Originally Posted by Rio2007
I just started weight lifing and need some pointers. I am also trying to lose 20 more pounds. I lost 38 with riding the bike at the gym and eating much less but I need and want to be much stronger. I tried to lift 35 pounds with my left arm and could only do 4 reps. Left arm is so weak. Are protein shakes a part of strenth training? Do you eat before the gym or after? I weighted 260 in March at 5' 11'. I am 62 years old and just a few guys at the gym that have been training for years.
First of all, congrats on your weight loss so far! Most of the answers to your questions are dependent on the situation. I'm not sure how often you are doing your biking or how often you want to start hitting the weights. I would say that at the age of 62 it would be pretty difficult to build a lot of muscle as people in that age group or more worried about maintaining muscle mass. You will be able to build muscle but I think it goes without saying that it won't be as easy of a thing as if you were in your 20's or 30's
Taking a protein shake isn't a necessity. When building muscle, the general rule of thumb is to get 1 gram of protein per pound of body weight. So for somebody that weighs close to 200 pounds, that's a lot of protein. A protein shake can help achieve that goal.
As far as eating before or after the gym, that depends on when you work out. I usually work out in the evening so I make sure that I finish up dinner at least an hour before I work out. If you go workout soon after you eat a meal, there is tendancy for your body to not digest your food properly and possibly store it as fat. I also try to get in a carb/protein rich meal after I work out to replenish my system with fuel I used for my workout. Sometimes, a protein shake will be all I take before I go to bed.
From taking a guess at your situation, I would say that you mix up some cardio (biking/treadmill/stair steppers) along with a few days of circuit training. Depending on how many days you would like to hit the weights, dedicate 1 day to upper body workouts and the second day to lower body workouts. If you want to make it three days of weights instead of two, you can further break it down to working on chest/triceps/shoulders one day, back/biceps the next, and then legs the last day. This is something that you can tweak to your personal preference. The important thing is that you are mixing strength training with cardio because:
A.) This is a good combo for weight loss.
B.) You will be toning/building muscle
The guys at the gym can always give you pointers on good exercises for certain muscle groups. That, or just watch what buff people at the gym do and just try those
. Good luck with however you decide to do this. Feel free to ask more questions if you have them.