Ask a PT & Nutritionist Anything


Hi mate, sorry for the late reply, will jump on here tomorrow :slight_smile:


Bloody hell, sorry for the delay mate, I get so many tags I forget to go back to previous things lol

Ok cool, lets dig into this!

So first things first… are you currently strength training? If so, whacha doing?

When someone first starts of with strength training, their body will be going through a lot of neurological adaptations from the new stimuli, so you may find that you gain strength pretty quickly, due to becoming better at the movements.

Once this slows down you’ll then be moving into true strength training (conversation for down the road) & increasing size & strength of actual muscle tissue itself.

For someone new to strength training, they can gain new muscle tissue in a calorie deficit, at maintenance & in a surplus, due to the new stimulus (a surplus will always yeild more results mind)

So for you right now you don’t/won’t need to increase your calories. You can stay at maintenance or even continue to stay on a diet/calorie deficit.

Keep in mind, maintenance are just that, maintenance. So if you up your calories as you say you’re think of doing, you’ll gain weight.

If you want to maintain weight, you’ll need to maintain your calories & stay at an even ‘energy in vs out’ balance.

So the good news is you don’t have to eat more food, spend more money & gain more fat to get stronger… just stay at maintenance if that’s what you want to do, and you’ll maintain weight whilst getting stronger.

For you right now, coming back after a layoff, be prepared for DOMS (the aches the few days after) initially.

Make sure to get adequate rest (2-3 days between training a muscle group)

Keep the volume low & just get your body back used to the movements before going full pelt.

I’d set your volume, weight, intensity etc etc all to around 50-75% of what you we’re previously doing

I’d also split this up into full body workouts so you take take enough rest in between while having trained your full body.

something like:

A - mon or tues

vertical push
vertical pull
Leg (squat or quad based mvement)

B - Thurs or Fri

Horizontal push
Horizontal pull
Leg (deadlift or hamstring based movement.

Maybe start off with just 1 or 2 sets, don’t try to max the workout, leave that for a week or two down the road, because you WLL be aching after a layoff, even if you think you didn’t work hard during the session.

Ease back into it, get your body moving again, recover, then start building up on the second week and go from there :slight_smile:

I’m in the middle of putting together a simple & adjustable beginner workout that you structure around your own life, time & preferences etc, but it’s not fully ready quite yet, I still have some tidying up to do on the web page & some more text to add, and I may re-write it in a simpler form to follow, but here’s the 1st draft.

I usually direct people to stronglifts 5x5, & while it’s great for most, many others either don’t have the equipment needed or the 5x5 heavy rep system is too much for their body to handle & recover from, so I’ve made my own version but with flexi options on the exercises & on reps/sets to fit each individual person depending on their access to equipment, personal preferences, injuries, age, fitness levels etc :slight_smile:

Give it a check back in a week or two & the page will be much cleaner, easier & simpler to read/follow :slight_smile:


I’ve sent a private message with a screen shot of what I put together. I do like a spread sheet.

edit: my apologies for being rude, many thanks for your advice.


No probs mate, always happy to help anyone if I can,

will take a look tomorrow morning if that’s ok :slight_smile:


Thanks for this. I have just started using weights again, and am sore. I trained on Thursday and wanted to train today but think, based on your comment I shall either give it a miss, or do upper body only, I gave my legs a workout on my rest day yesterday with a run, so they are complaining more than my upper body.


Sorry guys, I’ve been super lazy with this thread lately (or busy-ish! lol)

I’ll keep on top of it more & I’ll start making some useful guides, articles again :slight_smile:


I’ve recently written two strength training programs (beginner & novice) which I’ll share soon, they’re both fully customizable to individual preferences, needs & accessability, as I know lots of people can’t always just do a 5x5 strong lifts routine for lack of equipment, injuries, fitness levels etc, & need to have a flexible system structured around themselves, rather than trying to fit themselves into a rigid system.

So I’ve made them flexible to adjust around you, kinda like the nutrition guides,

Will share them soon, just doing some final updates to them :slight_smile:

I’m also working on a bodyweight workout program for people with no equipment, people who want to workout at home or for something easy to do on holiday etc

In the meantime, feel free to ask me anything about training & nutrition for fat loss (I’ll answer on here or make a video whiteboard type guide if it’s something worth making)

PS - a lot of guys inbox me & apologize as if they’re invading my inbox, I’m more than happy for anyone to inbox me if you’re more comfortable doing that… please feel free to do so, I’m always happy to help, I’ve gotten much more out of being a part of this community than I’ve put in :slight_smile:


I’ll be online for the next few hours… feel free to ask me anything ‘body composition’ wise! :slight_smile:

(Nutrition, Training, Habits etc)


Not sure if this one is within your area of expertise @maxnas, but essentially I am just short of the 10 stone lost mark, got rid of a lot of the fat, waiting for my skin to catch up! I now have to deal with, what I have found to be, Diastasis Recti. Essentially that means my stomach muscles are shot and are bulging forward, which gives the appearance of a bit of a pot belly.

