1. Post #1
    I hide under your bed
    Dennab
    July 2011
    1,877 Posts
    So today i went to the gym for the first time in a very long time. I am a complete noob at everything. This is a thread to log my progress and ask for critiques/changes to my workout plan i guess.

    I decided to start with Stronglifts 5x5 and focus on building strength. I can switch to some other workout plan once i actually have the strength to do shit. Surprisingly the only sore muscles i have today are my legs. They felt like rubber as i left the gym and they are still fairly sore. My arms feel fine (probably because i can bench more than 45 lbs). I'm just following exactly what SL5x5 says to do though so whatever.

    What i noticed is that the workout routine is really goddamn short. It took me probably 40 minutes to do, and that's with me learning where everything is in the gym and taking my time. My friends there commented on how short it is... I feel like i could be working out more muscles since i'm only going 3 times a week anyhow. I dunno what to do about that. It's a 15 minute drive to the gym and i feel like i should be making the most of my time spent there but at the same time i kinda wanna just follow SL5x5 exactly as they say to. Thoughts on this?
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  2. Post #2
    Kabstrac's Avatar
    April 2012
    3,340 Posts
    So today i went to the gym for the first time in a very long time. I am a complete noob at everything. This is a thread to log my progress and ask for critiques/changes to my workout plan i guess.

    I decided to start with Stronglifts 5x5 and focus on building strength. I can switch to some other workout plan once i actually have the strength to do shit. Surprisingly the only sore muscles i have today are my legs. They felt like rubber as i left the gym and they are still fairly sore. My arms feel fine (probably because i can bench more than 45 lbs). I'm just following exactly what SL5x5 says to do though so whatever.

    What i noticed is that the workout routine is really goddamn short. It took me probably 40 minutes to do, and that's with me learning where everything is in the gym and taking my time. My friends there commented on how short it is... I feel like i could be working out more muscles since i'm only going 3 times a week anyhow. I dunno what to do about that. It's a 15 minute drive to the gym and i feel like i should be making the most of my time spent there but at the same time i kinda wanna just follow SL5x5 exactly as they say to. Thoughts on this?
    It might be because you're using lighter weights while figuring out techniques for the lifts.


    Once you get into heavy weights, I find I have to take long breaks in between sets so it lasts about an hour. There's really no point in staying longer than an hour on any good routine unless you do a short cardio session before/after, and depending on what you do for warmup.

    Don't be fooled by the small amount of exercises; it's doing it's job. I switched to SL5x5 from a 5-day a week routine where body sections were split into individual days. I was doing retarded volume, and I got no where. I looked lean, but I was quite small.

    If you'd like though, you could add dips onto Day B (deadlift day) for a couple sets. I'll do that first thing and switch between over-head presses.

    Rest is very important, even Goku knows that

  3. Post #3
    Gold Member
    Seith's Avatar
    August 2006
    3,334 Posts
    5X5 is a good basic routine as said above with sufficient enough volume for a beginner to handle (some might not handle it, so if you are, I'd say you are doing great)

    No need to "feel the burn" "pump" "inhaling arm pit odors" to know a workout is working. If you are adding weight to the bar progressively, you are doing fine.

  4. Post #4
    IDIOT WHO IS NEVER FUNNY AND CANT UNDER STAND WHEN NOT WANTED
    loopoo's Avatar
    September 2006
    6,109 Posts
    While we're on the subject of SL5x5, I figured I might as well ask this question: why the fuck can I not even squat an empty bar? Seriously. I go down and it's too heavy for me, so my form is all over the place, I constantly have to fight myself from falling backwards and I generally feel like even the empty bar is too damn heavy for me to squat.

    What's my problem? Am I just too damn weak or what? The fact I can't even squat an empty bar has really made me dread squatting cause it's so embarrassing.

  5. Post #5
    I hide under your bed
    Dennab
    July 2011
    1,877 Posts
    While we're on the subject of SL5x5, I figured I might as well ask this question: why the fuck can I not even squat an empty bar? Seriously. I go down and it's too heavy for me, so my form is all over the place, I constantly have to fight myself from falling backwards and I generally feel like even the empty bar is too damn heavy for me to squat.

