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#1 Edited by big_jon (5782 posts) -

Since a young age I have always be interested in strength and physic, I started doing a small work out regime every night before bed of 40 push up, 40 sit ups and 40 oblique twists when I was about twelve years old, and kept this up for about two years or so in hopes that it would help me drop some weight and not be a fat kid. In high school I kicked it into overdrive by hitting the gym about five days a week on and off for about two years straight. I got pretty strong and by the end of my time there I was able to bench press about 275lbs twice, I was very proud of this but at the time was also realizing that I spent too much time lifting weights and not enough time doing cardio work, the Reason this dawned on me was that my father died do to heart related problems in September of 2007 because he was too heavy. That scared me so I started running a bit more.

So when I was out of high school I started running more than before, I started small and worked my way up to a couple times a week. Due to lack of funds running became a substitute for the gym and soon I had dropped from an average weight of 235lbs to 210 lbs. Eventually I disided to start going to the gym again and basically had to restart all the progress I had once made, This was compounded by the fact that I stopped every two months for a while then started again. The thing that always disheartened me was my lack of strength on the bench press compared to what I was capable of before, I had figured because of my lighter weight I would never get to my 315lbs bench mark that I always wanted to reach.

About three months ago I started working out again, five days a week and with a new outlook toward my fitness. My approach would be to hit everything as balanced as I could and work on cardio, form, and core work more and better than before. This new approach was also helped by having the guy who owns the gym that I go to start helping me train. Starting from the bottom and working back up with much stronger and more disciplined form. Now after three months of work I have made much progress and am much more healthy than ever before. Not only am I in better cardiovascular shape than before, and weight 25lbs less than I did, I can now lift almost as much as I once could but with much better form and discipline.

I hope to be able to flat bench press 315 lbs in the next four to six months, I am current able to press around 260lbs at a body weight of 215 lbs and a height of 6'3".

Here is a video of my max attempt last week.

So I ask you Giantbombers do you have a goal that you are finally near reaching? What is it, are you almost there? It doesn't need to be anything specific, just what ever you are trying to accomplish.

An update on my progress, I went up ten pounds on my Maximum 1 rep on Thursday, I also ran 8.5 km in 45 minutes yesterday, both are new records for me.

Update 2: I was able to press 225 for three sets of 6 today, this means that I am well on my way.Also I checked my weight, I've put on 5 pounds, I'm now sitting at 220lbs and I've gone from 14.2% body fat to 13.6 in a month.

Update 3: So I figured it's time for an update as my goal has not changed, after some back and forth health I am back at it, I got 245lbs for six reps on my final set yesterday, that brings my max up to between 290 and 300lbs, I am finally almost there, I will post a video when I reach my goal.

Update 4: I went in today, I did 1x8 with 135, 1x6 with 235 1x6 with 245 then 1x5 with 250, five pounds a week increase it seems, solid progress.

I am thinking that once I can get 3x6 at 265 I will try for 315.

Update 5: I went in today, it seems I am now reaching a slow peak, I got 235x6, 245x6, then 255 for 5 reps, now starts the slow grind.

Update 6 Duders: All right today I wanted to see what I could really do iif I started stacking the weight, I did 225x3 275x3 225x3 275x2 225x3 280x1

I am getting close, in two weeks I will try 290 and see how it feels, think I can do it, but trying new weight is always intimidating.

280lbs, looks scary.
#2 Posted by Empirepaintball (1397 posts) -

Very good. You've got awsome form, by the way. I'm a freshman in college, and play rugby (and some pick up hockey games). I weigh about 245 and press about the same that you do. Anyway, my goal is to be able to run a half marathon. Because I play scrum half in rugby (basically like a center in football), my coach wants me to gain a little weight, but I really don't want it to be fat, so I'm trying really hard to work cardio and gain some muscle as well. It's tough, though. I think I ran three miles in 18.5 minutes, which is a pretty good pace for me, but, unfortunately, that's not quite a half marathon. 


