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  1. #1
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    2 quick novice question

    Hi all, figured I'd pop in and get some experienced advice. Firstly, I live in a small apartment and only have room for a small bench and a pair of dumbells, so I looked up dumbell-only routines and have been using the one below for a week. I just want to make sure its sufficient for a beginner and I'm not under-doing it:


    Monday:

    Dumbbell bench press (Chest)
    Warm up 1 x 15 reps
    3 sets of 8 reps

    Incline dumbbell press (Upper Chest)
    3 sets of 8 reps

    Dumbbell squats (Quadriceps - Front Of The Thighs)
    4 sets of 10 reps

    Alternate dumbbell curls (Biceps)
    3 sets of 12 reps

    Dumbbell Pullover (Back / Chest)
    3 sets of 12 reps

    Ab Crunches (Abdominals)
    4 sets of 15

    Wednesday:
    Arnold press (Shoulders)
    Warm up 1 x 15 reps
    3 sets of 10 reps

    Alternate front dumbbell raises (Shoulders)
    3 sets of 12 reps

    Dumbbell rows (Mid Back)
    3 sets of 10 reps

    Dumbbell stiff legged deadlifts (Hamstrings / Butt)
    3 sets of 12 reps

    Ab Crunches (Abdominals)
    4 sets of 15

    Friday:
    Dumbbell deadlifts (Mid Lower Back)
    4 sets of 12 reps

    Incline dumbbell press (Upper Chest)
    3 sets of 10 reps

    Dumbbell Lunges (Legs)
    3 sets of 12

    Alternate dumbbell curls (Biceps)
    3 sets of 12 reps

    One arm dumbbell extensions (Triceps)
    3 sets of 12 reps

    Ab Crunches (Abdominals)
    4 sets of 15

    Second question is, how do you tell if the soreness in your muscles is normal or if you've overdone it and should take an extra day or two before you work out again? It being my first week in, I'm pretty damn sore and had trouble walking up/down stairs for a few days.

    Thanks for the feedback!

  2. #2
    Squat Heavy, Squat Often Cards's Avatar
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    Why aren't you joining a gym?
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  3. #3
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    Financial reasons, time constraint reasons, lazy reasons, etc.

    I figure if I can find a sufficient routine to do at home, why not?

  4. #4
    LittleJake JSully's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SmallyBigs View Post
    Financial reasons, time constraint reasons, lazy reasons, etc.

    I figure if I can find a sufficient routine to do at home, why not?
    IMO, thats the only one that should be stopping you from getting a gym membership. The other 2 reasons are nonsense. If you have the financial means to pay for a gym membership, do it. If not, keep what you're doing now. You will yield greater results in a gym though.
    Jake Sullivan
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  5. #5
    LittleJake JSully's Avatar
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    actually, I think that's a pretty solid workout. Can you get a pullup bar? that would be a great addition

    the soreness you're experiencing isn't out of the ordinary. I'm often quite sore for 2-3 days after a tough leg workout, and I've got over 10 years experience. Keep doing what you're doing.
    Jake Sullivan
    6' - 280lbs - 29yrs old - Professional Highland Games Athlete
    curently off-season
    HG training log = road to pro
    youtube channel = www.youtube.com/xtra0t

  6. #6
    Rob Schilke | GFX Designer thecityalive's Avatar
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    Gym memberships are a bitch. As someone who works in a commercial gym - they are quite a scam. Start up fees, annual fees, and (sometimes) cancellation fees. This only applies if you go with an Electronic Funds Transfered, or EFT plan. We do offer Paid In Full memberships (which don't include any bullshit fees, but if you've guessed by now, we don't publicly advertise them*)

    Example: At the Powerhouse Gym I work at, one of our more popular rates is 29.99/month. It costs 198.98 down to get started. You pay for 40 processing fee (bullshit fee), 99 initiation fee (I call it the frat fee), and two months in advance at 29.99 (your first and last month, basically collateral). What a lot of people don't ask or figure in is our 39.99 annual fee we charge once a year.

    So from the outside, it seems like you are paying for 359.88/year, but in reality, you pay 538.87.
    For our Paid In Full memberships, we sell a year for 399, which is why we don't advertise it.

    I tell a lot of my close friends who consider putting that money down for a gym membership - you could not get a gym membership, and potentially invest in used gym equipment for cheap (Power Rack, olympic weights, barbell, etc) and not have to deal with the bull shit that is (some) the commercial gym experience.

