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darren mcneill

I've Joined The Gym!!!! First time at 37

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Christ, when I wrote my age in the title then I felt quite old! :angry:

Well, I am very big on journals for accountability, so thought the off topic part of the forum would be a good place to bare my soul on my latest personal conquest!  I am now at the point in my life where the money side is starting to look much better.... so I intend on making sure that when I finally hit my goals that I am in a position to try and make sure I am in a physical condition to do so, so exercise, healthy eating etc.  Of course this wont stop me getting hit by a bus or getting a terminal illness (That's pretty much out of your hands) but what I can at least try to do is get myself fit so if I am lucky to dodge the daily perils of life and actually get to a decent age in life then I am fighting fit and able to enjoy life.

Personally I have been gaining weight over the last few years.  My work has become less active and I am now at the point in my property journey where I run my business from my office and my car, so my physical exertions are getting a lot less!  It sort of came to a point a few weeks ago when I bought a size 16 neck shirt, and it was far too tight for my comfort... enough was enough.  I have always used my busy lifestyle as an excuse for not going to the gym, and now I dictate my own diary.  I have never stepped foot in a gym, so I decided that the best route for me was 1 on 1 with a personal trainer.  It turns out that there is one literally 2 minutes from my house, so over the last few weeks I messaged him and then last Tuesday I finally turned up at 7am and had my first session.  I am attending twice a week (Tue and Fri) and the session is 7am-8am.  This works for me as it allows me to then have a full day in work, plus my Mrs does not work on those days so I am free to not have to worry about getting the kids to school.

So.......

Tuesday... First Session.

F--- Me!  I haven't exercised properly for probably 20 years now.  Having a PT is definitely the right route to take.  The exercises we did started off gradually, and even the warm up absolutely killed me.  We got to a point where we were taking a walk to cool off and rest and I had to stop because my legs were jelly and my head light.  I felt like being sick (and really wanted to) put wasn't.  I hadn't ate before this session which is good and bad.  Good because I didn't vomit (nothing there) but bad because you need some food in you for energy for exercising.  My PT absolutely beasted me (well, it felt like it, but it was probably a very light workout for normal people).  The next day (Wed) I ached a little, but it was Thursday that was the most painful.  My god I couldn't walk down the stairs or get in the car without being in agony.  The PT had been working more my lower half of my body, and squats are what crippled my leg muscles!!  My word there was some pain.  Fortunately on Friday morning I was in an OK position and it wasn't hurting as much......

Friday.. 2nd Session

This session felt much better.  I didn't feel ill until close to the end of the session.  This time I had read up on what I should eat before a gym session.  As I do not have much time to eat I went for Greek yogurt and an apple.  These are digested easily and give the body a little bit of an energy boost, which I must admit I did feel whilst working out.  Don't get me wrong, I was a complete wreck again, but I could walk out of the gym and didn't feel dizzy, just exhausted.  This session was more upper body.  As I am typing 48 hours later my arms and shoulders are in complete agony.  I have used muscles that I did not think existed, and now lifting my arms is an incredibly painful experience.  What I have established is that your muscles ache after 24 hours, but for me personally the real pain kicks in at around 36 hours.  Yesterday I was fine all day until I got home.  Then around 5pm I could feel a much sharper pain, and it just got worse and worse.  Last nights sleep wasn't great as I could not get comfortable at all because my shoulders and arms hurt so much.  My legs however do hurt, but not at the same level.  I know that I probably have another 2-3 weeks of this pain, but also that it will start to get better.  I have muscles that never get worked and are now being put through some serious exercise!!

