Hi. It’s Sam Ridgeway with Live Like a Viking. And today is day three. If you’re just tuning in, you’re probably wondering, “Day 3 of What?” Well, I’ve paid a professional bodybuilder to teach me what to eat and how to train. And since I share that with you, it’s going to benefit us both. My ultimate objective is to get in amazing shape and to be able to compete in a bodybuilding competition in about 8 months. So let’s see how I was feeling this morning and then let’s break down the reason my coach has me eating 3,600 calories a day.
I know a lot of people are thinking, “You can’t lose weight on 3,600 calories a day.” And you’d probably be right. But sometimes you have to take a step back in order to move 3 steps forward. When I started this docuseries I was consuming around 2,500 calories a day. I was also doing the Ketogenic diet. Keep in mind, I weigh 300 pounds and I train every day, whether it’s weight training or cardio and abs. Many days it’s a mixture of the two. 2,500 calories a day left no wiggle room for caloric manipulation. My metabolism would have stalled quickly and I would have plateaued in a very short period of time. By initially increasing my calories for a while, I create a New Normal with which I can use as a baseline for the restriction of calories in the future. In layman’s terms, I’m creating the perfect environment for weight loss.
You know how you read something online and it might make you a little irritated at first, but no big deal. The you see the same subject again, and again, and it really starts to piss you off? I had one of those situations recently and I’d like to set the record straight.
The subject I’m talking about is the younger generation bashing older men on Testosterone Replacement Therapy, or even a full-blown steroid cycle for that matter. But I’ll mainly focus on TRT since it’s legal and medically supervised. Looking at message boards online or YouTube videos, it seems that every time there’s an older man in great shape, there are multiple rants from the younger generation about how, “All of these old guys are going through a mid-life crisis and are trying to fix it with TRT” or “why can’t they just age like they’re supposed to” or my favorite… “Anybody could look like that if they were Juicing”. First of all, here’s the first image that comes to mind when I envision the people that post those comments. Second, NO… You will never look like this man. You’ve never come close to looking like him in the past and you will never look like him in the future. In fact, you could inject so many steroids in your ass that you looked like Nikki Minaj from behind and you will never look like this man.
So in this video I want to take the younger generation to school and I want to reinforce the benefits of TRT to the older group. Maybe even some benefits you haven’t thought of yet. In order to do this effectively, I’m going to assume the younger generation has the ability to feel empathy, which as most of you know, is where they can vicariously experience the feelings of others. In other words, they have the capacity to imagine feelings they’ve never actually had.
And the backdrop to why I thought of making this video was a chance encounter I had with a fit older gentleman yesterday in the parking lot of the local grocery store. He stopped me as I was getting into my truck and said, “Where did you play football”, which is a common question I get. We started talking and he said, “I see you work out. I just wanted to say keep up the good work, You’re looking great”. And no, he wasn’t gay. I mentioned TRT and he immediately said he was doing TRT as well… said he feels great… he chuckled and said he’s still grabbing his wife’s ass every day and she loves it… and when I asked him how old he was, he said, “68 Years Old!” I would have put this man in his mid-fifties at most if I had to guess his age at a carnival. And as I pulled out of the parking lot I thought to myself, “Who in their right mind would have a problem with that guy and what he was doing?”
Low testosterone causes many undesirable symptoms such as insomnia, low libido, sexual dysfunction, depression, decreased strength, weight gain… the list goes on, but you get the point. Low testosterone causes symptoms that nobody wants… you don’t want them when you’re 25 and you don’t want them when you’re 60… And there’s a solution available. It would be like somebody getting older and in order to read, they got a pair of reading glasses. I’m convinced there would still be those that chastised the person with comments like, “Just hold the page further from your face” or “All you have to do is squint… you cheater!” Ridiculous statements from a group that has never had to deal with the effects of aging.
Truth be told, we generally gravitate to activities we’re good at. I would be willing to bet that most of the older men in decent shape were once athletes or, at some point in time, they minimally found it easy to gain muscle. It’s what they liked to do and it’s something they still like to do. Here’s a Pop Quiz: Why will you never see me sprinting? Because I suck at it. Long jumping? I suck at that too. In fact, you’ll rarely see me doing activities I’m not good at because I don’t enjoy those activities… so why berate a man for doing what he loves to do… what he’s good at? And further, why would you be condescending when he leverages science to get a few more years out of it?
