"I started at 192lbs, and now I am down to 162lbs!"
What has happened so far on the program?
1 ½ years ago, I decided to do something about my physical condition. I was 47 years old, 194 lbs (88 kilos) with a 38” waist. I sat behind a desk all day, and I sat on a sofa when I got home. I had not been in a gym is 15 years. When I had tried going to the gym in the past, I did not achieve any results other than sore and strained muscles.
For 3 months I tried eating more “healthy” and started working out at home with weights. I was still not happy with the results, so I started looking online for some advice. Fortunately I found the Muscle for Life website. After reading Bigger Leaner Stronger I joined a gym and started lifting properly. I also started doing 20 minutes of HIIT by running in the local park 4 nights a week. After 6 months I was much leaner and much stronger, but I was still not happy with my remaining body fat.
I read Mike’s book again, but this time I actually paid attention the parts about nutrition. I created a meal plan for cutting by calculating my protein, carbs, and fats. I stuck to that plan for 8 weeks, and actually started seeing the results of the previous months in the gym. Now that I have completed my first cut, I am ready to start bulking to add more muscle. At 48 years old, I am now 161 lbs (73 kilos) with a 31” waist and I could not be happier with my progress. I also know that by the end of my 2nd year, I will finally have the body I could have only dreamed of before I started the program.
What do you like most about the program?
Once I subscribed to the website and started receiving the Muscle for Life articles in my email, I knew I needed to buy Mike’s book. I did not hesitate. I just bought and read it from front to back. I made myself wait to start The Year One Challenge until I had read the entire book. I have now just completed The Year One Challenge, and I am starting over on Phase 1.
It was also very helpful to read about the target bodyweight multipliers for the main lifts (Bench Press, Squat, Deadlift, etc.). This showed me that I had made progress, but that I also still had work to do before I had a solid strength foundation.
What, if anything, almost kept you from buying the book or starting the program?
The best part about about the program is that it is more than just Mike’s opinion about how to get in shape. The program is based on proven research. Mike has taken the time to find and understand the research. Bigger Leaner Stronger and The Year One Challenge tell you exactly what you need to do. All we need to do is change our habits and do the work.
How does this program compare with others you’ve tried?
Like most people who want to “get in shape”, I did not follow any program. Sure, I read a few articles online, and I read the label on the machine at the gym so I would know how to use it. It was not until I read all of Bigger Leaner Stronger the first time, that I really started to understand how the body actually burns fat and builds muscle.
How has what you’ve achieved with your body changed other areas of your life?
I know that most people say that getting into shape has boosted their confidence. I have always been a very confident person. However, my confidence was always undermined by my physical condition. Not only am I a much happier person, I can now be confident in my abilities without the underlying frustrations about my physical appearance.
Is there anything else you’d like to add?
The most astonishing thing to me is the amount of “bro-science” lifting advice I see at the gym. Unfortunately, it is not limited to overweight, gym-veterans telling a newbie how to lift. I see just as much bad advice coming from the “personal trainers” who work at the gym. If there is anything I can add, it is the importance of properly educating yourself before you try something new. Don’t reinvent the wheel. Learn from people like Mike Mathews who have taken the time to do the learning, and are willing to pass on that learning in a way that is easy to understand and implement. Thanks Mike!