Internet guidelines suggest consulting your GP, I have been to 2 GPs who have been next to useless, saying there is ‘nothing that can be done’. The PTs at the gym, whilst willing to help, don’t seem to know much either and I’m concerned that core strengthening exercises could actually be doing more harm than good as I can feel/see the stomach bulging outwards while I train. Any thoughts on this?


Completely out of my scope sorry mate, although I’m well aware of it as it’s common with bodybuilders.

I know of a few people who’ve had surgery to have it fixed, but like I said mate it’s out of my scope sorry mate

I’d just be giving made up, nonsense & possibly dangerous advice


Not a problem, just thought I’d ask. Apparently it’s not something that they generally operate on unless you go private!


sorry I couldn’t be more help with this mate


Going to be sat at my laptop most of the day tomorrow working, feel free to pick my brain (anything training & nutrition wise for fat loss) & I’ll jump on here intermittently :slight_smile:


Hi @maxnas

I’m hoping you don’t mind me asking a question, any advice/suggestions will be gratefully received.

I’m trying to get back on the weight loss wagon having regained 2 stones during 2017. I can plan relatively healthy meals and eat the usual three meals a day. My challenge at the moment is to break the need for sugar from the snacks and deserts that I’ve been addicted to for the last year. Do you have any tips (nutritional or otherwise) to help break the reliance on these sugary treats? Over the last week, I’ve managed to cut down but there are still times where I’ve been craving sugary treats, to the point that I can’t stop myself.

I’m at the start of this journey(again) which is frustrating because I used to enjoy doing exercise but my weight makes me get very tired very quickly.

On a different topic, do you have any tips for a beginner running. In the past 3 years, I’ve done a couch to 5k program several times but never managed to run for a full 30 mins. I just can’t carry on the running for that long. It it worth trying to run slower or extend the program? I would love to be able to run a 5k. I generally do my running on a treadmill, I don’t have the confidence to run outdoors!

Thanks in advance.



Hey mate!

Yeah no probs, happy to help (if I indeed can, that is!)

First thing that sticks out before even reading the rest of your post is " having regained 2 stones during 2017"

It’s all well & good creating a plan that works for you & enables you to lose weight in the short term, but what about the long term.

How do you intend on keeping to you new bodycomposition once you get there?

What do you think is the main reason for regaining the weight in the first place?

Unless these things are handled, it’s going to be a never ending game of back & forth.

Especially since you use the term ‘regain’ I’m assuming you’ve lost it before to be able to regain… so losing weight isn’t the problem, keeping it off is.

What’s the plan for this mate? :slight_smile:

Also keep in mind that the word ‘addiction’ has a very specific & serious meaning to it, it’s not something to be used in lose terms, we can’t just decide if we’re addicted to something or not to be able to make easy justifications (that part might sound harsh, sorry… but it’s seriously important & needs to be said for your own long term good)

Sugar (in all it’s glorious forms, sucrose, fructose, lactose & the other 10 million) is not an addictive substance in & of itself.

Can we get cravings? Sure, we can have cravings for anything, but addiction is very different. Addiction means out bodies NEED the substance, cravings means our brains WANT the substance.

One is the substance itself that has a grip on us (Heroin etc) the other is down to us to find a way to control ourselves & habits around it (or abstain if need be)

The super fast majority of the time that people feel like they have addictive likes traits around sugar, is because that moment, that taste, that dopamine hit FEELS good… which is not a common feeling to many people who find themselves in this area of life.

Makes us feel good = want to feel good more = gimme more of that sh!t. lol

Plus, I would be comfortable to bet my mortgage that it’s not plain bags of table sugar that you’re having a problem with, right?

It’s more likley a mix of various treat foods that are highly palatable, which you enjoy the taste of & mix of sugar & fats = extra calories = fat gain if too much calories.

As far as tips,

There’s a few, but initially based on evading the issue to be able to see results in the long term, but for the longer game it’s something that YOU’RE going to have to be able to take control of for yourself as you wiill find yourself in situations where these things are abundant & if you’re not in a place of control, you’ll give in.

1 - Abstinence, but keeping in mind that restriction usually leads to a binge at some point
2 - Limit variety/manage food environment… don’t have an abundance in the house
3 - Have a planned ‘treat’ meal, maybe on the weekend whuch gives you something to look forward to to counter act the binge that usually follows from point 1
4 - strategically implement a cheeky treat INTO your daily calories at the end of the day after hitting all the good stuff, this helps get rid of that craving for some people, and still keeps them to their daily goal intake

On point 4, there was someone in here a year or so ago (I think @admin posted his transformation on the main site) who had been struggling with over eating on chocolate, and after a bit of back & forth with him, he actually implemented point 4 & went on to totally transform the way he looked over the next 6 months or so

Ate the food he liked, thus not suffering with cravings from being overly restrictive, whilst keeping to a caloric deficit until he reached his goal

DAMIT, I wish I could remember his handle!

