.

Got back to reading my favourite books before bedtime – before I dozed off. Come to think of it I had managed two cardio workouts and 1 weight training workout during this week. So in a sense this was better than last week. I understand that when we are immersed with our daily chores, working out really takes a backseat. But i think what’s important is to always be aware and lookout for an opportunity.

 

Nine times out of ten, its only a matter of starting.  I remember reading this line in one of Robin Sharma‘s books or blogs – that a spacecraft/rocket uses more fuel during its take off than it does during its entire journey. It needs all the energy to overcome the force of gravity. It works absolutely the same with us. Most of it is in the mind. If we try to convince ourselves that we will do only five minutes of activity – it seems a very painless thing to do. Once you start doing something and start enjoying those moments, the 5 minutes will soon turn into 10, 20 or 30 minutes without even realising it.

 

The key is to just go for it. Start small – think small and then grow upon it.  If you are just like me and think you have No Time to Workout  – these posts might be of help to you.

 

Cheers

My Six Pack Journey – Day 12

Week 2 – Day 12 – October 3, 2008

This was probably a day that I was dreading – but somehow I managed to wade through this day without getting hurt too much. I had taken the day off work. So they was a chance to workout in the morning, but blew it.

I had a dance party to attend later that night and it here I was afraid that I might waver a bit. So I was extra cautious, had a good breakfast and lunch. What I did in the evening was fun.

Before I left for the party I decided that that I am not going to eat too much at the party. But then I would be hungry – so what should I do. Peanut Butter Sandwiches to the rescue. Got 4 slices of whole wheat bread with a dash of peanut butter thinly spread and gobbled them down. This way I was atleast half full before I entered the party.

The party by the way was our annual end of tax season bash. It was organized at Tendulkar’s. If you are familiar with cricket, Sachin Tendulkar is our God and this is actually his own restaurant. A lovely place, very close to the sea and another monumental delight of Mumbai – the Gateway of India.

My eyes lit up when I looked at the appetizers. They had chicken tikka – this a charcoal oven grilled version and not fried. This was something exactly what I was looking for. Throughout the evening, I mostly devoured only this item on the menu. Now my mind did wander a bit and did take a few bites of the other crisp fried chicken. But I didn’t eat anything else except one wee bite of the desert. No drinks, diet colas nothing whatsoever. I didn’t want any liquid calories to ruin my evening.

Apart from that, I made the most of the dance floor. For two hours, I had a whale of a time dancing. It was infact an unscheduled cardio workout and I think probably the most fun workout I had in a long long time. Really chilled out throughout the nite and by the time to clock struck midnite – I was totally spent.

So what I had imagined to be a disaster actually proved to be a blessing in disguise. A little planning and lots of commitment really helped.

Cheers!

My Six Pack Journey – Day 11

Week 2 – Day 11 – October 2, 2008

Its been quite a backlog. Let me update you on my antics.

Thursday was a below average day – was out the entire day – on my wedding shopping. I am getting married in January and yes, that is one of the motivations to get fit as well.

Had a good breakfast. Lunch got delayed though and dinner was just a sandwich – a low cal day almost.

I was at Gloria Jeans Cafe for Lunch and had a Chicken Sandwich and a Cocoa Cold Coffee. Yup did give in the coffee stuff there – but come on folks – can’t be perfect all the time.

Managed to catch a movie at a local theatre in the evening. Stayed away from the popcorn and colas there. That was the only saving grace. Went back home and continued reading on Small is the new big. Its been an amazing journey. The sheer number of ideas and thoughts addressed in the book make it a total don’t put me down kind of book.

To come to think of it. I wasn’t looking for this book. I went looking for Seth Godin’s other book – The Dip. The Dip – is a book about when to quit and when not to. It is about that juncture in life, when there is a lull after initial sucess and you are unsure whether to invest more time and go the whole way or quit and do something better. I feel i am at similar crossroads in my career and i wanted to read about it. However sinceThe Dip wasn’t available in my local bookstore, had to settle for this one.

Life has its own amazing coincidences. This was one and it introduced me to this lovely book.My friends always ask me how i keep discovering new authors and new books. My answer to them is Keep Reading.

Robin Sharma led me to Squidoo.com

I’ve built a few lenses on squidoo and i am totally addiction. You can build your own lens on any topic your desire.

Squidoo was founded by Seth Godin. That’s how i came to know about him. Once i started reading on him – i learnt about The Dip.

One thing just leads to another. Just let your life flow, keep your eyes and ears open and just let go!

I only hope I don’t spend all my workout time on reading. Havent got a workout for a while now. Hope to get one soon.

I’m in for serious trouble, since i had to attend back to back dinner parties on Friday and Saturday. Look out for my next posts and how i navigated these days.

Cheers!