    What's my problem? Am I just too damn weak or what? The fact I can't even squat an empty bar has really made me dread squatting cause it's so embarrassing.

    I followed this guy's texhnique. I never have done a single squat before but i was able to do these fine. The weird thing is, it didn't feel too hard. I even did an extra set of reps since i didn't feel like i was pushing myself enough.

    But then as soon as i got home my legs turned into pudding. They still ache today.
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  6. Post #6
    I'M AN ELITIST BELLEND. ASK ME ABOUT MY SOLILLA FETISH!

    February 2012
    179 Posts
    While we're on the subject of SL5x5, I figured I might as well ask this question: why the fuck can I not even squat an empty bar? Seriously. I go down and it's too heavy for me, so my form is all over the place, I constantly have to fight myself from falling backwards and I generally feel like even the empty bar is too damn heavy for me to squat.

    What's my problem? Am I just too damn weak or what? The fact I can't even squat an empty bar has really made me dread squatting cause it's so embarrassing.
    fuck feeling embarrassed.

    you could always start with the goblet squat or dumbbells by your side. for the barbell, however, i think it is obvious that you need to develop functional mobility before you can even attempt to squat with the bar.

    this might help:

    Broomstick squats develop mobility in the hips, knees and ankles. Hold a broomstick (or any other support - door frame) with your feet shoulder-width apart. Squat down as far as possible while still keeping your heels flat on the floor. Stand and repeat 10 to 25 times. The goal is to be able to get your rear to your Achilles’ heel.

    also, broomstick overhead squats helped my mobility when i first started to train.
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  7. Post #7
    Gold Member
    Seith's Avatar
    August 2006
    3,334 Posts
    Sounds like a mobility issue as said above...

  8. Post #8
    I hide under your bed
    Dennab
    July 2011
    1,877 Posts
    Wow fuck me, my legs are still aching today. Should i still go to the gym or would i end up injuring myself? I feel like i could barely pull off the same reps again.
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  9. Post #9
    IDIOT WHO IS NEVER FUNNY AND CANT UNDER STAND WHEN NOT WANTED
    loopoo's Avatar
    September 2006
    6,109 Posts
    Wow fuck me, my legs are still aching today. Should i still go to the gym or would i end up injuring myself? I feel like i could barely pull off the same reps again.
    I remember when the same happened to me, I went to the gym and did 5x5 squats (I didn't manage five sets of the empty bar though, only like 3...) and I went home and my legs were jelly leaving that gym. Literally walked feeling like I was floating on air, was so weird. I knew I must have looked hilarious because of the way I was throwing my legs around, good times!

    I didn't personally keep to the schedule due to my aching-as-fuck legs, I just postponed the gym till my legs were back okay again. I took like 2 days off then got back into it. I don't know if this is the right advice, but this is what I did. I guess you could keep the gym schedule but just omit squats until your legs are better?
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  10. Post #10
    Gold Member
    Seith's Avatar
    August 2006
    3,334 Posts
    Wow fuck me, my legs are still aching today. Should i still go to the gym or would i end up injuring myself? I feel like i could barely pull off the same reps again.
    A few warmup sets and you'd good to go.
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  11. Post #11
    I hide under your bed
    Dennab
    July 2011
    1,877 Posts
    I'm just curious if there's any chance i could injure myself. I'm not in severe pain, my muscles are just really strained from my last workout. And that was with an empty bar, so i guess a warmup set would be 3 reps instead of 5?

    I'll go and try doing more squats and if it's unbearable i'll just do as many as i can then move on.

    e:

    workout day 2 went decently i guess.

    i went and just did 4 reps with an empty bar, my legs felt like shit but i managed to do deadlifts as scheduled and the overhead lifts were piss easy

    apparently there's a "hump" you overcome with leg muscle pain, my legs feel less shitty now that i've worked them out again. hope i've gotten over that 'hump'.

