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Thread: The Next Level.

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2005

    The Next Level.

    I have so many questions, even after spending 2 days reading here and trying to absorb all the terms through the guides and stickies. This is somewhat of a continuation from my older thread. I've become wiser since. I'll do my very best to be informative, blunt, and clear.

    ---------------------History Begin---------------------------
    I started off 265 about last year.

    Currently 5"11 and weighing 219lb now. Male. 23.

    Quick History: I started going to the gym myself in 2007, mainly cardio. Stopped. Went back to the gym two months ago and got a PT. Paid $1200. I was 245.

    Went 2 weeks, stopped, body was in terrible pain the entire 2 weeks. Not soreness, unable to perform daily activities such as standing and walking, bending, etc. Came to find out he was doing a lot of the exercises wrong and his nutritional advise was very wrong for building muscle. I followed my own diet (just to lose weight) and today I'm 219.

    I came here to find the next step. Got some great advice and I'm going to move to weight training. I want to dedicate my days to hitting the weights and cardio, moving my diet to the next phase. But I want to do it at home.

    I'm done trusting people with my money.
    ---------------------History End---------------------------

    *Please understand I sat and did read as much as I could here and the sites externally linked but it's an incredible amount to understand so I figure I better start practicing.

    Focus: I want a FBW. I have $500 to spend to purchase equipment at home. I wanted dumbells and a bench. I just got paid today and I'm ready to master the exercises and hit this 7 days a week between weights and cardio. I dieted everyday, no cheating, for 2 months. I can do this.

    I'll try to be short and simple with the questions.

    ---------------------Questions To You---------------------------

    #1. Which exercises should I use for a FBW with dumbells? I was recommended this page: . I also found this page from Men's Health: . Please give me the proper combination to get started. I know the technical terms of which exercises I need but not the actual exercises so please be simple with me.

    #2. Should I stay in calorie deficit? I was going to start with a 2000 calorie focus. My current BMR (I believe thats the proper term) is 2500 (rounded up 15 or so calories only). Like everyone else I'm focused on losing fat which I know does come from muscle gain. I want to maximize with cardio, diet, and weight training.

    I won't get extremely detailed into my new diet so heres the quick overview so you don't get anymore bored than you already are:

    a. Eat 5-6 times a day
    b. Focus on egg beaters, turkey, skim milk, 300-400 calories per meal
    c. Take whey protein before workout and before sleep

    #3. Light cardio, FBW, heavy cardio, then skip FBW every other day? I'm trying to decide on a regime. 10mins of cardio then FBW with dumbells then 1 hour of heavy cardio for extreme fat burning. Eat right after. Next day, heavy cardio. Next day, 10min cardio, FBW, 1hour cardio. Repeat.

    #4. Adjustable dumbells and a good threadmill from where? I'm going to use credit to get the threadmill and I've got $500 for dumbells and a bench. I need recommendations please.

    Big thanks for reading this far. Please choose for me as if though you were teaching yourself when you first got started, I want to dominate this 3 month plan and be a beast once I'm finished, ready to move to intermediate training aka getting ripped.

    Hi Blackcub,

    take a look here:
    elbows sore after workout

  3. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    First I want to congratulate you for your success. I'm a Personal Trainer an I really hate when trainers don't really know what they are doing. The worst thing is that they think they know.

    A good trainer should have valid testimonials and a satisfaction guarantee.
    Men's Health has pretty good routines. Search for two of the best workout creators of Men's Health:
    Alwyn Cosgrove (Read his blog)
    Craig Ballantyne (his newsletter gives you lots of workout ideas and he also has a lot of workout you tube videos look for cbathletics on you tube)

    Okay now get to work.
    #1. Which exercises should I use for a FBW with dumbells?
    You can combine upper body exercises with lower body exercises, but first try doing them as a circuit or super set like this.

    Super Set 1 (perform 3 -4 sets before moving to the next super set)
    A1 DB Squat 8 - 12 reps
    Rest (30sec - 1min)
    A2 DBShoulder Press 8 - 12 reps
    Rest 1 -2 min
    Super Set 2 (perform 3 -4 sets before moving to the next super set)
    B1 DB Split Squat (or Lunges for a higher level)
    Rest (30sec - 1min)
    B2 DB Bicep Curls
    Rest 1 - 2min
    Super Set 3(perform 3 -4 sets before moving to the next super set)
    C1 DB Rumanian Death Lift (RDL) or Straight Leg Death Lift
    Rest (30sec - 1min)
    C2 DB Rows (elbows in or elbows out) for variety

    Circuit (perform 1 set and move to the next exercise) no rest or up to
    1min rest in between each exercise
    DB Squat
    DB Shoulder Press
    DB Split Squat
    DB Bicep Curl
    DB RDL
    DB Rows

    Combination exercises (Total Body) with DB
    Squat and Press
    Lunges and Bicep Curls
    Lunges and Lateral Raises
    RDL with Rows
    DB Renegade Push-ups
    DB Swings

    #2. Should I stay in calorie deficit?
    Remember that when you lose weight your body requires less calories per day. People over estimate the amount of calories they need when they exercise or gain some muscle.
    When you weighted 245 a daily intake of 2500 would help you lose some weight but now you need less.

    Try 2300 (once a week) on days you train really hard and 2100 (2 - 4 times a week) on days you do cardio only or lifting only. Also try 1800 (2 to 4 times a week) on rest days (this is hard but you will get results)

    Eat lots of nutrient like lean meats, healthy fats like fish oil and nuts. Don't forget the fruits and veggies. If you train hard and eat quality foods don't worry about the calories unless you really want to.

