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Old 2nd May 2011, 20:20   #2851
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Cool Re: Bodybuilding - Exercises and Supplements

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My muscles get hard/tough easily sometimes, with first set of reps itself. (e.g. forearms).
@ashokrajagopal
I meant, some exercises, it happens right from the first set of reps. (for example: Forearms.)
Others, Biceps, triceps, chest, etc, can take one or two sets before going stiff-wards.

I also observe, If I continue some more with stiff-muscles, it stays stiff for like 30 mins or so!

If I rest the stiffened-muscle without pushing further, then it loosens fairly fast, like in 4-5 mins max.

So, I was intending to ask, which approach to take here.

Care,

Ace.
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Old 2nd May 2011, 21:15   #2852
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Default Re: Bodybuilding - Exercises and Supplements

Ashok, I did a lot of reading on Mehdi's ebook. Agreed that he recommends to start with an empty bar, but further down he has suggested its ok to start with 50% of the 5RM if you've performed all the SL5x5 exercises before.
So thats a load off me, and thats where I intend to start tomorrow onwards. Really excited about this.

And here's Mehdi's ebook for the benefit of all the readers here.
Attached Files
File Type: pdf stronglifts-5x5-report.pdf (2.79 MB, 2375 views)
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Old 3rd May 2011, 14:08   #2853
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I started weight training 3 months ago. My condition (strength and endurance) was pathetic to start with but made good progress over the next few months. However for the past 2 weeks I noticed a drastic drop in my strength and energy levels and I am unable to complete my sessions that I could do earlier. I was doing 28-30 kg barbell bicep curls 2 weeks ago, now I am struggling with 24-26. My military press has gone down from 40 kg to 32-34 kg. I have also lost 3 kg body weight. I have not changed anything as far as my diet/nutrition/program goes.

My typical diet is-
1. A black coffee immediately after getting up.
2. A protein shake (1 scoop of MyoFusion) 5 minutes after the coffee.
3. Breakfast comprising of cereals, oats, muesli and bananas 15-25 minutes after the protein shake.
4. Brown rice, beans, pulses, chapatis, mixed veggies for lunch.
5. A protein shake (1 scoop of myofusion with 1 or 2 bananas and 5 gm of ON creatine) in the evening, 15-20 minutes before hitting the gym.
6. Juice immediately after the workout.
7. A protein shake 5 minutes after the work out (1 scoop of ON Whey gold standard and 1 scoop of MyoFusion)
8. A moderate dinner a couple of hours later
9. A protein shake (1 scoop of myofusion) before going to bed.

Am I doing something wrong? Or is it just the summer heat which is sapping away the energy? Will a preworkout supplement like Jack3d help in restoring some of that energy so I can lift longer and heavier in the gym?

Last edited by Astleviz : 3rd May 2011 at 14:09.
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Old 3rd May 2011, 15:20   #2854
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Default Re: Bodybuilding - Exercises and Supplements

@ Ashok: Try farmer walks and hanging from a pull-up bar. Even holding on to a bar while shrugging helps.

Grip takes time, whilst the rest of the muscle groups get stronger, one weak link can throw lifts out of accord. Get yourself a set pf straps, you could even make one out of sown together canvas material strips.

Been off myself past 3 weeks, wasn't keeping well, but back again.

I have been studying the strength training detailing on techniques by Mehdi, Rippetoe, Dave Tate and Cressey and I must say I have seen some good from squats this past 2 months.

Started first week on empty bar, then 5lbs each side and now 45lbs each side this last Saturday. But I am not doing 5x5, hitting higher reps of minimum 10-12 since I dont have a structured 5x5 schedule.

Working well for me, and I can feel just the squats working both quads and hams decent enough, with the Rippetoe method.

Here's a link for the Rippetoe ebook 2nd edition. Helped me, might help more like me.

[COLOR=#0000ff]https://www.yousendit.com/download/MEtTQ3Q5OW5Fd2V4dnc9PQ[/COLOR]

Oh, and btw: planning to give deadlift a try too, but in a few months!
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Old 3rd May 2011, 16:00   #2855
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Default Re: Bodybuilding - Exercises and Supplements

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Originally Posted by Astleviz View Post
I started weight training 3 months ago. My condition (strength and endurance) was pathetic to start with but made good progress over the next few months. However for the past 2 weeks I noticed a drastic drop in my strength and energy levels and I am unable to complete my sessions that I could do earlier. I was doing 28-30 kg barbell bicep curls 2 weeks ago, now I am struggling with 24-26. My military press has gone down from 40 kg to 32-34 kg. I have also lost 3 kg body weight. I have not changed anything as far as my diet/nutrition/program goes.

