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    Default Toning but not losing weight

    I used to work out pretty regularly a couple of years ago but a few things changed that (new job, new city, laziness).

    I want to get back into working out because I'm starting to get some flab where I never had it before and I really enjoyed the energy I had when I was working out. I'm a pretty tall and skinny guy (5'10" and approx 135 pounds). I don't put on weight easily. My goal is to get more toned and to put on some muscle. Not sure what type of workouts I should be doing to accomplish this so if anyone has experience in this that would be appreciated. I'm not looking to go from 135ish pounds to 190 pounds or anything but want to hit a comfortable weight while still having tone and good strength.

    Thanks

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    You're 5 10, 135 lbs and you have flab?
    "Anarchism is not a romantic fable but the hardheaded realization, based on five thousand years of experience, that we cannot entrust the management of our lives to kings, priests, politicians, generals, and county commissioners."

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    Originally posted by Modelexis
    You're 5 10, 135 lbs and you have flab?
    Not flab but the stomach is starting to get a little pushed out. I have a very high metabolism and I definitely don't eat the most healthy things since I don't work out anymore. It appears that all those unhealthy things go to one place.

    When I was working out I was also drinking protein shakes that acted as a weight gainer and I reached around 145 pounds because obviously muscle is heavier than fat but nothing really more than that.

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    IMO do a base phase for about 2-4 weeks (body weight stuff)(injury prevention)
    Then do a power phase for 3-6 (olympic/compound lifts)
    Then a fat burn phase for 3-6 (crossfit style)

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    I dont think crossfit is gonna bring this guy to his goal weight of 190lbs.

    OP if you really want to get to 190lbs and stay relatively lean, that will take you about 2 years, so your going to need a routine that you will stay on. You need to completely change your eating habits by the sound of it also.

    You need alot more protein, and overall calories in general if you want to gain some weight.

    Get a simple routine focusing on squats, deadlifts, and bench. Start eating more meat, brown rice, eggs and if you can, whole milk will probably do you some good too.

    The hardest thing for you might be your appetite. Its important to eat as much as you can. Try throwing a shake after each of your meals, this helps bump up protein and calories while not making you much fuller.

    Anyway.. how do you eat right now? What did you do in the gym before? Is 145lbs your all time heavyset?

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    I don't think he wants to hit 190, but I agree that crossfit won't give him the results he's looking for.

    A base phase is a good idea. Follow that with a period of power lifting, focusing on your core lifts (squats, deads, bench, press, chins, etc.). I'd run this for 3 months, changing the accessory exercises every 6 weeks or so. This will build strength and a muscular base that you can assess your results with. If you're happy, maintain. If you want more, lather, rinse, and repeat.

    Get into the crossfit style workouts when you've hit your muscular goal and want to maintain an overall fit appearance. It'll just keep a skinny guy looking skinny longer than I think the OP wants to be skinny for.

    EDIT:

    Oh, and eat. Seriously. Crank up your protein, and eat. You won't be building much muscle running at a caloric deficit.

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    Originally posted by Redlined_8000
    I dont think crossfit is gonna bring this guy to his goal weight of 190lbs.

    OP if you really want to get to 190lbs and stay relatively lean, that will take you about 2 years, so your going to need a routine that you will stay on. You need to completely change your eating habits by the sound of it also.
    Originally posted by Ajay
    I'm not looking to go from 135ish pounds to 190 pounds or anything but want to hit a comfortable weight while still having tone and good strength.

    Thanks

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    oh

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    Eat until you feel like throwing up. Seriously.

    And this means eat HEALTHY foods, aka eggs, chicken, steak (not the healthiest, but excellent for bulking), veggies, etc. Stay away from sugary drinks, literally only drink water, milk, your shakes, and tea (or coffee if you must, but no sugar or cream in it).

    As far as workouts go, the base idea is good, go check out bodybuilding.com (their supersite) as there are lots of great articles there to get you started once you want to start lifting. MAKE SURE YOU GET SOMEONE TO TEACH YOU PROPER TEACHNIQUE. I say this from personal experience as I threw out my back from squating badly and it has hindered my performance for a long time. IMO I would have you go for size to start, rather than just toning. You can always tone later. When you get into it, start with 4 sets of 6 or 5 sets of 5 if you want to build some muscle. If you just want to tone, then do 3 sets of 12-15 for each exercise.

    If you are wanting to bulk, you are most likely going to gain some fat at the beginning, no matter what. This is not bad though as your fast metabolism will eat away that fat after you have gained all the muscle from your bulking phase, and get into your cutting phase. You can do cardio throughout the bulking phase if you want, as it will help a bit with fat loss and cardiovascular endurance (which is important!), but it is not neccesary.