So my question to you is: Do you use protein? I think that that's the only way for me to run a lot and gain muscle at the same time.
#3 Edited by big_jon (5782 posts) -
@Empirepaintball: I don't but I try to eat a lot of it with no fat included, Egg whites, Tuna, and chicken but I'm not sure how to gain weight while running more as I've never had to do that.

I think the key is a good diet while eating about six meals a day, eat after you lifts and runs and just try to keep the fat out of your diet as much as you can.

3 miles in 18 minutes is a great pace especially for someone of your size, and all I can say is I hear football players wanting to put on weight a lot however I disagree simply for health. I can't see you being thrown around at 245 and I feel that people put too much confidence in weight over sheer strength and agility. Some of the most powerful rugby players in the world are about 240lbs.

That's just how I feel but if you want to add body weight the key as far as I know  protein, and eating often while working out is the way to go.

Keep up the good work.
#4 Posted by Empirepaintball (1397 posts) -
@big_jon said:  Like I said though, I'm really not trying to put on fat, just muscle, for that exact reason that it's unhealthy to be 315. I think that just gets to the point of gross. I'm not fat or skinny, just kind of regular, and I aim to keep it that way. The other thing I have been doing is running some ladders and agility stuff. I think I ran my 40 yard in about 4.85.

What do you usually do for your upper body workouts? What lifts? I'm just curious to know, and maybe to pass on some info to my coach.

#5 Posted by UncleClassy (405 posts) -

Damn, this just reminded me I havent lifted since like last October.

#6 Posted by iam3green (14390 posts) -

wow that's nice. i actually want to become a big guy also. at school for a project i am putting together everyone's video clips that they made. one of the clips  is an ad for an iron man lifting competition. the guy is huge and lifting like 900 pound huge wooden thing, and 225 pound dumbbell, and other such heavy weights. i am just like wow that is amazing i want to have an ability like that.

right now i'm just lifting a 30 pound dumbbell in the basement. 125 pound, 5'5. i don't want to go to the gym, with people watching me lift.

i have a question about stereotype lift weight.  crazy that you are that big and have 1,2-- something post on a video game forum.  do you get the girls all the time? are you a douche because your big? do you have other nerdy friends that you play video games with?

#7 Edited by SirOptimusPrime (2030 posts) -
@iam3green: I don't want to be a prick, but man up. People that watch you lift can give tips on how to perfect your form (easily the most important part of working out), explain set tips and the like. I know that the point where lifting became second-hand was taking a lifting activity period in school; sure half the class did it to avoid P.E., but there were the football and baseball players who would say something like "Hey, you're putting too much weight on your back/not using full range of motion, etc" and me being the nerdy ass dude I am, didn't know that. So invest in a gym membership or find something like that. 

Oh, and don't get the misconception that bigger=better for lifting. Building muscular endurance with low weights and perfecting technique is what's important so if you feel that uncomfortable with working out around others, keep on with that 30 lb., you'd be surprised how much muscle you can build with less than that. 

EDIT: Nice form, dude. I'm currently on a trek to 220 lbs., last lift was 180 lbs with me at 160 lbs. 5'8'' (I'm short :/ ) 

#8 Posted by iam3green (14390 posts) -
@SirOptimusPrime:  thanks for that. i change weight usually when i can do 30 reps of lifting with everything. right now i'm doing 20 reps of everything and 130 sit ups.
#9 Edited by big_jon (5782 posts) -
@SirOptimusPrime:
You'll get their soon I'll bet, my buddy is about 5'8" and in a year or two he went from lifting 160lbs to 270lbs You're already lifting more than you weigh which is a great start.

@m0rdr3d:
Thank you for the support dude.

