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How to get stronger in the gym? Watch

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    Background info: I'm 18 and back in the gym for the 3rd time (I've switched twice before this). I started using free weights at home at 16 and haven't progressed as much as I would like to in weight in 2 years. Now at the gym I feel relatively weak AF.

    I don't bench as I fear death - I only use dumbbells
    I don't deadlift, but for once out of the past 2 times I have been to the gym, I will start doing that soon
    I don't squat using the rack, I'm using machines

    I feel like some of these key workouts could be useful to me, but I am not sure. Will it help me gain strength in other areas like the row, pull ups etc.?

    Also, I always feel tired everytime after a set - I eat stuff before the gym, but I don't know why I feel like this.

    Anyone have any ideas on how to get stronger, and not feel tired?
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    What are your lifts?
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    (Original post by Nebuchadnezzaṛ)
    What are your lifts?
    Trying to keep anonymity so I'll keep it vague:

    Bench with dumbbells: below 50
    Seated Row: below 50
    Shoulder press: below 50
    Leg press: below 150
    Pull up: can't do a single one

    I'm 6'2 and play football so not sure if that's why my legs are stronger than my upper.

    I do more workouts, but nothing really compound like the above.
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    (Original post by Ze Witcher)
    Trying to keep anonymity so I'll keep it vague:

    Bench with dumbbells: below 50
    Seated Row: below 50
    Shoulder press: below 50
    Leg press: below 150
    Pull up: can't do a single one

    I'm 6'2 so not sure if that's why my legs are stronger than my upper.

    I do more workouts, but nothing really compound like the above.
    No one is going to figure out who you are by how much you lift.

    Bench with a bar and eat more.
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    (Original post by Nebuchadnezzaṛ)
    No one is going to figure out who you are by how much you lift.

    Bench with a bar and eat more.
    Other than eat more, anything else? I'm still going to feel dead/tired with my other workouts
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    (Original post by Ze Witcher)
    Other than eat more, anything else? I'm still going to feel dead/tired with my other workouts
    Try doing heavy lifts with low reps, they're more suited for strength. 5x5 is good
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    (Original post by Nebuchadnezzaṛ)
    Try doing heavy lifts with low reps, they're more suited for strength. 5x5 is good
    Cheers, I'll look into that.
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    (Original post by Ze Witcher)
    Background info: I'm 18 and back in the gym for the 3rd time (I've switched twice before this). I started using free weights at home at 16 and haven't progressed as much as I would like to in weight in 2 years. Now at the gym I feel relatively weak AF.

    I don't bench as I fear death - I only use dumbbells
    I don't deadlift, but for once out of the past 2 times I have been to the gym, I will start doing that soon
    I don't squat using the rack, I'm using machines

    I feel like some of these key workouts could be useful to me, but I am not sure. Will it help me gain strength in other areas like the row, pull ups etc.?

    Also, I always feel tired everytime after a set - I eat stuff before the gym, but I don't know why I feel like this.

    Anyone have any ideas on how to get stronger, and not feel tired?
    If you're looking to build strength, focus on lifting weights where you work in the 4-6 range. If your aim is building size, focus on weights where you can lift in the 8-10 rep range. And be in a caloric surplus.

    I would strongly recommend doing bench press with barbell. If you don't have a spot then just do it yourself using a rack (see vid below).

    I don't deadlift either. But I would do squats free weights as well, NOT using a smith machine (I used to do that and realised I was limiting myself). You're missing out on engaging a significant % of your muscle fibres as no stabilising muscles are used in assisted exercises when a smith machine is involved.

    Good luck.

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    (Original post by eden3)
    If you're looking to build strength, focus on lifting weights where you work in the 4-6 range. If your aim is building size, focus on weights where you can lift in the 8-10 rep range. And be in a caloric surplus.

    I would strongly recommend doing bench press with barbell. If you don't have a spot then just do it yourself using a rack (see vid below).

    I don't deadlift either. But I would do squats free weights as well, NOT using a smith machine (I used to do that and realised I was limiting myself). You're missing out on engaging a significant % of your muscle fibres as no stabilising muscles are used in assisted exercises when a smith machine is involved.

    Good luck.

    Thanks, much appreciated.

    You mentioned stabilising muscles - I did bench press once several months back (using a lower weight than I normally do with dumbbell bench press) and felt shaky AF - was that due to stabilising muscles you know?

    Yh, I'm going to soon try to incorporate as much free weight as I can as going from the machine to the free weights feel much different.
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    (Original post by Ze Witcher)
    Thanks, much appreciated.

    You mentioned stabilising muscles - I did bench press once several months back (using a lower weight than I normally do with dumbbell bench press) and felt shaky AF - was that due to stabilising muscles you know?

    Yh, I'm going to soon try to incorporate as much free weight as I can as going from the machine to the free weights feel much different.
    no worries bro. Yes that sounds totally normal and is definitely due to your stabilising muscles having not been used, and being used to exerting that force.

    In fact, I was the same the very first time I did bench press. I started lifting about 4 and a half months ago - I was struggling to do reps of 30 kg (i.e. 5 kg plates on each side). Now I'm pushing 60 kg for reps. Especially if you are a beginner, your body will adapt quickly and you will be able to do more reps/push a higher weight within the next few workouts (sometimes even the next workout) provided you are eating enough calories.