My typical diet is-
1. A black coffee immediately after getting up.
2. A protein shake (1 scoop of MyoFusion) 5 minutes after the coffee.
3. Breakfast comprising of cereals, oats, muesli and bananas 15-25 minutes after the protein shake.
4. Brown rice, beans, pulses, chapatis, mixed veggies for lunch.
5. A protein shake (1 scoop of myofusion with 1 or 2 bananas and 5 gm of ON creatine) in the evening, 15-20 minutes before hitting the gym.
6. Juice immediately after the workout.
7. A protein shake 5 minutes after the work out (1 scoop of ON Whey gold standard and 1 scoop of MyoFusion)
8. A moderate dinner a couple of hours later
9. A protein shake (1 scoop of myofusion) before going to bed.

Am I doing something wrong? Or is it just the summer heat which is sapping away the energy? Will a preworkout supplement like Jack3d help in restoring some of that energy so I can lift longer and heavier in the gym?
Hey Astleviz, your supplementation and choice of it is spot on.

Just a couple of things here from my own experience, you need to be heavy on supplements (as right now) for periods, then go on maintenance doses (pre + post and bedtime only) and get more regular food in.

The body needs regular foods, absence of which creates alot of imbalances and lead to lower energy levels and plateaus.

You need to share your workout routine, as overtraining is the most rampant reason for hitting a plateau and dipping energy levels.

Jack3d is essentially a caffeine supp, and you are taking caffeine already. I would recommend an on-off for early morning caffeine as well. Caffeine is a diuretic and you are also taking creatine, not that they dont gel, but cycling both is better. (hope you've not been on both continuously these past 3 months)

I recommend bananas post workout, curd/yogurt preworkout. Simple carbs are to replenish glycogen stores, complex are required to fuel workouts.

Juice has fructose, and many bodybuilders I know avoid it postworkout since it promotes insulin resistance and a more suitable alternate is dextrose, Glucon-D for us. Low GI fruits consumed are just fine.

Hope this helps. Do write back with your workout schedule, intervals/frequency of training and specific goals etc.

Last edited by mandheers : 3rd May 2011 at 16:02. Reason: typo
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Old 3rd May 2011, 16:34   #2856
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Default Re: Bodybuilding - Exercises and Supplements

Quote:
Originally Posted by Astleviz View Post
Am I doing something wrong? Or is it just the summer heat which is sapping away the energy? Will a preworkout supplement like Jack3d help in restoring some of that energy so I can lift longer and heavier in the gym?
Probably you need a break.
Take a week off or so.
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Old 3rd May 2011, 16:50   #2857
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Default Re: Bodybuilding - Exercises and Supplements

Hi strong folk

I've got a question. Does a 17 year old going-to-college-soon guy need to work out at a gym to keep fit [Fit as in good healthy levels of fitness, no intention of competing in a sport or something...] ?

Thanks.
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Old 3rd May 2011, 17:11   #2858
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Thanks mandheers/ alpha1. Here are my goals and schedule.

Height: 186 cm
Weight: 78Kg (Goal: 82Kg)
Waist: 32.5" (Goal: 30")
Body fat: 12% (Goal 8-9%)
BMI: 22.5 (Goal 24)
Biceps: 15" (Goal 17")
Chest: 42" (Goal: 46-48")
Thighs: 22" (Goal: 28")


Schedule
Monday (Biceps, Forearms, Shoulders, Back)
Chin ups - 2-3 sets
Barbell Bicep Curls - 5 sets
DB Curls - 3 sets
Concentration Curls - 3 sets
Forearm Curls - 3 sets
Overhead Press - 5 sets
Arnold DB Press - 3 sets
Shrugs - 3 sets
Barbell Rows - 5 sets
Cable Seated Rows - 3 sets
Lat pull downs - 3 sets
Deadlift - 1 set

