All Right, Let's Do This. V-Log

I ordered the supplements on Monday, and have been spending the week getting ready - buying the additional supplies, doing some NEPA, psyching myself up mentally, etc. I’m starting today.

Measurements (in inches):

Height - 71
Weight - 244.6
Neck - 16
Shoulders - 46
Chest - Upper - 46
Chest - Lower - 41
Waist - at Navel - 47
Waist - at largest - 48
Hips - at largest - 46
Upper Arm - L - 14
Upper Arm - R - 13.5
Upper Leg - L- 28
Upper Leg - R - 28.5
Lower Leg - L - 19
Lower Leg - R - 19.5
Ankle - L - 11
Ankle - R - 11

Now, about me…

I’m 23 years old, male, and I just finished my first year teaching in an inner-city school. Teaching your first year in an inner-city school means working 12+ hour days while only getting paid for 7 hours (the rest goes toward preparation, grading, parent meetings, “first year” meetings, staff meetings, after school tutoring, and hanging around until 7 PM watching the kids whose deadbeat parents treat you like a free daycare).

It also means that you never get a chance to catch your breath - our school can’t afford specials (art, music, gym, etc.) or para-pros, which means that I supervise lunch, recess, and every second of the day that the kids are there (no lunch break, no planning period, no time to stop and catch my breath).

Most of all, this means STRESS. It means breaking up fistfights and gang brawls EVERY. SINGLE. DAY. It means carefully choosing what colors to wear to school, because the wrong ones will get me hurt on my way there. It means restraining kids (some of whom are my size or larger) to keep them from seriously hurting each other.

It means occasionally pinning a kid to the ground and wrestling a weapon out of their hand, leaving my own hands bloody. It means being afraid to lift heavy at night, knowing that if I’m too sore or weak to hold on to a kid the next day, it could lead to something tragic. Hell, most days it meant driving home after work and falling to sleep immediately, too exhausted to even entertain the thought of hitting the gym.

This led to self-medication with junk food, and a general lack of giving a damn about what I looked like. And I wasn’t the healthiest guy around, prior to that. I’ve always been a nerd who would rather lift a book than a barbell. Growing up, I looked at my body as this unfortunate thing that I needed in order to move my head from one place to another. During college I started lifting and watching my diet, but not with enough dedication to do more than take me from “out of shape” to “not as out of shape”.

I put on 30 pounds in this last year alone. Damn.

But you know what? I’m pissed. I’m absolutely livid that I let myself go like this. So I told myself, “Hey, self. You’ve got a stressful job? So do a lot of people. To hell with your excuses. Get your big ass in gear, or you can never look your students in the eye and tell them to ‘work hard’ again.”

So, here’s my summer vacation project - the V-Diet, followed to the letter. The program plus the transition should last from now until I go back to work. This year, I know more about what’s waiting for me, I’ve got a good deal of my teaching materials prepared, and I’ve finished all the entry year meetings, so I’ll have more time to work out after school. I’m going to transition into another program (any suggestions?), keeping my progress going. I’m determined to make this work.

As a former teacher, I feel your pain!

Your attitude is spot-on: get pissed, dig deep, and focus. Go back to school leaner, stronger, and more steel-willed than ever before.

Keep us posted!

[quote]Chris Shugart wrote:
Your attitude is spot-on: get pissed, dig deep, and focus. Go back to school leaner, stronger, and more steel-willed than ever before.

Will do. Thanks for the encouragement, Chris.

Okay, I just finished up my last shake of the day, and I’m ready to call day one a success.

The workout kicked my ass (in the good way). I love the idea of working toward a specific number of reps and managing my rest times - ordinarily, I would have dropped down the weight in order to get a complete set, and take longer in between reps. It wore me out, but man, I felt like I had accomplished something when I was done. It made me realize just how half-assed I’d been doing things, even when I was in the habit of working out 3-4 days a week. And ironically, doing things half-assed leaves you with a rather full (figured) ass. There’s probably some zen wisdom, there. But enough about my ass! Moving on…

I walked about 4 miles for NEPA, today. Saw parts of the city I never see when I’m driving - turns out there’s a library only two miles from my apartment, so the second half of my walk was spent carrying a stack of books. I think I’m going to be a regular customer, there, now that I know it’s within walking distance.

I’ve felt “up” all day. Granted, that might be due to the HOT-ROX - I’m sensitive to stims, so just one cap had me jittery, twitchy, and ready to move.

