Joining a Gym.

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Cobra

Hummingbird
Gold Member
I have finally decided to get off my ass and care more about my health. For example, I carefully watch what I eat now. I started use a spreadsheet to track food intake and nutrition.

Moving forward, my next step is to get more muscular. I am setting a goal of being leaner and a bit bigger with a respectable body and go from there. Currently I'm 5'8" and about 170 pounds. Also, I am 34 years old. My frame is skinny but I have a bit of fat on my chest and belly. My legs are skinny and okay but could be bigger.

So I have a couple choices.
1. Start by losing the fat (running and continue eating right) with an added dose of pushups and crunches.
2. Join a basic Gym to lift weight (my form sucks and I need help).
3. Join an elite Gym where a fitness program will be developed and monitored for me. (e.g. this place http://crossfitdarien.com)

I am not a total beginner. I was in the Navy and went through typical "no weights" exercises during bootcamp and afterwards. However, that was about a good 15 years ago. Additionally, those fitness experiences had left me really skinny with little muscle. I was likely burning muscle in addition to fat due to the running.

Hoping for some advice from you gentlemen.
 

Albertron

Robin
My suggestion is that if you live nearby an established university/college, sign up for their gym (provided they allow non-students to enroll for membership). Compared to the "McDonalds" gym, as I like to call them, i.e. Goodlife, L.A. Fitness, these gyms are maintained very well and tend to have staff who are themselves taking a P.E. major or something relevant to health and fitness. This translates to better advice and better instruction should you seek help.

Also, those McDonald's gyms tend to rob you when it comes to hidden fees and contracts. Uni/college gyms don't typically have that problem because they are partially funded by the tuitions of students and grants from the government as well.
 

Jaylow

Kingfisher
Paying for fitness programs or PT's us a huge waste of money and most of them dont know shit about what they are doing.

It sounds like your are skinny fat. The recipe for curing this is eating about 500 calories more a day, having (at least) around 130g of protein a day and doing heavy compound lifts like deadlift and squats. Do not cut weight, you will look super skinny like a girl and will barely grow any muscle.

Deadlifting 101

Squatting 101

Goodlife, L.A. Fitness, these gyms are maintained very well and tend to have staff who are themselves taking a P.E. major or something relevant to health and fitness. This translates to better advice and better instruction should you seek help.

Goodlife is the only gym I have boycotted since they intentionally charge people even when they cancel their membership and never clean their change rooms or reorganize their weight room. I have heard Goodlife complaints like this in multiple places.

LA Fitness is cheap but is more of a social environment. If you make too much noise a siren will go off and they will kick you out. No joke.
 
Why not just buy dumbbells, a super-curl bar, a pullup-bar that you can attach to your door and some weights and start doing things home slowly, with good form? I started out like this, and there are plenty of resources out there to guide you.

Also, may I add...the amazing shape you get in by starting some kind of martial-arts. Boxing,muay thai, kick boxing, jujitsu... You won`t regret it if you can "go to that dark place" as Randy Couture said, pushing yourself for the first few months. After that you will feel like you are 19 again...
 

WanderingSoul

Crow
Gold Member
I'm going to give you the best advice you will get on this forum about strength training and nutrition.

Ready for it?......

Go to a DIFFERENT forum for your strength training and nutrition information.

This is a forum about traveling and picking up chicks. If you want info on either of those subjects, you have come to the right place. If you want info on other subjects, it is best to seek out resources with thousands of people all working/reading/learning/testing to meet that goal. Places with experts in those fields. You will have dozens upon dozens of people digging through and tearing apart the latest scientific research and studies, using the latest supplements and products, trying and reviewing popular programs, etc.

A couple good starting points IMO are:
Stronglifts.com
http://forum.bodybuilding.com/
http://www.t-nation.com/
scoobysworkshop.com
And dozens of others.
 
rkp208 said:
I am not a total beginner. I was in the Navy and went through typical "no weights" exercises during bootcamp and afterwards. However, that was about a good 15 years ago.

Hoping for some advice from you gentlemen.

I was in the Dept. of the Navy also.
 

Cobra

Hummingbird
Gold Member
Appreciate the advice. The motivational factor and belonging to a community actually are enticing to me. That's why the gym linked above seemed appealing.

As to the chicks, the elite gym seems to have higher a quality but they also seem motivated and in good shape; unlike the hogs that join most gyms and burn 100 of the 1000 calories they just ate. Of course, I would not be going to a gym to game.

I'll stay off this topic at this form and check some other sites as well.
 

liberman

Woodpecker
You want to go to a gym with an emphasis on weight training, lots of free weights and squat racks i.e a man’s gym. Do not go to a female emphasis gym with lots of cardo equipment as it will probably be more expensive and have stupid rules in the weight section (which will be a lot smaller and have more machines less free weights).
Ideally a gym that looks something like this.

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Therapsid

Pelican
Any guys here ever try a crossfit gym?

Crossfit gets dismissed by most power lifting and bodybuilding dudes. Rightfully so in many respects. It falls between the two stools of weight lifting and traditional cardio. But in addition to a solid bodybuilding routine, I have a couple cardio days. These could be put to use doing crossfit, which I've recently done experimentally.

The surprising thing is that I've found that crossfit gyms are, if anything, perhaps more pricey than regular gyms which have much more expensive equipment. This makes no sense on the face of it - but it implies that these establishments may have bigger profit margins.
 

Sebastian

Pelican
They charge a lot because they say you will get motivated by working out together. So everybody is paying to see each other LOL

I keep thinking about trying it (those girls in spandex...geez....)
but I don't see the reason to overwork your muscle.
eg: you will get very healthy by running several miles a week.
What this guys are doing is running 20~30 miles which is more than necessary.