    You should shoot for gaining a pound a week, anymore and it is most likely just fat. Depending on your goal weight, which I think you should shoot for 150-160, it will take some time. But probably more than originally calculated because we all have relapses (I was sick for a week, which meant I was not eating much, and lost 4 pounds )

    An important thing to remember is 80% of your gains come from what you eat.

    I have always been a skinny guy (5'11 ~150) for my life. I have been bulking since the beginning of May and have made it to ~167 so far, breaking 170 with food in me/clothes on Another piece of advice is to pay more attention to the mirror than the scale. Weight is just a number, but how you look is usually a good indication of how your diet is going. Your diet will change with time, so don't be afraid to change things up. Same goes with your workouts.

    And remember, abs on a skinny guy are like big boobs on a fat chick, they don't really count

    EDIT: If you ever have questions, feel free to throw me a pm and I would be glad to try and help you out
    Last edited by -relk-; 09-20-2011 at 10:42 AM.

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    Maybe take a hard look at your nutrition.
    Originally posted by TomcoPDR


    Wait. Tom, THE Tom?
    Originally posted by Rusted Bumper
    As far as I can tell, tom_9109 has the most detailed and correct answer

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    Originally posted by -relk-

    And remember, abs on a skinny guy are like big boobs on a fat chick, they don't really count.
    Great post. I especially love this - so true!

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    Originally posted by davidI


    Great post. I especially love this - so true!
    5'7" @ 120 checking in

    Lots of good advice here, I basically did a 3 day a week lifting routine with the Big 3 lifts and accessories for 4 months and put o 15 lbs, and I saw no significant gains in fat but getting more developed. Now I have dropped back to 120 over summer and starting it up again.

    Going to be looking forward to hitting 145 by my birthday in Feb.


    There's visible abs (ie me), and there are still abs that are well developed on a skinny guy. Don't take that way from us! Of course I am trying for the later.

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    I was 5'9" in High School at 135 pounds. I'm now the same height at 175-180 pounds and have a decent 6-pack - even an 8-pack in January (though the last 6 months I've definitely put on some extra insulation).

    Here's an excellent bulk building routine, but as stated, nutrition and eating is key!!

    The Training Split
    When you're training mostly for muscle growth, you hit each muscle group less frequently, but with a higher training volume and more oomph. Conversely, when you're training for neural improvements, it's best to increase the frequency of training each muscle group while lowering the daily volume.
    Since this program focuses only on maximizing muscle growth, each main muscle group will be hit once a week, but with more volume (around 12-16 sets per muscle group).
    To make the most of this program, we'll use an antagonist split with alternating sets. This consists of training opposing muscle groups in the same workout, alternating one set of each of those antagonists. For example, if on Day 1 you're training chest and back, the first exercise pairing might be incline dumbbell press (A1) and close-grip pull-downs (A2). In that case, you'd alternate one set of A1 (press) with one set of A2 (pull-downs), kind of like this:
    First set of A1
    Rest 60 seconds
    First set of A2
    Rest 60 seconds
    Second set of A1
    Rest 60 seconds
    Second set of A2
    Rest 60 seconds
    Third set of A1
    Rest 60 seconds
    Third set of A2
    ...and so on.
    The weekly split then becomes:
    Day 1 (Monday): Torso (chest and back)
    Day 2 (Tuesday): Lower body
    Day 3 (Wednesday): OFF
    Day 4 (Thursday): Arms (biceps and triceps)
    Day 5 (Friday): Shoulders (front/lateral deltoids and rear delt/traps)
    Day 6 (Saturday): OFF
    Day 7 (Sunday): OFF
    The advantages of this type of split are as follows:
    • Ensures balanced development of opposing muscle groups. This reduces the risk of injury while maximizing aesthetic appeal.
    • Allows for greater neural activation of the worked muscle group. Contracting a muscle after its antagonist has been contracted increases neural drive, thus maximizing muscle fiber recruitment. This leads to a greater force production potential, and more growth stimulation.
    • Minimizes reciprocal inhibition. When you fatigue a muscle group, it won't "resist" as much when you're working its antagonist. For example, when doing a curl you're not only fighting against the resistance but also against the triceps' partial activation. If you fatigue the triceps, they will be more fatigued, and thus won't create as much opposition to the biceps.
    • Increases training density (more total volume done in less time) without affecting the recovery time for each muscle group. This favors the onset of an anabolic state conducive to muscle growth.