Tuesday (Chest, Triceps, Legs)
Push ups - 3 sets
Bench Press - 5 sets
Inclined Bench Press - 3 sets
DB Bench Press -3 sets
Skull crusher - 5 sets
Tricep pulldown - 3 sets
Bench Dips - 3 sets
Squats - 5 sets
Leg extension - 3 sets
Lying Leg Curls - 3 sets

I rest on Wed, Sat & Sun. On rest days, I do 20 minutes of Core exercises. Repeat the same schedule on Thu & Fri. However I alternate a few exercises, eg, I'll do a hammer curl instead of a DB curl, upright rows instead of shrugs, decline bench press instead of incline and so on. Do you think I am over training?

I have been reading up the Stronglifts 5X5 program, do you think it's time to give it a shot for the next 12-24 weeks? Will I be able to meet my goals with the 5X5 program?
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Old 3rd May 2011, 20:18   #2859
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Default Re: Bodybuilding - Exercises and Supplements

Quote:
Originally Posted by driverace View Post
@ashokrajagopal
I meant, some exercises, it happens right from the first set of reps. (for example: Forearms.)
Others, Biceps, triceps, chest, etc, can take one or two sets before going stiff-wards.

I also observe, If I continue some more with stiff-muscles, it stays stiff for like 30 mins or so!

If I rest the stiffened-muscle without pushing further, then it loosens fairly fast, like in 4-5 mins max.

So, I was intending to ask, which approach to take here.

Care,

Ace.
Ace, I have no idea why such a pattern is there. Never felt that way about any of my muscles, probably you need a better, longer warmup. You may also need to do some flexibility drills. I guess forearms stiffening up is probably due to a inflexible wrists. Sorry I couldnt help here.
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Old 3rd May 2011, 20:19   #2860
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Default Re: Bodybuilding - Exercises and Supplements

Quote:
Originally Posted by hiren.mistry View Post
Ashok, I did a lot of reading on Mehdi's ebook. Agreed that he recommends to start with an empty bar, but further down he has suggested its ok to start with 50% of the 5RM if you've performed all the SL5x5 exercises before.
So thats a load off me, and thats where I intend to start tomorrow onwards. Really excited about this.
All the best Lift hard !
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Old 3rd May 2011, 20:21   #2861
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Originally Posted by mandheers View Post
@ Ashok: Try farmer walks and hanging from a pull-up bar. Even holding on to a bar while shrugging helps.

Grip takes time, whilst the rest of the muscle groups get stronger, one weak link can throw lifts out of accord. Get yourself a set pf straps, you could even make one out of sown together canvas material strips.

Been off myself past 3 weeks, wasn't keeping well, but back again.

I have been studying the strength training detailing on techniques by Mehdi, Rippetoe, Dave Tate and Cressey and I must say I have seen some good from squats this past 2 months.

Started first week on empty bar, then 5lbs each side and now 45lbs each side this last Saturday. But I am not doing 5x5, hitting higher reps of minimum 10-12 since I dont have a structured 5x5 schedule.

Working well for me, and I can feel just the squats working both quads and hams decent enough, with the Rippetoe method.

Here's a link for the Rippetoe ebook 2nd edition. Helped me, might help more like me.

[COLOR=#0000ff]https://www.yousendit.com/download/MEtTQ3Q5OW5Fd2V4dnc9PQ[/COLOR]

Oh, and btw: planning to give deadlift a try too, but in a few months!
Right on, I ve been trying farmer's walks, and some plate holds ( holding weight plates with fingers from top). Guess it will improve with time.

Good to know squats work for you. So will deadlifts !
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Old 3rd May 2011, 20:26   #2862
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Default Re: Bodybuilding - Exercises and Supplements

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Originally Posted by ashokrajagopal View Post
Right on, I ve been trying farmer's walks, and some plate holds ( holding weight plates with fingers from top). Guess it will improve with time.

Good to know squats work for you. So will deadlifts !
Might find this funny, but what I have also relied on for strong wrists and grip is the regular floor push up with a fully open palm, like not holding fingers lose together.

You get it don't you?
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Old 3rd May 2011, 20:37   #2863
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Astleviz View Post
Thanks mandheers/ alpha1. Here are my goals and schedule.

