Fighting Fat The Dumbbell Way
Working on a regular 9-hour shift, 3 hours of travel time to and from your workplace and home, having a 2-year old kid that is so excited to play with you waiting at the doorstep once you get home (and this kid would stick to you like a leech until the time you put him to bed).
Now, where will you be putting in your workout hours in that schedule? Sounds familiar? Yeah. I guess most of you do have this issue.
I'm a 33 year-old father of a 2-year old boy who works a regular 9:00 AM to 6:00 PM shift and needs at least 3 hours to travel to and from my home and office. As mentioned in my first 2 articles, I am an extremely overweight person (basing it on the body fat percentage I have).
For the past 11 years, I've been sitting on my flab (I weigh roughly around 126 kilos and stand 5'9" before I return to working out) before I realized that I am already 33!
With father time quickly running behind me, I decided that enough is enough. Hey, I have a son who looks up to me and I don't want him to grow up staring at a big bundle of lard sitting on the living couch.
But then again, how will I do that? How will I squeeze into my hectic daily schedule the time to workout at the gym? The answer? Build my own home gym. Yes. It does make sense. At least, by building my own home gym, I would be able to have better control of my workout schedules.
I don't have to make do with the tiring travel to the city area (around 30 minutes by bus) just to be able to have a great workout at the comfort of California Fitness or Fitness First (I am from Singapore and these 2 gyms are the biggest in this part of the world).
But how about the budget? I am earning just enough for our monthly spending and probably around 5% savings. So how will I build my own home gym? The answer... Dumbbells.
I came across a website about "The Superior Dumbbell Workout" by fitness coach Eddie Lomax. It gave me the answer to what I was looking for. Economical ways to burn the fat off my body at the comfort of my home using what? Dumbbells.
All I needed were 2 sets of dumbbells with varying weights and one ultra-durable gym ball (so that it won't burst when I lay my 126 kilogram body on it).
Here's what I purchased:
- 1 8 kg. Dumbbell pair
- 1 11 kg. Dumbbell pair
- 4 5 kg. plates
- 4 2.5 kg. plates
- 1 Gym Ball
- 1 Dance Stepper
Now, how can this set of limited equipment burn the fat off my body? It takes a lot of hard work to figure it out. First, I purchased the e-book of Coach Lomax. I have found his dumbbell workouts to be very good. In fact, his Grinding Slow exercise routines would really bust up even for most professional bodybuilders.
The only problem I find in his recommendations is that it requires you to be very good at aerobic exercises which, unfortunately, is very far from my condition. So I needed to keep on researching. Then I stumbled upon some old MuscleMag issues from my friend and I saw some pretty cool articles on how to incorporate dumbbells into one's routine.
With some tinkering on some of the most basic workouts I have read, I came up with this basic routine which I followed for one whole month, 5 days a week.
- Dance Stepper: 5 minutes
- Dumbbell Squat: 3 sets of 12 reps
- Dumbbell Lunges: 3 sets of 12 reps
- Dumbbell Shoulder Press: 3 sets of 12 reps
- Dumbbell Front Raises: 3 sets of 12 reps
- Dumbbell Incline Press: 3 sets of 12 reps
- Dumbbell Incline Flyes: 3 sets of 12 reps
- Dumbbell Deadlifts: 3 sets of 12 reps
- Dumbbell Rows: 3 sets of 12 reps
- Dumbbell Curls: 3 sets of 12 reps
- Dumbbell Triceps Press: 3 sets of 12 reps
- Dance Stepper: 5 minutes
Rest is limited to at most 20 seconds per set and 30 seconds per workout. Pretty simple right? This workout, for an extremely overweight person like me, worked wonders.
It gives me the overall body workout that I am looking for and at the same time it helps in developing the strength of my lungs via the cardio movements involved without too much exhaustion.
You see, the problem with overweight guys like me is that we have a great deal difficulty in doing a routine that stresses too much on cardiovascular training.
Normally, after a single set of an explosive cardio exercise we feel drained and exhausted. Much more if you are going to design a routine that circuits more than 2 cardio exercises.
This oftentimes causes most of us not to come back for the second day. So by coming up with a routine that doesn't make us huff and puff like the big bad wolf after each set, it would somehow encourage us to come back the next day and continue with the program. Was if effective? I can say yes, it was, at least for me.
Yeah, yeah. Most of you would probably be thinking that just like your jolly old product rep, I am here to promote a specific line of supps. Unfortunately, you're wrong this time.
Promote supps, hmmm, yeah. That I will do. But from a single specific line? Nope. That I'm not going to do. What I would be discussing here is my current supplement stash that has worked for me on my road to better and brighter health.
I am currently into 3 different types of supps. I have one for fat burning (as you see, I need to cut down on my weight), a pre-workout and a post-workout supp.
For fat burning, I am currently using VPX Meltdown. Probably one of the best fat-burners in the market right now; it really gives you that jolly mood in the morning after taking your first capsule on an empty stomach or 20 minutes before your breakfast. And when I say jolly mood, I mean it's like you start humming a song unknowingly.
For my pre-workout supplement, I just finished my first tub of Gaspari Nutrition SuperPump250. This supp really rocks! And I mean it gives you the boost of energy needed for your workouts; it gives greater focus when doing your reps and it doesn't cause you to crash after the draining workouts.
It gives you that push to keep on pumping those plates again and again. Just don't be carried away on your energy as we don't want you to overtrain yourself.
And since post-workout nutrition is so important in developing strong, lean muscles to replace my flab, I made sure I have one of it as well. My product of choice?
Universal Torrent. This is probably one of the most complete post-workout drinks available right now. It has a significant amount of creatine, protein and carbohydrates essential in muscle recovery. In short, it is simply the best for me and the taste is superb.
The results for me was pretty encouraging. From a bodyweight of 126 kilos, following the above routine religiously, I was able to trim it down to 118 kilos in approximately 3 weeks. Not bad. When converted, it totals to 17.6 lbs in 3 weeks.
I lost 1 inch on my waist (from 50 inches to 49 inches) and I had a firmed-up upper body. And although I still look big, at least I don't look like the bloated lard I used to be.
The best thing is, I noticed great improvements in my resistance as I can run and play a 20-minute basketball game without the hassles of stopping to catch my breath after running up and down the hardcourt a couple of times.
With the help of Bodybuilding.com and everything in it (BodySpace, articles, best-priced supps, forum, etc.), plus the motivation coming from my wife and my son, I guess I'll be staying in the gym for good. I don't have any excuses anymore not to pump those plates and shed the fat since I have practically taken control of my time.
The knowledge I gained from the tons of articles I have read and the millions of advices I have seen on the forums, I really believe that I now have the best tools imaginable to combat being overweight and bring a close to this chapter of my life and physique.
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God-willing, I will continue transforming myself into a better and fitter person, and who knows, our Lord Jesus Christ might allow me to become an active and professional bodybuilding competitor (such as Arnold Schwarzenegger or Dorian Yates) before I turn 40.
Good luck and God bless. You can win that battle against being overweight and make sure to whip its @ss.