    The Methods Used
    Each session will include 3 exercises for each of the targeted muscle groups. The first movement is the basic lift, which we'll do relatively heavy. After all, forceful contractions stimulate muscle growth, and we want to be strong, not just look strong. Not to mention that heavy lifting increases myogenic tone, which will make your muscles look much denser and harder, even at rest.
    The first exercise pairing is fairly heavy, using a 7/5/3 wave loading pattern for 6 total sets (one set of 7, one set of 5, one set of 3, one set of 7, one set of 5, one set of 3).
    Our second exercise pairing includes the main assistance movements, and it's still a major lift, not an isolation drill. For this one, we'll use a reverse pyramid for a total of 5 sets. Two sets of 10, two sets of 8, one set of 6.
    The last pairing is the finishing touch, the isolation work aimed at making sure the targeted muscle groups are properly stimulated. For this pairing, we'll use a special training technique. Depending on the movement, it could be regular reps to failure plus added partial reps, double contraction reps, or iso-dynamic contrast reps. Three sets are performed for this pairing.

    The Program
    This is a program recommendation. You can make substitutions as long as they’re in line with the philosophy of the program (in other words, don't replace bench press with cable crossovers).
    Day 1: Torso
    A1) Low-incline dumbbell press
    1 x 7, 1 x 5, 1 x 3, 1 x 7, 1 x 5, 1 x 3
    75 seconds of rest
    A2) Lat pull-downs with a close parallel grip
    1 x 7, 1 x 5, 1 x 3, 1 x 7, 1 x 5, 1 x 3
    75 seconds of rest
    B1) Flat Bench press, wide grip (Smith Machine or Dumbbell)
    2 x 10, 2 x 8, 1 x 6
    75 seconds of rest
    B2) 1-arm dumbbell rowing
    2 x 10, 2 x 8, 1 x 6
    75 seconds of rest
    C1) Pec deck machine: regular reps + partials
    3 x 10-12 full reps, then partials for the last half of the movement to failure, then partials for the first half of the movement to failure.
    60 seconds of rest
    C2) Straight-bar pull-down: low double contraction
    3 x 10-12. Pull the handle down to the low position, bring it back up halfway, pull it down again. This is one repetition.
    60 seconds of rest
    Day 2: Lower body
    A1) Front squat (Dumbbell or smith machine)
    1 x 7, 1 x 5, 1 x 3, 1 x 7, 1 x 5, 1 x 3
    120 seconds of rest
    A2) Romanian deadlift (Dumbbell or smith machine)
    1 x 7, 1 x 5, 1 x 3, 1 x 7, 1 x 5, 1 x 3
    120 seconds of rest
    B1) Close-stance snatch-grip deadlift (smith machine)
    2 x 10, 2 x 8, 1 x 6
    90 seconds of rest

    B2) Dumbbell walking lunges, long steps
    2 x 10, 2 x 8, 1 x 6
    90 seconds of rest
    C1) Leg press, full reps plus top partials
    3 x 10-12 full reps, then partials for the last half of the movement to failure.
    90 seconds of rest
    C2) Seated leg curl, high double contraction
    3 x 8-10. Lift all the way up, lower back down halfway, lift back up. This is one repetition.
    90 seconds of rest
    Day 3: OFF
    Day 4: Arms
    A1) Close-grip preacher curl
    1 x 7, 1 x 5, 1 x 3, 1 x 7, 1 x 5, 1 x 3
    75 seconds of rest
    A2) Close-grip bench press
    1 x 7, 1 x 5, 1 x 3, 1 x 7, 1 x 5, 1 x 3
    75 seconds of rest
    B1) Incline dumbbell hammer curl
    2 x 10, 2 x 8, 1 x 6
    75 seconds of rest
    B2) Decline EZ bar triceps extension
    2 x 10, 2 x 8, 1 x 6
    75 seconds of rest
    C1) Wide-grip/elbows in preacher curl: regular reps + partials
    3 x 10-12 full reps, then partials for the last half of the movement to failure, then partials for the first half of the movement to failure.
    60 seconds of rest
    C2) Rope cable pressdown: low double contraction
    3 x 10-12. Pull the rope down to the low position, bring it back up halfway, pull it down again. This is one repetition.
    60 seconds of rest
    Day 5: Shoulders
    A1) Dumbbell push press
    1 x 7, 1 x 5, 1 x 3, 1 x 7, 1 x 5, 1 x 3
    75 seconds of rest
    A2) Smith-machine or dumbbell power shrugs
    1 x 7, 1 x 5, 1 x 3, 1 x 7, 1 x 5, 1 x 3
    75 seconds of rest
    B1) Seated dumbbell press with a hammer grip
    2 x 10, 2 x 8, 1 x 6
    75 seconds of rest
    B2) Dumbbell upright rowing
    2 x 10, 2 x 8, 1 x 6
    75 seconds of rest
    C1) Cable lateral raise: regular reps + partials
    3 x 10-12 full reps, then partials for the last half of the movement to failure, then partials for the first half of the movement to failure.
    60 seconds of rest
    C2) Rear deltoid machine (Pec Deck Machine, Facing the Back): peak double contraction
    3 x 10-12. Lift the weight to the peak contraction, bring it back up halfway, lift it again. This is one repetition.
    60 seconds of rest
    Day 6: OFF
    Day 7: OFF