 

We also spoke about my food intake.  My issue is that during the day I eat fairly OK, but in the evenings I will snack and drink beer!!  I have had to log my food inputs and have made a more conscious decision to eat better (Although I have had weakness this weekend in the way of Chocolate HobNobs and the Mrs wanting a takeaway on Friday!).  My main actual goal is to simply get healthier, but we have set a target of losing 10kg in 10 weeks.... so I do also need to pull my finger well out of my bum (which is why my journal has been started).  Even if I have only one person knowing about this that is enough for me and my personal pride to get on with it!  So here is also my food diary for the week:

Food Diary

TUESDAY

08:30 - 3 boiled eggs

11:50 - 50g cashews

14:15 - Large bowl bran flakes

18:45 - Gammon, cauli cheese, new potatoes, green beans

18:45 - Greek Yog

18:45 - evening - 2 x 330ml San Miguel (last ones in the fridge, I was having those bad boys!)

 

WEDNESDAY

05:35 - 4 x Weetabix

12:30 - 50g whole almonds

13:45 - 4 boiled eggs. Small tin of tuna.

18:30 - Apple

20:30 - Fish, golden rice, peas and sweet corn. Greek yog

 

THURSDAY

06:10 - 3 x boiled eggs

10:00 - Apple

11:00 - Bowl of shreddies cereal

16:30 - Apple, half small tin tuna

20:00 - Sharwoods curry sauce, chicken breast, basmati rice. Greek yog.

 

FRIDAY

06:10 - Apple, Greek Yogurt

07:00 - WORKOUT

11:30 - Chicken breast, 2 boiled eggs

13:00 - Apple

16:00 - Apple

19:00 - Greek takeaway, 1/2 bottle Prosecco, 8 x choc hobnobs ☹️

 

SATURDAY

08:00 - 2 boiled eggs, gala apple

11:00 - Cooked breakfast with toast ☹️

14:00 - Apple

16:00 - Apple

17:00 - Small piece of cheese (15g)

18:00 - Spaghetti Bol, garlic bread. 

Choc ice, 10 hobnobs ☹️

 

 

 

So that's me and my new "project."  I am going to update each week and hopefully things will soon get much easier, as even typing this makes me want to cry at the minute! :lol:

 

Darren

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Hey Darren,

WELL DONE on starting your fitness journey! I'm a qualified PT so I see this all of the time! It's tough, especially at the beginning, but you've taken the correct first step to get you started.

You'll soon figure out what works best for you with regards to your nutrition timing around exercise. Personally, I train first thing in the morning and I don't need/like any food in my body. I then eat breakfast when I get into work. Matt on the other hand, needs food pre-workout. Everyone works differently and you'll soon work out what is best for you.

Don't be sad about your 'hiccups' - it's called balance! Though if you are serious about 10kg in 10 weeks, you might want to portion control those yummy snacks a little more.

Good luck and keep us updated!! 

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From my journey - it is important to know the rules of the game, and the routes to success. 

I spent a long time trying to get into shape with zero results, and it wasn't until I learnt the rules of the game, and learnt how things work, that I started getting the results. I wasted a lot of effort with nothing to show for it.

Turns out the Golden Rules was simple : Calories Deficit 

Track your calories (I use myfitness pal app), manage yourself and discipline and control.

You can not out train a poor diet. 

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On 5/14/2019 at 4:31 AM, kent614 said:

From my journey - it is important to know the rules of the game, and the routes to success. 

I spent a long time trying to get into shape with zero results, and it wasn't until I learnt the rules of the game, and learnt how things work, that I started getting the results. I wasted a lot of effort with nothing to show for it.

Turns out the Golden Rules was simple : Calories Deficit 

Track your calories (I use myfitness pal app), manage yourself and discipline and control.

You can not out train a poor diet. 

Followed the advice.  More in my post coming up, but thanks.  Kind of obvious really so no idea why I didnt start doing it!

Darren

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Sunday 19th May 2019 - Week 2 completed

Well..... 3rd session was on Tuesday.  The first thing we did was weigh me.... identical... not a jot lost (91.4kg).  As you can imagine my PT couldn't get his head round it, then I showed him the previous food journal from the weekend.  His look of disappointment hit me like a hammer.  He didn't complain massively, but I knew that I had let myself down and him... so....... The MyFitness app was downloaded immediately and I decided to take this seriously.  I am quite a determined individual when I set my mind to it (which is why the property side of my life seems to be moving quite fast), so like anything I set my mind to I decided to absolutely smash this one out of the park. 