I haven’t been hungry all day, either. Just the contrary - I feel very, very full. Much more so than when I was eating junk. I guess my body’s shocked that it’s actually getting all the nutrients and fiber that it needs, and consistently throughout the day.

All right. I’m about to hit the sack. Day one in the bag. Let’s see how tomorrow goes.

Day two in the bag!

Walked around for NEPA. Forced down the shakes. Nearly puked trying to swallow one of the Flameout caps (horse pills, I tells ya), but I’m not about to stop, since I can feel the benefits of the plan - despite busting ass in the gym yesterday, I’m feeling almost no soreness today.

No bad cravings yet. Mainly because I’m so full of shakes that thinking of food makes me a touch queasy.

Definitely felt less energetic today, but not so much that it stopped me from doing anything.

Ah, well. I get to lift, tomorrow! Looking forward to it.

Hey, Nerdcore. I just finished my 28 days of V-diet. I am a musician and a teacher, so I too know what you mean being in those situations at school. Time is short, so good for you taking charge of everything!

I felt queasy with my shakes the first week two. I wasn’t quite sure how I was going to manage 4 whole weeks when I could barely get 5 of them down a day. But after that first week I got used to it, and moving into the second and third weeks I actually started looking forward to my next shake. The shake issue seems to get a lot of people at first, but it does get easier.

Keep it up! You’ve got a great community of people who are supportive and knowledgeable here. Come to the site everyday for inspiration.


Hey, thanks for the encouragement, Tuba-man! I’m glad to hear that it’s possible to build up a tolerance to this stuff.

It’s midnight, and I’m sitting here forcing down the last of my shakes for the day. I was really, really tempted to just say “screw it” and skip one or three of these. I kept putting it off, saying to myself “Hey, maybe if I wait another hour, I won’t feel so stuffed.” Well, that never happened.

And I’ve learned my lesson - stick to the schedule! Toss in an extra couple scoops of “Man the hell up,” close your eyes, and gulp that sludge - if not, you’ll be stuck doing a marathon run of the stuff late at night.

Anyway…did about an hour/hour and a half of NEPA walking, today. It’s so hot out - it’s great!

I also did the second workout (40 reps of medium-weight) - WOW! I was panting and sweating like crazy. I loved it. I can tell it’s working - it’s DIFFICULT! Can’t wait until the next one.

I’ve been reading articles and forum posts here, as well. Learning a lot - I like the idea of a “paleo”-based diet, and will probably move on to that once I’ve transitioned out. It seems pretty simple, from what I’ve read - drop grains, eat a lot of meat and veggies, a little fruit, and use your carbs as peri-workout nutrition. I can do that.

Also, my transition weeks are the last few weeks before school - I think I’ll spend them learning to cook. That was one of my biggest problems in falling off the wagon. I finished college, moved out of my parents’ house, and had to shop/cook for myself for the first time.

I didn’t really know what I was doing, so I just bought pre-made stuff, full of preservatives, HFCS, and grease, because it was cheap and fast. Now I know what that gets me.

Just started today. Gotta choke down the first few shakes but training went well today. I feel like the workouts are a little easy and not long enough. Is it cool if I run a few days a week instead of the NEPA? I am in the military and very active but need to shed some fat. Will I lose too much muscle if I run 3x a week instead of NEPA and maybe throw in a Crossfit workout a few days a week?

[quote]robt7098 wrote:
Just started today. Gotta choke down the first few shakes but training went well today. I feel like the workouts are a little easy and not long enough. Is it cool if I run a few days a week instead of the NEPA? I am in the military and very active but need to shed some fat. Will I lose too much muscle if I run 3x a week instead of NEPA and maybe throw in a Crossfit workout a few days a week?[/quote]

No idea, mate - I’m new at this. Try posting in an “Ask Chris” thread. The most I can say is make sure you’re doing the “Advanced” program, since you’re in good shape already.

Didn’t post yesterday, because nothing special happened - sucked down the shakes, walked around a bunch.

Today was workout #3 - man, 40 reps of deadlifts took it out of me. But in a good way. If nothing else, I’ll have the form down pat by the time I’m done.

I’m going to try dropping the optional fiber supplements for a few days to see if that helps me as far as my “never wanting to eat/drink, ever” feeling goes.