@iam3green:
I'm a nerd at heart, I have Halo posters all over my apartment, I play Warhammer 40k, and I'm generally only a douche to douche bags.
#10 Posted by Pibo47 (3166 posts) -
You should try joining crossfit. Theres probly one near you, wherever you are lol. They are super intense. About a year ago today, i way wayyyy out shape. Now im getting pretty ripped.. I went from a max deadlift of 90 lbs to..oh id say about 345 or so. And im still making big improvements each month. The only thing i really need to fix concerning my fitness is my cardio. im around 15% body fat, i needa drop to 7% or so...yeah. Working out is legit my favorite thing XD
#11 Edited by oatz (1090 posts) -

Good job, bro, and good luck.
Been bodybuilding for close to 7 years now, currently at 6'1 around 230 lbs, hovering at 10 %. Gonna cut to 8% and see if I can maintain it during the summer. 

@Pibo47 said:

" You should try joining crossfit. Theres probly one near you, wherever you are lol. They are super intense. About a year ago today, i way wayyyy out shape. Now im getting pretty ripped.. I went from a max deadlift of 90 lbs to..oh id say about 345 or so. And im still making big improvements each month. The only thing i really need to fix concerning my fitness is my cardio. im around 15% body fat, i needa drop to 7% or so...yeah. Working out is legit my favorite thing XD "

Crossfit is absolute shit for anyone serious about gaining muscle and lifting heavy.
#12 Edited by bananablade (34 posts) -

i want to have a nice looking body, thats it lol. ive been doing compound lifts for a while but i think its about time i do something thats more aesthetic focused because my body is hideous. im 5'10, 162lbs and dl 405x1, squat 315x4-5. probably bench like 185 tops and have no abs. do you have any recommendations for a well balanced routine? ive been doing a 5x5 routine for the longest time but i think im long overdue for a switch because im unfortunately really self-conscious about how my body looks currently


edit: at the same time, i'd like to hover around 165lbs..yeah im one of those lame  "but i dont want to get bulky" kind of guys
#13 Edited by swamplord666 (1763 posts) -

Nice dude! I've just started getting back into shape but in the way that i'm too skinny and need to bulk up, eat more and better and get my body more conditioned to exercise. For me it's more of a self confidence boost. 
In terms of goals, Once Uni is all finished I plan on spending a hard month of getting better at Maya and optionally 3ds max in modelling, rigging and texturing.

@bananablade: don't worry man, I'm in the same boat as you. I have gym buddies who want to get huge but I just want to get fit and basically not look like I spend all free time I have at the gym...
#14 Edited by big_jon (5782 posts) -
@bananablade: Tons of cardio followed by core work, eat less fat, and start doing 3 sets of 12 to 15 if you're wanting to lean out, three different workouts for each major muscle group.

I do cardio and core 4 out of my five times a week.

That's just my opinion though, but 5x5 will inevitably build mass not tone.
#15 Posted by big_jon (5782 posts) -
@Empirepaintball:
Chest work: Flat bench press, Incline bench press, Decline Bench press, Dumbbell flys, Dumbbell press, Incline dumbbell press,

Triceps work: Dips/Weighted dips, Push ups, Scull crushers, Seated tricep extensions, Laying down tricep extensions, Narrow grip bench press.

Bicep work:
Dumbbell curls (seated or standing), barbell curls, Hammer curls, Consentratoin curls, preacher curls.

Shoulders work
: Overhead press, dumbbell press, Laerail raises, Front raises, Shrugs, Upright rows, Cable side lateral raises.

Back work: T-bar rows, Dumbbell rows, Bent over barbell rows, Pull ups, Seated cable rows.


There is a few I forget the names of but that is the gist of what I do for lifts, I do my Bench work after three days of rest alternating between heavy and light days.

Hope that helps, if you have more questions just ask.
#16 Posted by Azteck (7449 posts) -

Skinny 4 lyfe<3<3

#17 Posted by big_jon (5782 posts) -
@Azteck:
pro 4 lyfe.
#18 Posted by Th3_James (2579 posts) -

Now lift that with your penis. Than I will be impressed.

#19 Posted by proggykins (143 posts) -

I was a pretty fat kid (5'7", 250lbs at my worst), became a vegetarian and started working out a little in high school and managed to drop to 160. Just started really hitting the gym a couple months ago and I'm feeling and looking a lot better than I used to. Not being able to lift as much as you want to is definitely discouraging though.

