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Old September 11, 2000, 01:55 PM   #1
Coronach
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Hello all,

In my field of work it is very beneficial to have large throbbing muskels (plus, women like it, a nice bonus), and to that end I have always worked out using free weights in my basement. My exercise routine was sort of a cobbled together mishmash of common sense, stuff I heard other people do and so-forth.
Thats all been well and good, but recently I seem to have plateaued...I keep working out but I make no appreciable gains- and I'm quite certain I'm not at my max genetic potential

Question is: does anyone know a good web resource for weight training routines? I'm sure theres a TON of info out there and I'm betting I need to fine tune what I'm doing...work smarter, not harder and all that.

Thanks,
Mike

------------------
"A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects." -Robert Heinlein
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Old September 11, 2000, 02:30 PM   #2
KaMaKaZe
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Perhaps your diet needs to change? If you came "this far" with what you've been doing, perhaps your routine is good. As far as a web site goes.. hmm.. http://www.yahoo.com

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Old September 11, 2000, 03:39 PM   #3
Coronach
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**boot to da head**



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Old September 11, 2000, 03:40 PM   #4
Mikul
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Whenever you stop growing it's because you need a change. I know: "duh." Change the exercises that you're doing. If you're doing dumbell flyes for chest, do the bench press, incline press, or dumbbell press. Even though an exercise works the same basic muscle group, it can work it in different ways. Changing your routing from 3 sets to 5, or even working in a single superset once a week can make a difference.

You may also want to consider that you need to rest those muscles. Overworked muscles won't grow. Switch to a lighter load to maintain what you have an do more aerobic for a month and start again.

Diet can help too. Simply eating 10% more can stimulate a growth spurt. Your body interprets an increase in consumption as a signal to build mass. Be sure that what you're eating is good protein with low fat (yum, more chicken and rice Don't keep this up for more than 3 weeks because your body simply gets used to it.

Basically, your body is either tired or has adapted itself to your routine. Try changing a few things for a couple of weeks and see if it works. If not, try something else. It's difficult to give reliable advice in this area because everyone's body responds differently. You need to discover what your body responds to... why do I feel that I suddenly am writing an addition to "Our Bodies, Ourselves?" Oh boy.
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Old September 11, 2000, 03:44 PM   #5
EricM
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I don't have any Net sources for routines. I usually change mine up all of the time. When I reach a plateau, I usually take a week off and then come back with either different exercises or up the intensity.
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Old September 11, 2000, 03:47 PM   #6
TomMarker
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http://www.gymamerica.com/

Maybe you should try working out with a partner who can push you a little more as well. That is, if you can handle your wife benching more than you
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Old September 11, 2000, 03:52 PM   #7
Coinneach
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Your body interprets an increase in consumption as a signal to build mass.

It does? Then why, after my favorite meal of combination lo mein, steamed dumplings, egg drop soup, and Shiner, don't I look like Ahhnold in the "Pumping Iron" video?
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Old September 11, 2000, 03:55 PM   #8
Coronach
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She's well behind me, thankyouverymuch...but she's gaining and I'm not. Hence the hysteria (not).

I figure diet might well play a role (I eat crap far too often), and my routine HAS been unvaried for some time now. Hey, Tom, more knuckle-pushups in class? Whaddayathink?

Thanks for the replies, guys.

Mike

------------------
"A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects." -Robert Heinlein
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Old September 11, 2000, 05:05 PM   #9
Don Gwinn
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http://www.cyberpump.com

If you haven't used HIT yet, try it. You will be amazed. If you're using HIT now, you may just need a different way of utilizing it. Without knowing what you're doing specifically now, I can't recommend much else. People who make good gains on volume and then plateau usually find HIT to be pretty cool.

Ever tried 20-rep squats? You don't want to try it without a good spot or a cage, but if you were squatting without those, shame on you anyway! Just load a bit lighter than usual and then do 20 full, deep squats. Rack the weight and add the smallest increment you can the next week. 5 lbs is actually at the high end of the increase you want to make here. Good luck. It's about time I kicked my own ass back into high gear too. Maybe you and I should do a little informal competition, although I'm so undertrained right now I'll probably gain fast for at least a few weeks.
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Old September 11, 2000, 05:44 PM   #10
Jeff OTMG
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Listen to Mikul, he hit nearly every point. Another thing is that you may need to increase the weight on your exercises. Simple idea. If you lift a 50 pound weight over and over, it gets easier, but your muscles will only get to a certain size. You must add weight to add bulk.
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Old September 11, 2000, 06:11 PM   #11
fubsy
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As a guide I use "Hardcore Bodybuilding & a Scientific Approach"..by Fredrich C. Hatfield, PH.D. ISBN 0-80923728-8 ,,,,,also put issa (Internationl Sports Sciences Association) in your search engine and it will take you to a good ol site....

