Beginner advice on equiptment and training
09-21-2013 11:08 AM
Beginner advice on equiptment and training
Ok, so I've been weight training since last October. I started: at about 160lbs, struggled with 115 bench, and had never squatted or done a deadlift. I began with a total body workout modeled after one I got from "Bruce Lee, the art of expressing the human body with dumbells.
After about a month of that I joined planet fitness and cycled different programs, the typical back and bis chest and tris etc.. I brought my maxes up considerably and grew to a healthy 190. I also began gaining a love for strength training.
This past July I got a membership to a local gym that has more extensive equipment: power racks and free weight barbells! I jumped on the new opportunity and grew my love for training legs. I was running branch warrens leg workout, with Arnold's chest&back superset on alternating days with rest twice a week.
The first day of sept began the current program I'm on, rippetoe starting strength, but with 5x5.
Having never done a power clean, that became a challenge but everything else came in stride. The first week my numbers were:
Squat-225 .. Below parallel
Deads-275 double overhand first three reps
As of thurs all the numbers are up 20 except bench and PC which lag, bench due to infrequency of training, and PC's I don't want technique to suffer due to weight.
Now the purpose of this post is because now that I've solely trained in a rack with a barbell, I no longer focus on size gains. The feeling at the end of the week when my squats are quick out of the hole and I up the weight, is such a rush. I monitor every set and rep, my meals, and protein shakes all day every day. Basically, I'm hooked. The negative, my membership is up at the en of the month, and I'm NOT going back to a smith machine. I've been looking at buying equipment to continue training, but have no idea about what kind of quality I should look for, brands, price expectations etc.. Also what type of program I should look into next. I know I showed my inexperience and ability to ramble, but I'm just reaching out to learn and grow. I see all these strength feats of squatting and pulling 500+ and I want to put myself on the path towards reaching that goal down the road.
Any tips, advice, negatives on my weakness are appreciated.
09-21-2013 11:17 AM
Why don't you just invest in another membership there...
09-21-2013 11:37 AM
I've been back and forth between that and a home gym, the issue is that I work construction and the job I'm at now is an hour west of my house. So I leave work, pass my house, and drive another half hour passed home to the gym. So my day is I leave home at 5am and get home from the gym at 6:30pm. It leaves very little time for working on my house, training my pup, and lovin my lady.
Plus the membership is about 100 a month and I figure a power rack and weight set will just about pay for itself in the long run.
09-21-2013 11:40 AM
You can get a good full rack/cage for between $300-$500. Personally, I think that is all one needs along with a good set of frees and a strong (maybe adjustable) bench, to get to say a natural average of #300/#400/#500 BP/Sqt/Dead. You can add as you go, depending on how serious, to build your home gym.
If you hit those numbers (or near) naturally, you are most likely ahead of most in the gym game.
As far as routines, there are quite a few good proven routines. (As SS is one)
The thing to concentrate your focus on, is hard work/effort on the handful of 5-7 compound exercises, eating/resting enough, depending on goals and keeping progression in the crosshairs. (Slowly adding weight to the bar over the months/cycles)
09-21-2013 12:13 PM
Thanks paul, everything you said is right about where I'm headed. I found a 500 lb set with a barbell for $580. And squat racks around $500. It'll be a tough hit at first but it'll be worth it when I'd spend that much on a year at the gym.
Rest I'd say is the part I need to work on the most but I do what I can with my schedule of work and trade school.
09-21-2013 12:51 PM
Look for used stuff, weightlifting equipment has no resale value. I got 400lbs of weights and a squat rack for $37.50 once. Welded some extra bracing in the rack and that got me to a 295 bench, 275x12 squat, and 400lb deadlift (standard plates, so a big deficit). My current setup includes a better squat rack, about #800 in olympic weights, several bars, a row machine, seated calf, squat machine, and a competition style bench for well under a grand. All you need is a barbell and a rack, trust when I say your bench won't suffer if all you can do is floor presses and OHP.
09-21-2013 02:03 PM
Of all people my girl told me to check out used stuff, 37.50 though?! I've been tempted to just bring home some steel pipe from work and fab my own rack.
As far as a bench I feel that would be right after the rack, and weights. The point where I struggle is right about 6 inches off the chest so floor presses would be enough to get me by I'm sure.
I'm just itching to have the ability to start my morning off with some kind of lifting complex to get my blood going before work!
09-21-2013 03:22 PM
Sounds alot like my schedule....
Originally Posted by Rang30fMotion
Wake up 3am
Eat dinner, play with the kids, wife time 8pm-10pm
Back to sleep 10pm......
Been running on 4-5hrs of sleep a night for years now.
09-21-2013 03:58 PM
$100 a month?! How nice is this gym? My membership is $10 a month and it's a pretty decent gym
Originally Posted by Rang30fMotion
09-21-2013 04:29 PM
Livin the life phat boy!
I think the membership mostly pays for all the royalties besides the actual weights and machines. There's a men's and women's gym, Olympic pool with retractable roof, two full basketball courts, a track.. Basically a bunch of **** I'm not trying to pay for.
09-25-2013 08:55 AM
Check out edge fitness systems in Canton. I have Ricks reverse hyper and he is making me a comp bench right now. Very good pricing. Buy good quality stuff that you will be OK with when you are benching 300 and squatting and deadlifting 500. Start with a good rack, an adjustable bench, buy your weights off craigslist, and maybe pick up a landmine and some dumbbell handles. Also pick up a texas power bar or something good, you will have a quality bar the rest of your life. If you get into strength training most gyms are going to suck. Bye the way, you will put more size on through strength training than you will on the smith or doing cable crossovers anyway. I would not get too concerned about counting calories, just don't over do it and eat whole foods.
09-25-2013 06:05 PM
Yea I haven't done cable crossovers since I learned what they were about six months ago. I no longer focus on any cable work. Only occasional straight bar strict tri pulldowns, pull throughs, and weighted crunches as accessory work. Depending on shipping prices that canton company is pretty legit, definitely gonna check it out.
10-01-2013 07:30 PM
I joined the closest golds to near me today. I checked into a local power lifting based gym on Monday and it didn't feel right, not a lot of space and honestly it was just a dirty facility. Golds seemed like a perfect fit, while I still feel like my best personal option would be a home gym, I don't have a grand to drop on equipment
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