Now I’m going to lump Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT) in with TRT because I do both. I do testosterone and I do HGH. My own personal experience has shown that the combination of the two has stopped my ankle from hurting, cured my ailing tendons, and I haven’t had my back go out in over 10 months… which is something that happened at least quarterly before HRT. I have far more energy, I have a better sense of wellbeing, sexually it’s like I’m in my early 20’s, my mind is sharper, I sleep better and yes, it’s been easier to put on muscle. Now after listening to all of these benefits, do you honestly believe bigger muscles were my primary objective when I started this? Absolutely not. Yes, bigger muscles are a welcomed bonus, but I didn’t start this journey with the purpose of shaming the young studs at the gym. It ended up that way, but it didn’t start that way.
It’s not all rainbows and lollipops though. At our age, even with supplemental Testosterone and HGH, our metabolism isn’t what it was when we were young. If you’re following me on my Ripped at 50 Docuseries, you know we count every macro we stick in our heads, we do at least 40 minutes of cardio 4 times each week, and we lift weights every other day… with purpose. We train hard. This is a lifestyle and consistent discipline in your 50’s will always prevail over haphazard training and diet in your 20’s. So, to the younger group, that 50-year-old “juicer” as you may call him, probably has more discipline packed into one day than you have all week. And that, in itself, deserves a bit of respect.
So let’s keep going. As disclosed by the man in the parking lot, our libido is far stronger on HRT. Do you think that strengthens your relationship with your significant other? Of course it does. I would go so far as to argue that the family structure is preserved when both parties are in a sexually active relationship. Try laying your fat ass on the couch every night, shoving potato chips into your face, and see how attractive you start becoming to your mate… that’s exactly what I was doing before HRT. It won’t be long before you’re only getting lucky on your birthday and your wife is listening to how pretty she is from the guy in line at the grocery store.
So let’s move on… I have 4 grandchildren. Do you think it enriches their lives when their grandfather can be active for hours without looking like he needs a paramedic and a heart transplant? Something I will never forget is the day my daughter came home and said the other kids at school were making fun of her because I was fat. Try going to sleep after that one. I don’t know if I’ve ever been more embarrassed than that day. I don’t think we even realize the impact our choices have on the lives of others; people that rely on us to protect them.
I would even argue that our choices have an economic impact on society as a whole. I can assure you my health right now is leaps and bounds better than it was a year or so ago. The trajectory I was on had a dismal future… one of diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, heart disease. Do you realize the financial strain a person puts on the healthcare system when their lifestyle choices cost millions of dollars to stabilize? If you don’t think we all pay for that in higher medical costs and rising health insurance premiums, you’re wrong. Again, the choices we make have a ripple effect that extends far beyond our circle of friends and family.
Can you get healthy without HRT? I couldn’t. How do I know? Because I tried for years and was unsuccessful. I didn’t see results, which eventually made me revert back to the unhealthy lifestyle I hated. I was like a crack addict, but with food. And my eating habits and sedentary way of living had me in a death spiral of continuous disappointment.
Yeah, Yeah… I got that Sam, but HRT can’t fix all of that. Yes it can. It really can. It did for me. I’m an entirely different person now. I’m healthy, confident, energetic… Even though I’m a Work in Progress, I’m a new me. A better me. My daughter Remmi, now in high school, came home about a week ago and said a kid in her class was claiming another kid’s dad was really strong. One of the other girls said, “You haven’t seen Remmi’s dad then”. And I owe it all to HRT for giving me the ability to change. The desire to change. The visual feedback that what I was striving so hard to achieve was actually working. And it can change you too if you let it.
So the next time I see one of these young guys berating older men over wanting to stay young and healthy… “juicing”, as they call it, to stave off their “midlife crisis”… instead of ripping them a new one, I might just simply post a link to this video and maybe, just maybe, they’ll see the other side of the story.
Until next time, Peace Out.