How One Year Of Powerlifting Totally Changed This Guy’s Body
By now most of us know what a consistent lifting program can do. If you want to build muscle and mass, lift. If you want to get lean and lose excess weight, lift. But it’s not just about picking up heavy things and putting them back down. You’ve got to hit your body from every angle and it’s not as difficult as you think.
That’s what one Redditor, who goes by CashewmanRx, learned after a year of powerlifting completely transformed his body. He didn’t drown himself in bootcamp classes or juice cleanses. He started with basic, methodical, old fashioned hard work.
He started with big compound lifts, squats, deadlifts, overhead press and bench presses, following a 5×5 sets and reps split while he regained strong after two years of putting his health on the back burner. In the first four months his strength skyrocketed. He added 150 pounds to his squat in those early months. He broke down his body progress this way:
Sept 2016- 219 lb 5’9″, Body fat high! Physical abilities low Begin strong lifts 5×5 (SL 5X5) to get my life back in gear, start low and focus on form.
January 2017- 223 lb, BF 15.9% (3 point caliper). 3 months of SL 5X5, Feeling strong AF w/ new gains.
5×5 stats Squat 315, Bench- 200, DL 335, OHP 130
February 2017- 220 LB 12-14% BF. Linear progression w/ SL getting too hard, start 5/3/1 BBB and utilizing intermittent fasting
May/June 2017- 213 lb 9.5-10% BF. 5 cycles of 5/3/1
Squat 340 X 6, BP 225 x 3, DL 370 X 8, OHP 155 X 5
Also doing impressive 5 x10 w/ 245 5 x 10 squat, 270 5×10 DL, 120 5 x10 OHP.
June-September 2017. 195 lb , BF? but low. Began cutting in june and switched to a full vegetarian diet. Doing AMRAP work and progression was too hard so am currently running a weird hybrid of SL 5X5 w/ BBB accessories, Goal is simply maintain strength while losing weight. Will restart strength training this winter
One thing that stands out here is that as he started to get stronger, his dietary habits became increasingly more health-focused, from intermittent fasting to a complete vegetarian diet by the end of the year. He lost 25 pounds, cut a ton of body fat and gained considerable strength.
A couple things that we should note: while he did increase weight has he gained strength, he switched from a classic 5×5 scheme to a 5/3/1 rep scheme to allow himself to complete success lifts and still maintain some volume.
Also notice in the first months he gained some weight and then leveled out, incorporating intermittent fasting into his routine. IF is a practice in which someone will go through cycles of fasting and not fasting. For example one may only eat between noon and 8 p.m., preferring to ingest all their daily calorie intake in that window. The result is usually a calorie deficit that can help ignite weight loss.
But the breakdown also illustrates the biggest key to his transformation: consistency. He focused for a full year on building strength and restructuring his diet to meet his goals.