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BigRed

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  1. StrongLifts Workout #10 Squats - 45 lb (10) - 90 lb (5/5/5/5/5) OHP - 45 lb (10) - 70 lb (5/5/5/5/5) Deadlift - 135 lb (5/5/5/5/5) Chinups - 10/6/6 Second rep on the first working set of Squats almost started to get off balance a little bit. Was thinking about keeping the curve in the lower back and started to fall backwards a little bit at the bottom of the squat. Glad I decided to start this program at the lightest possible weights and increase so gradually to get little form issues like that sorted out early on. On both OHP and Deadlifts at one point I wasn't sure whether I had done 3 or 4 sets so I assumed the lower count each time, which means its possible I did 6 sets on OHP and/or Deadlifts. Need to bring a pencil and paper to tick off sets as I do them so I don't lose count like that in the future. Fun workout and I'm starting to sweat a little more.
  2. StrongLifts Workout #9 Squats - 45 lb (10) - 65 lb (5) - 85 lb (5/5/5/5/5) Bench - 85 lb (5/5/5/5/5) Row - 85 lb (5/5/5/5/5) Dips - +20 lb (10/6/5) Main lifts still relatively easy. Added more weight for dips. Feels good. Will try +25 lb next time. I worked in alternating sets for a while with a cute Russian girl. Something very attractive about watching a young lady doing heavy bench presses and deadlifts. While there is intense societal pressure for women to be fit and slender, powerlifting seems to go stridently against much of what society expects of women, and to see a young woman aggressively pursuing physical strength and power in a room dominated by meat-head alpha males is just awesome! In other news, been steadily gaining weight, and not too surprisingly some chub on the waistline. Gained three pounds in the past one week alone. Maybe I have been overshooting my eating, but I wanted to err on the side of excess because of my extensive running schedule (ran 11 miles Saturday)...I'll keep a closer eye on things to make sure bodyfat doesn't get too out of control too quickly...
  3. StrongLifts workout #8 Squats - 45 lb (10) - 65 lb (5) - 80 lb - (5/5/5/5/5) OHP - 45 lb (5) - 55 lb (5) - 65 lb (5/5/5/5/5) DL - 115 lb (5/5/5/5/5) Chinups - 8/6/7 I need to be more careful checking my program. I got the amounts wrong twice I see. OHP I did 65 when I should've done 60, and DL I did 115 when I should have done 125. Oops.
  4. StrongLifts Workout #7 Squats - 45 lb (5) - 65 lb (5) - 75 lb (5/5/5/5/5) Bench - 45 lb (10) - 65 lb (5) - 75 lb (5/5/5/5/5) Rows - 80 lb (5/5/5/5/5) Dips - Bodyweight (15/10/9) Thought I'd start getting in the habit of incorporating warmup sets, even though the weights are still light... Bench moving right ahead adding another 10 lb from the last workout rather than the prescribed 5. I'll keep doing this the next few workouts to keep things moving. I'm out of town this week and the gym I'm using doesn't have belts for weighted dips, so I just stayed with bodyweight for now.
  5. StrongLift workout #6 Squats - 70 lb - 5/5/5/5/5 OHP - 55 lb - 5/5/5/5/5 Deadlift - 115 lb - 5/5/5/5/5 Chinups - 10/5/4 Bicep Curls - 40 lb - 8 - 50 lb - 8/8 Was disappointed that I didn't make as many reps on chinups as last time. Each set I definitely gave up early and after finishing the last set I felt regret that I didn't struggle harder for more reps. Next time. Felt like doing Bicep curls. I dunno why.
  6. StrongLifts Workout #5 Squats - 65 lb - 5/5/5/5/5 Bench Press - 65 lb - 5/5/5/5/5 Barbell Row - 75 lb - 5/5/5/5/5 Weighted Dips - +10 lb - 12/10/5 I went ahead and skipped over 55lb and 60lb and went straight to 65lb on Bench Press. These workouts have been so light and easy that I felt maybe I was being too dogmatic about sticking to the program so purely. I don't mind staying light on squats for now because of the sheer volume of doing the exercise 3 days a week. Legs and Back get hit plenty, but chest not as much, so I thought certainly I could afford to move up a little faster on Bench Press. 65 lb is still ridiculously light, but at least it's moving ahead more quickly. First time ever doing weighted dips. Enjoyed that very much! Tried to keep rest between sets no quicker than at least 20-30 seconds...