    But I digress. What you are doing is fine...for now. Eventually, you will get stronger and grow out of your current weight set up (IE: you may need additional weights).

    This is your dilemma, IMO. What are you going to do when this happens?
    My road to powerlifting:
    ===thecityalive is dead meat===
    Current RAW PRs:
    Bench: 255 (9/30/13)
    Dead: 515 (9/2/13)
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    Total: 1205 lbs.
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  7. #7
    Rory Parker Behemoth's Avatar
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    You're not going to do much in terms of strength or hypertrophy if you don't have the ability to continually progress in weight
    accuflex - LOLZZZZ!!!11one1!! SOEM PPL WORK THRE ARMZ!!!!11!! LETS KILL THEM111

    "You can fake effort with grunts and clanging weights but quiet, consistent hard work coupled with gradual strength increases earns universal respect in gyms" - Steve Colescott



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  8. #8
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    But I digress. What you are doing is fine...for now. Eventually, you will get stronger and grow out of your current weight set up (IE: you may need additional weights).

    This is your dilemma, IMO. What are you going to do when this happens?

    You're not going to do much in terms of strength or hypertrophy if you don't have the ability to continually progress in weight
    That's really the only thing I'm worried about, but I definitely will come up with a new plan once I outgrow the ones I have. Luckily I'm not exactly in the best shape right now and have a long way to go before I max out the set of dumbells I currently have. For most exercises I'm only putting on a total of 20 lbs. per dumbell and I have access to a friend's plates and weights I can use to make each dumbell 40 lbs. each.

    Thanks for the feedback everyone.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by thecityalive View Post
    Gym memberships are a bitch. As someone who works in a commercial gym - they are quite a scam. Start up fees, annual fees, and (sometimes) cancellation fees. This only applies if you go with an Electronic Funds Transfered, or EFT plan. We do offer Paid In Full memberships (which don't include any bullshit fees, but if you've guessed by now, we don't publicly advertise them*)

    Example: At the Powerhouse Gym I work at, one of our more popular rates is 29.99/month. It costs 198.98 down to get started. You pay for 40 processing fee (bullshit fee), 99 initiation fee (I call it the frat fee), and two months in advance at 29.99 (your first and last month, basically collateral). What a lot of people don't ask or figure in is our 39.99 annual fee we charge once a year.

    So from the outside, it seems like you are paying for 359.88/year, but in reality, you pay 538.87.
    For our Paid In Full memberships, we sell a year for 399, which is why we don't advertise it.

    I tell a lot of my close friends who consider putting that money down for a gym membership - you could not get a gym membership, and potentially invest in used gym equipment for cheap (Power Rack, olympic weights, barbell, etc) and not have to deal with the bull shit that is (some) the commercial gym experience.

    But I digress. What you are doing is fine...for now. Eventually, you will get stronger and grow out of your current weight set up (IE: you may need additional weights).

    This is your dilemma, IMO. What are you going to do when this happens?
    Yep when I was thinking about joining a gym this is exactly what pushed me out the door. It's just to damn expensive I've been lifting for 6+ years and the amount of money I would have spent on a gym membership is ridiculous.

    I prefer to cram my weights and all that into my apartment. I don't have a kitchen table but that's fine with me my daughter would be the only one to use it anyway.

    I have everything I need and more then enough weights for my current lifts. When I need more I'll go buy them. Plus I can sell all of it and make some of my money back if for some odd reason I decide to do that.

  10. #10
    Squat Heavy, Squat Often Cards's Avatar
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    I agree with Behemoth - however if your goal is to lose weight and possibly get in shape I would look into some type of program that revolves around body weight exercises if you're not willing to spend the money.

    Your second reason, being lazy, will not get you far in this sport.
    H: 5'7" W:185
    Goals: 495 -315 -585

    “Persistence Persistence.” - Calvin Coolidge.
    "I'm so pissed at how dumb this thread is that I think I'll go kick my cat. Again"-Belial
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  11. #11
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    It's mostly money. I simply don't have any extra cash to spend on something like a gym membership. The economy is crap right now.

    Another unrelated question:

    I've developed quite the stomach gut from too much inactivity for too long. I have a feeling my routine listed above isn't going to do much to get rid of it, so aside from the weight lifting I'm doing does anyone have any advice on how to shed a pot belly without burning the muscles you're working to build?