That old adage about you are what you eat is right, but there is more to it than that, ---Muscle fibers are composed of 3 fiber type's
Type 2b (fast-twitch, low oxidative capacity)
type 1 (slow-twitch, High oxidative capacity)
type 2a(fast-twitch, High oxidative capacity)

There is a Dr. Connely who has theorized (it might have been proven by now,Im out of date), that what bodybuilders use to call plateauing might in fact be explained by muscle fiber recruitment. In a nut shell, if your doing the same exercises the same way, with little to no variation you have most likely recruited changes from one type of muscle fiber to another. the fibers adapt to what you need....If you want to train for explosivenss with power, your work out has to duplicate that need.
Instead of just a hodgepodge of training excercises you might want to look into "intergrated variable split training" its commonly referred to as ABC type of training---but be careful here because they usually at most gyms will not go into the aspects of that training were you will get the most gains....using 4 mesocycyles with in a macrocycle with your daily workouts being microcycles....the abc's are like this:
A-muscle-specific training(low intensity)
b-targeted sets training (medium to low intensity)
c-Holistic sets training (ultra-high intensity)
----thats just scratching the surface a bare frame work and the book will help you fill in the weight, movement, intensitiy, rest, food, supplements and much more....
do your self a favor and get that book, its been a great help to me, It will take some reading to get through because it covers so much. luck to ya..fubsy.
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Old September 11, 2000, 06:30 PM   #12
Bruegger
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I second Don Gwinn's suggestion of cyberpump.com. It's just plain old no-nonsense stuff.
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Old September 11, 2000, 07:06 PM   #13
MTAA
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What field of work are you in ? I'm guessing bouncer ? Do you do a martial art ?

Dude, don't powerlift, that routine gets old and is purely "loud bark but no bite". When I started kickboxing I could bench 450 lbs and hit like a freight train. Problem was, I had no gas or agility. If I didn't knock someone out in the first round, I stood a good chance of losing. Now that I freed up some of that weight, my bench has gone down considerably (450-335lbs) but I can run around that ring like a lightweight. If your in a position where you have to control a large group of people, I strongly suggest an excercise routine that not only emphasises strength, but also muscular endurance. ?Gotta find that middle ground between a 6 shot .44 magnum and a high cap 9mm right ?

Anyhow, to answer your question, whoever said this You may also want to consider that you need to rest those muscles. Overworked muscles won't grow. Switch to a lighter load to maintain what you have an do more aerobic for a month and start again. hit it on the nose. Unless your fat, your diet is probably fine. focus less on Bulking up on protein and more on quality protein (white meat, fish as opposed to Red meat).

Good luck.


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Old September 11, 2000, 09:36 PM   #14
Coronach
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My profession is law enforcement: a lot of muscle is always good to have if you get stuck in a fair fight...of course, the entire point is not to fight fair.

I'm not looking to bulk up to Ahnold proportions...which is good, since I'm nowhere close. Yes, I do martial arts...but ironically I've been able to attend less and less now that I'm a LEO. I am trying to make up for that by hitting the heavy bag at home and putting more of an emphasis on being aerobically (not a problem) and muscularly (more of an issue) fit. I'm 5'10" and weigh in at a whopping 165...very little of that is fat but with those proportions there ain't that much to start with.

Like most routines mine earned me fairly good initial gains but progress has since flattened out. I LIKE the gymamerica webpage (thanks Tom), and I'll check out Cyberpump next...though I'm betting thats for the more muskelbound among us than myself...at least so far.

Thanks,
Mike

------------------
"A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects." -Robert Heinlein
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Old September 11, 2000, 09:51 PM   #15
Don Gwinn
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Actually, Mike, you sound like the ideal HIT candidate. HIT emphasizes:

--Intensity--your lifting should be as intense as you can make it. If you can do this by slowing your movements, OK, but be INTENSE to the point that you can think of nothing else when you're training.

--Short duration--A good HIT routine takes from 15 minutes to an hour. I usually spend close to an hour, but I'm slow.

--Infrequent sessions--Many people say if you're working at the right intensity, you'll only be able to work once a week and still gain. Myself, I always handled two, but I'm a somewhat easy gainer and I suspect I didn't get to the real pinnacle of intensity. The point is, you work less often, you have more time for other stuff, and unless you're a great natural gainer, you probably make more progress this way anyway.

