Bench Press, Weight Gain, Dropping 15lbs

Email Exchange 1

E-mail from client:

Bench Press is stalling.

I did the numbers that you sent for the bench but stalled out on the last rep, I got stuck at the bottom position.


Still follow the prescribed format for hitting the numbers but let’s do these exercises as your accessories for the following month. Without seeing the form directly, it seems to me that you’re probably losing your elbow tuck and your chest needs to be a bit stronger from the bottom, all easy fixes.

Bench Press Day

Warm up

(Hit your prescribed numbers for bench)

1A. Dumbbell Neutral Grip Chest Press 10 reps (*remember your numbers)

1B. Pendlay Rows 10 reps (*remember your numbers)

Rest 1min and complete 5 rounds


2A. Dumbbell Floor Extensions 12 reps

2B. Fat Gripz Pull Ups 10+ Reps

Complete 4 rounds


3A. Inverted Ring Rows 12+ reps

3B. Toes to bar leg raise 15 reps

3C. Run 200M

Complete 4 rounds NO REST

*remember your numbers for those exercises because next week I want you to beat them by either more weight or more reps with the same weight*

scaleEmail exchange 2

E-mail  from client:

Ok, I don’t know, but I have gained the weight back 🙁 Trying to figure out what I am doing so wrong.


Scale weight or body fat?

Below is a quote from one of my resources:

“Daily weight fluctuations are normal. They are not indicators or success of failure. Changes in sodium status, how much water you’re drinking (low water intake promotes water retention), hormonal changes associated with menstruation, glycogen status, etc., all affect body weight.”

“It’s futile to put too much stock into what the scale says TODAY. It probably said something different yesterday and will say something different again tomorrow. Worry about what you’re DOING – your fat-loss behaviors, your program compliance, etc. From there over time your bodyweight will take care of itself.”

With your increased weight training, it is common that your scale weight should go up, but that does not mean anything negative.

All the scale tells you is your relationship with gravity and gravity is a heartless b—h.

Remember, let’s see what the body fat test says and progress pics.

Email Exchange 3Lesley Maxwell | Fitness Revolution Rowlett

General Inq. E-mail   

I’m a 51-year old female who is 5′ 7″ and is 15 pounds overweight.  I do spinning, cardio and weight training workouts 4x/week and also walk a lot.  I eat incredibly healthy meals of fish, whole grains, tons of veggies and very little to no sweets.

I cannot lose weight at all – no matter how hard I try or what I do.  I’m fearful this is hormonal and the new norm of middle age.

Can you help?  Do you have experience with my age group, fitness level and lack of results?  Can you prove to me that you can help?


I have a few questions for you that will help me get an idea of where you’re at and what we need to do in order to help you drop that stubborn 15 pounds.

Q: Have you had any stressful events over the last 6 months?

A: No

Q: Do you have an example of the current workout program you are doing?

A: 45 minu45-minutes classes at the YMCA at 5:45am; Core Fusion at Exhale Spa; Walking 1+ miles every day; Jillian Michaels work-out DVD’s

Q: On a scale of 1-10 what would you rate the intensity of your cardio and spinning?

A: 8-ish.  I sweat.

Q: Do you track your diet in anyway using any of the applications like MyFitness Pal? Would you be able to provide me with what a typical day/week of eating is for you?

A: I don’t track but could give you examples, yes.

Q: Have you had a blood panel run recently to determine hormone levels?

A: I had a full panel ran in March and my thyroid was low so I’ve been taking meds for that.  Not sure if they checked hormones but I’m pretty sure I have just completed the “change.”

Our Response:

From what I can read and infer without meeting you in person, it seems that there may be a disconnect with what we call progressive adaptation. This just means that you’re working out but you’re not progressing your body each week to overcome new and continuous stimulus. A number of the classes and DVDs that you have listed are great workouts but not necessarily the best at getting YOUR body better at something; for you, that’s getting those last 15lbs off.

Anyone can make you tired but not anyone can make you better.

It seems like you have the fitness level to do work but not a program designed to push YOUR body to the levels that it needs to get those last few pounds off.

One of the biggest variables in a person’s current ability to lose fat that most ‘dieters’ are not aware of … is your dieting history. Yes of course a good plan, effort, compliance and consistency are all obvious and important variables, but what you’ve put your body through in PAST can be a factor that rarely gets considered.

For example, we take a yo-yo dieter,  those people who have been wrestling with weight for the longest time, who are always dieting, or trying to, or those who have struggled with the same 20lbs, gaining and losing for years at a time.

Yo-yo dieting does a number, and not a good one, on the regulatory hormones of the body (with subsequent effects on thyroid, leptin, fat metabolism, overall metabolism, etc…)

If you’ve put your body through the dietary ringer for a few years then even a solid approach, such as what you have listed, may not be enough and tactics have to change.

Makes me wonder if this was a cause for your low thyroid…?

In conjunction, I’m curious how long you have been eating so clean; you can eat too clean and TOO little for TOO long and enviably the metabolism will accommodate.  Sometimes having day to binge (yes binge) will help spike leptin levels back up and allow your body to go back into a fat burn mode.

Hopefully you can see that our approach and mindset extend a bit further that the traditional fitness professional dogma.

Again, the above are just speculations from what we can infer from your two e-mails. For us to really get a good idea of what may be going on, it may be helpful for us to meet in person and just talk to see if we can deduce anything else.

A talk or consult is always free of change so you don’t have to worry about paying anything… unless for some reason you just have money that you want to give! 😉 jk

So if you have time, let’s arrange an appointment when you can come in and talk… who knows you may even get the answer to the question that you need, sometimes it’s that easy.


In Health and Awesomeness,

Travis Merritt, BS, CPT, (and other letters behind the name) is the Owner of Rowlett Transformation Center in Rowlett, TX.

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