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  1. #1
    Registered User PhDPepper1111's Avatar
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    PhDPepper1111 is offline

    Just getting started!

    I've decided as a 50th birthday present to myself to get a little more serious about health overall, and to finally compete in powerlifting which I've wanted to do my whole life.

    I'm 49, turning 50 next year.
    I have always eaten fairly poorly - high fat/red meat, ice cream etc... gotten away with it since I've been fairly athletic and involved in sports my whole life. But my cholesterol and blood pressure keep creeping up and fat to muscle ratio going the wrong way gradually.

    As I posted in the powerlifting forum, I was built to lift heavy stuff, and was training for competition (briefly) in my mid 30s when I was in a car accident that fractured two vertebra and caused nerve damage to my right tricep and pec. I did tons of rehab and was able to resume playing soccer, mountain biking etc but was nervous about lifting anything heavy.

    3 months ago I thought - 'Why Not'? So I asked my Dr how I was doing and if it would be possible to powerlift again. He did a physical, x-rays etc and said my vertebra had healed/fused nicely and that it wasn't really a risk to powerlift.

    So I started training, increased from 2 to 3 days a week and focused on the main lifts. Lots of online articles and youtubes.

    Competed for the first time 10 October and what a fun experience!
    All personal bests since I had none established, but surprised myself at what I was able to lift. It gives me confidence to keep training, motivation to keep at it!
    Masters 45-49 male 220lb group
    Squat: 407
    Bench: 303
    DL: 474

    Goals:
    1. lift as much as I can! Hopefully, set some masters records next year for the over 50 group. State records are very close (untested - already exceeded the tested records), national records (USPA) are aspirational.
    2. replace fat with muscle. Bodyweight is 210 now, might want to get as low as 195 but primary goal is fat loss and muscle gain so I don't really care about weight. I'm at or over 34% bodyfat per my Renpho scale (not sure how accurate?).
    3. Healthier lifestyle - eventually want to enjoy what I eat, but much more healthy foods and less unhealthy foods
    4. Improve overall health - lower cholesterol/blood pressure
    5. Enjoy being over 50! (when I get there)

    For training this cycle I'm doing a formal beginner/intermediate Powerlifting focused plan (TSA intermediate), trying to do minimum 3, preferably 4 days a week
    Using a calorie counter for the first time to track everything I eat. Wow.

    Good to be here and hope to see some progress!
    Why NOT?

    5'6", 210

    PRs:
    10/10/2020 FS meet: 407/303/474
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  2. #2
    Registered User xTeTe's Avatar
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    xTeTe is offline
    Seems like you were able to jump right in fairly quickly. Nice numbers for just getting back in as well.

    Given your strength now, I'd definitely concentrate more on the weight loss side. If you eat clean with the amount of muscle you have now, it shouldn't take much time at all to lower the bf percentage.
    Amateur boxer turned bodybuilder...

    Hit me up on Sherdog.. TeTe
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  3. #3
    Registered User Payton1221's Avatar
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    Payton1221 is offline
    You're bodyfat is definitely off. 210 with 34% fat means that you would have less than 140 lbs of lean mass, and you're too strong for that. If you're really interested, google "bodyfat pictures men." That'll probably give you a better idea. You could try entering your info in one of the Navy bodyfat calculators too.
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  4. #4
    Registered User PhDPepper1111's Avatar
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    PhDPepper1111 is offline
    Originally Posted by Payton1221 View Post
    You're bodyfat is definitely off. 210 with 34% fat means that you would have less than 140 lbs of lean mass, and you're too strong for that. If you're really interested, google "bodyfat pictures men." That'll probably give you a better idea. You could try entering your info in one of the Navy bodyfat calculators too.
    Thanks Payton.
    Yes, I felt the Renpho just doesn't know what to do with an unusual build like mine - pretty sus.
    I don't know much about impedance - but it makes some sense as a decent rough estimate of bodyfat... not sure why - as you say, I'm pretty strong - it would be too off for me. The interwebs - healthline.com - suggests that impedance should work reasonably well. On the other hand consumer reports wasn't very positive about them. I guess the main value is that the scale should be consistent even if it's inaccurate, so a decrease in measured BF should accurately represent change.
    I'm actually on orders currently so I should see if I can hop in a bod pod - which has been shown to be as accurate as the gold standard water displacement tests. I'll post an update for comparison if I'm able to do so.

    EDIT: the US Navy calculator puts me at 16% body fat so there's a big gap there. I think the truth is in between. I've called to try to set up a bod pod appt.
    EDIT 2: bod pod set up for Monday. Hilariously, the BMI method for calculating body fat is even more off for me (no surprise): it has me at 48% body fat.

    In any case, I DO have fat to lose though so I'm happy - and really need - to work on healthier eating. I'll take your advice and try to get more accurate numbers, but for someone really getting started with this whole life/body transformation thing, eating better foods at a smallish caloric deficit should do for now. My guess is losing 20lb of fat and adding 10lb of muscle is a really good start and I can re-evaluate from there.

    @xTeTe - thanks - I'm feeling pretty good overall about where I'm headed! In my day job as a psychologist I understand change models pretty well, so working to ensure I can stay on track. My main goals performance wise are getting stronger, but long term I do need to focus on the overall health goals as much as possible.

    Happy Friday/Halloween all!
    Last edited by PhDPepper1111; 10-30-2020 at 04:10 PM.
    Why NOT?

    5'6", 210

    PRs:
    10/10/2020 FS meet: 407/303/474
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  5. #5
    Registered User PhDPepper1111's Avatar
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    PhDPepper1111 is offline

    Before pic

    Here is my before picture - about 8 weeks ago when I signed up for my first meet. I do have more abdominal fat than this pic might imply.
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    Why NOT?

    5'6", 210

    PRs:
    10/10/2020 FS meet: 407/303/474
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  6. #6
    Registered User PhDPepper1111's Avatar
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    PhDPepper1111 is offline
    The verdict is in: 28.8% bodyfat. Good news is, plenty of room for improvement, and with my current lean mass I'm already doing the weights posted.
    I guess the goal I put earlier - lose 20lbs fat, gain 10lbs muscle sounds pretty good for a starting goal - should put me around 20% bodyfat. If/when I get there, I can re-evaluate from there.
    Any other recommendations?
    At my age I anticipate this will take time but I'm good with that. I need to reinforce better lifestyle before I try to go into any kind of maintenance.
    Planning for my state drug free comp in March should help keep me motivated/disciplined.
    Why NOT?

    5'6", 210

    PRs:
    10/10/2020 FS meet: 407/303/474
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