Pretty impressive weight on the bench, hopefully I'll be able to lift that much someday!
#20 Posted by McShank (1630 posts) -

nice, I just started going to the Gym after a 2year lapse of being lazy and gaining to much weight :( went from a nice 245 to 275 since Football stopped after highschool. I can relate on how you had to restart from the beginning when you started lifting again since muscles get soft and deteriorate after not in use for a good time. I Must work harder to get back into shape and get back to my ole 1000+pound weight lifts! (Combined between bench, squat, and Man Makers)

#21 Posted by DEllen (149 posts) -
@Empirepaintball: Aren't a scrum half and a center basically the opposites? Scrum halves are stereotypically the smallest players on the field. 
#22 Posted by big_jon (5782 posts) -
@DEllen:
Hookers usually are actually.
#23 Edited by Empirepaintball (1397 posts) -
@DEllen said:

"
@Empirepaintball: Aren't a scrum half and a center basically the opposites? Scrum halves are stereotypically the smallest players on the field.  "

Size wise they are, but the gist of a scrum half is to launch the ball after a scrum. It loosely resembles snapping the ball if you are a center. It's a pretty flimsy comparison, to be sure, but that's how I describe it to my friends who have no f*cking idea what is going on.

A fly half is usually pretty small also.
#24 Posted by fancifulunicorn (58 posts) -

I completed the 100 pushup challenge a while ago (I actually did it a long time ago but with bad form and whatnot so I sort of started over).  This is big for me since I'm mostly a long distance runner.  Marathon type stuff isn't a big deal for me but my goal now is to do well at some shorter distance stuff.  I did alright at state in hs for the 800 meter and I would like to get sub 2:00 times again and start getting beastly at it.  I figure I need to muscle up a tad after all this long distance stuff so that's pretty much my goal right now.  I eventually just want to go to the open state meet and beat some college dudes :P. 

#25 Posted by DEllen (149 posts) -
@Empirepaintball: Yeah fair enough but you probably shouldn't sacrifice fitness and speed for being a bit stronger in the tackle.
#26 Posted by fancifulunicorn (58 posts) -

Speaking of working out, does anyone else use the bombcast as their workout noise?  Is that weird?

#27 Posted by phish09 (1110 posts) -

...at a time?!

#28 Posted by Toms115 (2317 posts) -

occasionally i look at my weights and realize that it's easier being skinny

#29 Posted by Beaudacious (934 posts) -

My weigh regime consist of doing a variation of lifts non-stop with not a single break, from top to bottom. It seems to work for my body, 3 sets of 12 each. I find it oddly rewarding to tire myself to the brink of exhaustion, then continue to lift till i basically can't pick up the weigh off the floor/bench. The upside for me with this is that it fits my A.d.d personality since it basically cuts my workout time in half as well. I've nevered tried to lift  max at rested, idk why but my mentality has always been if you can't do 12 reps it doesn't count. Guess maybe am more of a tone, then size guy.

Props to OP though, 300 + is nothing to scoff at. I also think i don't do enough cardio, but the only cardio i enjoy is cycling, or swimming. I'd rather gouge my eyeballs out then do any sort of straight running.

#30 Posted by big_jon (5782 posts) -
@Beaudacious:

The funny thing is I'd far rather run than swim or cycle. lol
#31 Posted by big_jon (5782 posts) -

 An update on my progress, I went up ten pounds on my Maximum 1 rep on Thursday, I also ran 8.5 km in 45 minutes yesterday, both are new records for me.

Update 2: I was able to press 225 for three sets of 6 today, this means that I am well on my way.

