I am really looking for some help on how to lose weight and increase my core strength. I am 22 years old, weigh around 76kg and my height is 5ft 8 inchs. Basically I am overweight. My aim is to reach 65kg and build some lean muscle. I have approximately 6-8 months to achieve this goal.

I have started going to a gym nearby this month.The schedule I am following is as follows:

cardio: running for 25 mins (around 2.5 - 3kms)(5 times a week)

lower body - squats,leg press,calf raise etc. (twice a week), upper and lower abs (5 times a week)

upper body - biceps/triceps/chest/shoulder(both machine and free weights)(thrice a week)

I wanted to ask if this schedule is good enough or do I have to make some changes. Also I need some advice on what nutrition to take.

Currently I am following this food plan.

  • breakfast- 2 eggs or cornflaks
  • lunch - bread,pulses,vegetables,
  • dinner- bread,pulses,vegetables,
  • late night snacks - fruits
  • I am bit of an foodie, so I occasionally overeat.

People in my gym take some protein shakes and have suggested me to take whey protein(advanced myotein protein matrix).They give the reason that as I don't eat non-veg at home,I need the protein.Will this help?

  • 1
    Studies have repeatedly shown that the single biggest factor in weight loss is calorie reduction. While the 3500 calories = 1 lb of fat is somewhat in debate and variable per person, calorie restriction is the main consideration.
    – JohnP
    Jul 29, 2013 at 14:58
  • 1
    Are you male or female? 76kg is not overweight for a male, you should really avoid using the BMI calculation and forget your weight and focus on a target appearance. Your weight can be a good measure for progress sometimes but I am assuming that you would like to appear fitter and leaner rather than simply be lighter?
    – shilov
    Aug 3, 2013 at 11:27

4 Answers 4


This, this right here is your problem:

I am bit of an foodie, so I occasionally overeat.

As cliche as it is, what goes in your mouth is more important than what exercise you do. If you want to lose weight, you need to track what you eat.

You can't out run a bad diet

It takes about: - a minute to eat an apple or a cookie - 5 minutes of jump rope to burn of the calories in an apple - 40 minutes of jump rope to burn of the calories in an cookie

By not eating a cookie, you save yourself 40 minutes of exercise, and you know its not one cookie. Until you control your snacking, and start tracking what you eat - both calories, and macro-nutrient breakdown, there isn't much else you can do for your goal of weight loss.

On the subject of vegetarians and whey protein supplements

Whey is a supplementary food, so if you find that you aren't getting enough protein (ie. about 200g per day), and can't fill that gap through traditional means, then you use it to fill a gap in your diet.

If you are eating well, mixing your pulses and grains properly, you can easily meet your protein requirements. Start by tracking your food intake and supplement accordingly.


If you really want to trim down, I would say 25 minutes of cardio is on the low side. I would aim for 40 to 45 minutes, 5 times a week and I would try to make sure these have a few high intensity intervals in them. Note that these 45 minutes do not need to be one block. In fact splitting them between morning and afternoon can increase benefit as it will boost your metabolism for longer. If your work is nearby, cycling to work can achieve that really easily. But do your high intensity pedalling on the way home to avoid arriving at work sweaty!

Protein supplement can help you build muscle faster or recover better, but in my experience the vast majority of gym goers overdo it with those and forget that they actually represent additional calories. I would definitely never follow the advised quantity on the box which is always too much (unless you are training for Mr universe or something). One shake twice a week right after heavy sessions (i.e. legs) would probably provide best return on investment and not compromise your attempt at loosing weight.

Before worrying about visibly building muscle, I would make sure some of the weight comes off. Good luck.


You are working out plenty. Resistance training 5x a week along with cardio 5x a week is more than enough exercise. As a general rule I'd suggest focusing more on big, free weight movements (squats/deadlifts/bench/press), but that's not really the core of the issue here.

If your goal is to lose weight, you have to take in fewer calories. Protein shakes aren't a bad thing, but if you add a protein shake to your current diet, you're just tacking on extra calories - you'll gain more weight. You need to eat less, snack less, and don't drink your calories. You should really be drinking mostly water if you aren't already.

As was previously suggested, keep track of everything you take in via something like MyFitnessPal or FitDay. You might be surprised by the amount of calories you're actually taking in - and that's where you need to start if you want to lose weight.


You are in the same boat as 80% of my clients that wanted to lose weight-

  1. Do not over-do cardio. 25x5 is PLENTY. I would actually change it to maybe 4x30 to give your body more days off. The key to integrating a cardio program into a new routine for weight loss is what can you do that will not cause your body to go into starvation mode? When you start a new cardio routine or expense a lot of energy/intensity on cardio your body will naturally try to recoup through diet. No use busting your ass on the treadmill to burn 300 calories and then have to eat 500 calories to feel better. Am I suggesting cutting out the cardio? No. What I am suggesting is cutting down the intensity at first until your body is used to the activity. Also I strongly encourage 2 feet up - 2 feet down jump rope. It is low impact and I don't know of a faster way to take off fat.

  2. I am not sure about your weight routine. You label what you do but not how many sets, reps, or exacts. In general what you are saying is good. I would also ask your intensity level, how tired you are after lifting, and how long does the soreness last in each body part. Lifting is more crucial to losing weight than cardio - the more muscle you put on the more your metabolism speeds up. Also your metabolism is sky high during recovery. So lift before your cardio not after.

  3. Your diet seems protein deficient. You need to add lean meats/beans. I would aim at 35-40% protein - natural. You should not be taking protein shakes to lose weight. Maybe 1 out of 10 of my clients would actually eat less when taking these sorts of supplements. Only even think about taking protein shakes if you know that you will cut out an equal amount of calories out of your diet.

  4. Do not starve your body and you really need to make sure you are limiting binges. You have a big routine. You have to eat. You never mentioned calories and you need to start counting. I would not consider you way overweight. I would shoot for losing a pound every week or two. You need to know more about your calorie intake.

  5. Make the goal how you look not your weight. If you are working out hard and lifting you will gain muscle. Muscle is heavy. Often initial muscle gain (some water weight) can rival fat loss. It is conceivable that after a year of lifting/cardio/watching what you eat that you weigh slightly less but look totally different.

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