--Limited reps--If you're doing a typical routine, you may be doing, for example, as many as 60 sets specifically for your chest (5x3 bench, 5x3 flies, for example, twice a week.) On a hit program, you'd do one or two sets per major muscle group, twice a week. A typical workout would be deadlift, bench, pullups on Monday and Squat and overhead press on Thursday. Throw in stuff like grip, calves, etc as you need it, but it mostly gets worked as you go along with the major muscle groups. Do one set, maybe two, for each group. You will feel like you're slacking if you've never HIT before. If you stay with it, though, you will develop the proper intensity. Once you are properly intense for ten reps of deadlifts, you will NOT want to do a second set.

You can run, box or whatever on off days. It only takes about two hours per week to lift this way and you get a ton of recovery. No offense, but at your size, you're probably a borderline hard gainer and you will benefit from the long recovery.

[This message has been edited by Don Gwinn (edited September 11, 2000).]
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Old September 11, 2000, 11:18 PM   #16
Glamdring
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Athletic performance is an art not a science IMHO.

Keep a log or journal of your workouts and results...also track your sleep and stress levels, diet.

Over training is often a problem for motivated people. Have often found when illness or something keeps me from working out for 5 to 10 days I actually make bigger gains [deeper recovery I imagine].

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Old September 12, 2000, 02:15 AM   #17
MTAA
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Ahh I see ! Well then, first find out if your police department will pay for a gym membership (No seriously, some departments do this) and then try to work through this with a qualified trainer. Sorry if I mistook you for being at Ahnold's proportions, but from what it sounds you are nowhere near your plateau and shouldn't be frustrated in the least. Unfortunately, unless you have Arnold's bank account and forte for fitness, a home gym can't give you the desired results. A trainer can custom tailor a workout and a nutrition schedule to help you reach your goals much faster than you would on your own. This doesn't mean the home gym is a waste, it's a good supplement and helps with time restraints, but seriously consider a quality gym (avoid Ballys or others that require you to sign long term contracts) and look into a police discount through your department or the gym.
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Old September 12, 2000, 02:59 AM   #18
oberkommando
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DECA,DIANABOL,IGF-1!

MTAA Is right you probably need a larger selction of equipment and maybe trainer.

Yeah the riverside sheriffs office out here pay for gym fees.

If you plateaued then the advise on here is right Don,Mike,MTAA. Your diet can play a large part though. Generally you can adjust two ways by increasing weight and or decreasing rest periods, because some parts only have a few exercises to begin with there are only so many variations for building say quad mass, Squats, press, and extensions there really arn't that many new things you can do. As was said earlier you can superset,run rack,triset, use priority principle etcetra.
As to calf and ab training you can basically do that 6 days a week, esp calf they are the hardest muscles to grow and like a lot of weight, most people didle dally with their calf and ab work.
Probably not much help, maybe you should list your workouts here, how many times week and which body parts you are doing along with reps and sets with rest periods included.
If you can also figure your lean mass ratio and check how much protein you are consuming.

For good diet change, my brother tried that Anabolic burst cycling diet and made gains very fast and he is a hard gainer. But you need a lot of discipline to follow this plan as it specifies protein, fat, and carb ratios precisely. You can find it at muslcemedia at http://www.musclemedia.com/training/abcde/v58_abc1.asp

Soon as I loose the rest of my excess weight I will get on this diet, based on what happended to my brother it looks like it worked great. BTW one of the local roid monsters at my gym asked if he was on the juice because he was so tight.
This diet was hard for him because he had to just about double his caloric intake for two weeks and then drop it to around 1600 for the next two while doing cardio for around 5 days a week on the last two weeks. That complets one cycle and they say the second is even better. But if you dont like extreme stretching and/or cardio you might not like it, it depends on how much you want it.

[This message has been edited by oberkommando (edited September 12, 2000).]
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Old September 12, 2000, 09:56 AM   #19
Steve Smith
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It's trus! Coinneach DOESN'T look like Arnold! It's a good thing Coronach is here to pump (clap) us up! Otherwise, we would all be slithering around like the girly-men we know we are...not even strong enough to hold our feeble little heads up out of the primordeal slime.
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Old September 12, 2000, 11:20 AM   #20
Coronach
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Heh! I have NO DOUBT that I'm a hard-gainer. I amazed the people in my police academy by making only moderate gains in muscular strength even though I was *obviously* training just as hard (or harder) as everyone else (I mean...PT is supervised. Duh. And if you slacked you got called on it big time. I never slacked. Better to die a thousand deaths than drop out). And yeah, I'm sure I'm nowhere near a normal plateau level. Thus my search for a tweaked routine.

