I’m a 41-year-old man who went from 87kg to 68kg in 2017, and got into pretty good shape. I felt 15 years younger. New pep in my step.
When I started losing so much weight, A LOT of people asked me: What did you do?
Some where even concerned that I was sick because of the rapid fat loss.
The true answer was: There was no secret method. I just ate A LOT less, and moved A LOT more.
I was literally spending 2+ hours in the gym every single day. I didn’t eat anything for breakfast (except for coffee with butter), and then had some sushi or sashimi around 3pm, and then maybe some boiled corn in the afternoon. I drank only water. And the sushi portion was really tiny. I was constantly hungry. But I was in that zone where I felt like: Fuck it all, I just want to do it. Within less than 3 months, I lost all that fat.
I’ve maintained that weight for around 2 years. And then slowly, slowly things started to slide back again. Then Covid lockdowns hit. And while some people used the lockdowns to really get in shape, the exact opposite happened to me: I gained a lot of weight. In fact, all those kilograms I had lost? They now came bouncing back.
Here’s my chart of shame:
I almost hit that dreaded 87kg again, and I figured I can’t do that. I had put so much sweat and effort into getting in shape, and I let it all go to shits.
But if you think I learned my lesson that time around, watch this:
Yup. Bounced back. And hit new heights: 87.6kg.
Again, a drastic decision to not fuck this up again:
That hardcore drop was mostly diet-driven this time around, not so much exercise. I did exercise but it wasn’t the same hardcore regimen I had submitted myself to back in 2017. I basically just ate A LOT LESS.
And look where I am now:
Back at (almost) my worst in terms of weight.
So I’m one of those folks for whom the struggle with weight is real. I get it now.
Back in 2017 and 2018 I thought: I’m gonna get a six-pack. Get in tiptop shape. I’m gonna pull it off this time.
And if I had stayed on course, I probably would have made it. But I didn’t.
I’ve used a 7-minute workout app for the past couple of months, and I’ve done that workout at least 3-4 times per week. Just as a simple habit. You can always fit in 7 minutes, there’s just no excuse for that. For me, I think of it as a quick thing I can do to get a minimum dose of exercise in, as well as some basic strength conditioning, and preparing my body for what’s ahead. Telling my body: Hey brother, we’re going to get into a different gear at some point soon.
Then I’ve done a lot of cardio. I know a lot of people like to shit on cardio, and that’s fine. I actually like it. I like getting on an elliptical or a stationary bike, and just kick things off slowly, warm up for about 10 minutes and then work myself into a frenzy until there’s a big fucking puddle of sweat on the floor under me and my clothes are all soaked and my eyes are burning and I’ve got that salty sweat taste in my mouth and my heart is pumping. I like it because it’s a great opportunity to challenge myself, to push myself further when I feel like giving up. And by doing it this way, I can do a really intense workout without any joint pain, which was an issue for me in the past when doing high-impact workouts or workouts with weights.
Then I started working with some weights, but still very mindful and attentive to what my body was telling me. My very first attempt at working out with weights didn’t go well—it was back in 2015, with a personal trainer, and it fucked up my shoulder for about 4 months, so I had to take a break because of the shoulder pain. What the fuck is a personal trainer good for if they can’t prevent you from injury?
Anyway, since that time I have a lot of respect for weights and high-impact workouts (anything where there’s a lot of jumping involved, or stuff like running, etc). I’d rather consistently work out and be injury-proof, than do a period of all hyped-up intensity, get injured and then be forced to take a break and have to restart months later.
That being said—I’ve kind of done the work to build up general strength, lose weight, and accustom my body to the stresses, so now I’m looking to take things up a notch. What I’ve done so far are push-ups, some lat machine workouts, ab crunches, pectoral machine, pull-ups, spiderman push-ups, that kind of thing.
I’ve learned a lot of this stuff from a friend who’s in great shape, and he’s happy to coach me along the way. I’ve also been occasionally looking up things in YouTube, which is a great way to wisen up on exercise stuff—however, it’s also so noisy, because there are so many experts out there who contract each other. I figure you just gotta take in some information, different perspectives, and then pick one that seems right for you.
Now one of the things I came across was Jeff Cavaliere from Athlean-X, and in particular his bodyweight-only exercises. So I’m going to try to sign up for his program.
Why bodyweight only?
Now what I really like about the bodyweight only approach is that I CAN DO IT EVERY-FUCKING-WHERE, ANY-FUCKING-TIME. When I’m in my hometown, I like going to the gym, but I tend to travel quiet often, and then there’s no gym, no equipment, and I’ve noticed that this always throws me back a week or two in my training. So having a no-equipment-needed workout program that gets results, and is save, seems very compelling. (From what I’ve heard, Jeff Cavaliere is an expert when it comes to knee-, back-, and shoulder-issues, which is relevant to me). So there we go. I’ll document this journey and see where it takes me, and if it gets results, I hope that it’ll inspire some of you to get in the best shape of your life as well.
Principles I believe in
Personalization over generalization
We’re all different and unique. What works for you might not work for me, and vice versa. Inform yourself about what works for others, text and evaluate for yourself.