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  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Oct 27, 2007 6:02 AM GMT
    Hey guys,

    I've been doing pretty much the same routine in the gym for several years now. While I do try to change it up on a regular basis, I always find myself falling back into the same patterns. Since the beginning of the year I lost a bunch of weight (fat), so I went from tall and kinda beefy to tall and lanky. I wouldn't mind seeing a bit more lean meat on all areas of my body.

    I guess my questions are, how much can I safely increase the weight I'm lifting or does it matter? Should I perform all of my main sets to failure? Should I increase the number of exercises I do? How about increasing the weight I lift per set until I'm at my max?

    I'm a competitive runner...Lift early, and then run later...I'm thinking of switching that up so I can push myself harder in the gym without having to worry about compromising my run.

    How about protein intake? I've always heard that you need to take in approximately 1 gram of protein per pound of your desired body weight...would I need more since I put in approximately 35 miles a week running?

    Would appreciate any input.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Oct 27, 2007 9:49 PM GMT
    You pretty much answered your own question.

    Decide up your priorities (running, or lifting) and adjust accordingly.

    Tons of running wrecks the metabolic processes that need to work for hypertrophy. It's o.k. if you aren't big. Indulge your passion, first, whichever it is. I hate running. I look like a penguin. I have to lift, or get laughed at. LOL

    When I decided I wanted to be competitive in bodybuilding, I had to let my ice hockey go. I love ice hockey, but, it's way intense, and expensive, and I'm very good at bodybuilding. I made my choice, and it worked out well.

    Educate yourself. There are tons of resources. This board, bodybuilding.com, Google, and so on. Discover what works best for you.
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    Oct 28, 2007 3:12 AM GMT
    I'd recommend getting a trainer if you can afford one. Working with mine over four months, I've seen more results than I have from years of lifting myself based on routines from Men's Health. I meet with my trainer once a week, and we switch up my routine every three months. The weekly meeting gives me a benchmark of how hard I have to work during each routine and also gives me a better idea of what I can do (frankly, I work harder when he's there to spot me). Good luck!
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    Oct 29, 2007 5:01 AM GMT
    Great point(s) chucky. My priority's definitely running...I'd rather do what makes me happy and gives me a sense of peace and accomplishment. I do enjoy lifting weights, but it doesn't do for me what running can.

    Acure-I've done the trainer thing through a company that works out of my gym. Waste of time and money and I have yet to get even a quarter of what I've paid for. The trainers just suck, and they're not professional. If I ever get another trainer, I'll probably hire someone who works independently. I'm going to check references and act more like I'm hiring someone, rather than signing a contract with some sleazy company who acts like they're doing me a favor by taking my hard earned money and then putting me with some skinny college kid who probably isn't even certified.
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    Oct 29, 2007 5:14 AM GMT
    Ouch, running, I'm sorry about the trainer experience! You're right, it's hard to find someone that's both qualified and good (and they're totally different things). I really got lucky in finding someone to work with, and I went through three trainers before finding him.

    I really envy your ability to run--I miss it a lot. Used to run myself, but I'd injured my knee in high school and at a certain point just couldn't log the miles in anymore. But running is like nothing else ...

    Good luck with your running and training, and be well!
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    Oct 31, 2007 9:27 PM GMT
    Chucky's advice is good. Running will keep you from gaining the maximum mass from your workouts, but if you scale it back periodically, you may be able to find a balance. You could only run short distances for a few months while lifting, when concentrate on running again, and then back to lifting.

    You can increase the weights, and should, as long as you can keep good form. That's really the best thing a trainer can do for you, is teach you the correct form. Increase in SMALL increments-- if you add 5% each time, thats 15% a week, which is plenty.

    You should always perform your main sets until failure, or at least close to it, but failure is defined as being unable to complete the rep with proper form, NOT letting your form deteriorate until you can't contract at all. Until you can perfect your form, you can do your reps to failure on machines that help control the motion safely. For example you might do dumbbell incline presses on a bench until you can't do them properly, then do another set on a machine until you can't do them at all.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Oct 31, 2007 10:27 PM GMT
    Proprioception