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Upper body gaining strength faster then lower body....

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  • Upper body gaining strength faster then lower body....

    im seeing much faster strength gains in my upper body and am wondering what i can do to catch my lower body up.

    lower body strength has always been an issue for me and its what i am trying to correct.
    I also have tight calves which i am working on by stretching.
    I have to elevate my heals to do proper squats... I keep hovering around 20-30 squats while holding on to a pole.

    should i do lunges on top of my regular movements? i usually dont feel as sore in my legs as i do in my upper body the days after a work out.
    or would incorporating lunges after my squats be over-training?

    any input will help, thanks

    Vozz
    We need to have a global discussion about the epidemic of donut murder

    Starting Weight: 238 lb
    Current Weight: 224 lb
    Goal: 190-200 lb
    Height: 6'-0"
    Age: 27

  • #2
    I don't think adding lunges would be excessive. So you're doing bodyweight squats at the moment? Knowing more details (set/reps) would be helpful in making specific recommendations.

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    • #3
      Try to keep the heels firmly planted (imagine someone trying to pull a piece of paper out from under your heels thru the whole movement). If you are elevating you heels, you really aren't doing a "proper squat". Pushing from the toes puts too much stress on the knees and your asking for trouble later on down the road. Keeping the heels down brings in the ham and butt muscles, which will give you more balance and increased strength in the legs. Practice this as much as you can, even if it means you do less squats while holding onto a pole. Sounds like doing tip-toe squats would have more of an impact on your calves rather than keeping your heel planted.

      As for squats/lunges, nothing says you can't do both. Do one for a warm up and the other for your work out. Just remember, to push from your heels on your way up from squats/lunges.

      The most important thing to do is get the form right. Cause if you are doing body weight squats and other movements with bad form you will continue to have bad form when you add weight and risk injury.
      My weak attempt at a journal:http://www.marksdailyapple.com/forum/thread35809.html

      M/30y/190#

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      • #4
        I imagine you're seeing better results in your upper body because you are doing a higher training volume on your upper body. You should definitely start doing lunges. Weighted step-ups are great for building leg strength, too.
        "In theory, theory and practice are the same. In practice, they couldn't be more different."

        "You can have anything you want, but you can't have everything you want."

        My blog: http://www.AlKavadlo.com

        sigpic

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        • #5
          im doing the essential movements. so..
          2x as many squats as i can trying to get to 50
          right now its around 2x 25

          Try to keep the heels firmly planted (imagine someone trying to pull a piece of paper out from under your heels thru the whole movement). If you are elevating you heels, you really aren't doing a "proper squat".
          I am raising my heals of the ground by standing on a block because that is the only way that i can get into a squat right now due to my inflexible calves.
          with my feet flat on the ground i cant squat down far enough with out falling backwards. all stems from calves inflexiblity.
          my heels are planted on the block and i feel my thighs working, while i don't feel any stress on my calves.
          We need to have a global discussion about the epidemic of donut murder

          Starting Weight: 238 lb
          Current Weight: 224 lb
          Goal: 190-200 lb
          Height: 6'-0"
          Age: 27

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          • #6
            Vozz,

            Not sure if you've seen it yet, but SL has some pretty good suggestions for getting your heals on the ground during squats,

            http://stronglifts.com/7-ways-to-kee...oor-on-squats/

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            • #7
              thank you for your responses.. i know i should keep my heels on the ground but i cant do that yet and do a full squat.
              i dont want to stop training my thighs untill i stretch my calves to the point where i can bring my thighs parallel to the ground while having my feet plated firmly on the ground.

              its my ankle mobility that is the problem. i need to stretch the calves like i have been doing.
              and i will start doing more volume for my thighs as well.
              We need to have a global discussion about the epidemic of donut murder

              Starting Weight: 238 lb
              Current Weight: 224 lb
              Goal: 190-200 lb
              Height: 6'-0"
              Age: 27

              Comment


              • #8
                Vozz, do the lunges/ step ups. Your thighs, quads and glutes are powerfull muscles and may need the higher effort of lunges to develop.
                Also be aware that once you get past twenty reps, it's more endurance than strength, that's why I went back to weights.
                I feel you on strength coming slowly in the legs, I usualy hit the wall on weighted squats because of wind, more than muscle, and my legs only feel worked after my stationary lunges on Squat days, or my Step ups on Deadlift days.
                Also, the tight calves will be less of an issue with lunges / step ups.
                Are you doing you Grok Squat stretch? very good calf stretch, if you lean forward enough to maintain balance.
                sigpicI'm not old, I'm Vintage!

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                • #9
                  If you're struggling to keep your heals on the floor when squating, give hindu squats a whirl. They give your thighs a good workout and done correctly your heals are supposed to come off of the floor. A good way to build leg strength while you're working on keeping your heals down on normal squats.

                  Also good for building strength around weak knees, often used for physiotherapy rehabilitation of knee injuries.

                  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jPSVpo4mzNI
                  If you're interested in my (very) occasional updates on how I'm working out and what I'm eating click here.

                  Originally posted by tfarny
                  If you are new to the PB - please ignore ALL of this stuff, until you've read the book, or at least http://www.marksdailyapple.com/primal-blueprint-101/

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                  • #10
                    Ankle mobility: Something I worked on a bunch while rehabbing my broken ankle, and discovered it has a lot to do with the feet; what a surprise!

                    Go to Target and get a pair of dryer balls (You only need one, but they only come in bubble-pack pairs.) They're made out of a hard rubber or plastic and have little pointy nubs all over them. Stand up and roll your foot across a ball. Try to work it from different angles, the entire sole and the sides, too. Then sit down, pick it up in your hand and roll it along the top of your foot and the sides of your ankles.

                    This will make your feet very sore the first few times you do it; even my foot that wasn't broken was sore. But once you break down any adhesions and stretch the tissues out, you'll have more flexibility.

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                    • #11
                      vozz, i am thinking you should also try a foam roller for your calves and IT bands. if calf flexibility is an issue, you are likely having mobility problems elsewhere. they are definitely worth the $15 investment. also, you might try tuck jumps (stand on two feet, shoulder width apart and jump as high as you can, tucking your knees to your chest)...this is brutal when you get to 10-15 jumps.

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