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(Originally posted on: 02-12-09 12:46:25 AM)
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I'm lazy when it comes to exercising, I won't lie. The only reason I ran cross-country in high school is because we had an instructor who drilled it into us that if we didn't run every single morning of every single week day, he would kick us out of the team. I suppose the sensation of being abandoned and ridiculed by my track-team peers was enough to keep me motivated to practice. So why not try it again?

I'm not technically in any courses right now and I won't be for another three months so, in the interim, I have lots of free time to burn on miscellaneous projects I have always wanted to do. With the coming semester, I may end up cutting my hours back to part-time at whatever job I have and, so, I have resolved to start an exercise routine I will actually follow.

But outside of running and its related stretches, I don't have a clue on what to do, so this will be sort of a learning experiment in ways. I will post (if I can) daily logs on what I accomplish and I will, at the end of 3 months, post another set of pictures to monitor any results. I'm not expecting a lot so I won't be disappointed. Hell, judging from my past attempts, I probably won't even make it three months. Mainly, I hope to trim up my belly fat (as is painfully evident in one of the profiles) and maybe sculpt my arms and chest by a few percentage points. At the end of three months, depending on my success, I may or may not make a new thread to continue the program.

For yourselves, please, use this thread to give me advice on what I should concentrate on judging from the pictures. Obviously, I need push-ups, curls, crunches, and flying crunches, but is there anything else? I may or may not start running again as I don't want to overwhelm myself and get discouraged. If no one wants to post useful things, that's fine too, you can just use this thread for your amusement to poke fun at my bird chest big grin or other things related to personal fitness. I will post my first attempts later on today (02-12-09) before I head off to work, so get cracking!

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Reply 1 of 66 (Originally posted on: 02-12-09 06:30:46 PM)
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Okay, folks, the ship has left the dock

Thursday, 02/12/09

PU = Push-ups
CU10 r/l = Curls @ 10lb
CR = Crunches
FC = Flying Crunches

(If you have additional excercises that don't require specialized equipment, that is good to know until I get a gym membership)

Time elapsed: 35 minutes

PU
(# completed / Attempt)
10/1
12/2
12/3

CU R/L
40/40/1
31/26/2
13/11/3

CR
20/1
9/2

FC
40/1
40/2
32/3

If I am reporting these wrong, feel free to tell me.

Summary: Didn't get to do it as long as I wanted to nor did I accomplish as many push ups as I wanted, but at least I did something. A journey of a thousand miles begines with one step, after all. I can already tell this will be hell later on tonight when I'm running around chasing inventory workers to do their jobs right; it will be like eating a bunch of bean burritos before a small get-together and paying for it by farting around other people, only I'll be haunched over my stomach taking DOMS up the butt with a sniffle and cough to boot.
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This reply was last edited on 02-12-09 06:53:02 PM by atlas sighed (at me).
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Reply 2 of 66 (Originally posted on: 02-12-09 07:36:20 PM)
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Add weight to your dumbells.

Do shoulder presses.
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Reply 3 of 66 (Originally posted on: 02-12-09 07:36:26 PM)
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Ztolk is going to come in here and tell you to do squats and deadlifts....he's not a fan of crunches or curls because he doesn't think they build any kind of strength you'll particularly need much (which is true). He'll also mention that it's very important what you eat. He is correct. It does seem like you're focused on looking better, and not so much gaining strength. That's not a bad thing...just seems to be an observation.

The way you're reporting things is retarded. If you're just doing body-weight things (push-ups, crunches, etc) just say how many you did. Like 3 sets of 20, or just like

"10
12
12"

No need for the /attempt stuff

If you doing stuff with weight, I'd say do like

10, 3x12 (10 lbs, 3 sets of 12)

or just say
10 pounds...
40
31
13
Which would imply you did 40 curls first time, 31 the second and 13 the third.

Also your workout plan is lousey. You should try to be consistent and do sets. Rather than 40/31/13 you should try like 3 sets of 25 or something. Also you should definitely use higher weight.

You should have at least 2 different workout days. One day do some shit, the other day work different muscles. Alternate those.

If you're looking for good routines, you've already asked this a few times and people gave a ton of different links and it seems like you weren't interested. Perhaps it's because you don't have ANY equipment?

Anyway, with your base you should be able to see significant improvements in 3 months.
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Reply 4 of 66 (Originally posted on: 02-13-09 06:22:31 AM)
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Quote:
If you're looking for good routines, you've already asked this a few times and people gave a ton of different links and it seems like you weren't interested. Perhaps it's because you don't have ANY equipment?


Haha, I have myself and one dumbbell. I am considering a gym membership to open myself up to different types of equipment; the prices aren't appetizing, however, but I am still open to paying. Good/bad idea?