My next weigh in was Friday..... 89.6KG!!  Boooooom!!! 1.8kg lost in 3 days.  I have just been disciplined and incredibly boring with what I am eating.  Mainly protein with very little carbs during the day, then in the evening a balanced meal.  No Beer.  No snacks. NO false calories.

This weekend we went to the mother-in-laws and we did have a chinese.  I had sweet sour chicken and egg fried rice with a few chips..... didn't enjoy it.  Didn't enjoy the fact that I had wasted calories on that crap, and more importantly I didn't enjoy how it made me feel after.  Very sluggish and just generally crap.  I have noticed that I am feeling more energetic on my current eating plan.  Even on my training days when I have been absolutely beasted from 7am-8am, I can work until 8pm (which I have done on both Tuesday and Friday this week).  I feel tired near the end of the day, but not exhausted.  One thing that has become apparent to me is that my hunger levels have dropped massively.  I am also drinking gallons of water!  I now always have a pint of water with me at home or in the office and when in the car there are lots of bottles of water.

This week I have been told off twice by MyFitnessPal as I had only reached 1100 calories in the day (and this is after eating all day and my evening meal), so had to get something to tip me over the magic 1200 calorie mark.  It is a bit annoying as I wasn't hungry but did as I was told. 

1197605461_Photo19-05-2019142159.thumb.png.b907bc1072db9cf149d1a7499f984580.png

I have also split my diary into sections of time, rather that "breakfast" etc.  My time segments are:

6am-10am, 10am-12pm, 12pm-2pm, 2pm-4pm, 4pm-6pm, 6pm-10pm.

I do still eat my tea past 8pm which I know isnt the best, so this might be something that I have to work on.  The problem is here that the Mrs works until 8pm 3 days a week, and the other days I am running round doing after school clubs etc


 

Here is this weeks log:

Tuesday

1092004750_Photo19-05-2019141922.thumb.png.ace2644001dff8195ea438f418ba9700.png1073113282_Photo19-05-2019141931.thumb.png.8466a7d9a4e68c41501a961b231a9adb.png

Wednesday

506680830_Photo19-05-2019141937.thumb.png.835d6cf0c7e925ffa35d6141ec2fff80.png65475016_Photo19-05-2019141943.thumb.png.682ce6cb743e67686f9b4de5db0e31b6.png

Thursday

419393299_Photo19-05-2019141953.thumb.png.15a306cfd245798c9b8655b5eee4a2cd.png132934916_Photo19-05-2019141958.thumb.png.bb91253c909e03d2cd53ef1df79aa3d2.png

Friday

1092366675_Photo19-05-2019142005.thumb.png.15d336cb558956b0953a01d33d283fd6.png1429231723_Photo19-05-2019142013.thumb.png.f8011085c8d66dac9bea1588572ddeb8.png

Saturday

523001466_Photo19-05-2019142023.thumb.png.0bc635a3f58b99b8aeed61271697e12b.png440048523_Photo19-05-2019142030.thumb.png.a0c6b2e46c78712acfbe355f18007e0e.png

Sunday

1497638761_Photo19-05-2019142251.thumb.png.3bfbd7277956c7f5191896aaf467a114.png1490288241_Photo19-05-2019142258.thumb.png.042070556c54d16384fcbf6da3b74e9f.png

 

And finally here is my projected weight in 5 weeks if I continue:

199022793_Photo19-05-2019142244.thumb.png.a8b0f5a10e8121993a8d73b8d50ffe3d.png

 

Today I have just sat and had a look at all of the colourful graphs and pie charts that you get when you log food.  I have been eating a lot of eggs, and didn't realise the fat contect in them compared to the lean chicken that I have also been eating, so the eggs will now be trimmed back massively.  They are a decent snack for hunger but having looked at the fat content I am just going to have to cut them right back.  I have been purchasing the ready cooked portions of chicken (normally in a tray at 140g).  On Friday I purchased a number of chicken breasts myself and will cook them now in advance and take them with me during the day, more to see if it saves me any money.  I have also found that Aldi do some great "protein shots" at just 29p a packet which are a great mid afternoon treat.  There are loads of flavours so the next time that I am in I will be treating myself to some.  I have now also started looking at white fish as options and what vegetables I can have with them in the evening.

