Received the following questions from Bill recently and wanted to post as this response will help others in the same situation:
Wanted to start Big Time program which i purchased some time ago. Needed advise turning 50 soon and have some “slight” knee arthritis – no pain just feel it is “there”, but exercise seems to make it feel better – have been cycling for past three years averaging 16 – 25 miles (2 – 3 days / week) with many hills in my area and have done (carefully) deadlifts and machine leg extensions and curls, etc.
Point is I need to get into shape at 240 finding it hard to lose. Started the gym with some simple work outs but wanted a program that I can build, lose weight. Your system is very extensive, how do I break in as I digest all the information your program provides. Also any other advise for my age, mass building and weight loss goals? Your thoughts on hiring a trainer that I can work with using your program?
And a follow up question from Bill:
Also can routine be broken down to 5 days at gym as i build up duration, isolating parts, and keeping gym time to 45 min to 60 mins? Recommendations for a non-workout type getting in to a routine as I approach 50?
I appreciate your desire to help a fellow engineer (brain strong but weak upper body syndrome) now as I approach 50 i need to make life change on areas I never really developed and want to approach in a manner I can incorp and enjoy without burning out. Can't wait to hear from you.
Bill, for your knee issues I highly recommend getting a foam roller and start using a few times per week. If you are seated a lot plus cycling several times a week, I would bet you really need the foam roller. Give that a shot and I bet your knees start feeling better. Recommend to use before and after your weight lifting workouts for about 3 to 5 minutes.
I would start by simply following the weight lifting program inside the Big Time manual and improving the way you are eating each day. It doesn't have to be perfect according to the manual. If you stick to ONLY the healthiest foods and a large variety of them, you will see amazing results from the work you put into the weight lifting workouts.
Whole Eggs from Pasture Raised Chickens
Raw Milk from Grass Fed Cows
Fresh Salsa to Top Your Eggs
Spinach Cooked with Your Eggs
Piece of Fruit
Scoop Whey Protein
Add Flax Seeds
Left overs from Previous Night Dinner
Salad w/ Oil and Vinegar Dressing
Red Potatoes w/ Skin
Add Yogurt from Grass Fed Cows
Salad w/ Oil and Vinegar Dressing
All mixed together
Again, that is just a very quick example. You can adjust the amounts too to fit your goals. Want to build more muscle? Add more. Want to lose fat? Adjust amounts down. You can adjust the amounts slightly each week until you get the desired results. Experimentation is key but the base diet should use real foods. Once you get that right, you are on the right track.
Try eating that way, and I guarantee you will feel much better and look much better with time. Add in the weights and some cardio workouts and the results will amaze you.
You can adjust the weight lifting workouts as well…
For example, for older trainers you might want to increase the number of reps as lower reps can get tough on the joints once the weight gets really heavy. Starting out, though, I would probably stick with 5 reps and use really light weights.
Since you will be starting out with really light weights, try to increase the weight each workout. But only if you completed each rep with good form and hit the target number of reps for each set.
You just have to work hard each workout, concentrate each and every second, and the results will be there. Increases in amount of weight lifted is what builds muscle. So your goal is to always increase the weight each workout but only if possible. You've got to push yourself, but you have to be smart about it.
I've got some comments from people before telling me that I shouldn't tell people to push themselves in the gym. That it is unsafe. Well… if you don't push yourself and challenge yourself, you'll never get results. That's why you see so many people that stay the same for years. It's this way of thinking that causes people to get ZERO results. So push yourself, fight each workout, but be smart about it. Don't push yourself to do another rep when your knee doesn't feel right. I believe you understand what I mean?
The challenge of each workout and reaching new goals should keep you going and fighting hard for a better body.
Weight lifting gives you new goals and keeps you excited about each workout… especially when you are getting results.
Remember, you should always start out very light and take it easy for the first few workouts. Some workouts might seem very easy but it's giving your body a chance to acclimate to the workouts. They will get tough but always start out easy. You can always adjust volume and frequency of workouts as well. For example, if you think you need an extra day of rest… take an extra day. But don't do it if laziness is a factor. Do it only if you really need it.
Would rather you not split up the workouts. I would get the entire workout in and take a complete day of rest. If you go back to the gym instead of resting, fatigue will accumulate at a higher rate with the types of exercises you will be using in the BIG Time program. I would try it as laid out since the workouts shouldn't be very long.
Let me know if you have any other questions. You can add a comment here on this page, and I will answer here. Keeps everything organized.