Name: Michael Franke
Beginning Weight: 235 Lbs.
Beginning Body Fat: 22%
Waist Size: 38 inches
Ending Weight: 173 Lbs.
Ending Body Fat: 6%
Waist Size: 31 inches
Why I Got Started
I have always been involved in sports. I played basketball, football, and baseball in high school, but after I graduated I decided to put my focus into weightlifting. Unfortunately, I never followed a proper diet. I knew I had quality muscle, but excess body fat always covered it up.
I reached 235 lbs. In June of 2004 and it was the most I have ever weighed in my life. I was able to lift a lot of weight, but I felt horrible. I was always tired and lethargic. Walking up stairs or even getting up to answer the phone caused shortness of breath.
Finally, I decided to make a change. I worked in a health club so I had absolutely no excuses. I was going to take off all of that fat and see what I had underneath no matter what!
How I Did It
There are two key components to losing body fat, each being 100% critical:
Diet and Exercise.
I consulted the manager of the health club for nutritional advice because he was a former bodybuilder and trainer. (Thank you Harry Spencer for all your help!) He advised me to follow a version of the Zone Diet in which my calories were divided up as 40% carbs, 30% protein, and 30% from fat.
I calculated my lean body mass, which was 168 lbs. I ate 1 gram of protein for each pound of lean body mass. Normally, I would advise to eat closer to 1.5 grams per pound, but I was strictly in cutting mode. Eating the exact ratio of food at each meal can be tedious, but the benefits are great.
|LEAN BODY MASS (LBM) PROTEIN NEEDS CALCULATOR|
- 8 am: ground turkey, 1 packet oatmeal, 10 almonds
- 10:30am: turkey chili
- 1:00 pm: turkey chili
- 4:00 pm: protein bar
- 7:00 pm: ground turkey, 2 cans of green beans, 10 almonds
Your body becomes extremely efficient at utilizing your food intake because it becomes accustomed to exactly the same foods every time you eat. Another advantage of this is your hormone levels are always balanced. You don't have fluctuations and insulin spikes with roller coaster effects, which can make you tired and lethargic. I followed this diet for exactly one month and was feeling great.
After one month I had made great improvements. It was at this point that I decided I was going to kick my diet into high gear. We made an alteration to my diet. I would now have four days of a calorie deficit and three days of a calorie surplus. My schedule was as follows:
Saturday, Sunday, Wednesday: High calories (6 1/2 meals)
Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday: Low calories (4 1/2 meals)
The reason I alternated between food amounts is to keep my body from slowing down my metabolism. The human body is a vary adaptive machine and if you restrict calories for too long a period of time it will think it is going into starvation mode and slow down its metabolism.
- 1st month: 30 min. x 5 days per week post workout
- 2nd month: 40 min. x 5 days per week post workout
- 3rd month: 45 min. morning and 45 min. post workout
- 4th month: 1hr. morning and 1 hr. post workout
- Incline Dumbbell Press 4 x 12 - 8
- Dumbbell Flat Bench 3 x 12 - 8
- Weighted Dips 3 x Failure
- Incline Dumbbell Flyes 4 x 15 - 10
- Pullups: 4 x Failure
- One-arm Dumbbell Rows: 4 x 12 - 8
- Deadlifts 3 x 8
- Cable Rows 3 x 10
- Squats 4 x 20
- Hack Squat 3 x 8
- Leg Ext. supersetted with Bench Squats
- Lateral Raises: 3 x 15
- Dumbbell Press: 4 x 12 - 8
- Rear Delt Raises: 3 x 8
- Front Raises 3 x 8
- Behind The Back Shrugs 4 x 12 - 8
- Rope ext. 3 x 15
- Machine Dips: 4 x 12- 8
- Overhead Dumbbell ext. 3 x 8
- Cable Pressdowns 3 x 8
- Cable Kickbacks 3 x 12
- Barbell Curls 4 x 12 - 8
- Cable Curls superset w/ Reverse Curls 4 x 12 - 8
- Hammer Curls 3 x 12 - 8
- Concentration Curls 3 x 12 - 8
Your body also adapts to cardiovascular exercise. As you improve your fitness level your body becomes more efficient. Therefore, you must gradually increase either your intensity or duration of exercise.
My program was as follows:
All cardio was done at a moderate pace. Hard enough too make you sweat and breathe hard, but not too intense to be unable to carry on a conversation.
Sample Week Of Training:
Thursday: Shoulders / Traps
Saturday: Triceps / Biceps
I alternated Abs and Calves every other day while dieting.
Suggestions For Others
- Set specific goals for yourself.
- Map out in detail how you are going to achieve these goals.
- Constantly remind yourself of where you want to be.
- Mentally reinforce that you are on track. (Get rid of all negative doubt).
- Enjoy the process and take pride in that you are willing to do what others are not.