Quote:
It does seem like you're focused on looking better, and not so much gaining strength. That's not a bad thing...just seems to be an observation.


I AM A NINJA!

Looking at the long-term, would it be better to concentrate on strength let aesthetics follow? OR do they even follow?

Quote:
Also your workout plan is lousey. You should try to be consistent and do sets. Rather than 40/31/13 you should try like 3 sets of 25 or something. Also you should definitely use higher weight.


How many would you recommend?
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This reply was last edited on 02-13-09 06:38:56 AM by atlas sighed (at me).
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Reply 5 of 66 (Originally posted on: 02-13-09 07:24:34 AM)
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A bunch of NFL players have started doing palates to become leaner and more flexible, with more tone. Might be something you'd want to look into if you're not big into weights.
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Reply 6 of 66 (Originally posted on: 02-13-09 09:59:29 AM)
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Quote:
Haha, I have myself and one dumbbell. I am considering a gym membership to open myself up to different types of equipment; the prices aren't appetizing, however, but I am still open to paying. Good/bad idea?


It's a very good idea. There's a reason people join gyms, and that's access to lots of different equipment. A lot of times places offer special trial periods, or student discounts and stuff. You could try to find that.

Quote:
Looking at the long-term, would it be better to concentrate on strength let aesthetics follow? OR do they even follow?


Well to me, if you're working out you're working out. I don't think I've ever found a large difference between doing low weight high reps and high weight low reps. Apparently these do have different results (more tone as compared to more muscle mass). As far as STRENGTH vs AESTHETICS....Ztolk will tell you that the best workouts for pure strength are heavy squats/deadlifts, and that's completely correct. However, doing these won't give you a 6-pack and ripped arms. If your goal (at least for this 3 month period) is for aesthetics, then go for it.

Quote:
How many would you recommend?


Most people usually do 3 sets of a certain weight. I can't tell you what this weight is, because I don't really know your strength. Looking at what you posted, maybe try 3 sets of 11 for push-ups and 3 sets of 25 for curls. Give it a shot, and if at the end of the 3rd set you can still do more, then keep going until you fail. The next workout, add more reps (Although ideally I'd tell you to add more weight, but it seems like can't do that).

As far as abs are concerned, they're a whole different muscle. Usually you can do 3 sets of something, while resting 3-5 minutes in between and that's good. Abs are pretty tough to get to the point of muscular failure, and they "heal" pretty quickly, so you should really try to work them hard. There are TONS of ab routines out there...just do a google search. Try one out. If you're sore as shit the next day, it's good. If you don't feel it, then look for a different one, or just work out harder.

PS - If you're going for toned arms, you should really also work out your shoulders and triceps to compliment the biceps.
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Reply 7 of 66 (Originally posted on: 02-13-09 06:08:51 PM)
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A few semi-related paragraphs:

Wheezy basically said what I was going to post.

Remember, the biggest muscles are in your hips, legs, and back. If you want to do anything: get stronger, build muscle, lose fat, etc, you've got to train these. You should also do compound movements over isolation exercises. That means all (at least 90%) of your lifts should move more than one joint.

With your limited arsenal, make sure each day has a pulling movement, a pushing movement, and some kind of lower body movement.

If you're not going to go to a gym I recommend www.rosstraining.com. Either buy his book or read the free stuff he has online. With one dumbbell there are better things to do than curls: snatches, overhead presses, bent over rows, turkish getups.

If you do go a gym, find a good routine and follow it. Like this one: http://www.elitefts.com/ws4sb/WS4SB.pdf

You are on the right track in logging your workouts. Keep that up. It will let you track your progress, and other people can support you. I can recommend another forum to post it on simultaneously if you want more feedback and support as you work.

Try to define your goal in terms of numbers. If you can measure it, you can improve it.

If you train for strength, you will get bigger. If you train for size, you will get stronger. Whatever your goal, make sure you do heavy compound movements.
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Reply 8 of 66 (Originally posted on: 02-14-09 05:56:25 AM)
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Quote:
It's a very good idea. There's a reason people join gyms, and that's access to lots of different equipment. A lot of times places offer special trial periods, or student discounts and stuff. You could try to find that.


Would you recommend any specific brand? When touring, what should I look for?

Quote:
PS - If you're going for toned arms, you should really also work out your shoulders and triceps to compliment the biceps.


Suggestions?

Quote:
I can recommend another forum to post it on simultaneously if you want more feedback and support as you work.


Yes, please. I might enjoy just reading through it.
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Reply 9 of 66 (Originally posted on: 02-14-09 06:51:06 AM)
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Look for a gym with a name closer to "Iron Pit" and farther from "24 Hour Celebrity Tone Fitness." One with a lot of squat racks and a lot of free weights full of large people doing deadlifts. Try to avoid commercial gyms with stupid shit like "Lunk Alarms."