#32 Posted by DukeT (119 posts) -

@big_jon Good job at working to where you want to be, especially if you don't play a sport. I'm a senior in high school right now, headed to college for football.
I'm considered small for a D-Lineman, but at 245 lbs 5'11, my last bench max was 340. My coaches have always stressed alternating muscle workouts. If you go into the gym with someone who thinks doing a bunch of reps is going to get you stronger, your not going to get stronger. Change workouts on different days, do a lot of reps with low weight, then do medium-high weight on a cycle, like 225 at 5 reps, 6 times. Then do about 95% percent of your max, with a spotter, as many times as possible, taking breaks in between each set. Cardio helps, but if you want more muscle and less fat, its all about plyometrics. Jumping in place, broad jumping, and short sprint bursts will help you to lose fat. Most people who play sports need to be physically capable of filling a certain role, but people like yourself, who just want to be in good shape generally, have so many options. You need to do everything possible, from P90X to power lifting in order to get where you want to be. Focusing on individual muscles instead of one muscle group helps the entire body to develop muscle. Good luck!

#33 Posted by big_jon (5782 posts) -
@DukeT: Surprisingly enough I checked my weight the other day, I have gone from 215 to about 220 in a month, I also checked to see if it was fat or not, and it turns out that I have gone from 14.2% body fat to 13.6% in a month, that's 5lbs of muscle, and I am pretty amazed.
#34 Posted by Example1013 (4807 posts) -

I've only skimmed like a sentence of this thread, but one thing just jumped out at me: why in holy hell would you ever throw out a perfectly good egg yolk?


@Th3_James: My health teacher in high school knew someone who tried that once. Well, sorta. He was fucking a girl in the weight room (in the dark, I think), went to go to the door or something, and tripped and knocked the weights on his dick. Apparently they only partially succeeded in reattaching it. It functions for removing waste, but not much else.
#35 Posted by Vitor (2832 posts) -

I put on 22 pounds over my first 3/4 months hitting the gym here - went up from 132 to 154 in body weight (about 10% last time I checked). Am about 5'10.  Lifting about 160 but not having seen much improvement in terms of weight recently. 


How often do you guys increase the amount you're lifting? Once every two weeks or more? Also, what's your diet like? I pretty much try to eat once every 2/3 hours and half a bowl of rice with vegetables and around 200 grams of chicken/pork/beef - basically whatever I have lying around at the time. 

Was doing a 5 time a week gym routine but found myself far too exhausted to keep it up. Dropping it to around the 3/4 I was doing originally. Concentrating on chest one day, then biceps and triceps the next ones. 

@example1013: That's the kind of story that'll give a guy nightmares...
#36 Posted by Example1013 (4807 posts) -
@Vitor: I know, right? Such a waste of good yoiks. ;)
#37 Posted by npeterson08 (502 posts) -
@fancifulunicorn said:
" Speaking of working out, does anyone else use the bombcast as their workout noise?  Is that weird? "
I listen to the bombcast when I work out! I usually just pick a random old episode.
#38 Edited by big_jon (5782 posts) -

So I figured it's time for an update as my goal has not changed, after some back and forth health I am back at it, I got 245lbs for six reps on my final set yesterday, that brings my max up to between 290 and 300lbs, I am finally almost there, I will post a video when I reach my goal.

#39 Posted by GetEveryone (4458 posts) -

... Do I live in some crazy world full of midgets, or does America breed huge people by comparison?

245 pounds is 17.5 stone (or 111KG). That's heavy by any measurement - why would anyone desire to put on more weight than that?

At the moment I'm pushing something measly like 65KG (though I was benching 80+ at my strongest) and weigh 170 at 5'11".

This thread has made me feel like a woman.

#40 Posted by RsistncE (4496 posts) -

@big_jon: I'm a much smaller guy than you (136 lbs) but my max is just over 200lbs right now. Your form might need a little work but the angle of the video is a little odd: it looks like you might be flaring your arms a little and you're probably not coming down low enough since the inner angle between your biceps and forearm barely hits 90 at the lowest point. You want to aim for just a bit past that, like try to reduce it to about 80. Keep at it though, your max is already well above your bodyweight.

In terms of diet I wouldn't avoid fats. Fats are incredibly sources of energy...that and your body needs them just to operate effectively. The key is not to eat shitty fats if you want max performance. This means getting lots of quality EFA's and some healthy saturated sources coming from nuts, coconuts etc.