Height: 186 cm
Weight: 78Kg (Goal: 82Kg)
Waist: 32.5" (Goal: 30")
Body fat: 12% (Goal 8-9%)
BMI: 22.5 (Goal 24)
Biceps: 15" (Goal 17")
Chest: 42" (Goal: 46-48")
Thighs: 22" (Goal: 28")


Schedule
Monday (Biceps, Forearms, Shoulders, Back)
Chin ups - 2-3 sets
Barbell Bicep Curls - 5 sets
DB Curls - 3 sets
Concentration Curls - 3 sets
Forearm Curls - 3 sets
Overhead Press - 5 sets
Arnold DB Press - 3 sets
Shrugs - 3 sets
Barbell Rows - 5 sets
Cable Seated Rows - 3 sets
Lat pull downs - 3 sets
Deadlift - 1 set

Tuesday (Chest, Triceps, Legs)
Push ups - 3 sets
Bench Press - 5 sets
Inclined Bench Press - 3 sets
DB Bench Press -3 sets
Skull crusher - 5 sets
Tricep pulldown - 3 sets
Bench Dips - 3 sets
Squats - 5 sets
Leg extension - 3 sets
Lying Leg Curls - 3 sets

I rest on Wed, Sat & Sun. On rest days, I do 20 minutes of Core exercises. Repeat the same schedule on Thu & Fri. However I alternate a few exercises, eg, I'll do a hammer curl instead of a DB curl, upright rows instead of shrugs, decline bench press instead of incline and so on. Do you think I am over training?

I have been reading up the Stronglifts 5X5 program, do you think it's time to give it a shot for the next 12-24 weeks? Will I be able to meet my goals with the 5X5 program?

Hey you are clearly overworked. Take a week off, and split your schedules. I see you are trying some sort of a full body split. But then, full body splits work only if you take 1 day off between each workout.
I dont know what weight you move, but seeing that you do hell lot of curls and presses, I do not think you are lifting enough weight but clearly lifting too frequently. I am a novice, but this looks very obvious that you are heading towards some real imbalance.

There is no way you will reach 28 inches of thighs with that kind of schedule any soon. I hope this is not the order in which you do your exercises. If it is, in the name of god, change it.
How much do you expect to deadlift when you are doing it after hundreds of curls, presses, shrugs, rows etc. I mean you have fatigued your biceps, shoulders, traps, and delts by the time you start deadlifting. I am sure you are not deadlifting your maximum capacity. Same with squat.
Squats and deadlifts should be the first exercises to do.

Concentration curls are built for the peak in biceps when flexed. You wont benefit anything from that unless you have reached your goal and are flexing your muscle for a double biceps pose. Lose it.

Forearm curls - you are doing barbell curls, chinups, rows and deadlifts - there is no way you are gaining anything by preexhausting your forearms. Lose it. They will get worked anyways.

I dont see any good from doing two kinds of Rows on the same day. May be you could do one on Monday, and the other on thursday. Anyways its upto you.

Lose lat pull down. Unless you have a pretty huge back and have exhausted weighted pull ups to a 15 reps with 25% of your weight hanging on your waist, it is pretty pointless. One of the least effective and most used exercise.
Pull yourself up. Snatch grip. Really wide. The more you do, the stronger you become. The broader you become.

Forget bench dips. They are for the weak. Try parallel bar dips with actual weights. Dips work all the heads of the triceps much better. Works well for your forearms too.

Lose leg extensions -- Try DB or barbell lunges.


All said, you clearly are overtraining. You have an impeccable diet, and there is no other reason you cant lift what you had been lifting last week.
When your body responds that way, stop training; go home; take rest, come back in a week.
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Old 3rd May 2011, 21:01   #2864
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Hi Ashok

I always start of with the heaviest exercises (Squats and deadlifts) but I get your point. My squats are pretty weak (60 Kg) since I started them about 4 weeks ago, but I deadlift approx. 90-100 Kgs. Even I had been thinking about reducing the number of exercises and concentrate mainly on compound exercises. So I guess I'll take a week or ten days off to recover and then start with fewer exercises for every muscle group.