  7. Congratulations! How did the competition go for you? What is your height and weight in this picture?
  8. StrongLifts Workout #4 Squats - 60 lb - 5/5/5/5/5 OHP - 50 lb - 5/5/5/5/5 Deadlift - 115 lb - 5/5 - 105 lb 5/5/5 Chinups - 10/8/5 Okay, so on Deadlifts I was planning on staying 5x5 rather than 1x5 as the program dictates until the weight gets challenging. I absentmindedly loaded on a 25 and a 10 on each side, rather than the 25 and a 5 that I meant to do to stick with the program. I didn't realize it until after my second set, then I changed it back to the intended weight for the remaining 3 sets. Is it normal to feel deadlifts in the hamstrings? I know it's primarily a lower back exercise...perhaps when I get to using 45 lbs there will be a little bit less stretch to move the weight up and down than there is now when the biggest plate is a 25. I think when I get my last set of Chins to 8 I may add weight to those... Workout was quick - though per Veggie's advice I really tried to make myself weight longer between sets, but I still had the impulse to keep moving on to the next set after 20-30 seconds rest. Again, I imagine the need to wait longer between sets will emerge organically when the weight becomes challenging...
  9. C.O. - sure, I don't see why not. Veggie - Bar dips. I'll ask the front desk if they have a belt then next time... I know over a minute is standard, but the program at this point is so doggone light I feel silly waiting when I've barely put forth any effort!
  10. StrongLifts workout #3 Squats - 55 lb - 5/5/5/5/5 Bench - 50 lb - 5/5/5/5/5 (may have lost track and done a 6th...not sure) Rows - 70 lb - 5/5/5/5/5 Generally 5-10 seconds between sets Dips - 15/10/8 Whole workout took me less than 20 minutes. Considering adding weight for dips soon. I guess I just hold a dumbbell between my knees? Took a look around the gym today and noticed that I am the skinniest guy in the weight room by *far* (6'0" 168 lbs) - no worries, I'm sure in a year's time I'll be catching up to some of 'em.
  11. Thanks veggie - I love following your posts! Will look forward to getting feedback from you as I travel this journey! I love this workout plan. Years ago I found the MadCow routine on bodybuilding forums and followed that for a while and enjoyed it immensely. I like stronglifts right now because of the simplicity of it - when i've run my course with it way down the line I will look into other possibilities (I see 5/3/1 is becoming popular around here). I feel much more stimulated by strength-type routines than bodybuilding-style routines.
  12. C.O. - The forum has already motivated me immensely - reading threads from members like sosso, chewy, veggiesquatch, forklift, and many many more (sorry for all the tons of people I left out!) has been such a motivating force in pursuing strength! What motivates me? Well, I want to see what a guy like me whose been skinny all his life can achieve in strength if I really commit to exploring my potential. I also remember that the times I did lift weights in uni I genuinely enjoyed just the act of lifting weights - I don't know why, it's just very satisfying - maybe a more intense release of pent-up energy than I get when I'm running - running is more like meditation for me. The other issue is that I perform on the stage and looking more filled out and strong on stage will certainly be a competitive advantage for me when going out for more "heroic" parts. The other thing, is that like some other people here, I came to vegetarianism and eventually to veganism from a moral philosophical stance, and I want to be an example that one can be healthy, active, fit, athletic, and even very strong without animal consumption. I held back from vegan for a long time, even though I respected veganism intellectually because I was afraid that giving up dairy/eggs would be a hindrance to my health and athleticism, but reading about vegan athletes in such a wide variety of sports has helped give me the courage to follow my ethical beliefs more completely. Thanks for the reply!