I did two hour-long NEPA walks, today - when 8:30 pm rolled around, I was energetic and needed to move.

Twice today I came VERY close to vomiting. Not because of the shakes, but because of the Flameout caps. They’ve set off my gag reflex every time (I’ve always had a sensitive gag reflex - the dentist hates me), but twice today I had to literally clamp my hand over my mouth and force them back down after they made it halfway down my throat, then came back up. I’m considering jabbing one with a pin and squeezing it into my mouth, just to see if that’s any better.

Anyway, day 4 is complete. I can do this.

Dude…let me now how that Flameout thing goes…I bet it’s going to taste NASTY!!!

But I really wanted to just drop into your thread and say great job so far…keep up the great work.

[quote]Serge A. Storms wrote:
Dude…let me now how that Flameout thing goes…I bet it’s going to taste NASTY!!![/quote]

Haven’t had to try it yet - it’s been rough, but I’ve been keeping them down.

[quote]Serge A. Storms wrote:
But I really wanted to just drop into your thread and say great job so far…keep up the great work.[/quote]

Thanks, man - I appreciate the support!

It’s day seven. No missed workouts, no missed meals, and no shortage of NEPA thus far. I did miss a dose of HOT-ROX at some point, but that’s it.

Dropping the FiberChoice was the best thing I could have done. I’m no longer on the verge of puking all day long, and I’m starting to like the shakes. Well, not the ones with flax, yet, but at least it’s less sickening.

V-Burn challenge kind of sucked. Clap push-ups? With as top-heavy as I am? Forget it. I’d still be lying face-down on the floor if I hadn’t given up on those and switched to regular push-ups instead.

I weighed in this morning - I’m down seven pounds from where I started. I’m happy with that kind of progress.

Today’s my birthday (24), so I’m going out to a steakhouse tonight for my first HSM. I’ve never been that much of a meat-eater - in fact, I was a vegetarian for a few years - but I’m craving lean beef and salad.

Day ten.

I’ve been sleeping terribly since I started this program, but between the HOT-ROX, physical activity, and nutrition, it hadn’t taken its toll on me.

Well, it caught up to me today. I slept in until noon and was dragging all day. I didn’t get to the gym until about 9:00 pm.

Today was the first day I was really feeling the cravings. Maybe I slept so long that I got hungry. I headed to the store to pick up some stuff (not edible stuff) and the food was calling my name, man. I had a rough time walking past all that fresh fruit and vegetables.

And I know what you’re thinking, dear readers: Did our humble protagonist cheat? Did he give in? Did he rationalize “Well, one cheat couldn’t hurt. Hey, it’s fresh produce! That’s, like, good!”

Hell no! I’m in this for the duration.

Ten days in and still running clean, but I’m definitely feeling the grind.

Eighteen more days to go!

Day fifteen.

Second weigh-in: 236 (down one from the last time, down eight all together).

Not a lot of change in scale weight this week, but my clothes are looser and I look smaller. Also, my lifts have gone up, so I assume I’m putting on some muscle.

For my HSM I visited my family and cooked a couple recipes from this site: Instant Bodybuilder Jambalaya and baked rutabaga, with a pile of blueberries for desert. They were shocked that I had “learned to cook while not eating food.” Both dishes were big hits, by the way, with everyone asking for the recipes. Rutabaga is definitely going to become a staple in my place once I’m eating solids again. As Mr. Shugart mentioned in his blog, it’s got a starchy taste and texture that makes it easy to skip the potatoes.

Anyway, I’m halfway there and feeling great. The nausea I was feeling the first week is completely gone, as are the rough cravings I was having early on in the second week. I’m still hitting the gym hard and loving it.

I’ve got a couple job interviews coming up - one of them would require moving across the state within a matter of a week if I should get it. I’m worried as to how that might affect my progress, but I’ll burn that bridge when I come to it.

Also, I’ve picked up a copy of “Starting Strength” that I’m going to read through so that I have an idea as to what I’m doing once the V-Diet is over. I’ve figured out that this was my biggest mistake the last time I tried to get into shape - I didn’t really have a plan. I’d go the gym 4 to 5 times a week, but I’d just kind of…do stuff. Whatever I felt like doing that day. And, yeah, there was some progress because I was repeatedly lifting heavy stuff, but it was slow and unbalanced. This time I’m in it 100%.

Day 22:

Yesterday marked the end of week 3.

