It’s been a bit since my last post so today I wanted to provide a bit of an update and share a gym story.
My ailing knee problem seems to be corrected for now. After a lot of searching and some trail and error I seem to have corrected my form. Tyler suggested I start with landmine squats which really helped force proper form and allowed me to carry that form over into squats. I dropped the weight considerably as well just to ensure I was doing everything right. The biggest lesson I have learned here is the importance of proper form to ensure you are not hurting yourself when completing an exercise. The internet is a great source for resources but if that isn’t enough the APE Troop is always available to bounce ideas off of and get some really helpful information.
As for the story behind the blog post title “Are you between sets?”.
The biggest hurdle i’m sure people have, including myself, when starting an online training program is having the confidence to go to the gym alone and complete your workouts. When I first started I actually liked the idea of doing this alone because 1) I wasn’t depending on someone else being there in order to do my workouts and 2) it allowed me to gain confidence in what I was doing. A friend of mine started working out religiously a few years back and I was talking to him recently about when he first started. The first thing he said was that he doesn’t think he could have started working out like this (with an online training program) as at the time he couldn’t do it alone. Back when he first started he was heavily dependent on another friend to go to the gym with him as he wasn’t confident enough is his abilities to work out successfully. It became more stressful going to the gym because he knew that their schedule’s had to match up in order to do a workout and if they didn’t, he just didn’t go to the gym.
Another bonus to going to the gym by yourself is learning how to lift the proper weights for YOU. Take incline dumbbell press for example. You look at your exercise stats and last week you did 90 lbs so you think you should go with that again – problem is last week your buddy was there and he helped you get the weights in place. This week no one is there to help and you can’t get set without some assistance. I believe it is important to not only be able to complete an exercise at an appropriate weight but to also be able to get yourself set at that weight. You’ll not only be completing a more complete workout but you’ll be able to do it every time you’re in the gym, regardless if someone is with you or not.
At some point everyone is going to need one and this is what my story is focused on. This morning I was between sets doing dumbbell dead lifts and a guy comes over and waves to get my attention. I take off my headphones fully expecting him to ask if I was done with the weights or give me some advice on what I was doing but to my surprise he asked if I could come give him a spot. I was taken back for a second as it wasn’t like I was the only one in the gym and I definitely was not the biggest but regardless I went over and helped him knock out his last set on the bench. He said thanks and that was that – I went back to the dumbbells and he went off to the machines. Now i’m sure lots of people have been asked to spot before but for me this was a first. It made me feel good about my journey so far as if I didn’t look like I could handle the weight he was benching he probably wouldn’t have asked me for a spot.
After I got back to my workout I started laughing a bit as I kept thinking about a video I had seen on YouTube which I have added below. NSFW language.
It also got me thinking if I would ever have the confidence to ask some random at the gym for a spot. I haven’t needed one yet but I guess I’ll cross that bridge when I come to it. #broscience
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