Thats it for this week.

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Hey Darren,

Sounds like you're doing really well - congratulations!

Especially well done on getting the water in, people don't realise that water is an assistant to SO many functions within the body. I personally drink around 3 litres a day. 

Just a couple of notes on what you've said above with regards to your nutrition. 

  • It doesn't matter what time you eat your meals. I regularly eat between 8-9pm and there is no scientific proof that you should stop eating at 6pm or whatever they try and tell people these days. 
  • 1200 calories isn't a magic number. This was brought around in the 80's-90's diet culture as a number that women should stick to to lose weight. Unfortunately (or fortunately - however you decide to look at it) every-BODY is different and requires a different amount of calories and split of macro-nutrients to function and to lose weight. This is easily worked out, and I'm happy to help if you like, but I will tell you right now that 11-1200 calories is incredibly low for you. It may be sustainable for a short amount of time, sure, but that is basically a crash diet which you will bounce out of and possibly come out the other side worse off. Your PT (if he is a good one) should be able to figure out the correct amount of calories for you, along with a start-off macro nutrient split for you to work towards.

I follow James Smith PT on Instagram, who is a straight-talking personal trainer who basically busts the bullshit in the fitness industry. Yes he can be a bit sweary and rude - but he gets his point across and he is very good. I also follow Courtney Pruce who is great at giving out the facts.

Feel free to message me if you have any questions at all - I'm happy to help!

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12 hours ago, tiffany b said:

This is easily worked out, and I'm happy to help if you like, but I will tell you right now that 11-1200 calories is incredibly low for you. It may be sustainable for a short amount of time, sure, but that is basically a crash diet which you will bounce out of and possibly come out the other side worse off.

I am consuming 1500 a day, it was when I went to log a couple of times and it gave me the warning so I ate something to bring it up.  My appetite has just completely changed now.  Its like today, I have ate 2 eggs, 2 packs of 120g cooked chicken breast, 2 apples, 26g snack pack of nuts and a yogurt.  Just about to have my tea (Fish, cauli cheese and veg) and I am at 1,222.  I now need to get another 200 in really.  I am just not eating the crap, so I will make up the calories with some fruit or something.  Its quite hard to get calories in when you dont eat crap or drink beer! lol.

Darren

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Haha yes that is very true! If you need calorie dense stuff, take a look at things like an apple or banana with peanut butter or something.

I have protein bars/cookies so I can always manage to find an extra 200-250 cals when I need them

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On 5/14/2019 at 11:31 AM, kent614 said:

From my journey - it is important to know the rules of the game, and the routes to success. 

I spent a long time trying to get into shape with zero results, and it wasn't until I learnt the rules of the game, and learnt how things work, that I started getting the results. I wasted a lot of effort with nothing to show for it.

Turns out the Golden Rules was simple : Calories Deficit 

Track your calories (I use myfitness pal app), manage yourself and discipline and control.

You can not out train a poor diet. 

 

Another thing I track is steps. I target 12k steps a day every day, and take every opportunity to walk and move. Leaving the house earlier, walking to the station, getting off the bus a stop earlier, always taking the stairs and avoiding the escalator. I have a step tracker on my watch, and seeing my daily stats becomes a mental game - always finding an opportunity to steps to make sure I hit my target. Whatever gets measured - gets managed. 

In terms of overall calorie burn, maintaining high movements and a high number of steps throughout the day daily can have as much and more of an impact that hitting the gym for an hour x3 a week 

 

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