Another thing I wanted to check up on is my Chest. Over the past 3 months I have seen a reasonable increase everywhere- Biceps, triceps, lats, traps, legs, everything but my Chest. Despite the fact that I am bench pressing almost 3 times than what I was pressing 3 months ago. I read on a few forums that this may be due to genetics, different muscles in different people respond differently. Is that right? I have had a couple of instructors spotting me and they don't think that there is anything wrong with my technique. They just told me that i have to keep at it as my chest muscles may be responding slower as compared to other muscles. What do you guys suggest?

And lastly, should I take creatine before or after the workout? Most people say before, but the Optimum Nutrition Creatine label says after.
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Old 3rd May 2011, 21:07   #2865
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Default Re: Bodybuilding - Exercises and Supplements

Quote:
Originally Posted by Astleviz View Post
Thanks mandheers/ alpha1. Here are my goals and schedule.

Height: 186 cm
Weight: 78Kg (Goal: 82Kg)
Waist: 32.5" (Goal: 30")
Body fat: 12% (Goal 8-9%)
BMI: 22.5 (Goal 24)
Biceps: 15" (Goal 17")
Chest: 42" (Goal: 46-48")
Thighs: 22" (Goal: 28")


Schedule
Monday (Biceps, Forearms, Shoulders, Back)
Chin ups - 2-3 sets
Barbell Bicep Curls - 5 sets
DB Curls - 3 sets
Concentration Curls - 3 sets
Forearm Curls - 3 sets
Overhead Press - 5 sets
Arnold DB Press - 3 sets
Shrugs - 3 sets
Barbell Rows - 5 sets
Cable Seated Rows - 3 sets
Lat pull downs - 3 sets
Deadlift - 1 set

Tuesday (Chest, Triceps, Legs)
Push ups - 3 sets
Bench Press - 5 sets
Inclined Bench Press - 3 sets
DB Bench Press -3 sets
Skull crusher - 5 sets
Tricep pulldown - 3 sets
Bench Dips - 3 sets
Squats - 5 sets
Leg extension - 3 sets
Lying Leg Curls - 3 sets

I rest on Wed, Sat & Sun. On rest days, I do 20 minutes of Core exercises. Repeat the same schedule on Thu & Fri. However I alternate a few exercises, eg, I'll do a hammer curl instead of a DB curl, upright rows instead of shrugs, decline bench press instead of incline and so on. Do you think I am over training?

I have been reading up the Stronglifts 5X5 program, do you think it's time to give it a shot for the next 12-24 weeks? Will I be able to meet my goals with the 5X5 program?
Personally, it would be a bit difficult achieving those measurements. I mean the torso, upper arms and thighs seem do-able, but not with a 30 waist, not at 187cm height, not without steroids.

With adding mass to thighs and torso, the waist will increase marginally from 32 or stay put since the stabilizing muscles will also grow, considering you will be lifting more. Again, 30 is not totally not achievable, so the above is just my opinion.

You are training too much, too often.

The triceps are also involved in shoulder work, and that measure you are pushing more on 2 consecutive days. We need to pull as much as push, if not more.

Try a 3 day split, mixing large + small bodyparts or mixing complementing/opposing parts. For e.g. you could do Chest + Triceps or Chest + Biceps. (my personal fav is chest + back)

Leg work is of prime importance for both ensuring a better tone overall and breaking through plateaus.

Ashok is right, extensions are for definition and so are concentrations.

Again IMO, push-ups, bench press, incline press, db press are all hitting more or less the same muscle groups. Ok, inclines hit shoulders more than the others, not that others dont. So much imbalance will be created here, or nothing much will come out it, overtraining again.

Agree with Ashok again, big movements should be at the top, post thorough warmup, or else at the fag end of workout you shouldn't have the strength left to squat or deadlift. And if you are then you are risking alot to injury and overtraining.

Biceps and Triceps are well home with just 2 exercises per part 3-4 working sets each. These are small muscles, recover sooner and will never lift big weights, so it's all about 'feeling the weights' and eccentrics. Pick any 2 movements, 1 for it's range and weight and the 2nd for it's quality, on both these muscles.

I have tried pull ups with the widest grip, and all my lifting life, and they work, although I still can't do more than 6 in a row.

I have posted a link just today, so scroll down and you could look up Rippetoe's strength training too. (thank Ashok for it)

With your diet, just slight tweaks in your workouts will get you great results.

Last edited by mandheers : 3rd May 2011 at 21:10. Reason: typo
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