33 Months On T and Refocusing On Fitness

Something I love about the New Year is the chance at a clean slate. It’s a time that signals reflection and reorganization, and like millions of other people I’m choosing to refocus on fitness. I don’t think of this as a New Year’s resolution per se, it’s more like what I refer to as, “going back to the top of the list.”

I first got into working out when I was about 21. My lifestyle as a working bar musician meant that I ate a lot of free pub food and drank a lot of free beer, and this led to my heaviest weight of 160 lbs. I got into cycling, then got a YMCA membership and started training under the guidance future Mr. Canada, Erik Alstrup. That winter, I dropped 40lbs and added a good deal of muscle to my small frame. I could press 450 lbs with my legs and I raced against cars on my bike down the main drag coming home from the gym. I was pumped and loving it!

When I started transition, I renewed my dedication to working out because I wanted to have as little estrogen-storing body fat as possible, and also wanted to help ensure good results with my top surgery. Since then, I’ve gone on and off exercise, due to additional surgeries, a surgery complication, a car accident and injury or illness. Through periods of wellness I’ve worked out, but then another life event would come along and derail me for a bit. Well, I’m recovered from my recent bout with shingles and ready to take aim once again!

I don’t have very defined goals, I just know that I want to drop the 10 lbs I’ve put on since the shingles and add about 20 lbs of muscle to my upper body. Dropping the weight shouldn’t be too hard because I have a killer diet technique that always works for me: no alcohol. I’ll be abstaining until my birthday in March and will re-evaluate then.

I got out of the habit of doing my daily 5km walk because my dog hasn’t been able to walk that distance for about a year now. I started doing it daily again, 4-5 times a week, beginning last month. There are some days when I can’t get the walk in for one reason or another, so I’ve found a handful of 15 minute cardio workouts to mix it up and keep me focused.

I start my workouts with some Yamuna body rolling and stretching. Next, I do 400 ab crunches (200 twist style), push ups (currently 3×40) and reverse pulls ups (currently 3×10.) 4 days a week I work out with barbells, focusing on two different muscle groups a day (ie. chest/biceps, biceps/triceps, back/shoulders, etc.)

I pay close attention to my diet and once I’ve lost the 10 lbs, I’ll amp up my eating to 6 meals a day of 30-40 grams of protein each.

Here are my starting photos, 2 years and 9 months on T, weighing in at 145 lbs. (If you compare these with my 22 months on T photos, you can see that I’ve put that extra 10 lbs on around my waist.)

Has the New Year inspired you to refocus on fitness too? What are your goals, and what are your biggest challenges in achieving them?

ps. Yes, I shaved on New Year’s Day, leaving just my ‘burns and faint ‘stache. It was fun, but it feels weird and I’m looking forward to it growing back!

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