Starting on the 14th of February ---- care to join? --- Questions for a beginner.

  • Well well well,

    After owning the book for about 10 years, reading it about 4 times and not really believing it to its word, I am thinking, what the hell and I´ve made the decision to start the program for real now. I have tried before, but never made it past week 2, my self discipline is awful. 

    But now I am sure to make it. I am going to plan plan plan. I have already downloaded the work sheets, and the meal planners and I am looking for some advice. 


    1. --- Early morning or night. -- I am terrible at getting out of bed in the morning, but this is something I would like to change - do you guys feel a difference?

    2. --- About the weight training, I am terrified of making a fool out of myself at the gym so I think that i will be concentrating on the machines instead of free weights at least for the beginning weeks, that way I at least know I am doing it correctly. --- any objections to that?

    3. --- I am wondering about the intensity - in Bills book it says that the first set should be 12 at an intensity level of 5 --- does this mean that I should be able to lift this weight about 24 times and then breakdown? To explain - lets say I can do 20 lbs. 12 times and the twelfth lift is damn hard, barely getting there. should I therefore start at 12,5 lbs 12 times as intensity 5, 15 lbs - 10 times (intensity 6) 17,5 lbs. 8 time (intensity 7) 20 lbs. 6 times (intensity 8) and drop to 17,5 lbs 12 times (intensity 9) and then go and do another exercise 12 time (intensity 10) and barely making it to 12?  --- wow this sounds confusing.

    4. --- I was thinking about working out Monday to Saturday --- in the mornings. Is it ok to have my ,,free day" on that Saturday for meals and a free day from workouts on Sunday but still eating correctly?

    5. --- do you guys have any other tips or methods for beginners that you are willing to share? 


    Thanks in advance --- and please - if anyone is starting on Feb 14th, join along, we can compare! 

  • Corleone,

    Firstly, welcome and congrats on your determination to join BFL :)

    There are lots of people on the forum who have a better wealth of experience than me - I'm on the 6th week of my 1st Challenge - all I can say is follow the program to the letter that means:-

    1) Early morning or night - Whatever works best for you and do what you can stick to.

    2) Free Weights or Machines - Don't be embarrassed about using free weights. The free weights are better in my opinion as you have more routine options.

    3) Intensity - Start light and build up the weights as you go along.  It will take several workouts to discover what you should start lifting and how you should finish a superset. Trial and error, just grab some light weights and concentrate of form when you first start out.

    4) 6 day training - Don't try and tweek the program before you start it!  Follow the program as written.  There is only ONE free day and you need to earn it.

    5) Tips - Plan your meals, make too much so you can have leftovers, carry the book with you for the first few weeks incase you need help, drink plenty of water, ask for help on the forum if you need it.

    I have dropped a dress size in the first 6 weeks, simply by following the book.  It is trial and error, you will make mistakes and bad choices but you will learn from them and push forward.

    You can do this!!!

  • Thanks Jules for the encouragement,

    How are you coping with the program? When did you start to see a difference?

    Wish you all the best in the following weeks, half way there!

    best regards!

  • Hi there, how has your first day been?  Did you get to the gym in the morning?

    Day one for me was today (Feb 14th), this is my second time on the program.  

    The first time I did this was about 9 years ago (wow, time flies).

    I followed the plan to the letter, I worked out in the mornings but if I just couldn't get out of bed in time I always made up the workout in the afternoon after work.

    I lost 35 pounds in 12 weeks and felt amazing.

    Totally agree with Jules, plan your meals, make leftovers...I was amazed how much time I was spending preparing meals, so expect it and plan for it...and try to make enough for leftovers or prepare whatever you can in advance.

    You should grab some meal replacement or protein bars, keep some at work, a couple in the will find yourself in situations where you can't eat a real meal but it's time to eat.

    The free weights are the way to go, don't worry about what you look like at the gym, in a matter of days, you'll know exactly what you're doing with them.  As Jules said, start light to get the form down and then start tweaking the weight until you are hitting the intensity levels.

    For me, as soon as I feel I could've done a couple more reps on my last set I add five pounds (to every set) for next time.  Then the new challenge for next few weeks is to just finish the sets (yes, sometimes I have to go back and maybe remove a 5 from a set or two, but it's all about pushing yourself to do more).

    Seeing results...I think you will feel them first...but in a few days you will see them on the scale, and in just a few weeks, you will start noticing just how loose your clothes are.

    You can do this, and you will feel incredible!

  • Hi Devin,

    Thanks for the note. Started yesterday and trying hard to stick with it this time. I worked out yesterday with the machines on the upper body, except for biceps, had free weights there. --- I think I will try to go full scale free weights next.

    My biggest problem was that I was doing intensity level 5 x 12 - 6 x 10 - 7 x 8 but then as I tried for intensity 8 x 6 and 9 x 12 --- I felt that this was usually a bit light --- so I will have to tweak this to some kind.

    Eating is good, I feel a difference already, it was hard getting into the mood after a long days work to go to the gym, but as soon as I was there I felt so much better and feeling the endorphines after practice was great.

    When you do upper and lower body, do you warm up on the treadmill, just to get the blood flowing and at the same, do you cool down?

    I have also incorporated 15-20 minutes of stretching into my routine at the end, I want to get flexible - do you think this matters to the program?

    So tell me more about your FIRST challenge --- 35 pounds is a whole lot - what was your starting weight?  - I am 220 lbs and aim to get down to 185 --- so there are 35 pounds I want to shred. Did you bulk up, did you feel getting stronger, and was it easier to wake up in the morning?

    Thank you for your words, and please, feel free to communicate on here if yesterday was your first day as well, we can encourage each other along the way!

  • Hey there, I haven't done any warm up prior to weightlifting, however I do some stretching now...getting older, have to be more careful ;).

    My first challenge was awesome!  I really followed it strictly, even through the christmas season.  I was 233 lbs at the start and 198 when I was done.  It was incredible, I hadn't been under 200 lbs since my my very early 20's.  After just a few weeks I could see how much weight I'd lost...clothes were hanging off me...and then near the end I noticed my increased muscle, back, legs, chest and arms all well defined.  It was very rewarding.  Definitely felt stronger, way more energy...waking up in the morning was always a problem for me, but that's because I just didn't go to bed early enough.

    Looking forward to day 3!

    Have a great workout!

  • Hi, I am just starting up, looking for a "group" also in the beginning stages of a Challenge.... have you been communicating with others as well?