If you think you will enjoy the process of pushing yourself (it's like a drug addiction once you get hooked) then do it.
But if you want to just get fit and somewhat muscular, going to gym 3 times a week would be good enough.


Therapsid said:
Any guys here ever try a crossfit gym?

Crossfit gets dismissed by most power lifting and bodybuilding dudes. Rightfully so in many respects. It falls between the two stools of weight lifting and traditional cardio. But in addition to a solid bodybuilding routine, I have a couple cardio days. These could be put to use doing crossfit, which I've recently done experimentally.

The surprising thing is that I've found that crossfit gyms are, if anything, perhaps more pricey than regular gyms which have much more expensive equipment. This makes no sense on the face of it - but it implies that these establishments may have bigger profit margins.
 

obrero

Sparrow
I would recommend Crossfit. It requires very little thought because you just show up and do the workout, no planning or thinking involved. The coaches are usually good at correcting your form. It's much easier than trying to teach yourself how to squat, deadlift, clean, etc.

You WILL get bigger and leaner. It's hard, you're going to be sore often, but I think it's the fastest way to improve your physique and overall fitness.

There is something to the mob mentality of group workouts. The motivation to go to the next level just isn't there if you're working out alone.

Oh yeah, CF girls are easy swoops if you're fit :banana:

Just my 2 cents. I know there are a lot of cf haters out there, but they have usually never even joined a cf gym for a month.
 

Cobra

Hummingbird
Gold Member
Aliblahba said:
I was in the Dept. of the Navy also.
rkp208 said:
I am not a total beginner. I was in the Navy and went through typical "no weights" exercises during bootcamp and afterwards. However, that was about a good 15 years ago.

Hoping for some advice from you gentlemen.

The Navy was a great experience for me; a lot of great people but even more rejects. Anyhow, judging from your rank and posts, it appears you have improved yourself as a man. I didn't follow that philosophy and took to getting a job and a relationship rather than reaping the benefits of the confidence and experiences as a man the Navy gave me. Good to see a fellow sailor actually living life. I hope to use you as an inspiration. :)
 
rkp208 said:
Aliblahba said:
rkp208 said:
I am not a total beginner. I was in the Navy and went through typical "no weights" exercises during bootcamp and afterwards. However, that was about a good 15 years ago.

Hoping for some advice from you gentlemen.

The Navy was a great experience for me; a lot of great people but even more rejects. Anyhow, judging from your rank and posts, it appears you have improved yourself as a man. I didn't follow that philosophy and took to getting a job and a relationship rather than reaping the benefits of the confidence and experiences as a man the Navy gave me. Good to see a fellow sailor actually living life. I hope to use you as an inspiration. :)

I was in the Dept. of the Navy also.

I was in the Men's Dept. (Marines). Haha. Sorry, had to throw that zinger. Welcome to the forum. You'll learn a lot here. Lot's of good intel on fitness and health.
 

Cobra

Hummingbird
Gold Member
obrero said:
I would recommend Crossfit. It requires very little thought because you just show up and do the workout, no planning or thinking involved. The coaches are usually good at correcting your form. It's much easier than trying to teach yourself how to squat, deadlift, clean, etc.

You WILL get bigger and leaner. It's hard, you're going to be sore often, but I think it's the fastest way to improve your physique and overall fitness.

There is something to the mob mentality of group workouts. The motivation to go to the next level just isn't there if you're working out alone.

Oh yeah, CF girls are easy swoops if you're fit :banana:

Just my 2 cents. I know there are a lot of cf haters out there, but they have usually never even joined a cf gym for a month.

Thanks, I hear that I should be going to a "man's" gym. It makes sense as I have read various posts and articles on the topic from those more knowledgeable than myself. The problem with me is that I lack the push and motivation. Don't get me wrong. I don't mean the motivation to work out. I mean the motivation to work out the "right way." For example, I had it ingrained in me that if I ran quite a bit, I would be in good shape. That was wrong and all that happened was I got really skinny; any muscle I put on was also likely discared during the process. I have never done a squat, press or row. My first option is to pay about $20-60 a month for a gym that has the equipment but I personally need to bring the right form or get advice from someone that may not really know. The other option is join the crossfit gym (link posted in the OP) for about $115 - $150 per month with the added benefits of community, form development and structure. What I am struggling with now is the cost-benefit of each option given my goal of putting on more muscle and "looking" fit.
 

Cobra

Hummingbird
Gold Member
Aliblahba said:
rkp208 said:
Aliblahba said:
rkp208 said:
I am not a total beginner. I was in the Navy and went through typical "no weights" exercises during bootcamp and afterwards. However, that was about a good 15 years ago.

Hoping for some advice from you gentlemen.

The Navy was a great experience for me; a lot of great people but even more rejects. Anyhow, judging from your rank and posts, it appears you have improved yourself as a man. I didn't follow that philosophy and took to getting a job and a relationship rather than reaping the benefits of the confidence and experiences as a man the Navy gave me. Good to see a fellow sailor actually living life. I hope to use you as an inspiration. :)

I was in the Dept. of the Navy also.

I was in the Men's Dept. (Marines). Haha. Sorry, had to throw that zinger. Welcome to the forum. You'll learn a lot here. Lot's of good intel on fitness and health.

Marines hated the Navy cats; I don't blame them. Some Navy dudes were just bitches. I wasn't pathetic like that but got worse after I left. It was a good lifestyle for me at the time - active, could stay somewhat politically incorrect with other men, had structure, had diversity, visited countries with beautiful women and so on. I was enlisted and didn't have a degree; so I left to do "better." Job wise I did fine. However, the lack of structure, political correctness and especially diversity on the outside got to me and I went downhill socially. Catching up now with fitness and hope to make strides in other areas over the next year. Maybe I will even do 100 approaches per Roosh.
 
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