    Don't worry about losing muscle because as long as you lift weight with intensity you will not lose muscle. Use this to get the weights right 6 to 8 good controlled reps are very good, 10 - 12 good controlled reps means you should add some weight. If you can do more than 12 reps is too light.

    I use this because it keeps my strength levels high and I can also increase the weight safely almost every week.

    #3. Light cardio, FBW, heavy cardio, then skip FBW every other day?

    I think you are ready to go with interval training on lifting days and 30 - 45min of slow cardio on resting days(preferably a bike for resting days).

    Intervals are a time efficient way to train and increase your metabolism for more than 24 hours.

    Slow cardio on resting days is for active recovery and burn some more calories.

    #4. Adjustable dumbells and a good treadmill from where?

    If you can save the treadmill money and run outside would be great. I think a bike that allows you to use your arms too like an airdyne is a better investment and is cheaper. A cheap treadmill (less than $700) is only good to walk.

    You can also get a Stability Ball, some bands and a medicine ball for variety purposes. Kettlebells are good but you need to learn how to use it correctly.

    I hope this helps, If you train hard and have good nutrition (don't forget Omega3 Fish oil to boost your fat loss) You should be able to lose 2 or more pounds a week. I lot of people disagrees with me on this but usually my clients drop a minimum of 12 - 15 pounds per month until they reach under 18% body fat and then the weight loss is less because there is less weight to lose.

    Good luck and train hard (this means feel the fatigue not the pain)

  4. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    I looked up Men's Health and found this: . Any thoughts of suggestions from anyone about this workout?

    #1. I wanted to spend an hour a day with the weight training. Can I do all 3 Super Sets in a single training session? If not, please recommend which exercises I should perform to complete the routine and I'll follow those instructions.

    #2. I plan to do FBW/Cardio on Day 1 and just Cardio on Day 2. Then repeat. So should I bounce between 2300 (Day 1) and 2000 (Day 2)? I'm keeping my calories very low right now and I'm not hungry at all. I don't want to have 'rest' days.

    #3. How do I perform interval training with a threadmill?

    #4. I was told a threadmill is basically the best at-home cardio you can get. Any suggestions on some good, reliable, adjustable weights and a bench?

  5. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    #1 Yes, most of the FBW sessions I do are from 6 to 8 exercises in a super set or tri-set manner plus intervals at the end. You can organize it like this:

    Super Set 1
    Lower Body (Posterior) exercise some people say knee dominant.
    Upper Body Push (Vertical)

    Lower Body (Anterior) Hip Dominant
    Upper Body Pull (Horizontal)

    Lower Body (single leg)
    Upper Body Push (Horizontal or Vertical)

    Total Body Metabolic Exercise
    Core Exercise

    You can mix this any way you want. Just keep the SS 1upper body and 1lower body

    Lower Body (Posterior)
    Squat with or without DB
    Step Up
    Jump Squat
    DB Overhead Squat

    Upper Body Vertical Push
    DB Shoulder Press (alternate arms) (Regular grip, Inverted or Hammer grip) (Seated or Standing)
    DB Front Raises

    Lower Body (Anterior)
    Lunges (variations) Lateral, Back, Forward, Diagonal
    Death Lift
    Stability Ball Leg Curls

    Upper Body Horizontal Push
    Bench Press (variations)
    1arm Push-ups
    DB Fly's

    Upper Body Pulls (Vertical)
    Band Pull-Downs
    Band Swimmer Pulls

    UBP (Horizontals)
    DB Rows (variations) one hand or two hands, elbows in or out
    Body Weight Rows
    Band Horizontal Pulls

    Lower Body Single Leg
    SL Squat
    SL RDL
    SL Hip Extension
    Bulgarian Squat
    Slow lowering Step Up

    Jumping Jacks
    Mountain Climbers
    Side or front hops
    Jumping Splits Lunges
    Combination and Explosive Exercises can be very metabolically demanding

    Crunches (Variations)
    Leg Raises
    T Push-ups (also horizontal push)

    #2 Yes, Just make sure that your calories fit your day. FBW and Interval days are your highest burning days therefore a pre and post-workout meal will increase your calorie intake.
    If you are just doing cardio one day then just use it as a "active rest day" Low calorie day. This day your pre and post-workout meals don't need to be very big.
    Your next step should be to focus on getting quality nutrients so you can keep increasing the intensity of your workouts.

    #3 This could be done in two ways. You have to be careful.

    a) By increasing the incline level (easiest)
    b) The way I do it is by increasing the speed for a period of time (very hard and be careful) and then decrease it (it takes about 15 to 20 seconds to slow down)

    Sometimes I do both and just get on and off the treadmill. I use my arms to lift my body and step on the sides of the treadmill.

    #4 A treadmill is the recommended tool for walkers and steady state runners.
    The most effective piece of equipment is the airdyne (search for it on google) You use your legs and your arms. Great for intervals or steady state and no electronics needed.

    I hope this helps and good luck
    More Workouts here at (download the free workout sample)

  6. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    This is all incredible information, thank you very much.

    Last thing is whats a good, reasonably priced pair of dumbells to pickup to get started from the absolute bottom?

  7. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    What I do is buy a pair ajustable DB with weights. Is about 30 - 40 bucks when is altogether with 30 or 40 pounds in plates (total). This is from 15 to 20 pounds per dumbbell. Then buy an extra pair of 10 pound plates. With the extra plates I can have 25 - 30lb DB and that should be enogh to start.

    The exercises I like to go heavy with DB are:


    I just don't like benching heavy dumbbells.

    I'm glad you like the info
    Take care

    Hi Blackcub,

    take a look here:
    elbows sore after workout

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