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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2006

    Very weak upper body strength

    Hi there.

    I am new to gym and weights (2 weeks ago) but I am 24 years old and male. I am overweight a little (72kg) but I am about 6' in height.

    When I've been in the gym over the past week, I can't seem to lift any of the weights on the machines. I am not using free weights, just the equipment like Calf Raise, Chest Press and Arm Curl etc...

    I can only lift around 20-28kg on each machine, which I think is diabolical. It is very embarrassing for me to lift weights which are more suited to a woman. I feel as though people are staring and laughing.

    Problem is, I don't know why I'm so weak. How can I put bulk on my biceps, for example, if I can't lift anything over 25kg? Surely I need to be pulling at least 40kg at my age if I'm ever going to beef up.

    Maybe I have a unnoticed medical condition and a trip to the Doctor is in order?

    Any advice?

    Hi Tycoon,

    take a look here:
    weak upper body

  3. #2
    Karky is offline Former member of VulgarityGang
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    had to quit when he became a mod
    first of all.. 72kg and 6' high.. and overweight? id say underweight.. im a bit more than 6' tall and im closing up on 80kg and im skinny :S

    As for your consern weights wont make you bigger because you cant lift enough.. the muscle doesnt know how much you lift, it only notices how much of your max it lifts, so if you want to get stronger you should lift heavy (heavy for you)
    lets imagine my 1rm for deadlifts is 200 and yours is 100 (just picking easy numbers here xD)

    the 80% of my maximum is 160, so i must lift that or above to gain strenght (80% of 1rm or above gives you strenght)
    yours would be 80kg, even though yours is smaller than mine, it will still make you strong.
    Same goes for bulking only that you need other % of rm.

    If you want both str AND size it can be hard. Though, there is a program called Bill Starr's 5x5 which i was on earlier and i had both size and strenght gains, you might want to check it out

    Though if you just started, you might want to look around for a more beginner routine, i dont know of any, but someone else probobly does.
    hope that answers some of your questiones and dont be afraid to be weak, i was very weak once too.. embarrased in the gym, but you get over that pretty fast, ive never once gotten a comment like "you really dont lift much" or anything like that

    and if you choose to go with that program or not, learning those lifts can be hard, so be CAREFUL! if you cant do 5x5 with weights on the squat, do it with bodyweight
    just remember that form (technique) is everything
    Last edited by Karky; Jun. 01/06 at 06:44 AM.

  4. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    1. get off the damned machines, now. machines are inferior 99% of the time, and they remove stress from all the 'assisting muscles' in a workout, giving you a less efficient workout with a fixed range of motion

    2. pick up the free weights, and do what you can. people are not there to watch you work out and comment on how much or how little you can lift.

    3. form/technique, and the mind-muscle connection. on some exercises, it's really easy to use the wrong muscles, or fail to use all the muscles in a move. pull ups are a good example. you can struggle with all your might because you're not using the lats and upper back're just yanking with the biceps.

    4. compound moves: stick with bench press, shoulder press, pull ups, squats, deadlifts, and a little bit of curling and triceps exercises to round things out. again, don't sit at machines and do isolation moves. its way less efficient in terms of getting stronger, getting bigger, and just getting a good workout in general. calf raise is one of the few machines I actually use at the gym.

    5. persistence and consistency - keep up the work to see results.

  5. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Everybody had to start somewhere. Many people feel that way when they enter the gym, but just remember those huge guys werent always huge.

    Hi Tycoon,

    take a look here:
    weak upper body

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