Press the weight over your head.

I write out a big post like that and that's the one sentence you focus on? I'll PM you some links.
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Reply 10 of 66 (Originally posted on: 02-14-09 07:22:15 AM)
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Quoted from Ztolk:
Look for a gym with a name closer to "Iron Pit" and farther from "24 Hour Celebrity Tone Fitness." One with a lot of squat racks and a lot of free weights full of large people doing deadlifts. Try to avoid commercial gyms with stupid shit like "Lunk Alarms."

Press the weight over your head.

I write out a big post like that and that's the one sentence you focus on? I'll PM you some links.


Well, what you wrote leaves me nothing to need to clarification on. It's pretty precise and offers web sites for further reading. In honesty, when I am not commenting about something I am generally agreeing with it.

But since you pointed that out, I will ask a question I opted against:

Quote:
compound movements over isolation exercises.


Can you give good examples of these? Preferably with pictures!

Quote:
Look for a gym with a name closer to "Iron Pit" and farther from "24 Hour Celebrity Tone Fitness." One with a lot of squat racks and a lot of free weights full of large people doing deadlifts. Try to avoid commercial gyms with stupid shit like "Lunk Alarms."


Doing a quick search, the only one that popped up near-by was Bally's Total Fitness Club. Their membership is 69$ for the first month and 29$ for each subsequent month. Is this pretty standard or pricey compared to what you might expect from a smaller local brand? Is there an advantage to national brands over local ones? Honestly, I don't know a whole lot, bear with me.
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Reply 11 of 66 (Originally posted on: 02-14-09 07:34:10 AM)
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Commercial chain gyms tend to appeal to the masses, which means they support pointless unfruitful training and tend not to be very good for the serious trainee. But if it has actual weights and no stupid rules preventing their use, it should be ok. 29 a month I think is on the good side of standard, I think. Also check if there are any university gyms or YMCA type places.

Overhead press: http://exrx.net/AnimatedEx/DeltoidAnterior/DBOneArmShoulderPressLeanningBody8.gif

Bent over row: http://exrx.net/AnimatedEx/BackGeneral/DBBentoverRow.gif

Dumbbell snatch: http://www.athletics.ucr.edu/strengthconditioning/images/DBsnatch.gif

Dumbbell squat: http://kbierek.powweb.com/shapefit-pics/quadriceps-exercises-plie-squats.gif

Turkish get up: http://www.kettlebells.com.au/AKB/turkishgetuplunge%20copy.gif
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Reply 12 of 66 (Originally posted on: 02-14-09 10:08:48 AM)
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Here's another good article outlining the basics that was written by a guy I know.

https://www.enhancedfp.com/training/strength/what-really-works-effective-strength-training-principles-josh-hewett
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Reply 13 of 66 (Originally posted on: 02-14-09 10:52:40 AM)
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The only Bally's I went to only had 2 squat racks and about 7 benches.

you should go to Penn State and work out in the White Building gym. It's a beast.
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Reply 14 of 66 (Originally posted on: 02-14-09 04:59:32 PM)
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Quote:
Overhead press: http://exrx.net/AnimatedEx/DeltoidAnterior/DBOneArmShoulderPressLeanningBody8.gif

Bent over row: http://exrx.net/AnimatedEx/BackGeneral/DBBentoverRow.gif

Dumbbell snatch: http://www.athletics.ucr.edu/strengthconditioning/images/DBsnatch.gif

Dumbbell squat: http://kbierek.powweb.com/shapefit-pics/quadriceps-exercises-plie-squats.gif

Turkish get up: http://www.kettlebells.com.au/AKB/turkishgetuplunge%20copy.gif
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------



The first two give me a picture of Darth Sidious (?) about to get decapitated, but the latter three work. Is there a recommended weight to do those on or does it vary depending on personal ability?

I noticed in the last one that he had a sack of sorts while the other two men were using dumbbells. True, false?

Also, when doing a squat, do you hold the weight in front of you or behind you?

Quote:
Also check if there are any university gyms or YMCA type places


Very good point; I totally forgot.

Quote:
Here's another good article outlining the basics that was written by a guy I know.

https://www.enhancedfp.com/training/strength/what-really-works-effective-strength-training-principles-josh-hewett


Great, thank you. Will read soon.

Okay, I'm going to post another attempt, be back in an hour to update.
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Reply 15 of 66 (Originally posted on: 02-14-09 05:52:07 PM)
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Okay, 2/14/09

Tried mainly core exercises today, will try to concentrate on arms on the 15th.

