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  1. As of tomorrow, July 8, 2014, I will have been on NF for One Year. One year ago, I weighed over 260 lbs. I now weigh 249 lbs. Not super impressive, but... at the time I could barely do 10 pushups. Now I don't do pushups, I just lift heavy shit. Sometime, a little longer than one year ago, I saw the scale inching toward 270 and I was feeling week and tired all the time. As a busy grad student I spent a lot of my time in front of a computer, eating crappy food, and when I had downtime, I'd be drinking beer and stuffing my face with even crappier food. Enough was enough. I already had a gym membership thanks to that year's New Year's resolution that I hadn't used in at least three months. I decided to use it. But... what would I do once I got there. The last time I had been was either to spend an hour or two on an elliptical. Another time I had been to a yoga class, but was so week and inflexible that I could barely hold a downward dog. Cardio machines are boring, and I clearly needed strength. I thought I'd try lifting weights and calisthenics, and I'd heard circuit training was good for weight loss... So I googled "circuit training and weight loss" and guess which site came up... Yep. That's right... bodybuilding.com... But, then I scrolled down to the next few hits and there was a video link to Steve's Beginner Bodyweight Circuit... and it was from a website with an intriguing name. A few links, and Links (Zelda references) later I was reading about Joe and Staci, and other success stories about people who were struggling with fitness the same way I was. These were not people who played sports all their lives, and devoted all their time to the gym, they were busy people, with jobs, who had similar nerdy interests and they were all helping each other get in shape. I wanted in. So I started doing the Beginner Bodyweight Workout at home. Then I'd go to the gym, lift a dumbell and walk on a machine or two. I cleaned up my diet a bit. Then after learning more and coming back to the site, I signed up and did my first challenge. I went from BBWW and dicking around at the gym, to barbell training with stronglifts 5x5 and tracking macros. Lost 12 lbs. during that first challenge. Later during the fall, I really got into trying to do body recomp, maintaining weight while building muscle, so I tracked macros and lifted like a beast. Unfortunately, I got derailed a few times, but I persevered, and still managed to hang around 248 lbs, while I got stronger. The holidays came and went, and I managed to maintain, and was gearing up to make more progress. In January I set my first 1 RMs on the big three, Squat: 315, Bench 210, Deadlift 330. Six months before this I didn't squat or deadlift at all, and I couldn't have benched 150 to save my life. Then, in February and March the storm came. A vitamin D deficiency, Wisconsin winter, a bit of overtraining, working hard with lack of productivity in the lab, social isolation, and anxiety about my future career and such, all combined to level down my life with a bout of depression. I was waking up, then lying in bed till noon, skipping days at work, not going to the gym, but still eating like a body builider. I gained most of my weight back. It got bad enough that I decided to get help. Got back on NF, and to the gym. And after a couple of months, I'm approaching a two year personal best for weight (getting below last year's 248). Also, I'm way, way stronger than a year ago. And I can wear pants that I couldn't, even when I was at 248 a year ago. I'm also back to being productive at work, and I've even given talks about my research in front of prominent researchers in my field and recently at an international conference, and it was well received. To acknowledge how crazy this year has been, both up and down,to get a fresh start, and to re-affirm my commitment to getting healthier and FUCKING SHREDDED LIKE A DEMON, I'm starting this new battle log. As of yesterday, I started my first cycle of 5/3/1... follow this link to see Darwin's 5/3/1 Cycles I'm following a ketogenic diet and cutting. And I'm trying to finish a PhD within this next year. That's the gist of it. edit 1/19/15 -- after several months on, off, and back on again, my masterplan changed to strongman training. The Journey to Strongman begins here. edit 10/30/15 -- Around here I switched to the Standard Keto diet and did mostly barbell complexes and (hopefully I lost a bunch of weight)
  2. Are there any rebels out there who want to chat about keto diets? Either regular low carb high fat (LCHF), or cyclical ketogenic diets? Earlier this year I was doing a moderate ketogenic diet (about 40-50 net carbs, paleo + dairy and fairly high in veggies), and lost about 15 pounds, without a lot of effort or suffering. In fact it worked a little too well... I ended it after I came down with salmonella, felt really weak and I needed the carbs back to recover. After a few months of my weight staying relatively steady on a higher carb paleo diet, I went a little food & cocktail crazy over vacation, so I think I'm going back to doing keto for a bit. Is anyone else eating this way? Want to swap recipes or support? -jj
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