  13. StrongLifts Workout #2 Squats - 50 lbs - 5/5/5/5/5 Overhead Press - 45 lbs - 5/5/5/5/5 Deadlifts - 95 lbs - 5/5/5/5/5 Chinups - 10/4/5 The only thing more emasculating than working out with an empty bar is putting dainty little 2.5 lb plates on that empty bar LOL! Still could not find patience to wait more than 10 seconds between sets on the Squats, 15 seconds on the OHP and 20 seconds on the Deadlifts. As I write this I realize now that the program only calls for 1 set of DL's whereas I performed 5. Oops. It's light, so for now I'm sure it's fine. After the second set of chins I realized I gave up too easily without enough struggle, so I was able to squeeze out more on the third set. Quick workout. The 5 deadlift sets did produce a little bit of sweat on my body though No A/C in the gym, which I actually like. There are enough fans around that it's okay, but I'd rather be a little too warm than too cold. I wonder what it's like there in the winter. So much fun. I've missed barbell workouts all these years that I've been without them. So glad to be doing this!
  14. Stronglifts Workout #1 So after couple months of steady dumbbell work out at home and maxing out my weights, I decided to take the plunge and join a gym (had been worried about cost) so I can attack the barbells and gain some strength. Fortunately I was able to find a gym very close by that is a lot cheaper than I anticipated. I started StrongLifts 5x5 today. I did Madcow for a couple months when I was in University and had gym access maybe about 7 years ago and enjoyed the routine so I have experience with the concepts and movements. I decided to go ahead and start off with just the empty barbell as the program advises. As expected, the first workout was a breeze: Squat - 45 lbs 5/5/5/5/5 Bench - 45 lbs 5/5/5/5/5 Row - 65 lbs 5/5/5/5/5 This is less than half the weight I've been using lately at home with dumbbells so of course the effort was minimal. Because it was so light I didn't have the patience to wait more than 10-20 seconds between sets - of course I know that will change when it gets more demanding over the next two months. I thought that I would feel self-conscious pushing around an empty bar in front of all the massive grunting meatheads around me, but as my other hobby is barefoot running I guess I've really become used to not worrying about other people judging what I'm doing. Since I had so much energy leftover after this 10-15 minute workout I attacked the dip station. Dips - 13/7/5 Couple questions for anyone that might be reading this: Rows With the barbell rows I was bent over quit a bit but not to the point where the barbell went all the to the floor. Is this okay for now? I imagine with 45 lb plates it's another story, but with the little 10 lb plates, it seemed excessive to try to get it all the way down to the floor. Dips There was a mirror in front of the station and I noticed that I go down to the maximum depth possible with these. Is that okay, or is it better to just go to parallel? the angle of my elbows was definitely more like 45 degrees than 90. And for the guys who are familiar with stronglifts - do you recommend keeping stuff like pullups and dips in the workouts or is it better to only do the basic 3 exercises each time? At least for now I'm going to need to do the dips and pullups just to feel like I'm getting a workout. Even though I went super-light I did feel my muscles engaging in a different way than they do with my dumbbells. Squats for instance I felt in the outside of my thighs more than I usually do. So looking forward to progressing with this system. I love being able to push a bar around. So much more satisfying than dumbbells for some reason.
  15. Awesome that you've built so much muscle and kept your bodyweight low! You look very strong but you won't be carrying around a ton of extra bulk in the marathons and ultra - very cool!
  16. Glad to see non-meat diet getting a positive shout-out in the news! But holy hell, that CNN interviewer was so obnoxious! Almost seemed like a joke!
  17. I appreciate you posting this. I read Thrive Diet a year or two ago and I remember being highly bothered by how so many claims were asserted as fact without any sort of scientific support for them. I have little doubt Brendan's diet has been effective for him and for the many athletes he advises, but a cavalier attitude about evidence raises a big red flag to me. I heard him speak today in New York and a lot of what he said felt right to me on a gut level and I noticed a lot of heads in the audience nodding up and down, but he certainly wasn't citing any studies during his presentation...and considering the price of the product he sells, I would think more people would want to see some hard facts to support his narrative...
