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Posted: 8/10/2004 9:28:49 AM EST

I finally joined a local gym the other day. Went there to use the facilities for the first time. Used a stationary bike and the treadmill and then went downstairs to use the freeweights and nautilus. However, found that I was rather overwhelmed. There's got to be over 100 pieces of equipment but I have no idea what to use or what sort of "program" I should do. How often should I work out and how long should I work out each time? What equipment should I use?

Anyone know of any sites or books that would be good for showing what I should be doing? I know what I'd like to work on:

- general weight loss
- running (moderate distance/speed.... Not looking for marathons, just to be able to run 2 or 3 miles at a time at about 8 to 9 minutes per mile)
- upper body strength
- tightening abs/losing spare tire

I tried asking the gym staff, but they were absolutely useless telling me: "We're not trained in that." Apparantly they're only trained in how to sell memberships and how to work the juice bar.
Link Posted: 8/10/2004 10:52:33 AM EST
Check out this site. I have found it to be of great help.

www.wannabebig.com/category.php?cat=4
Link Posted: 8/10/2004 11:35:43 AM EST
for the first month or so stay with the nautilus. go low weight at 10-20 reps and 2-3 sets per machine. Stay away from the funky machines (like the neck, calf and forearm machines, etc). work on major muscle groups. Chest, back, lats, legs etc. big trunk muscles and biceps and triceps. just work on getting fit and limber again before you begin pumping up so you won’t hurt yourself.

Talk to a manager at the gym that person should have given you a tour and shown you which machines to start with. Don’t accept the bullshit line. “I don’t know (I just want to ogle girls).”

Look at what you are eating. Chances are you can eat a lot less. Eat 5 meals a day but cut your portions to almost nothing. Like breakfast and mid morning snack should be a granola bar each. (that’s two bars to the pack). Cut out as much sugar fat and carbs as possible. Eat green vegetables, protein and fruits. Eat half a regular apple or a small apple. Let your stomach shrink to the point if you eat more than a sandwich you feel stuffed.

After a month or two you can start adding protein and weight and cutting back on your reps.

Don’t worry about 2-3 mile runs right now.

good luck
Link Posted: 8/10/2004 1:03:39 PM EST
Do some research on the net. Read as much as you can find. Don't be afraid to question.

I would suggest that you consider doing lifts that work the core muscles first. Lifts like deadlift, squat, dips, chins, situps, pushups, ect. These involve large muscle groups. Ask some of the guys at the gym to help you with the learning the lifts. Most will be happy to help. As far as the 3 sets of 10 routine goes, I would consider using the rule, low reps high weights for strength, and high reps lower weights for endurance.
Low reps 3-5
High reps 12-15

Check out T-Nation.com it is a good site.
Link Posted: 8/11/2004 11:44:21 AM EST

Originally Posted By killingmachine123:
Check out this site. I have found it to be of great help.

www.wannabebig.com/category.php?cat=4



Another plug for WBB. Great site. Check out WWB Routine 1, and if you have questions, they have awesome forums.
Link Posted: 8/11/2004 12:55:45 PM EST
Keep track of your workouts. Log what exercises you did, number of sets and reps. This also applies to your running. Ease into your workouts and as you become more comfortable in what you are doing, give yourself more to do. As to the running, I only run every other day at a maximum. If I run every day, it kills my knees.

If you can find a regular workout partner, that is always a plus. Having someone there to push you is good. Especially when you are just "blah" and don't really want to work out.

Also, keep track of your eating pattern, cut out the sodas, and make note of how well you are sleeping. All of these things will effect your workouts.

Good luck to you.
Link Posted: 8/11/2004 10:05:18 PM EST
if i want to build a specifc muscle area, how many different excercises should i do to that muscle area in a workout?
Link Posted: 8/15/2004 2:19:39 AM EST

I started doing that wannabebig routine #1 on Wednesday. Did "day 3" of it then and "day 5" on Friday. I'll do "day 1" on Monday and continue from there.

It's a good workout so far and I enjoy it. My legs hurt like hell for two days after "day 3" but are ok now. Arms are hurting now from "day 5" but I assume that will fade by tomorrow. This routine seems to make a lot of sense.

I belonged to the YMCA a couple of years ago and worked out religiously 6 days a week (3 days nautilus, 3 days cardio) for a year with no weight loss or strength improvement. Probably due to the Y's suggestion of "start at one end of the Nautilus line and do every excercise" so I'd be working every muscle group 3 days a week and not giving them a chance to rest.

So, yeah, this seems to definitely be an improvement. Will just have to focus on diet now which can be tough when one works odd hours (3rd shift).
Link Posted: 8/15/2004 6:10:01 PM EST
[Last Edit: 8/15/2004 9:18:01 PM EST by Boom_Stick]

Originally Posted By killingmachine123:
Check out this site. I have found it to be of great help.

www.wannabebig.com/category.php?cat=4




Cool! Check out the WanaBeBig (1) rountine then go to the forums and check out this topic. It's got video demonstrations of the program exercises.

Link Posted: 8/16/2004 4:45:47 PM EST
Start out light and easy. If you try to go too heavy too fast you'll just burn out.h
My Favorite site:

http://www.exrx.net/

The beginner's page is great, as are the exercise descriptions.
Link Posted: 8/16/2004 4:56:46 PM EST

Originally Posted By Garand1911:
if i want to build a specifc muscle area, how many different excercises should i do to that muscle area in a workout?



That's actually a pretty hard question to answer. I assume your looking for big arms or chest or something like that? What muscle group you want to build makes a difference on how many exercises you can do. For instance you can do 3 or 4 leg exercises in a workout but I wouldn't do more than 2 for shoulders...

What do you specifically want to do?
Link Posted: 8/16/2004 6:17:04 PM EST

Originally Posted By 9mmFlyer:

Originally Posted By Garand1911:
if i want to build a specifc muscle area, how many different excercises should i do to that muscle area in a workout?



That's actually a pretty hard question to answer. I assume your looking for big arms or chest or something like that? What muscle group you want to build makes a difference on how many exercises you can do. For instance you can do 3 or 4 leg exercises in a workout but I wouldn't do more than 2 for shoulders...

What do you specifically want to do?



I'd say maybe 3-4 different exercises on one muscle. And 2 sets of like 6-8 the first time.

Check out www.wannabebig.com

And try the #WBB Routine 1

That's what I'm currently doing.
Link Posted: 8/16/2004 7:24:34 PM EST

I see that the wannabebig routine #1 is 3 days a week with days off between them. Is there anything that I should/could be doing on those "resting" days? Should I work on cardio on those off days?
Link Posted: 8/25/2004 6:00:42 AM EST
Try a beginner spin class if they have one. And better yet, see if they have a "boot camp" class or "body pump" class.

I find that if you get in a routine of going to certain classes that you are more likely to stick with it. Lift weights in the off days.
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