  12. Post #12
    Gold Member
    Seith's Avatar
    August 2006
    3,334 Posts
    You will, keep at it my friend.

  13. Post #13
    I hide under your bed
    Dennab
    July 2011
    1,877 Posts
    my legs feel pretty good today. sore, but not as bad as yesterday.

    i'm more motivated to hit the gym now, it makes me feel good to be productive for the first time in a long time. every other aspect of my life is borderline ShitFuck so i might as well just focus on self improvement

  14. Post #14
    I hide under your bed
    Dennab
    July 2011
    1,877 Posts
    what the shit, there's only one 2.5lb weight at the gym. what the hell am i supposed to do with that.

    in other news, i managed to stick to the SL5x5 plan even though my second day of training was kind of shitty. I increased my squat weight by 10 today and managed all 5 sets perfectly. my legs barely ache right now so i think it's smooth sailing from here on.

    i need some opinions on the proper form for barbell rows. i've seen 2 videos with different form for rows, is there a "right" way to do it?
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  15. Post #15
    IDIOT WHO IS NEVER FUNNY AND CANT UNDER STAND WHEN NOT WANTED
    loopoo's Avatar
    September 2006
    6,109 Posts
    Good going man :)

    Also, to Seith: I noticed that when I first started going to the gym, my legs were sore and 'jelly-like' for a few days after my first two sessions. I also noticed that my arms became jelly-like from doing bench presses and (back when I first started going to the gym, before I knew about SL5x5) bar curls left my arms so weak I could barely lift them. Was that just because I was first starting and my muscles weren't used to that sort of weight lifting or?

  16. Post #16
    Gold Member
    Seith's Avatar
    August 2006
    3,334 Posts
    Sounds like it..

  17. Post #17
    I hide under your bed
    Dennab
    July 2011
    1,877 Posts
    I've started taking multivitamins in the morning and fish oil pills 2-3 times a day. I have an autoimmune dysfunction and fish oils are good for it, but apparently they also are good for workouts.

    Should i start taking protein powder after workouts? I've been hitting the gym fairly late at night after dinner.

  18. Post #18
    Gold Member
    sp00ks's Avatar
    January 2008
    12,048 Posts
    It doesn't really matter when you eat, only what you eat.
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  19. Post #19
    I hide under your bed
    Dennab
    July 2011
    1,877 Posts
    Well i've become more conscious of what i eat, i try to eat more proteins and veggies while getting less carbs (since there's such an uproar about carbs i figure ingesting small amounts can't hurt).

    Would it be smart to start taking protein powder at this point?

  20. Post #20
    Well i've become more conscious of what i eat, i try to eat more proteins and veggies while getting less carbs (since there's such an uproar about carbs i figure ingesting small amounts can't hurt).

    Would it be smart to start taking protein powder at this point?
    Complex carbs you will need

    Fruits:


    apricots
    oranges
    plums
    pears
    grapefruits
    prunes


    Vegetables:


    Broccoli
    cauliflower
    spinach
    turnip greens
    eggplant
    potatoes
    yams
    corn
    carrots
    onions
    all types of lettuce
    celery
    cucumbers
    cabbage
    artichokes
    asparagus


    Beans:


    lentils
    kidney beans
    black beans
    peas
    garbanzo
    beans
    soy beans
    pinto beans

    to name a few
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  21. Post #21
    IDIOT WHO IS NEVER FUNNY AND CANT UNDER STAND WHEN NOT WANTED
    loopoo's Avatar
    September 2006
    6,109 Posts
    Taking protein powder wouldn't hurt :) and it's still good to get your protein from other sources, such as lean meat (chicken is great!) so be sure to take both protein powder as well as protein from normal sources.

    If you're getting protein, get whey protein isolate.What I say next may be wrong, but I hope it isn't, so wait for a more experienced user to check what I say
    Reason being isolate contains more protein per serving, so you're getting less fat and other things. Getting whey protein concentrate, it's less protein per serving, so you're getting more fat
    But to be honest, if you're not too worried about the slightly extra fat you'll get per serving, get concentrate, as it's cheaper (I'll feel terrible if what I'm saying is bullshit).