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    Originally posted by [Yu]


    5'7" @ 120 checking in

    Lots of good advice here, I basically did a 3 day a week lifting routine with the Big 3 lifts and accessories for 4 months and put o 15 lbs, and I saw no significant gains in fat but getting more developed. Now I have dropped back to 120 over summer and starting it up again.

    Going to be looking forward to hitting 145 by my birthday in Feb.


    There's visible abs (ie me), and there are still abs that are well developed on a skinny guy. Don't take that way from us! Of course I am trying for the later.
    Im not trying to take it away from you! Just regurgitating information I have read over the years. I am a skinny guy as well, but am starting to get bigger so I am now realizing the reality in that saying. The quote does hold true though, "bigger" girls dont have to work for their big boobs, while skinny guys dont have to work for their abs. Mind you, women can't really control the size of their breats But I think the point gets across

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    Wow. Thanks a bunch for the feedback and for the tips with workout routines. I'll definitely heed the advice. First step I think is getting my diet in order.

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    Originally posted by A790
    I don't think he wants to hit 190, but I agree that crossfit won't give him the results he's looking for.

    A base phase is a good idea. Follow that with a period of power lifting, focusing on your core lifts (squats, deads, bench, press, chins, etc.). I'd run this for 3 months, changing the accessory exercises every 6 weeks or so. This will build strength and a muscular base that you can assess your results with. If you're happy, maintain. If you want more, lather, rinse, and repeat.

    Get into the crossfit style workouts when you've hit your muscular goal and want to maintain an overall fit appearance. It'll just keep a skinny guy looking skinny longer than I think the OP wants to be skinny for.

    EDIT:

    Oh, and eat. Seriously. Crank up your protein, and eat. You won't be building much muscle running at a caloric deficit.
    I use crossfit to break plateaus while maintaining strength. I dont really lose weight cuz i eat ALOT. Keeps my endurance and power solid

    BTW if you want a solid core Olympic Lifts, Renegade Rows and the BIG 3(squat,dead,bench)
    Last edited by scboss; 09-21-2011 at 12:32 AM.

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    Originally posted by -relk-


    Im not trying to take it away from you! Just regurgitating information I have read over the years. I am a skinny guy as well, but am starting to get bigger so I am now realizing the reality in that saying. The quote does hold true though, "bigger" girls dont have to work for their big boobs, while skinny guys dont have to work for their abs. Mind you, women can't really control the size of their breats But I think the point gets across
    Haha of course. I'm just saying that if I worked my abs to look like a half dozen of dinner buns bulging from my torso, that also took a lot of time and dedication.

    But at this point, I just have abs because I am skinny, nor do I ever brag about having a 6 pack. Lets be honest, at the end of the day I am 120 lbs soaking wet, nothing to see here lol.

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    You have to eat, eat, eat. How do you think people get fat? Why are so many people obese? haha They over eat junk food.

    What you need to do is, over eat on the good stuff. You want to get bigger like Thor and Captain America? Those guys put on a solid 20-25lbs of muscle and look huge. All kinds of workouts from kettle bell swings, prowler pushes, squats, deads, compound movements, eating tonnes of high quality protein foods, eat well, lift hard and you'll see result.

    It's rather simple but just fucking hard. I can't do it. I fail.
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    As far as eating goes, lots of steel cut oats, eggs, chicken, tuna, fish, natty PB, protein shakes, rice, etc.

    I've posted it before, but when I was bulking my day looked like this:

    Morning:
    2 cups oats
    6 egg omelette

    Mid-morning:
    Banana & Protein Shake

    Lunch:
    2 Cans Tuna

    Mid-Afternoon:
    Fruit & Protein Shake

    Dinner:
    2 Chicken Breasts, Bowl of Rice & Veg.

    Do that, lift hard, and you'll be clean bulking in no time.

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