Body Fat %: 7%
Name: Jonathan Kappel
Favorite Body Part: Biceps and Calves
Favorite Exercise: Squat and 21's
Time Working Out: 7 Months Hardcore
Why I Got Started...
Why not? There are too many reasons as to why people should stop eating unhealthy and living there dangerous lifestyles and begin a healthy one. I was not paying much attention to myself most of my life and just went through it enjoying every minute. But it was Christmas of 2004 that I noticed I was letting myself get too far.
I had began gaining mass amounts of fat way to quick and began to get sick on a weekly basis. I was fooling myself and trying to wear 36-inch waist pants while bursting at the seams.
At the same time I was telling myself it was ok. I took out the scale and blew the dust off around January 6, 2005. The scale said 240 pounds. This freaked me out.
I had big goals of becoming a NYC Firefighter but knew my current lifestyle was only setting me back. Even worse nobody said anything to me about my weight and how it was hurting me.
I simply needed to make a change and push myself to new limits. At this time I did not have much to be happy about with my life and it led to drinking with friends who didn't care much about my health or theirs. I needed something in my life to really make me want to wake up every morning and keep the drive for success inside of me burning hard.
How I Did It ...
Well I simply got my ass up went to the gym and signed up. My first gym experience, funny to think about now, was getting on the treadmill and lasting about 5 minutes till it ended with my begging for air. I went home threw up and then emptied all my cabinets and the fridge into the garbage pail.
I poured out the beer and threw out the bottles. I sat down and spent some time doing research on the computer on how I can do this healthy and quickly. I found Bodybuilding.com and Louis Dorman; he was my main motivation.
I was so impressed with him that I wanted to do it like he did. So I went food shopping and hit up a supplement store. I began a strict nutrition regimen in which I ate 5-6 daily meals and restricted my calories.
I also used Bodybuilding.com to help me design a good exercise regimen and began off slow. I began drinking Optimum Nutrition 100% Whey Protein and plenty of oatmeal, turkey, and the king of all protein; Tuna!
I recorded every last calorie I ate and the % of carbs, protein, and fat in my diet daily. The next day I started with a 1/2 hour of cardio on the elliptical machine, which ended up being a very slow pace, but to go fast one must row slowly. I was hitting the weights but not as much as I would soon begin too.
I began to see some amazing results and it only made me want it more and more. I began mixing up my cardio sessions and now lifting intense and adding creatine monohydrate into the mix. My muscle mass began to go up and my fat way down. I knew I was doing something right when people were asking me for help and advice. This felt good at the time and even to this day.
I really began to enjoy supplementation and reading all about what is good for my goals. I ended up using
Optimum Nutrition 100% Whey Protein, Chocolate Mint Flavor. By far this is the best tasting protein shake I have ever tried. I also Used
Nutrex Lipo-6 fat burner and saw some amazing results with this product.
Flax seed became a huge part of my diet and later I added in Creatine Monohydrate from Optimum Nutrition, anyone interested in adding lean muscle mass needs to add this to their everyday life. And of course the addition of a Multivitamin and 2,000 mg of vitamin C kept me healthy and strong everyday.
I think the hard part with supplementation is dealing with people telling you that you don't need all these products, or that "Creatine is going to kill you." Well let me just say I dealt with it all and these people only base their ideologies on what they hear from people who used it incorrectly.
If used correctly and done with proper research you will have no problems with it. I also feel that people saying these products are too expensive should look into using the minimums and shopping at discount websites like Bodybuilding.com where the products are sometimes 45% off the MSRP, so to sum it up:
As I stated earlier my diet consists of constant eating which surprised a lot of people around me as to how much I ate and how much fat I was losing. I usually eat between 2000-2500 calories a day depending on my routine for the day but usually a day for me appears like this, Simple yet healthy ...
- 2 Scoops of ON 100% Whey Protein (eliminating the catabolic state my body was in during the night)
- 1 bottle of Gatorade
- 5 hardboiled egg whites
- Peanut butter sandwich on whole wheat with 2 Tbsp of Skippy Peanut Butter
- Turkey sandwich on whole wheat with 8 oz of turkey
- I would usually split the sandwiches into halves and have half of each one at two points in the day. This worked out perfectly for me and gave me a good ratio of what I needed to be eating.
- 1 banana
- 1 cup of apple juice with 10g of creatine when I cycle (6 weeks on 2 weeks off)
- 1 apple
- 2 tbsp flax seed
- 1 can tuna
- I also added about 8 packets of splenda to sweeten it up
- 1 scoop ON 100% Whey Protein
- 1 serving of rold gold pretzels to snack on throughout the day
Upon Waking Up: (before a morning run)
After My Run:
During The Day:
- 1 scoop ON 100% Whey Protein
Post-Post Workout: (around 30 minutes later)
- 1 cup of oats
I found this diet to work best for me (it continues to work for me). When I have a day that I don't run I eliminate the post run meal from my diet. This worked well because I would always run in the morning but my lifting times would change depending on when I worked so the sandwiches allowed me to take them with me to work, no problem.