@Empirepaintball: In reality even individuals with great genetics have a tough time putting on muscle at the rate of about 10lbs per year. Unless they're on steroids of course. Additionally, if you're shooting for something like 10lbs the reality also is that you'll probably end up putting on a little bit of fat also (depending on your diet). The road you're taking is going to be slow, in fact it'll take years before you put on something close to 20lbs, but it'll be worth it once you get there.

@SirOptimusPrime: The only issue with lifting 30's is that, depending on the person of course, it may be too light. Most studies have shown that you want to go to failure to achieve the the level of muscle tearing that is needed to promote build up again. For example, I could bench 50 lbs for who knows how many reps. In fact, even if I ever got tired it would only be from holding my arms up perpendicular to my body for so long. At the end of the day, to build muscle you need to lift heavy and go to failure.

#41 Posted by the_OFFICIAL_jAPanese_teaBAG (4284 posts) -

Does weight lifting become easier when you become older?  Because Im 16 and my squat max has been 275 for a long time....  Its really bugging me because I really want to go over 300 pounds

#42 Posted by big_jon (5782 posts) -

@the_OFFICIAL_jAPanese_teaBAG: I have found that they key for me was just rest, take a week in between your chest workouts, make sure your muscles are well rested before you lift.

I was over training, it is hard to get stronger when you do that.

#43 Edited by big_jon (5782 posts) -

@GetEveryone said:

... Do I live in some crazy world full of midgets, or does America breed huge people by comparison?

245 pounds is 17.5 stone (or 111KG). That's heavy by any measurement - why would anyone desire to put on more weight than that?

At the moment I'm pushing something measly like 65KG (though I was benching 80+ at my strongest) and weigh 170 at 5'11".

This thread has made me feel like a woman.

I am not sure, I have always just be somewhat obsessed with both size, and strength. When I was 17 my 23 year old land lord was I successful guy, he was strong, smart, and was good looking, I looked up to him as a roe model I suppose.

He also bench pressed 315lbs, it was something of awe for me to see, I wanted to do the same.

Also, I am Canadian :)

#44 Posted by gamefreak9 (2417 posts) -

I used to go to the gym and thought I was in shape... then I went with people who are in ACTUAL shape and learned what it means and never hit the gym again:p. Your body will adjust to get in shape according to what you need! Though if ur a house cat(is that valid in english?, means stay at home too much and don't have an active lifestyle) i guess Gym is a good substitute.

#45 Posted by Xeiphyer (5611 posts) -

The real question is: How many cock pushups can you do?!

#46 Posted by the_OFFICIAL_jAPanese_teaBAG (4284 posts) -
@big_jon: Really?  Damn, Ive been working out 5 times a day and Ive been doing chest and legs twice a week....  Thanks for the heads up. 
 
@Xeiphyer: Ahhh the true test of a man's strength
#47 Posted by big_jon (5782 posts) -

@Xeiphyer said:

The real question is: How many cock pushups can you do?!

Just one is all you need.

@the_OFFICIAL_jAPanese_teaBAG: Yes, I was going five days a week before and hitting chest twice a lot of the time, my bench press was stuck, now it is going up when I do it after fully rested, and repaired muscles.

#48 Posted by s7evn (1072 posts) -

@the_OFFICIAL_jAPanese_teaBAG said:

@big_jon: Really? Damn, Ive been working out 5 times a day and Ive been doing chest and legs twice a week.... Thanks for the heads up.

@Xeiphyer: Ahhh the true test of a man's strength

Rest will allow your muscles to build back up. Alternating your work out so you don't do the same muscles two days in a row can be helpful, or you can just work out every other day (cardio on off days or something).

#49 Posted by the_OFFICIAL_jAPanese_teaBAG (4284 posts) -
@s7evn: Yeah I try to space them out every 3 days.  I really dislike cardio because I have no motivation for cardio....  
#50 Edited by Nick (696 posts) -

I used to squat 315 lbs. I'm about 6'2 and weighed 195 lbs at the time, squatted to parallel, 4 reps. Can't do it anymore though, I lost some weight, can maybe do 275 now.