It's never too late. Well, unless you're dead, but we're all trying to put that off for a while at least.
The problem is there is so much bad information out there that. Fitness seems like such an uphill battle. Most give up before they even try.
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You see between advanced age, low testosterone, and whatever maladies we have been diagnosed with, we are told we need some fountain of youth. It seems impossible.
Television and the internet are full of the latest and greatest diet and fat burners. They have tiny writing attached to the ads; writing so small we can’t even read it with our trifocals.
So we just don’t make the move. It’s just too hard.
Sometimes though, there is a spark. The thought that maybe, just maybe I can turn this around if I give it a chance. We dare to hope and maybe dream of improved health. Maybe not what we once had, but certainly better than it is now.
That was my start.
As a semi-wore out commercial fisherman recovering from a double rotator cuff surgery and torn bicep, I certainly had the time. And, to be honest I knew that at 325lbs with gout, high blood pressure, and type 2 diabetes that I likely wouldn't hang around too long.
The funny part is that within all that info and technology out there, we still try to rely upon pre-ordered food and testosterone boosters (because our lack of energy can’t be because of other factors). They were my savior.
That’s where the research started.
The more I read and watched (including Massive Iron and Tiger Fitness), the more I realized that there was a clear path. Beyond all the razzle-dazzle and glimmering lights, there was the only real answer.
That answer was that a balanced healthy one ingredient rich diet and some form of exercise was the only answer. I know this is all common sense, but sometimes we need to be hit with a sledgehammer for things to click.
I adopted a concept of what was to become a meal plan (I hate the word diet) that I could adhere to. Adherence was of the utmost importance. If a person cannot adhere to a plan of any type failure was all but assured, a lesson I had learned many times.
This Plan had the following rules:
Eat as many single ingredient foods as possible. Chicken, not fried or breaded chicken. Broccoli, but not broccoli with cheese sauce and bacon.
Be realistic in your consumption of these foods. In my case, I weighed everything to keep count.
Do something, even if it meant going for a short walk.
As easy as this may sound it was a bit difficult at the beginning. Everything was new. Weighing, measuring, getting out of my own way, it was all difficult.
My savior was the scale. As the days passed, the numbers on the digital scale went down. The bane of my existence was now my friend, confidant, and even complimented my efforts.
With my success on the scale and rehab on my surgically repaired shoulder progressing, I was allowed to start resistance training as part of my recovery. Thoughts of my youth returned. I dared not to even hope for a glimpse of the past.
Was a 300-pound bench press possible again? Could I ever squat 600 pounds again as I did in my youth?
Certainly, it had to be a pipe dream, right? I mean, I’m 51 and this just can’t be possible. But could it be? Am I setting myself up for failure?
Back at the iron, I dove into videos and writings to see just what is possible for an “old man.” Unbelievably, the news wasn’t that bad! I might not have the testosterone of a young buck, but hey I still have some!
It was that day that I decided to “push it” just a bit more than I had been. Not enough to damage myself, but another rep or two couldn’t hurt could it?
The results were slow to come. Almost much slower than an already impatient guy could put up with could bare.
They were indisputable though. Biceps the size of walnuts started to grow. Triceps started to swell albeit slowly, and the weight came off faster.
Success! If not in large doses, at least noticeable to me and my friend the scale. These results continue to this very day.
My original weight goal was 230 pounds. It was achieved and surpassed. My waist has shrunken from size 46 to 36. Strength has increased slowly but relatively steadily.
I am by no means a “strong guy,” but I am much stronger than before and not as strong as I will be tomorrow. Gout? Gone. HBP? Gone! Diabetes? Gone!
Where do I (we) go from here? I’m afraid you’ll need to check out my next installment.