How much weight?

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xlucasx
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How much weight?

#1 Postby xlucasx » Wed Jan 04, 2006 8:07 am

Hello,

My question is how much weight I should use when performing certain excersises, especially dumbbell and barbell excercises. There are a lot of helpful starters guides as to what to do, why to do it and how many times it should be done and in how many series. So far so good, but, they don't really indicate the ammount of weight you should use for the excersises. Take an excercise like the Flat Bench Dumbbell Press, mentioned in the article Beginning Bodybuilding. Note that it doesn't include any weight suggestions. I'm limited to my 2 x 4 kgs (hence my previous topic hehe) dumbbells I still have, but I don't know if that will cut it.

Plus, some excercises take me forever when I feel I could get the same (or even a better) result with more weight and less repetitions. That's also a sidenote on my question here: What is the difference in result in doing a series of say 20 repitions with 4 kgs or a series of 10 reps with 8 kgs? How do repetition and the weight which you repeat with relate to one and other? My personal goal is increase of musclemass and perhaps weight gain, so which aproach would best suit that?

If there is not a solid theory behind the ammount of weight one should use, let me ask: how much weight did you start out with yourself?

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jonathan
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#2 Postby jonathan » Wed Jan 04, 2006 8:27 am

when i started benching when i was about 17 (i didnt keep it up though - only started doing it regularly when i was 19) i did sets of 8reps with a 17.5kg barbell. when i was 19, i had done press ups for a few months with taekwondo, so i started with 10kg dumbells for sets of 8. now, 2 and a bit years later, im up to 50kg dumbells for sets of 5 done after my main benching with a barbell :D

progress comes quickly so long as you are dedicated to it. you are right to identify less reps and more weights as a good stimulus for progress. 20rep sets arent all that great unless they are really really hard. even so, the mainstay of your work should be done in the 6-12 rep range in order to get a balance of mass and strength. if strength is your goal, cut the reps down even more, to triples, doubles and singles.

you would certainly be better off using 8kg dumbells for benching rather than the 4's. aim each time to get 3x10 at your given weight. once you acheive it, increase the weight and work up to it again.

good luck with the lifting lucas :D

jonathan
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Daywalker
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Re: How much weight?

#3 Postby Daywalker » Wed Jan 04, 2006 8:44 am

Hi Lukas, welcome to our board :)

xlucasx wrote:My question is how much weight I should use when performing certain excersises, especially dumbbell and barbell excercises.

When starting, use a weight you can do for 15 reps. The last rep should be hard, but still possible with strict form, so that you feel you could do a few more reps if you pushed really hard.
The reason why no exact weights are indicated is that this is very individual. Obviously it will differ a lot for different persons. You have to find out how much weight you can use for a certain number of reps.

Note that it doesn't include any weight suggestions. I'm limited to my 2 x 4 kgs (hence my previous topic hehe) dumbbells I still have, but I don't know if that will cut it.

4kg is little weight for dumbell bench press, even for beginners, unless you have some health issues or are not young anymore.
You should get yourself adjustable dumbells and/or barbell with plates. Work out regularly and aim to increase the weights. After a few months, you can also start to decrease the number of reps per set while increasing the weights.

How do repetition and the weight which you repeat with relate to one and other? My personal goal is increase of musclemass and perhaps weight gain, so which aproach would best suit that?

For mass, i believe variety in the wide rep range of 5-15(-25) reps is best. All depends on you: your routine, your preferances, your disposition etc.
Lower reps will train strength primarily. Strength and mass go hand in hand, however.

As a beginner, concentrate on learning proper form on some main movements and focus on increasing the weights on those steadily.

Cheers,
Daywalker
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willpeavy
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#4 Postby willpeavy » Wed Jan 04, 2006 11:39 am

There are lots of different theories on this.

My philosophy is, if you're just starting out - pick a weight you feel comfortable with. If you can do 12 reps at that weight then it is too light, so up the weights until you fail before the 12 rep. When you get strong enough to do 12 reps at a higher weight, then raise it again
[url=http://willpeavy.net/:34olz5pn]willpeavy.net[/url:34olz5pn]

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Daywalker
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#5 Postby Daywalker » Wed Jan 04, 2006 2:43 pm

willpeavy wrote:There are lots of different theories on this.

My philosophy is, if you're just starting out - pick a weight you feel comfortable with. If you can do 12 reps at that weight then it is too light, so up the weights until you fail before the 12 rep. When you get strong enough to do 12 reps at a higher weight, then raise it again

I agree with you, Will.

BUT as a complete beginner it's better to go for higher reps than 12, to learn the movements and memorize them into your CNS (the more often you do something, the better you know how to do it). Many trainers recommend 20 reps for this reason.

On the other hand, 12 or 15 or 20 is not THAT big a difference. As long as the weight is not too high to prevent you from doing more than 12 reps and you keep good form, all is well.
No one said it would be easy.


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