Help here guys

Guys forgive me for this long ass post,I know there are guys here as smart and knowledgeable as Chris and have no doubt that i will get some good feedback and recommendations,please read on, I have been weightlifting for over 30 years,done everything from power lifting,bodybuilding contests to personal training.I have been a follower of you Biotest since the company was founded. I have great respect for all the knowledge all the folks working at T-Nation have. Always recommended their products and website to all of my previous clients,friends and family members.

I am 47 years old male, I am a biochemist so feel free to get as technical as you like. Here is my situation,16 months ago i had surgery to correct a C7 disc herniation. In my opinion the surgery did more harm to me than good. I have a left vocal chord paralysis and my left triceps and pecs look very flaccid and atrophy. I have maybe 15% of my strength on my left triceps and pec.

Since after the surgery a series of complications have risen on me,among them, I have a 4.8 CM dilation of the ascending aorta,I have an undesirable lipid profile,I have a herniated Lumbar disc whom which I have been dealing with for almost 10 years. Here are my questions and I pray that you give me your honest advice. Question # 1. Can I do the V-Diet program? if yes,what level?.

Question # 2. I cannot perform at the moment any deadlifts due to my Lumbar disc hernia,what exercise can I substitute for the deadlift and bendover rows?

Question # 3. I am planing on slowly but surely getting off from all the medication I am currently taking( Crestor and Atenolol) and hopefully relied on supplements as the mean of reducing my bad cholesterol and diminishing the circumference of my ascending aorta. What is your thought on that?

Chris my form and technique in all exercises is impeccable unfortunately I am injured and my cervical surgery has left me very limited in terms of strength and goes without saying i am in terrible physical shape. Right now I am weighing 214.5 Lbs and carrying an incredible amount of body fat.

Chris I went ahead and place the order for all the products to begin the V-Diet and i purchases Receptormax and Alpha Male additionally hoping to get my injured cervical spine nerves a hopeful ingredient to see if it heals. Creatine I am not sure if it is a recommended supplement for folks like me with Ascending Aortic Aneurysms.

MY cardiologist like 99% of all the doctors in the world is limited in terms of weight training knowledge and nutritional supplementation. I ask him if i can at least go to the gym and bench press 95LBS for reps ( Used to bench 300+) and he almost got a heart attack.In closing Chris, I feel my cardiologist is wrong in recommending me a sedentary life style free from weight lifting. I feel that if i do the V-Diet and loose 20 LBs of body fat weight my Ascending aorta circumference will diminish.

I want to do the V-Diet and I feel I can somehow improve my health by accomplishing such,I need to get control of my health and somehow improve my cardiac health and lower my cholesterol. I eagerly will await for your responses.

First, let me applaud you for having the balls to persevere in the face of such adversity. Here you are, facing down all kinds of physical barriers, and instead of giving up you are looking for an alternative to deadlifts. That is the quintessential T-Man attitude right there.

I’m not sure what Chris can or will say in response to your question about the V-Diet, but in my opinion, I see absolutely no reason why you couldn’t do it. I think it is perfect for your situation.

When I quit playing volleyball after college, I gained about 15 pounds of fat and became almost sedentary for a while. I had a physical during that time, and my cholesterol, triglycerides, and blood pressure were all too high. The doctor wanted to put me on meds, but I told him that I would do it through diet. I don’t think he believed me. I ended up trying something called the “Portfolio Diet”, which was hypocaloric, high-fiber, super low-fat diet. All of my lab values moved into the standard ranges within 6 weeks.

My point here is that I certainly believe you can turn your health around through diet. If that bullshit low-fat diet that I tried worked, I bet the Velocity Diet would work about a thousand times better. In fact, I really wish I would have gone and gotten my labs drawn before I started this (I’m about a week in).

You sound like the kind of guy who will stick to this once you get started, so please keep us posted. I would really like to see what happens to your lab numbers in about six weeks.

As far as the Velocity Training goes…I am quite sure you can come up with some alternatives to the lifts that you can’t do. You’ve been lifting for 30 years, so I would challenge you to draw upon that experience and what you know about your own body to figure out what will work best for you. Stick with the main theme for varying your load and rep schemes, and just plug and play with the movements you feel comfortable with. By all means…be extra careful because one wrong move can really set you back right now. You may find that you have to use some machines or do some isolation exercises that you typically would not have done. If you want to feel okay about that, just read the Dave Tate interview in the current issue.

Good luck, man. I probably don’t need to tell you this, but you are in the right place. I look forward to a post from you about 3 months from now with a story about how you turned all of this shit around. I mean…you are “Dr. Destructo” after all, right?

Thanks for the encouraging reply. I will go ahead and do as you say.Let me ask you a couple of more questions here if you do not mind.

Yesterday I did my first velocity training workout. Of course I went ahead and proceeded very cautiously on the BENT OVER ROWS and the OVERHEAD SQUAT, i felt that it was extremely easy for me since after all just 15 months ago i was able to squat 315 lbs for reps and perform barbell bent over rows with about 225 lbs.

Unless i am doing something wrong or read the entire program wrong, i felt the workout very easy. I did each exercise as recommended,total of 20 reps on each exercise,30 seconds rest, and stay on the exercise until completion of all the reps.

However this is the problem, my entire workout lasted 22 minutes. I felt my bent over rows with 95 lbs to feel extremely light and the 20 rep total not being sufficient for me. I did the same weight with the overhead squat and again felt the weight easy and the 20 total reps to be very little. I am use to doing very hardcore brutal type workouts that require a massive focus and discipline. Do i have the rep and weight scheme interpreted wrong? This is what i did 4 sets of 5 reps with 95 for the bend over rows and for the overhead squat. Performed 4 sets of 6 reps on the dips without any weights.

Lastly, i did the ab wheel for 4 sets five reps.I was done again in just 22 minutes. I know that i can no risk going to heavy on the OVERHEAD SQUAT AND BENT OVER ROWS due to my lumbar injury,but i still felt that the workout was relatively easy.Should i be doing more reps and more sets? Considering that I substitute the exercises that are likely to re-injure me for another exercise that might be “somewhat” equally effective on the targeted muscle,should i focus on heavier weight and less reps? Again, I thank you for all you can share with me in paving my road to recovery.

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