Cofrin Park

Cofrin Park
Cofrin Nature Park

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Weight Loss In Men Over 50: Case Study Part II

Unlike Richard, who has reached his goal, Chuck is about three-quarters of the way through his weight loss program and the goal to lose 20 more pounds.

If you have any questions for the guys, please post them in the comments!


Chuck lost over 40 pounds using the following protocol, which was a challenge due to his health history, as he explains:

1)     Chuck, please tell us your experience with the program. For example, who initiated the program and why did you become involved?

In order to answer this question I must first back up to July 2010.  I went to a Blind Rehab Hospital in Birmingham, Alabama for 8 weeks, because I was losing my sight. They offer an excellent rehab program there.  Upon arrival, during the intake process, the nurse practitioner was asking routine health questions. Based on my answers, she ordered blood tests for Type 2 Diabetes. My blood pressure was high as well.  Within a few days I began taking prescription drugs for blood pressure and diabetes.  I weighed over 300 pounds at that time. I was miserable and the prescription drugs seemed to make me feel terrible. 

By December 2011, I was feeling as though I was in very poor health, even though I had been working out 3-4 days per week.  My blood sugars were out of control.  I went to the doctor and insisted that I needed a different prescription and a plan to lose weight. The doctor changed my medication and suggested I look for a program that would push me physically and mentally and offer a diet plan.  

At that moment the Gainesville Health and Fitness Center had sent out an email detailing a workout study group. The email stated that they were looking for volunteers for their initial 6 week program.  I went to the first meeting and was selected as a participant. The program was with the new X-Force machines and a seasoned trainer that had a lifetime of experience to offer those who were willing to learn.  I felt that this was a great opportunity for me to have a regimented program that I would be able to follow and learn from. The X-Force machines offer a “Negative Force” resistance that greatly enhances the workout. 

Dr. Ellington Darden’s hypothesis was such that a person would gain muscle mass and lose weight by following his prescribed workout and his strict but varied diet. The diet was controlled calorie with a minimum of one gallon of ice cold water daily. The diet started with 1600 calories for men. Although the workout was extremely difficult and exhausting, the diet proved to be my greatest challenge. Because I was taking the blood pressure and diabetes medicines, I would run out of energy and get low blood sugars.  After discussing this with my doctor, he suggested that I lower or even skip the meds on the days that I worked out.  After 2 weeks on the plan, I took a bold move and stopped taking both meds. I found that my daily readings were good as long as I followed the plan completely. Soon, I realized that I did not need the meds as long as I continued the same diet and workout plan.  

2)     I understand there were several protocols with different goals. Describe briefly which program you chose.

The program I chose was focused on the principle that a person could lose weight and gain muscle using the X-Force 2 times per week and use a diet consisting of 1600 calories for men for the first 2 weeks, 1500 calories the second 2 weeks, and 1400 calories the final 2 weeks.  This cycle was repeated a second 6 weeks but the workout was reduced to 1 time per week. 
(I stayed on 1800 calories, which was modified for my diabetes.)

3) What was your routine?

The first 6 weeks the machine workouts were split in half so that you did half the machines on Monday and the other half on Thursday.  The second 6 weeks, all machines were done on Monday.  Each and every time you worked out, the weight was increased on every machine. By the end of the 12 weeks, I had increased my weights, in most cases, by as much as 3 times the amount that I started with. One of the most important parts of the program was doing the workouts in a group and with the support of experienced trainers. I felt this was invaluable to me as a workout member as it helped to keep me focused and motivated. Finally, there were bi-weekly meetings to discuss our progress, provide information and insight, ask questions and basically become a team.  
I also walked for 30 minutes after dinner.

3)     What are your limitations and how do you think they challenged your success?

I think one of my biggest challenges was, and continues to be, my lack of vision, mainly because I need assistance to complete the workouts.  Although it is a challenge, I am able to find assistance as needed.  Another challenge was my health issues but I am able to manage these by continuing to focus on the plan.

4)     Did you get the results you anticipated?

I think that I started the program in an effort to lose weight, which was truly my main focus. However, I feel that I got my life back.  I do not take the prescription drugs any longer, I have as much energy as I did as a young man and I have gained a lot of muscle.

5)     Do you continue to follow the protocol?

Absolutely, I have become a believer in the power of a solid workout routine and a diet that provides a balance of good healthy foods that encourage your body to perform at its maximum potential.

6)     Is it easy, grueling, fun, hard work?

I believe that doing any type of plan, whether it is a workout or diet requires a strong commitment to the outcomes that one desires. Honestly, if you do the X-Force machines properly, you will be sore each and every time.  In addition to the soreness, there is a certain exhaustion that accompanies a great workout.  As far as the diet, I no longer consider it a diet; rather, I see the food I consume as fuel for my body.  I choose to use high octane fuel for my body, instead of the alternative.  The better the fuel, the stronger performance.  But, make no mistake, it is always a challenge.

7)     What health benefits do you notice?

The best benefit is that I do not need the prescription drugs to control my blood pressure or blood sugar.  Other benefits; more energy, stamina, attitude and excitement in my life.  I am able to do all the activities that I thought were out of my abilities due to my health.

8)     How has the X-Force protocol differed from other strategies you have tried?

I think that this program worked for me because I wanted it to work for me.  By this I mean that I am able to understand it, employ it into my life and made a commitment to myself to improve my body, mind and soul.

9)     Closing remarks?

I believe that there are many good plans out there that will allow you to lose weight, but I have realized that the main portion of any plan MUST include a solid, healthy, and controlled diet.  This above all else will have the greatest impact on losing weight and getting healthy.

What did you eat on the program?

Breakfast: Kashi Go Lean cereal 1 cup
½ cup fat free milk
1 small lite yogurt
2 cups coffee

5 dried prunes
Or 15 almonds
Or 10 baby carrots
Or 3 inch apple

Ham sandwich 2 slices 100% whole wheat bread
Black forest lite ham
Fat free cheese

Strawberry Whey Protein shake

Green salad with dressing
1 cup Tomatoes
Lite dressing 2 ounces balsamic vinaigrette
4 ounces lean meat, chicken, pork, turkey or fish (salmon or tuna)

100 calorie popcorn
Small (3 inch) apple
Luna power bar allowed one a day.

Drink 1 gallon of ice water a day
Allowed 10 ounces of wine a day which I did occasionally.
No pain meds allowed. Use cold plunge and ice packs.

Multi vitamin for men “Ultra Man”
Fish Oil
Vitamin D3
Cinnamon pill for diabetes

The only before and after pictures Chuck could find are blurry, but show the progress:

Chuck's before picture
Chuck's after picture

Chuck doing his thing on X-Force machine

Chuck's after picture