I am confident this is probably a common question but I didn't see it posted recently so I thought I would ask.
I am 28, i'm 6'1 and I am mostly legs. My legs are skinny.
I was never a runner or jumper or any other form of athlete.
I have recently joined a gym to try and fix this but legs are throwing me.
Here are my concerns and forgive the newbie pussy-boy shiz...
I am uncomfortable with squats because I don't know what the hell to do and I am convinced my knees will snap. I have seen a couple machines that help control the squat but everyone online seems to violently hate them.
There are several machines at my gym (YMCA) including one where you are at an angle with pads on your shoulders and you bend down and stand up (leaves odd scratch/bruise marks on your shoulders), one where you lay on your back and push a plate up at an angle and one where you are sitting up straight and push a plate forward and up.
They work well but I am a little confused. 1) I seem to be able to use the last machine mentioned (sit up and push forward) with 270 pounds which is just tough enough for me to notice. (6 - 45 plates). Now. I dont know if this is normal for starting out or not but I am very sure that putting 3 - 45 plates on each side of a bar and attempting to pick it up on my shoulders will lead to very a funny public death.
The standing angled squatt I can do 180 pounds with 4 - 45 plates.
when I do both I can feel it and I can do 3 or 4 sets of 8-12 and my legs are fairly sore...but its not like when I do shoulder presses and feel like i cant lift my arms for 3 days.
So I need to do more...but I am doing like 4 sets on each machine and I am not sure what else to do.
This isnt exactly a whiny "I dont know what to do - save me big muscle guys" cry for help...more of an advice thing.
In the past I focused mostly on trying to fill out my arms and chest. Now I am being serious about my whole body but workout books translate oddly into reality...especially with legs.
I was wondering how far you go before you overtrain your legs in one workout...how heavy you should go and if you will hurt your knees if you go heavier.
also half my workout is my legs and then my hour is almost up and you cant train for more than an hour. I'm very confused on this whol etime management thing with moving plates around and doing lots of sets.
anyways legs are different. If I pick up a barbell that is too heavy I can set it down. If I put something too heavy on my shoulders and bend down I might die.
so I am not looking for a quick fix...I just want to grow my legs and I dont feel like I am using my leg muscle nearly as much since they seem to be stronger than I assumed they would be.
I am not a big growly man with years of athletic experience. I am not a super pussy either but I do know my limits. I am just trying to better my body and look good naked. Also i'd like to not have to ask my friend to help me pick things up like couches.
now big muscly guys...you may proceed to rescue me.
Last edited by borgsixofnine; 08-29-2010 at 04:20 PM.
I didn't read past you are 6'1". That isn't tall to me. The simple answer is squat.
Why do you think your knees will snap? In any case, watch.I am uncomfortable with squats because I don't know what the hell to do and I am convinced my knees will snap. I have seen a couple machines that help control the squat but everyone online seems to violently hate them.
Thank you. I am nervous about the weight because I feel a lot of pressure on my knees in particular when I bend down. I dont feel like I am able to support the weight...it might just be that I am not used to what heavy weight feels like when I bend down. Also my knees snap and crack when I bend them normally.
I just know I need to lift heavier things with my legs. But I assumed most guys dont just walk into a squat the first time and rock out at it. I was hoping for some encouragement here from the fellas who know! = P
Sure 6'1 is not 6'7...but I still have trouble climbing into the squatting machine and usually have to adjust them to their highest level because my legs are too long...so yes. I am tall. I have no idea how taller guys than me manage it.
Starting Strength can be found in the stickies at the top of this forum.
Hardgainer can be found here: http://www.faqs.org/faqs/body-building/hardgainer-faq/
Base on everything you are stating this will be the best money you will spend.
If you are afraid you are going to use too much weight on a squat, then start with the bar and work your way up. Don't try to translate what you can do on a machine to a free weight value because it doesn't worl. So, try 3 sets of 6 to 8 squats with the bar and if it too easy, then add 10 pounds to either side. Do this until you accomplish a good workout- then you know you have enough weight on the bar.
The reason you can't figure out the time management deal is that most powerlifters (since this is a powerlifting dominated forum, IMO) will only do about four different exercises for any given workout and will split those workouts up into motion specific or body part specific days. For example, you do a legs day, then a chest and tri day, then a back and bi day, or you do a "push" day and then a "pull day."
But like most have said, you need to grab a premade routine on here that will set you in the right direction.
The reason that everyone busted on you for saying you are tall is that no one on here is going to try to "climb into a squat machine" because squat racks are about 10 feet tall so we don't have to worry about it
Most people pray for a lighter load in life...ever thought of praying for a stronger back?
Goals as of 2/08/11 (current) goal:
Squat: (505) 535, Deadlift: (475) 500, Bench: (325) 350 Total: 1305 (1385)
BW: 225 as of 02/01/2011 Goal: 205 by May 1, 2011
#1: Starting Strength is a great and easy routine (like many have said).
2. Eat (~ which some have mentioned),
3. Squat (which nearly everyone said).
Skinny legs and Squats don't go well together, so once you make a comittment to use Starting Stength (a routine that has you squatting every workout), your legs will be forced to grow ~ and will do so rapidly (assuming you eat like a lion).
Does this pose make my camera look big?
"We're not as good as we want to be, we're not as good as we should be, but thank God we're not as bad as we used to be..."
Squatting can be harder for guys with long legs, just accept it and move on to focusing on squatting more weight over time. If there's a secret, that's it. Squat and eat ( i.e. just like shorter guys. )
Not if you have any clue how a squat rack works...anyways legs are different. If I pick up a barbell that is too heavy I can set it down. If I put something too heavy on my shoulders and bend down I might die.
Also you would never start with a weight that you are not 100% sure you can lift without a spot. When you begin to spot it's best to get a trainer or someone with a solid amount of expertise in the lift to watch/spot you.
And making steady progress.
I say just learn proper form first and start small, being committed to progressing each workout. And you'll adapt to squating.
Also want to add that making it point to improve your flexibiity would also help greatly, lower back, hip flexors, hamstrings would also do wonders for helping your progress
Last edited by parra79; 08-30-2010 at 01:40 PM.
Great answers guys.
I'm right with ya man. realitive newbie to the game, tall and lanky, terrible knees, back squats scared the hell outta me. I took these guys advice, started very light and made myself push out perfect reps. once i started to add the weight on muscle memory took over. My knees have actually gotten better once i started squating. If your unsure of your form have someone video you, My wife video'd me in the kitchen with a broom stick on my back, it was very helpful for me. oh and eat and then eat some more....and when your done eating...grab something to eat.
Bench: Half a subway club
Squat: to pee
Deadlift: no thanks
don't let the 12" pythons fool you....i can run way faster scared than you can mad
I really really appreciate all of the advice. I am going to the gym today and will try out Deadlifts and test out this Squat thing.
I do feel a lot better now with all of the encouragement. Thank You.
Do lots and lots of sprints. Even uphill, in sand, with a weighted vest. Sprint!