I just read the HIT FAQ and it does sound interesting. It is more of a philosophy than a routine, and elements of it are present in my current routine (work to volitional failure, etc) but some of it is new.

As to gym membership: I'm a phenominal tightwad about some things, this being one of them. Our department, alas, does not give free memberships, and I'd much rather make an investment in stuff and do it at home as opposed to tossing money out every month for a membership. Naturally, this means I have to do my homework and make sure I am doing the right thing and have the right gear. Again, hence my questions.

Thanks again for all the replies.

Mike

------------------
"A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects." -Robert Heinlein
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Old September 12, 2000, 12:23 PM   #21
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Moving to AF/CQC: Alternative Force/Close-Quarters-Combat Forum. That's the only forum on TFL that approximately fits this topic.

Locked in General Disc. Forum.
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Old September 12, 2000, 12:49 PM   #22
Mikul
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A decent home gym can be had relatively inexpensively.

A bench is a must and can be found quite cheaply in the classified section of your local paper. I've seen them for $50 in ads, and once for $25 at a garage sale.

Dumbbell and barbells are also a must and are pretty cheap even new. They're also common at flea markets. The weights can also be found a flea markets or you can find a good fitness store (not one of the goofy up-market ones with $8,000 stairmasters) and wait until they have a sale on weights (usually pretty frequently).

Any kind of machine which will allow you to do pulldowns, butterflyes, and alternative exercises is a plus. They're ALWAYS expensive when they're new (at least $2K), but good deals can be found in the classifieds. While they are rubber-band based, a good Soloflex can be had for around $200. They do work if you don't mind the bands (there is a free weight adapter for the bar).

Cheap stationary bikes STINK. Instead, I puchased a trainer for my road bike. It attaches to the rear axle and applies user controllable pressure to the rear wheel for variable resistance. They're over $100, but good stationary bikes are over $600.
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Old September 12, 2000, 01:43 PM   #23
TomMarker
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If you remind me, I'll let you borrow my book
"Combat Conditioning" by Matt Furey. Furey is a tank, strong as an ox, and doesn't lift weights. It might add a little variety to your workout. I've been doing the workouts for about a week, and they will kick your butt.
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Old September 12, 2000, 02:24 PM   #24
Skorzeny
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As some of you know, I am a serious student of various martial arts. As such, I consider conditioning to be very important.

I have found that, based on current scientific understanding, I need to work on both "strength" and "strength-speed" (aka "endurance") routines.

So, for four weeks (16 workouts), I work on strength using Pavel Tsatsouline's "Power to the People" (look for it on Amazon.com) routine (low reps and high tension, using free weights, mainly barbells, and do side press and deadlift, correctly, which is very important). I must say that Pavel's routines have brought amazing gains. His book also summarizes in very easy layman's terms the results of various researches into strength physiology. I was amazed at how ignorant I used to be (just showing up at a gym and lifting some weights, doing some benches and increasing them a bit each week - so unscientific and unstructured and ultimately futile as I reached a plateau).

Next four weeks, I do strength-speed routines similar to Matt Furey's workouts such as Hindu push-ups, pistols (one-legged squats) and pull-ups, in which I use my bodyweight and go for maximum reptitions. I also throw in some sprints. I also grab one side of a big rubber band in my fist (the other side is tied) and simulate punches with rubber tension resistance.

Note that Pavel's routines will NOT increase your weight as the increased strength will largely come from neurological conditioning, rather than sarcoplasmic hypertrophy (the blown-up look that bodybuilders, as opposed to serious strength trainers, get because of formation of jello-like material in your muscles). It is functional strength that Pavel preaches, not the hollow (or lack of) strength with the beach muscle look.

BTW, the alternating strength and strength-speed routines seem to be norm with most professional sports team training nowadays.

Hope that helps...

Skorzeny

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For to win one hundred victories in one hundred battles is not the acme of skill. To subdue the enemy without fighting is the supreme excellence. Sun Tzu
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Old September 12, 2000, 03:26 PM   #25
LOBO
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Power to the People! : Russian Strength
Training Secrets for Every American
by Pavel Tsatsouline http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/AS...089002-2773777

[This message has been edited by LOBO (edited September 12, 2000).]
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