  12. #12
    Rob Schilke | GFX Designer thecityalive's Avatar
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    Fat loss comes at a caloric deficit. Your expenditure to intake ratio needs to be higher if you want to lose that gut.
    My road to powerlifting:
    ===thecityalive is dead meat===
    Current RAW PRs:
    Bench: 255 (9/30/13)
    Dead: 515 (9/2/13)
    Squat: 435 (9/26/13)
    Total: 1205 lbs.
    twitter @thecityalive

  13. #13
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    If that's the case it looks like I'll be hitting the treadmill between my workout days then!

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by SmallyBigs View Post
    If that's the case it looks like I'll be hitting the treadmill between my workout days then!

    Room for a treadmiill but no bench? Haha

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by tommygunz90 View Post
    Room for a treadmiill but no bench? Haha
    The treadmill is actually at a friend's house. I have to go over there to use it.


    As someone mentioned, don't forget bodyweight exercises. Pushups, feet elevated pushups, dips, pullups, chinups, etc. An easy way past doing sets of 20-30 is get a dipping belt. They're fairly inexpensive and you can add weight to the dips/pullups/chinups. Also, a backpack will work (even for the pushups), just make sure you wrap the weights in a towel or two for a bit more comfort.
    I'm liking the idea of a chinup bar. I'm sure I can stick one in a doorway somewhere. I'll have to look into that.

  16. #16
    Become Unbreakable Mark!'s Avatar
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    Don't like the fact that you said you were lazy, but you're wanting to lose weight. Those two definitely do not go together at all.
    "Light Weight"

    260's by May

  17. #17
    Administrator chris mason's Avatar
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    The program looks good and soreness is normal. In your case you should train through it. It will go away quickly. Be sure to use good technique! Slow and controlled repetitions.


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  18. #18
    Rob Schilke | GFX Designer thecityalive's Avatar
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    HIIT (high intensity interval training) is where it's at, not this RUNNING thing.
    My road to powerlifting:
    ===thecityalive is dead meat===
    Current RAW PRs:
    Bench: 255 (9/30/13)
    Dead: 515 (9/2/13)
    Squat: 435 (9/26/13)
    Total: 1205 lbs.
    twitter @thecityalive

  19. #19
    The Flyfisher rbtrout's Avatar
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    As someone mentioned, don't forget bodyweight exercises. Pushups, feet elevated pushups, dips, pullups, chinups, etc. An easy way past doing sets of 20-30 is get a dipping belt. They're fairly inexpensive and you can add weight to the dips/pullups/chinups. Also, a backpack will work (even for the pushups), just make sure you wrap the weights in a towel or two for a bit more comfort.
    Give chalk a chance.


    49 years old

    665 squat
    700 deadlift
    325 bench

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by rbtrout View Post
    As someone mentioned, don't forget bodyweight exercises. Pushups, feet elevated pushups, dips, pullups, chinups, etc. An easy way past doing sets of 20-30 is get a dipping belt. They're fairly inexpensive and you can add weight to the dips/pullups/chinups. Also, a backpack will work (even for the pushups), just make sure you wrap the weights in a towel or two for a bit more comfort.
    On what days in my routine listed above would you add these bodyweight exercises? I know I quoted you specifically, but feedback from anyone would be appreciated.

  21. #21
    The Flyfisher rbtrout's Avatar
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    Since you're doing full-body 3X a week, you could really throw them in on any day.
    Pushups will hit chest, shoulders and tris, changing the emphasis on hand placement.
    Dips hit chest, shoulders and tris.
    Pullups and chinups are back, bis and some shoulders.

    I'd probably throw pullups or chinups in on Mondays.
    If you do pullups on Mondays, then do chinups on Fridays.
    Wednesdays, add in pushups, but I'd use closer hand spacing to hit the tris more.
    I'd probably throw dips in on Fridays.
    Give chalk a chance.


    49 years old

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  22. #22
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    Awesome info. I'm going to do that. Thanks!

  23. #23
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    Probably a dumb question, but since I don't have any dip bars or anything will chair dips suffice? Or should I try something else?

  24. #24
    The Flyfisher rbtrout's Avatar
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    As long as they can hold you without breaking or collapsing, you'll be fine.
    Give chalk a chance.


    49 years old

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  25. #25
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    Perfect. Thanks.

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