    Keep us updated on your progress buddy, I'm genuinely interested :) Been checking on this thread regularly.

  22. Post #22
    Dennab
    January 2012
    609 Posts
    There really is no meaningful difference between the two. Isolate is more expensive, that's the biggest difference you'll find.
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  23. Post #23
    I hide under your bed
    Dennab
    July 2011
    1,877 Posts
    http://mikeroussell.com/whey-protein...n-concentrate/

    concentrate has ~5% lactose and more fats/carbs while isolate has less, i guess.

  24. Post #24
    Gold Member
    Fragmatic's Avatar
    January 2005
    669 Posts
    It's a 15 minute drive to the gym
    Get a bike.
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  25. Post #25
    I hide under your bed
    Dennab
    July 2011
    1,877 Posts
    eh, i don't need the cardio/weight loss nearly as bad as i need some muscle gain. you can see my ribcage partially when i stand normally.

    i also just noticed that there isn't really any arm workouts in SL5x5 (it seems to focus more on legs, back and shoulders?), i kinda wanna add my own arm workouts to one of the routines just so i can build strength in all aspects. I want to eventually work my way into a full body workout routine for 4 days a week or something like that.

    what if i added Standing Curls and something else for arms to my workouts and just added 5lbs per workout?

    e: someone told me that you do build arm muscle with sl5x5, so i guess i dont have to worry

  26. Post #26
    Gold Member
    Seith's Avatar
    August 2006
    3,334 Posts
    see first how you respond to the volume on all your bodyparts. after 1-2 years, you can start rethinking this program.

  27. Post #27
    Gold Member
    ghosevil's Avatar
    September 2005
    2,783 Posts
    Stick with this program for a year before rethinking? Goodness. You should be well informed by the 3rd or 4th month- depending on your starting strength and how consistently you stick with it.

    Edited:

    e: someone told me that you do build arm muscle with sl5x5, so i guess i dont have to worry
    The bench-press should beat up your biceps pretty well, but every exercise should be helping out in the form of grip-strength.

    Make sure you don't use gloves and grip the bar (very) tightly to lift those extra pounds.

  28. Post #28
    tesher07's Avatar
    July 2007
    1,038 Posts
    Stick with this program for a year before rethinking? Goodness. You should be well informed by the 3rd or 4th month- depending on your starting strength and how consistently you stick with it.

    Edited:



    The bench-press should beat up your biceps pretty well, but every exercise should be helping out in the form of grip-strength.

    Make sure you don't use gloves and grip the bar (very) tightly to lift those extra pounds.
    You have no idea what you are talking about..

    The bench press does not engage the biceps at all. It is a pressing exercise, thus your chest and triceps are engaged, as well as the back to a very minor degree. Twoski I took a look at the SL5x5 and the only workout that is beneficial to the biceps are the barbell rows. Also, if you are actually aiming for larger arms, the triceps make up 2/3 of the upper arm, so your better off focusing on them. Wearing gloves has no effect on anything other than getting a better grip on the bar, so I see no reason not wear them. If you were referring to wrist straps though, then that would be a different story.
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  29. Post #29
    Gold Member
    Dennab
    March 2005
    7,463 Posts
    i wouldn't say the back in engaged to a minor degree.


    at least if you're doing them right. i feel it pretty good in my back. my coach for a while was an Olympic athlete and professional top dollar personal trainer, so shit ain't about form lol.

  30. Post #30
    IDIOT WHO IS NEVER FUNNY AND CANT UNDER STAND WHEN NOT WANTED
    loopoo's Avatar
    September 2006
    6,109 Posts
    i wouldn't say the back in engaged to a minor degree.


    at least if you're doing them right. i feel it pretty good in my back. my coach for a while was an Olympic athlete and professional top dollar personal trainer, so shit ain't about form lol.
    I agree. I've got friends who religiously do bench press exercises and they've got curved backs from doing it too much. Their backs are muscular but it's quite horrible, so (tesher07) surely bench pressing engages the back muscles more than just in a minor way?