  18. I'm not knowledgeable at all on this subject - I just had some questions. You feel that the reason your energy levels are low, and your inability to lose as much fat as you desire to, and the frequency of colds you contract and the itchiness of your skin are all because your testosterone is abnormally low? And when you saw your blood test results that indicated your testosterone levels were very low what is the baseline that is judged from? Very low compared to the average male your age? How do you know all the natural methods you tried to boost your testosterone didn't help? Did you have your blood tested multiple times? Does the 110 and 2.3 levels you listed indicate where you were before or after trying all these different natural methods? What do those numbers mean specifically? I'll be interested to hear what happens as you decide what to do because steroid use is something that seems to not be very openly discussed. Good luck!
  19. Gaia - not against protein powders. Is it cheaper to get that extra protein through powder form or through more food? And do the extra carbs/fat from getting the extra protein through food make it harder to bulk cleanly? I counted my calories and protein today and I ate 2,519 calories and 96 grams of protein from food. Also I am uneducated on vegan powders like soy, pea, rice, and hemp and not sure what the best way to go would be. What would you recommend? Cheers
  20. Thanks Robert for the warm welcome! Excited about the journey!
  21. Phyto- Thanks for the welcome and the response! I'm less concerned with a specific scale number than I am with increased muscle mass...I've been as heavy as 200 lbs but not looked so good, because I was skinny-fat. I've seen photos of guys who weren't any heavier than I am but who looked bigger because muscle mass was higher and body fat was lower. I don't know my specific bodyfat percentage - I have calipers but I've read that they aren't always reliable because the tension in the spring can change over time which affects the measuring process...and that the different formulas are so variable that the same measurements can get you a large range of bodyfat percentages based on which formulas you use...But basically I think if I could get to 200 lbs with approximately the same bodyfat levels over the next 5 years I should be very happy with the amount of muscle on my physique. I understand that adding muscle takes time, while adding fat can happen quickly, so I want to do it right and not get chubby just to pursue a number on the scale at all costs. Thanks for the advice on food logging, I've been thinking about this, and am starting to track my food today. I think this will be a very helpful tool for me. Cheers
  22. Hey gang! So inspired by the folks on this forum, I thought I'd dive in! My story: 29 year old man, was skinny kid, have exercised on and off most of my life, usually more off than on. Have lifted weights, not usually more consistently than 1-3 months at a time. Have run as well usually about as consistently. I have enjoyed both very much when I've done them, and I find running especially very therapeutic and meditative. I've got a pullup bar and an adjustable set of dumbbells that go from 10-50 lbs each. In grad school I did the 5x5 program for about 3 months and enjoyed it very much and got noticeably stronger, but my waist line increased much more quickly than my muscle mass and I ended up looking totally ridiculous (dirty bulking I think you would call it). Where I am now: I've been eating much healthier past month and officially became full vegan 2 weeks ago. Right now I think my bodyfat is low enough that I can think about gradually carefully and healthfully "bulking" a little bit. I've spent the last month doing regular strength workouts focusing almost entirely on bodyweight exercises (pullups, pushups, air squats, crunches). I'm now going to start working more with my dumbbells (no gym membership yet - might join one in the fall, depending on cash). I've long been annoyed with how skinny my muscles and I really want a fuller shape all around (legs, arms, chest, shoulders). Especially now that I've become vegan I want to make sure I don't wither away because I want to be a living testimony that vegans can be healthy and strong. My challenges: I've always been the kind of person that doesn't concern himself too much with eating. My challenge will be being disciplined enough to get enough calories. I'm 6' 0" and 167 lbs, so I'm thinking a good place to start might be about 2500 calories/day (which I'm sure is way more than I currently eat). I'll be running the NYC marathon in the fall so I know I definitely will need to increase that amount as my running increases over the next couple months. I love running but I'm not so concerned with performance...i e I'm not worried if I get slower because of added mass. Here's my starting point: 167 lbs, torso 167 lbs, including legs
  23. Greetings Forum! I've been following the forum for the past month now and feel like I'm ready to dive in. I was lacto-ovo vegetarian for 9 years, have been eating more and more meals vegan over the year and officially made the switch to full vegan 2 weeks ago, in no small part inspired by you guys! I've exercised on and off for years but am now inspired to make a full regular habit of it. I've been very impressed with the vibe here on the forum - seems very supportive. Looking forward to becoming more involved here! Cheers!
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