As far as the running stuff mate, it’s not something I’ve ever really ventured into much… I could give you textbook answers, but I have very little real world knowledge, and to give advice on something, someone should have both in my opinion. (understand the current research & have been through it themselves or trained others through it)

Point is, there’s better people, experienced runners right here on the forum who could probably give you better insight that me (paper qualifications aren’t everything lol)

@admin @Adrian @Doctor_Bong could you guys tag some fellow runners into this for @moley456

Hope this helps mate, feel free to ask any follow on stuff :slight_smile:


I’m offended @maxnas missed me off the list of runners, though I’m sure @Adrian will be flattered!! :grin:

Seriously @moley456, I started running in October, mainly through the RED October thread on here. It really is a case of building things up steadily. I found couch to 5k wasn’t designed for weight loss, it moved on too quickly for people trying to lose weight as well.

Like you, I also took ages to run in public. I even went as far as jogging in my wellies whilst walking the dog so i could pretend I was walking if I saw anyone! The only positive about the dark winter nights is that you can do some jogging and not be spotted as easily!

The one thing I regret not getting into sooner, and I would recommend to anyone is the Park Run movement. It is an amazing institution, so supportive for people of all abilities. Plenty of people can’t run the full 5k, so jog/walk it, others take an hour to walk the whole lot. My first five runs I couldn’t do the whole distance without walking. It was a great feeling when I did my sixth without stopping, I didn’t care about the time, although now I am getting semi-addicted to them, I am starting to. It’s a great way to kick off a weekend and doesn’t impact too much on family time. My 15 year old remarked yesterday that I ‘always come back in a good mood’.

I had all of the worries I hear are common place before i went for the first time, but they were all unfounded. The ethos of the community is so friendly, they make everyone feel at home. It’s really superb.


@JIL I can only ask for forgiveness & pray I haven’t fallen foul of your friendship (Game of thrones eqse, eh?.. I could totally be playing a Dorninsh charachter with my med looks :slight_smile: )

There’s TONS of runners on here btw, (especially alot of the early days crowd, what happened to @howmanymiles ? sorry for missing 99% of you out lol)


Not a problem - I’m still very much in the image of Samwell Tarley, but still working on it!


You’ll always be my Jon Snow :blush:


Hi. Thanks for taking the time to respond. My short term weight loss has always been due to fad diets, of which I’m not convinced any of them have a long term solution. I’ve come to the belief/realisation that there isn’t a quick fix and I need to address my underlying food issues (e.g portion sizes, Cravings for sugar treats). I’ve always been big (since being a child) and I’ve always wanted to be thinner and over the last 10 years I’ve cycled between 20St and 17 ½ st.

In the long term, I don’t want to be “on a diet”, I just want to have a healthy relationship with food, to be able to turn down dessert, to better understand what my body needs.

From the recent loss/regain cycle, I put weight back on due to a lack of motivation and completely stopping my exercise. I was unhappy with work and other things in life which hit my motivation and we had a new baby and I changed job which interrupted my exercise routine. Once that was gone, motivation suffered further and I didn’t get back on track. I then started to eat because I felt down. It’s amazing how exercise helps combat “feeling down2. I have also come to the belief that motivation is key in any diet and that is what I have trouble keeping. I’m hoping MvF is the motivation to get going again.

At the moment, I’m at the early stages and I don’t have a plan… I’ve joined here with the idea of having some accountability. I’m also starting to look at my calorie intake and try to cut down/eat a healthier diet. Hopefully, as few pounds will fall and that will help motivate me further and start exercise again. I understand the basics of calorie deficit and can calc the calories in my meals, I need to motivation to get going and to start properly organising my time to include some exercise.

I accept your point on craving vs addiction. My language use may be a little lax when it comes to this area but that is mainly due to my frustration at myself. I have no problem with giving up alcohol and coffee (having given both up in the last 2 years and been completely free of them), but the treat foods I can’t break and I don’t just eat a biscuit, I can demolish a packet of them with a cup of tea. ½ a swiss roll after tea. More than one chocolate bar in a sitting. If I had one wish in life, it would be to never have the cravings. Sweet treats have always been in my life (and a problem). I can remember using my lunch money in secondary school to buy 3 or 4 chocolate bars instead of a proper lunch.

I think I’ve got to retry number 4 on your list. #1, doesn’t work for me as I eventually binge. #2, from experience, it may not be in the house but it will be in the shop (5 mins walk) but I’d drive as it is quicker! #3, I think that may be a longer term goal but I have trouble getting through a day at the moment, let alone a week. So #4 for a few weeks, hopefully, I can start to make the treat every other day and then into a weekly event.
Again, thanks for taking the time to respond. I apologise this post has ended up as the ramblings of a mad man but I’ve never been able to say a lot of this stuff to anyone. I’ve never had the confidence and most people don’t understand, it isn’t as simple as “well just don’t eat the biscuit”.

Thanks again.


No proble mate, feel free to ask me anything anytime… always happy to help!

I fell off the wagon myself a while back, and got back on track by being a part of this community, so im always happy to contribute where I can :blush::ok_hand: