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  1. #1
    Stood in the Fire
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    weight training upper body only

    K, to start off I'm a naturally big dude. I'm 6'1, and 240 lbs at the moment. Im a little squishy atm, but nobody would call me fat if they saw me (im just tall, thick, and wide). For example, at 200 lbs, I look sickly and gaunt. Anyway, I used to train like a freak and 2 years ago I was a true beefcake. Since then I've lost strength and muscle mass. I wanna get back into it, but I'm only interested in training my upper body at this point (I don't wanna hear that my priorities are wrong and that I should be squatting/dead-lifting - I'm fully aware that those are the most effective lifts. I'd like to have healthy knees and back later in life. plus i have long legs and shorter arms, so those two lifts really take a toll on my body).

    I guess I'm wondering what a good routine is at this point (I'm 26 right now). I have time for maybe 2-3 lifting sessions a week. Ideally I'd like to do all pull/chin-ups and dips, but my strength/body weight ratio is not that great right now. I just wanna regain lost muscle, so I should be able to do so without much hassle, especially since I'm meso-ecto.

    any tips/advice?

  2. #2
    Legendary! Masark's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by beardedcandy View Post
    I'd like to have healthy knees and back later in life.
    Unless you're doing things grievously wrong (e.g. idiotic foot positioning), squats will not harm your knees.

  3. #3
    Stood in the Fire
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    Quote Originally Posted by Masark View Post
    Unless you're doing things grievously wrong (e.g. idiotic foot positioning), squats will not harm your knees.
    im sorry but this is bro science... u cant tell me squatting 3-400 lbs below parallel has no effect on one's knees. u can minimize damage, but its not natural. plus even at 26 my knees are already starting to ache

  4. #4
    I'm not here to judge you, only to tell you the facts. Your leg muscles are some of the largest in your body. Stimulating them will drastically increase your metabolism and help you get into that shape you want to. You don't have to do high weights on anything, just be sure to stimulate those muscles to help increase your metabolism. I recommend high rep sets of lunges/squats once a week. Don't go heavy on the weight, go heavy on the reps instead, this is much better for you. Also, if you're concerned with your knees and back for later in life you could considering doing yoga once a week. A hardcore yoga routine will workout your entire body, don't be too cool to take care of yourself.

    For your upper body routines, you could break them down into a variety of ways. Assuming you have 3 days a week for this, you could do 1) Chest, Shoulders, Triceps (all push muscles) 2) Back and Biceps (all pull muscles) 3) calisthenics (body weight resistance). or you could do 1) Chest and Back (bigger muscles) 2) Shoulders and Arms (smaller muscles), 3) calisthenics.

    If you're looking more for specific moves just let me know, but I recommend high reps low weight per set. This reduces your chance for injury while still stimulating your muscles to improve.

  5. #5
    Brewmaster
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    Quote Originally Posted by beardedcandy View Post
    im sorry but this is bro science... u cant tell me squatting 3-400 lbs below parallel has no effect on one's knees. u can minimize damage, but its not natural. plus even at 26 my knees are already starting to ache
    Squatting below parallel recruits the glutes and hamstrings more and balances the forces across the knee joint better. Squatting above parallel mainly activates the quads and creates unbalanced forces on the knee.

    Stop spreading broscience.

    Go back to training only upper body if you want. Then when you wear shorts everyone can see your pathetic little chicken legs and you pathetic. Guys who don't train legs are wusses. Stop wasting space in the gym and let people who actually want to train use the equipment.
    Last edited by dd614; 2012-09-23 at 02:49 AM.

  6. #6
    I would suggest boat rowing (one of the kinds that focuses on the muscles u want), it is both healthy, awesome to be riding on a bot and good for muscle build.
    Tinker + Alchemist in a single class:
    Tank spec: robotics, steampunk hammers/chainsaws, grappling hooks and heavy machinery.
    Melee dps spec: doping yourself with chems and tossing vicious acids on the enemies.
    Ranged dps: rockets, lasers, TNT critters and explosives, shrink rays and sapper mines.
    Healing spec: chemical sprays, needles, exploding flasks and other chemical type abilities to heal.

  7. #7
    I see that you're from Kalamazoo. Now when I go to the gym and see someone with huge arms and skinny legs I'll know who it is!

    On a more serious note, why would you want to exclusively train upper body? It's not like all leg training = bad knees. If done properly, your knees (and other bones, for that matter) will strengthen along with your muscles. Your legs support your entire body so it's only logical that increasing your upper mass without increasing its support is NOT a good idea.
    -Many thanks to Cocoacross for this amazing signature!-

  8. #8
    adding it training for lower body is advisable, squats dont just do lower body they also help your core, as long as you work to a weight that is suitable then no exercise if done right is bad for you, exercise strengthens your body and keeps the muscles active.

    By all means focus on your upper body but dont ignore the lower, always keep a good base for strength.

  9. #9
    Stood in the Fire Shibuya's Avatar
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    Just training your upper body is so dumb

  10. #10
    High Overlord
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    As a nutrition major and full time personal trainer I highly recommend training your lower body as well as your upper body. No one says you need to squat a shit ton of weight or do some crazy ass deadlifts, no, that indeed will set you up for horrid knee/lower back problems later in life. Then again if your form sucks ass you will still end up killing your body. Any who, stick to a suitable weight or even drop the weight to an even easier load and up the reps. Maybe 3 or 4 sets of 15 to 20 with a decent weight. At a lighter weight you will grow stronger over time and be able to move up in weight without really thinking about it. Throw in some leg extensions, calf raises, and lunges on leg day and you will be golden. Easy peasy, brah. Plus, legs being one of the biggest parts of your body they release a good amount of testosterone just by training them. Sooo getting some growth hormone just by training legs at least once a week that will basically help you in all of your lifts? Sounds pretty good to me. You are doing more for your body by training legs than just, well, training legs. You are training your whole body.

    ---------- Post added 2012-09-23 at 12:04 AM ----------

    As far as a decent program goes I have written out what I mainly use as my base for everything. Stick to compound movements. These work. Sure, it's great to get all fancy and shit and try different exercises, but seriously, if you are putting in the work, eating enough (clean foods), and upping the weight every 2 weeks to a month then you are going to progress and not see a plateau. As you can see I did not type in "abs." I usually train these every other day. Hanging knee raises, crunches, decline sit ups, swiss ball crunches, etc. I also don't get crazy with a lot of isolation bicep and tricep exercises. Over the past 8 years of lifting I have had way more success burning out my tris and bis with one exercise once a week with isolation exercises and leaving the rest to compound movements. This will create more rest for them thus GROWTH. Gotta love that growth. You see people in the gym day in and day out doing too much. Too much can actually hinder your progress. Ok, I have talked way too much. Check out the sample program.




    Mondays: Chest

    Barbell Bench Press: 3x10

    Incline Dumbbell Press: 3x10

    Dumbbell Chest Fly: 3x10

    Weighted Dips: 3x10



    Tuesdays: Legs

    Squat: 3x12 (Keep back on the heels, look forward, core tight, butt out, parallel, squeeze glutes at the top of the exercise)

    Calf Raises: 3x20

    Leg Extensions: 3x12 (Light weight, get a full stretch, and squeeze at the top)

    Lunge: 3x10 (exaggerate the length of your step, keep a tight core, stand up straight, get parallel)



    Wednesdays - OFF




    Thursdays: Press

    Military Press: 3x10

    Dumbbell side raises: 3x12 (Light enough weight that you don't do a little jump to get the weight up, one arm at a time, squeeze delt at the top, keep core tight)

    Barbell shrug: 3x20 (Core tight, shrug straight up, no rolling shoulders or doing a little jump)

    Barbell Curl: 3x12

    Up hill sprints: 20 sprints (Full speed, no stopping, all out)


    Friday - OFF



    Saturdays: Back


    Deadlift: 3x5 (Make sure you understand perfect form on this exercise. Butt down, chest high, keep head slightly down, propell upwards, don't lean back at the top of exercises, keep bar close to body, start with bar close to shins, squeeze glutes at the top)

    Dumbbell Row: 3x10 (Straight back, tight core, no swinging the weight around)

    Leg Curl: 3x12 (Light enough weight to get a tight squeeze on the hamstrings, no using your back to help pull the weight)

    Wide-Grip Pull up: 5x5 (Full extension, squeeze lats at the top, slowly come down, if you can't pull your own body weight use a chair to give slight assistance)



    Sundays: OFF

  11. #11
    Stood in the Fire
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    Quote Originally Posted by dd614 View Post
    Go back to training only upper body if you want. Then when you wear shorts everyone can see your pathetic little chicken legs and you pathetic. Guys who don't train legs are wusses. Stop wasting space in the gym and let people who actually want to train use the equipment.
    did you read my post? Im huge... I will never have chicken legs. i used to squat and deadlift like a psycho. jackass

    ---------- Post added 2012-09-23 at 01:17 PM ----------

    jesus... read the post people... my days of intense lifting are OVER. I just wanna get my upper body in gear

  12. #12
    The Patient Abominator's Avatar
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    So you were some ripped 'beef cake'. Well to become a 'beef cake' it requires year of dedication, training an knowledge. So you should be able to go back to being a 'beef cake' since you just have to remember, unless you forgot all of it. Then you should probably learn it all again like you did before, by not asking an MMO community. This may be harsh but in complete honesty people always vastly overestimate their physical condition, especially when they look back on the past at what they use to be. I love hearing an old man tell me "back in my day I use to be as big as you" to which I start thinking well back in your day professional bodybuilders weren't much bigger than me because they had no knowledge of diet and training but they did have steroids, so you're saying you had revolutionary knowledge on diet and training or you took borderline lethal doses of steroids?

  13. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by beardedcandy View Post
    im sorry but this is bro science... u cant tell me squatting 3-400 lbs below parallel has no effect on one's knees. u can minimize damage, but its not natural. plus even at 26 my knees are already starting to ache
    No your right, it has an effect on your knees. It strengthens them. Squatting below parallel has several times shown to be better for your knees than above parralel. Besides, if your technique is wrong, you shouldn't be squatting anywhere near that weight. Squatting has no more negative effects on your joints than doing benchpresses has on your elbows.

    Quote Originally Posted by beardedcandy View Post
    did you read my post? Im huge... I will never have chicken legs. i used to squat and deadlift like a psycho. jackass

    ---------- Post added 2012-09-23 at 01:17 PM ----------

    jesus... read the post people... my days of intense lifting are OVER. I just wanna get my upper body in gear
    Relax

    The point is right though. You need to train your legs, there's no way around it. I don't understand why you would want to neglect leg training given how many positive effects it has. With serious upper body training and no lower body, your going to develop an unhealthy body symmetry that most likely could end in back problems in your later years. As long as you keep a proper form and don't lift way more than your supposed to, your knees will get more healthy. All the knee-busting myths you hear is coming from people either over-estimating themselfes, didn't want to learn proper form or from people who needed an excuse not to perform leg training. As mentioned, any exercise can bust your joints if performed incorrectly. Benchpresses, military presses, heck even push ups and pulldowns have injuried people.

    Besides, proper lower body training releases much more testosterone than due to the size of the muscles being trained, this extra release of testosterone doesn't only affect your gains in your lower body, but entire body overall. Read a study not long ago that showed that a group training biceps and squats grew their arms by 30% more than those only doing biceps.

  14. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by Abominator View Post
    So you were some ripped 'beef cake'. Well to become a 'beef cake' it requires year of dedication, training an knowledge. So you should be able to go back to being a 'beef cake' since you just have to remember, unless you forgot all of it. Then you should probably learn it all again like you did before, by not asking an MMO community. This may be harsh but in complete honesty people always vastly overestimate their physical condition, especially when they look back on the past at what they use to be. I love hearing an old man tell me "back in my day I use to be as big as you" to which I start thinking well back in your day professional bodybuilders weren't much bigger than me because they had no knowledge of diet and training but they did have steroids, so you're saying you had revolutionary knowledge on diet and training or you took borderline lethal doses of steroids?
    Not really between 16 and 21 your test levels are going to be the highest they will ever get naturally so it could be relatively easy to be big and fit not doing too much then after a few years of being a little more sedentary after your test drops it will be harder to bulk up and cut down with lower test levels.

    Personally I would recommend mark ripptoes starting strength to start with then move into 5-3-1.

    But definitely try to keep your body balanced doing legs is important and theoretically helps boost test since they are the largest muscles in your body.. You don't nessisarily need to squat 300 lbs hell most people start at body weight or just the bar.

    ---------- Post added 2012-09-24 at 03:24 AM ----------

    Quote Originally Posted by beardedcandy View Post
    did you read my post? Im huge... I will never have chicken legs. i used to squat and deadlift like a psycho. jackass

    ---------- Post added 2012-09-23 at 01:17 PM ----------

    jesus... read the post people... my days of intense lifting are OVER. I just wanna get my upper body in gear
    I think everyone here who's been at the gym for any amount of time has heard "I don't need to do legs cause they are naturally big" probably 100 times and eventually they either start training legs or quit all together

    Honestly if you just wanna get in shape go do yoga, the gym is for serious training and treadmills.

  15. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by beardedcandy View Post
    im sorry but this is bro science... u cant tell me squatting 3-400 lbs below parallel has no effect on one's knees. u can minimize damage, but its not natural. plus even at 26 my knees are already starting to ache
    Anything is harmful if you do it wrong or far too much. Physical training should incorporate a full body. Your legs/knees will suffer far more if you build up your upper body because your all of your bodies muscles work in concert with each other. If you'd prefer to focus mass/strength building on your upper body, that's fine but you need to have consistent lower body work outs to match it. Aerobics, yoga, bicycling or swimming are good examples of workouts to match with upper body strength work outs. Id suggest doing a combo of these workouts 2-3 times a week on off days from strength work outs. Also a day or 2 of rest and/or intense stretching a week because you need to give your body recoup time.

  16. #16
    You don't need to do squats or dead lifts if you dont want to. I use to do them and no longer do because they put too much of a strain on my nervous system. I hated not being able to walk without shaking after a legs day. There are bunches of other types of leg exercises that you can use to get a workout.

  17. #17
    Quote Originally Posted by beardedcandy View Post
    im sorry but this is bro science... u cant tell me squatting 3-400 lbs below parallel has no effect on one's knees. u can minimize damage, but its not natural. plus even at 26 my knees are already starting to ache
    If anything, training only your upper body will do more damage to your back than doing squats would.
    Night gathers, and now my watch begins.


  18. #18
    What else will people come up with?
    Beauty > Personality

  19. #19
    Dreadlord Fogkin's Avatar
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    i want to work out but i don't really want to do any kind of hard work... think I can just do some dumbbell curls so i can get all jacked up??!?!

    train your legs, even if it's just a few set of lunges a week, that or just to plyometrics or calisthenics if you just want to get in shape build strength without heavy lifting. The insanity program is actually real good for this.

    Thanks to Scythen for the sig

  20. #20
    Agree 100%
    Quote Originally Posted by Shibuya View Post
    Just training your upper body is so dumb

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