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Old June 19th, 2013 (10:51 AM).
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Entermaid Entermaid is offline
    Join Date: Jan 2013
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    Originally Posted by Razor Leaf View Post
    Yoyo. I've been told by Andy that I don't actually need to sign up to ask a question or whatever so... here goes! If there's no-one here who can help then I'll just make a thread in CC&P or something like that.

    So, here's my situation. I have a summer to kill and, while I'm not looking to get hench or whatever, I basically need to put on some weight and at least get some muscle or something. Just so that every shirt I own doesn't hang off of me, haha. Unfortunately it's not that easy so I can't just go do it.

    Here's my (rather depressing...) situation. I've always been a pretty active guy; I've always run a lot and played cricket, football, hockey and tennis (English definitions here) a lot and if I do say so myself I've always been quite good at them. Certainly, I'd consider myself someone very willing to play sport and generally get exercise, although it'd probably be better if I did something aside from just running around after a ball. However I've always been someone who gets fairly ill a lot so I had nothing really physical to show for it as I spent a lot of time losing weight and whatnot, but I could always deal with that. However that's all kinda changed in the last year or so since I was diagnosed with cancer. At first I handled it pretty well since I was already in a fairly good physical shape and the chemo and whatnot didn't have too much of an effect but as time's gone on I've found myself less and less able to do physical exercise due to weight loss and muscle wastage and as such my response to the treatment is gradually getting worse. I'm in remission for both the primary and later developed secondary cancers right now, which is awesome, but in order to stay that way I'm really gonna need to be keeping myself in shape so that I can continue handling the therapy properly. The issue, as I say, being that the longer the chemo goes on the worse my physical condition gets.

    As I say I have no issue with exercise and whatnot but it's just becoming extremely difficult to actually get any done despite how imperative it is that I stay in decent physical shape. Plus it'd be nice to put some weight and muscle on to boot! I can't afford a gym membership at present and I'm not in much of a state for any heavy physical exercise or whatnot. Or all that much exercise at all, really. At least, right now I'm not. What sort of things should I be doing / what should I be eating / etc to keep me fit, all this considered?
    I am very glad to hear that your cancer is remission and thank you for sharing your situation with us. Of course you can ask a question, though, I must caution you that you may need to consult your (a) doctor before you take my advice.

    First, I would definitely discontinue or heavily limit rigorous cardio. At this juncture, all the hard work put into cardio might be exacerbating the muscle loss and your recovery to full strength.

    Second, I would increase the weight resistance training. Which could be an issue, given that you do not have access to a gym or exercise facility. Though, I have a few ideas in mind. The best way to put on the muscle mass is to do few reps with more weight. For instance, if you can bench 100 lbs 50 times, you need to increase your weight substantially, maybe to 150lbs, if you can only bench that 8 times. Okay, so I am guessing you don't have weights though, but keep this principle in mind. Less reps, more weight. If you have a texts books, or other somewhat heavy articles, and a sturdy backpack I have three exercises that you can focus on, but I am sure there are other alternatives.

    1) Push-ups. Since you don't have access to a weight bench to perform bench press, push-ups are probably the best alternative to work out arms and pectoral muscles. However, remember, what I said. If you can do 20+ pushups, you need to increase weight, to reduce reps. To do this, put like a few giant biology books or bricks (Preferably sand) in your backpack and carefully place them on your upper-middle back while your stomach is flat on the ground. Then, once it's all secure around your shoulders, perform as the pushup. This will also help with postural muscles given the balance; it's like yoga and weight training all in one. You will need to experiment a bit, but the first set of pushups, you should be able to barely get through about 10 (so adjust your weight in the back pack accordingly.) Then, reduce the load a in the backpack for the second set so you are only able to barely get through about 12 push-ups, and then to about 15 pushups in your third set.

    There are many many many types of different pushups you can execute following this same principle. Just remember, you will see much more results if you are struggling through a few rather than exhausting yourself over doing tons and tons of repetitions of lower weight.

    2) Back Squats. simply put the backpack on with the appropriate amount of weight so that you can only do about ten squats. Make sure, your environment is safe, especially behind you in case you lose balance. If I am doing any type of squat in my room, I usually am stand in front of my bed just in case. Next, reduce weight so you can barely get through 12, and then reduce it again until you can barely get through 15.

    A refresher of squat just in case, except you will use additional weight to mimic barbell back-squats:

    3) Goblet Squat- Same. 10 highest reps. Reduce weight, 12 reps. Reduce weight, 15 reps.

    This with a the backpack and weight.

    4) Deadlift - Same.

    This, with the backpack and weight.

    You might be able to apply these exercises to other weight lifting techniques as well!

    Make sure to eat plenty of protein and complex carbohydrates after working out or the muscle cannot repair. Avoid eating right before working out.

    Well, this is the most creative and hopefully practical weigh I can think of to get you weight training without the need of the gym equipment. Sometimes simplicity and consistency are good for results. You may want to check-in to see how much weight training you can perform. Maybe, you might need to reduce the amount of weight you use at first. I'd double-check with your physician just in case.