Crunches
25/4

Sit-up (pathetic)
15/1

Push-ups
11/4

Flying crunches (cannot get the form down)
25/1

Any advice with sit-ups? They are wtf-hard when it comes to doing them. Same with flying crunches but it has more to do with form.

Also did squats like ztolk and wheezy recommended holding a 30-lb book bag:

20/3

Sum: Was more orderly this time; seems like I have a base to start looking at when trying to improve. Will ramp up the next attempt by at least 2 reps per set.
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Reply 16 of 66 (Originally posted on: 02-14-09 08:15:29 PM)
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Haha I guess the forbade offsite linking.
http://exrx.net/WeightExercises/DeltoidAnterior/DBOneArmShoulderPress.html
http://exrx.net/WeightExercises/BackGeneral/DBBentOverRow.html
Actually that website you'll probably find useful.

Start with a random weight and if it's too light add more.

That "sack" is called a kettlebell, it changes the weight distribution around a bit. The people who use them swear by them, but they cost like $2.00 a pound.

There's no real proper way to squat holding a back pack, if you go to a gym start off with back squats.

I remember when I first started I could do about 20 situps then my abs would totally cramp up. It just takes practice.
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Reply 17 of 66 (Originally posted on: 02-15-09 06:06:22 AM)
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Also, throwing this out there: thirty pounds isn't enough.
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Reply 18 of 66 (Originally posted on: 02-15-09 10:09:43 AM)
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Quoted from Ztolk:
Also, throwing this out there: thirty pounds isn't enough.


Then what is?

Better question; what should I work towards?

Also, purchased single-handed bar (7$) with 2 10 lb weights (10$ each). Will buy a full one (29$) for two-handed practice when I get paid sometime this or next week or whenever they pay me assuming they don't. Are the ones that are contoured for ergonomic grip better on the body than the ones which are just a straight and unbending bar?

When doing curls, (i know you don't like them ztolk, but I will try and use it for squats and eventually deadlifts in the future), is it better to go for low-weight/many reps or the opposite? My old gym instructor gave us that advice when lifting for "results".

Quote:
There's no real proper way to squat holding a back pack, if you go to a gym start off with back squats.


was holding it in front of me.
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Reply 19 of 66 (Originally posted on: 02-15-09 10:21:07 AM)
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Work towards squatting twice your body weight.
Get a straight bar. And lots of weight.
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Reply 20 of 66 (Originally posted on: 02-15-09 10:24:48 AM)
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Quoted from Ztolk:
Work towards squatting twice your body weight.
Get a straight bar. And lots of weight.


Now, when you say squatting twice my body weight (360 lbs mm i wanna suck ur cock lol), is that just one time or multiple times in multple sets?

Yeah, looking at the weights is going to be killer on the pocket. 25lb weights start at 20$. I think I may try and look around for used rather than continue hitting up the sports store. Speaking of that, is used equipment a generally good or bad idea in terms of fitness accessories?
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Reply 21 of 66 (Originally posted on: 02-15-09 10:27:53 AM)
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Just once.

Oh yeah definitely check craigslist. You can get much better deals. Nothing wrong with used equipment if all it is is iron weights. If it's something like a squat rack you might want to exercise caution.
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Reply 22 of 66 (Originally posted on: 02-15-09 06:25:01 PM)
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Sunday, 02/15/09

Body is still sore from yesreday's crunches, sit-ups, and push-ups, so I resolved to be a little girl about it and just do curls.

20 lb weights
20/3

Sum: Yeah, I'm gonna feel this one tonight. Gah, the one draw-back to all of this is that every part of my body (one exception being my thighs) feels sore doing basic things. Makes me feel like a hard-ass, for sure, but it is not very fun.

Also, does anyone have good diet rcommendations?
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Reply 23 of 66 (Originally posted on: 02-15-09 09:10:38 PM)
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Have you tried any of those exercises I posted gifs of?

Check out the book I posted in the secret forum. Basically, eat 0.5-1 grams of protein per pound of bodyweight, then eat fruits and vegetables until you're satiated. Avoid processed foods.
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Reply 24 of 66 (Originally posted on: 02-16-09 07:16:15 AM)
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Trying these tonight:

http://kbierek.powweb.com/shapefit-pics/quadriceps-exercises-plie-squats.gif

http://exrx.net/WeightExercises/DeltoidAnterior/DBOneArmShoulderPress.html

Would like to do this, but not sure if I can do it with the 20lb weight I have.

EDIT;

Also, serious soreness in most parts of my upper-body. Well, not serious as in I'm about to faint, but it aches doing simple stuff like lifting, kneeling (thighs), and walking quick-step. DOMS or something else possible?
A witty saying proves nothing - Voltaire
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