Third weigh-in: 233 (down three from the last, for a total of 11 pounds lost in 3 weeks).

Current NEPA soundtrack: Thoreau’s Walden (Audiobook)
Current workout soundtrack: Switching between Street Sweeper Social Club’s self-titled CD and Belle and Sebastian’s “If You’re Feeling Sinister”.

That’s right - I’m listening to both violent Marxist rap and sweet British indie-pop. That’s how I roll.

Enjoy reading through your posts. You’re attitude is great and helps fuel my desire as well. Keep it up, eager to see where ya end up.

Hey, thanks for the support, Alex.

Day 26:

I’m about ready to sack out for the night. I can’t believe there’s only two days left until transition. I’m going to have to get used to cooking and doing dishes (more than just my blender, that is) again. I’m looking forward to it, though.

From my HSMs, I’ve discovered just how awesome vegetables are. Things that I NEVER would have imagined eating - rutabaga, okra, onions - are going to be staples in my kitchen. And now I’m sitting here with my mouth watering from thinking about okra. Never thought I’d see the day.

I love being in the gym with a solid program to follow. No pussyfooting around, no “I’ll go easy today and just jog, because those squats four days ago took it out of me.” Just a straight forward “Man up. Lift this. Then drink Surge.”

My first big bump in the road: I ran out of Leucine. I’m also down to my least favorite shake flavor (Strawberry…ugh.), but that’s not all that bad. I put in an order for my transition period as well as a few extra jars of Surge Recovery, because it’s the best post workout drink I’ve tried and I plan on making that a permanent part of my diet. It’s supposed to get here around Thursday. Cool.

Not much else to report. My arms are feeling more solid, my back is feeling stronger than it’s ever been, and I’ve been riding the good-time wave of brain chemistry that comes from good workouts and good eating. Also, the stimulants in the HOT-ROX don’t hurt. Heh.

A tip for anyone reading this: Get yourself some zero-calorie green tea (I use decaf, so it’s HOT-ROX friendly). I’ve read elsewhere on this site that it’s V-Diet approved. I didn’t start this until week 4, but MAAAAAN, even though it’s the middle of summer, drinking something hot is extremely satisfying when you’re living on cold shakes.

WHoo congrats on getting this far man the end is in sight. I’m looking forward to see the final results!

How much extra did you end up needing to order? I’ve been thinking about it in advance so that I can put an order in and not miss anything.

Hey man, nice work you are so damn close :slight_smile:

How are feeling about salad these days? :slight_smile: My friends joke about me now because the first time I did it I remember they all went to dinner and I ordered a garden salad just to join in on it. A little salt and I was in heaven. I said out loud “I fucken love salad” and it stuck :slight_smile:

Keep it up! Looking forward to before/afters.

[quote]IPB wrote:
How much extra did you end up needing to order? I’ve been thinking about it in advance so that I can put an order in and not miss anything.[/quote]

I ordered four jars of Low Carb Metabolic Drive, one jar of L-Leucine, one jar of Superfood and a couple jars of Surge. I deliberately ordered extra Surge, though - I’ve still got plenty from my original shipment, but I figured I’d get it now to save hassle later. Also, I figure if I buy post-workout drinks, I’m more likely to actually work out. Heh.

[quote]ozzyaaron wrote:
How are feeling about salad these days?[/quote]

Salad is AMAZING. And I live right next door to a fresh produce store. They might be getting a lot of business from me, soon.

Day 27, DONE.

One more day until transition.


28 days on this program is an awesome accomplishment. Good luck with the transition!

Transition diet is no problem thus far.

HOWEVER - and this is a big however - my right arm stopped working. The doc has me drugged up on painkillers to dull the constant searing pain that shoots through my arm whenever I try to move it (which is often, since I’m a righty). It’s looking like I might have a pinched nerve or a caught tendon or something, because it’s physically impossible for me to change the angle of my arm.

Needless to say, no lifting.

But you know what’s cool? When the doc asked what kind of OTC drugs I was taking, he added “Are you sure you aren’t using any bodybuilding supplements?” (I forgot about those, heh - on the V-Diet, they don’t feel like supplements, just food.) So, that’s kind of cool - I guess I look like a guy who lifts.

I miss lifting. And using my arm. I have to shave, brush my teeth, write, type, drive, etc. using only my off-hand. And I am unable to button a shirt. So that sucks.

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