I could eat when I had to. No same diet works for everyone that's why it is best to find what works for you then change it as the time goes on.
Well my exercise changed a little from time to time but I finally settled on something I really enjoyed and got me amazing results. Again it is important to find what works for you. I would try to spend no more than 1 hour in the gym to lift weights and then rush home to get all the protein and simple carbs into my system within an hour after working out.
- Bent Barbell Row
- T-Bar Row
- Wide Grip Pull Down
- V-Bar Pull Down
- Dead Lift
- Hyper Extensions
- Cable Crunches
- Reverse Crunch
- Flat Bench
- Hammer Strength Incline Bench
- Machine Press
- Pec Deck
- Cable Cross Over [Lower Pecs]
- Dumbbell Pull Over
- Leg Extension
- Lying Leg Curl
- Leg Press
- Barbell Lunge
- Super Set One: Adduction/Abduction Machine
- Cable Crunches
- Reverse Crunch
- Superset One: Preacher Curls/Tricep Cable Pushdowns
- Superset Two: Barbell Curls/Skull Crushers
- Superset Three: Wrist Curl/Forearm Roller
What Are 21's?
One of Arnold's favorites. Using the curl as an example, you would do 7 full reps followed by 7 half reps from the starting position to half way up followed by 7 half reps from half way up to the top of the movement. All of this counts as one set.View Video Of 21's
First 7 Reps
MPEG (297 KB)
Windows Media (88 KB)
- Machine Lateral Raise
- Rear Laterals
- Military Press
- Barbell Front Raises
- Barbell Shrugs
- Hammer Strength Shrugs
- Cable Crunches
- Reverse Crunch
I would also not do cardio and lifting at the same time because I wanted to benefit a lot from each one. So I would run in the morning then lift at least 3 hours later after I am 100% relaxed and refueled. I would also try to not fight any cravings. If I go out with friends and they get ice cream I get ice cream, but just the small size.
I found fighting these temptations only drive you crazy and sometime to binging later on with a whole pint of it. It's better to enjoy yourself in moderations and adjust your daily diet to accommodate for anything you feel you cant do without in life.
Monday: Back Day
Tuesday: Chest Day
Wednesday: Leg Day
Thursday: Arm Day
Friday: Shoulder Day
Most of my movements consisted of 3 sets of 6-8 Reps. With the exception of some of the leg exercises. I usually did between 12-15 reps for legs with 3 sets of each exercise. I usually did abs Mon-Wed-Fri with 3 sets of 20 cable crunches and reverse curls. I worked out my calves on Tues-Fri using 3 sets of 12-15 seated calf raises and standing calf raises. I also rested no more than 1 minute in between each set. This kept my pumps up and got me out of the gym in under an hour.
After experimenting with many cardio machines for a couple months I finally settled on doing my cardio outdoors to keep it interesting and to help me prepare more for the FDNY academy. I do a 5-minute warm up walk usually to start then a 30 minute run which is now up to over 3 miles but at first was just around 2.
I would then walk for another 5 minutes to cool down. This run is done Monday/Wednesday/Sunday. On Tuesdays and Fridays I did intervals. The block I live on is just under 1/4 of a mile. I would walk for 5 minutes again to warm up then start at one end of the block and sprint the length, then walk back and sprint again.
I look funny to the neighbors but intervals are great for everything from Lactic acid tolerance to speeding up your metabolism to burn more fat. I didn't do any running on Thursday so I could let my legs rest from the previous leg day. I also rested on Saturdays.
What Helped? What Hurt? Advice For Others?
I think the most important thing is to surround yourself with supportive friends and family. Don't let people tell you that you're getting to thin because it's all jealousy. It helps a lot to keep yourself in a healthy environment free of temptations. However, when the temptations arise think to yourself, do I really need this piece of cake or do I just want it? Then look at yourself in the mirror and the hard work you have accomplished and then decide if it's worth it.
People will be jealous and people will put you down as you lose weight but don't let it get to you because this is your life and you want to live it out to its fullest and only a healthy fit individual can climb Mount Everest or base jump off a cliff in Australia.
To me, that's living life to its fullest. Ask any "FAT" individual if they would want to climb a mountain, they would say no because it's too hard. Well as Tom Hanks Said in A League of Their Own, "It's supposed to be hard! If it wasn't hard everyone would do it! The hard ... is what makes it great."
Think about that and then embark on your journey and be the select few in this overly obese world with enough motivation to push yourself to the limit and succeed in everything you do in life.