  31. Post #31
    Gold Member
    Seith's Avatar
    August 2006
    3,334 Posts
    The back is an antagonist while doing the bench press. It is not engaged while doing the bench press, but if you have a weaker back than your chest, you'll probably stall which makes the back indirectly influence your bench press performance. (This is for the standard bench press)

    If you use the powerlifter's bench, which utilizes more Erector Spinae, then yes you work your "back" while doing the bench press.

  32. Post #32
    Gold Member
    Dennab
    March 2005
    7,463 Posts
    well actually there's one other thing about those guys with big fronts AND backs.


    if you focus on the front you're going to have a natural "lurching" standing position if you don't do anything to the back. was told this in rowing as well. i never saw it though. but i the piece of advice i got was to work on the back just as much as the front otherwise you'd look fuckin weird.


    From what i've learned so far muscles can still be pulling even when not contracted. it's why pilates people are curved at the sides of the torso. iirc the teacher said that there's these muscles in your stomach area that act as a girdle, creating that sexy in-curve that's basically saying "fuck you" to side fat whenever you have your shirt off.

    i kinda feel ashamed i forgot the name of these muscles... she said the name over and over again.



    shit, if anyone wants a really easy workout do pilates. shit is fuckin awesome.

  33. Post #33
    I hide under your bed
    Dennab
    July 2011
    1,877 Posts
    I skipped a whole week because i've been so busy so i'm just gonna resume where i left off this week.

    Also i am moving to Montreal in 3 weeks, so i plan to pretty much radically change my lifestyle as soon as i get there. More gym time and a strict diet plan. I still don't have a place to live yet and it fuckin sucks, i'm trying to find a place close to the gym, close to school and close to a grocery store.

    What do people eat while building muscle? It seems eggs are a solid thing for mornings and chicken is a staple for dinners. Recipes etc would be appreciated.

  34. Post #34
    Gold Member
    Seith's Avatar
    August 2006
    3,334 Posts
    There's isn't any magic benefit if you eat eggs in the morning, it's a common preference among gym goers.

    Eat as much as possible protein and have fun

  35. Post #35
    I hide under your bed
    Dennab
    July 2011
    1,877 Posts
    That's all? So if i made myself a denver sandwich for breakfast that would work well?

    My cooking repertoire is pretty shitty, it is something i desperately need to improve.

    Also, i've been seriously reconsidering my current gym schedule. I'm thinking of scrapping SL5x5 and switching to a more comprehensive workout schedule. My buff friend goes 5 days a week and focuses on a different set of muscles each day (ie. one day for arms, one for back, one for shoulders, etc). How would i go about setting up a basic plan like this?

  36. Post #36
    Kabstrac's Avatar
    April 2012
    3,340 Posts
    stick with it for at least 12 weeks imo


    it'll benefit you greatly, regardless of what your "buff" friend does

  37. Post #37
    I hide under your bed
    Dennab
    July 2011
    1,877 Posts
    Well once the 12 weeks is up, then what? I'll have the core strength i need to persevere into a more complete program, but how do i go about creating the program? What does the average person here do? I can't imagine everyone here goes to a personal trainer to get their workout schedules.

    Come september i'm going to have a lot more spare time for the gym. I wanna do something on tuesday and thursday!

  38. Post #38
    Gold Member
    Seith's Avatar
    August 2006
    3,334 Posts
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  39. Post #39
    I hide under your bed
    Dennab
    July 2011
    1,877 Posts
    Ok so i'm finally moved into my new apartment.

    I need to go grocery shopping. What kind of diet should i have? I'm trying to go gluten and dairy free for 2 weeks (i'm trying to gain muscle, but i'm also trying to find out which foods cause my autoimmune dysfunction to flare up - dairy and gluten are 2 common things that cause problems). This will probably make it a bit trickier to make meals.

    Any suggestions are welcome.

  40. Post #40
    Gold Member
    Seith's Avatar
    August 2006
    3,334 Posts
    meat, fish, eggs....

    nothing particular