    Great plan - your strength will skyrocket by changing from machines to free weights.
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    (Original post by eden3)
    If you're looking to build strength, focus on lifting weights where you work in the 4-6 range. If your aim is building size, focus on weights where you can lift in the 8-10 rep range. And be in a caloric surplus.

    I would strongly recommend doing bench press with barbell. If you don't have a spot then just do it yourself using a rack (see vid below).

    I don't deadlift either. But I would do squats free weights as well, NOT using a smith machine (I used to do that and realised I was limiting myself). You're missing out on engaging a significant % of your muscle fibres as no stabilising muscles are used in assisted exercises when a smith machine is involved.

    Good luck.

    “My d*cks too big” 😂😂😂😂
    Mayne Omar is too funny 😂
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    (Original post by Kevin Hodge)
    “My d*cks too big” 😂😂😂😂
    Mayne Omar is too funny 😂
    PRSOM :lol::lol::lol: Mayne I LOL'd when he said that, I was like "mayne he can relate. We both got AWWL KINDS of BBC action..."
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    (Original post by eden3)
    PRSOM :lol::lol::lol: Mayne I LOL'd when he said that, I was like "mayne he can relate. We both got AWWL KINDS of BBC action..."
    😂😂😂

    Can I get a MO GAINZ?
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    (Original post by Kevin Hodge)
    😂😂😂

    Can I get a MO GAINZ?
    :rofl:

    hold up mayne.. hold upp..
    Spoiler:
    Show

    MMOOOOOO GGGGGGAAAAAINZZZZZZZ
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    increase weight or reps by a tiny amount each week. After a few weeks take a week off and lower the weight down a bunch. Then go back to the normal weight next week. Do that for the rest of your life lol.

    Keep it simple y'all.
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    I usually take some coca cola, 2 doughnuts and a snickers with me for after workout. Who needs protein shakes?
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    (Original post by Ze Witcher)
    Trying to keep anonymity so I'll keep it vague:

    Bench with dumbbells: below 50
    Seated Row: below 50
    Shoulder press: below 50
    Leg press: below 150
    Pull up: can't do a single one

    I'm 6'2 and play football so not sure if that's why my legs are stronger than my upper.

    I do more workouts, but nothing really compound like the above.
    you weren't vague enough
    pretty sure I know your name and address now
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    (Original post by Ze Witcher)
    Trying to keep anonymity so I'll keep it vague:

    Bench with dumbbells: below 50
    Seated Row: below 50
    Shoulder press: below 50
    Leg press: below 150
    Pull up: can't do a single one

    I'm 6'2 and play football so not sure if that's why my legs are stronger than my upper.

    I do more workouts, but nothing really compound like the above.
    Thats mad. Well done- just go as often as u can. Also try getting a gym instructor or someone who knows how to use free weights at the beginning, then u can start going with a few of ur mates and compete. Try spend at least an hour each time u go and work on opposing muscles or muscles in the same area- 5/6 sets each and many different exercises and machines. Also go from your heaviest weights with enough reps to lower weights with most reps.
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    Eat something before hand (also a banana) with enough water during workout. And leave cardio to the end so u dont tire urself out.
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    Apparently for strength you wanna do 5 reps with high weights. 5 sets of 5 is a popular training style. I've never trained for strength but that's common for powerlifting.

    You won't die benching with the bar, you have to bring the bar down over your chest not your neck. If you fail a rep all you have to do is roll the bar down your body. I don't bench though I also use dumbbells because they're better, you get a way better contraction and you can bring them out wide and sort of hyperextended at the bottom like a semi-fly and you get an ENORMOUS stretch that you absolutely can't get with the bar. You might also get better activation angling the dumbbells very slightly rather than horizontal. Like holding them at 25 degrees or so.

    I personally gained strength fine doing standard 3 x 8 sets. When I could do more than that I upped the weight. But whatever you decide on, make sure you do the compounds:

    Shoulder press, bar or dumbbells. I have got really good burn from overhead press with the bar standing, but for some reason NEVER get that anymore so do seated now.

    Bench with bar or dumbbells.

    Squats.

    Deadlifts.

    Deadlifts are definitely fantastic for your overall strength and you might see posture gains. If you care about your physique though, wear a belt when you start doing a decent amount of weight to keep your waist small. Also wear a belt if you squat a decent amount of weight.

    I don't like seated row. Try face pulls (one of the most important exercises you can do btw, ALWAYS include them in your routine - zero point having nice muscles if you walk hunched over) and standard bent-over rows. There are several variations of bent-over rows depending on how close you keep your elbows to your body, and they target different areas of the back. They are extremely effective and activate the muscle hard. Pull-ups and pulldowns you won't feel it as much as rows.

    Also try forced reps. When you're failing, say on dumbbell curls or whatever, cheat it up and then try to let it down as slowly as possible. Without a spot this is very helpful. If you are doing some one handed exercises you can use your free hand to physically move the weight to the top of the motion and then let go and let it down as slow as you physically can.
 
 
 
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