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Want to start lifting weights...1st step: find a coach/trainer?

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  • Want to start lifting weights...1st step: find a coach/trainer?

    I've decided I want to try some weightlifting after having given it up years ago. I've been reading the book Starting Strength by Rippetoe. Now the question is, how to start? Do I find a trainer/coach to help me out with getting the form down or is the book and various videos enough? If I should find a trainer how do you find a good one? Finding a gym looks not to be so easy either, as I noticed that some don't even have squat racks (i.e. Planet Fitness). Mostly stationary bikes, etc.

    I thought about going to some CrossFit places in the area and asking around, not because I want to do CrossFit, but it might turn up some leads. At least it seems there is a lot of crossover between people who do CrossFit and who are into Primal/Paleo stuff.

  • #2
    Personally I think you should take half a day watching youtube videos on correct form first. See what your comfort level is before deciding how much help you are going to need.

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    • #3
      I did 8 one-hour sessions on the main lifts with a coach to make sure my form was good. I think it was a great investment. There is a lot going on tht you can't observe directly. If you don't go that route, then do a lot of filming from different angles to check form against SS and YouTube.

      I also didn't really know my way around a gym and weight lifting equipment so it was a real help just to get oriented.

      Strting Strength is a great reference. So is Becoming a Supple Leopard.

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      • #4
        You can learn the lifts just fine without a trainer. They can be expensive, and their advice might be counterproductive ("Squats are bad for your knees!"). What worked for me was to record all my sets (even the warmups) and watch them while I was resting. If something didn't look right, I'd work on that during the next set.

        If you're still unsure about your form, post a video here or on the Starting Strength forum, and you should get any help that you need. And find a gym with a power rack and a place to do deadlifts. There's probably one somewhere in your area.
        In matters of style, swim with the current. In matters of principle, stand like a rock.

        This message has been intercepted by the NSA, the only branch of government that listens.

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        • #5
          That's what I do, record an watch while resting. Very helpful!! I just bought a used weight bench, bar and plates off of craigslist. I also spent a few days before
          I started watching YouTube, Ripp had many videos there teaching how to do each lift along with some classes.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Jefferson1775 View Post
            You can learn the lifts just fine without a trainer. They can be expensive, and their advice might be counterproductive ("Squats are bad for your knees!"). What worked for me was to record all my sets (even the warmups) and watch them while I was resting. If something didn't look right, I'd work on that during the next set.

            If you're still unsure about your form, post a video here or on the Starting Strength forum, and you should get any help that you need. And find a gym with a power rack and a place to do deadlifts. There's probably one somewhere in your area.
            This is great advice. I had a lot of success with videotaping my lifts, posting them as requests for form checks when I couldn't figure out what was going wrong (or if I wasn't sure if something was going wrong), but a lot of the time I could see how I was deviating from the model laid out in the book on my own and work to correct it. The lifts are technical, but not super complicated. Follow the steps for learning them in the book to the letter and you'll be most of the way there, I promise.
            The Champagne of Beards

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            • #7
              Thanks everyone for your input so far…

              Originally posted by Jefferson1775 View Post
              And find a gym with a power rack and a place to do deadlifts. There's probably one somewhere in your area.
              So I visited one today where I can do deadlifts, and they have a squat rack but not a power cage. Do you think that is good enough?

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              • #8
                Originally posted by StupidFatHobbit View Post
                So I visited one today where I can do deadlifts, and they have a squat rack but not a power cage. Do you think that is good enough?
                That should be fine. Just make sure that you can place the bar at around sternum level before you begin to squat and that you can safely dump the bar onto the safeties if needed.

                Your form won't be perfect at first, but it will improve with practice. Best of luck.
                In matters of style, swim with the current. In matters of principle, stand like a rock.

                This message has been intercepted by the NSA, the only branch of government that listens.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by Jefferson1775 View Post
                  That should be fine. Just make sure that you can place the bar at around sternum level
                  Armpit level. You can always work with an inch or 2 lower, but not higher.
                  The Champagne of Beards

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                  • #10
                    AllPro: A Simple Beginner's Routine part IIII - Bodybuilding.com Forums

                    I've just started this, it explains everything in easy terms and shows how to do each lift with videos.


                    First time I've tried a link, hope it works,
                    FTM. I'm not biased, I hope everybody beats the mags!

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Sol blackcat View Post
                      AllPro: A Simple Beginner's Routine part IIII - Bodybuilding.com Forums

                      I've just started this, it explains everything in easy terms and shows how to do each lift with videos.
                      Clearly a hypertrophy routine based on the set and rep scheme. Probably best left to people who are already somewhat strong. Exercise selection isn't bad (except the bicep curls and calf raises, also a bodybuilder thing)
                      First time I've tried a link, hope it works,
                      The Champagne of Beards

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by RichMahogany View Post
                        Clearly a hypertrophy routine based on the set and rep scheme. Probably best left to people who are already somewhat strong. Exercise selection isn't bad (except the bicep curls and calf raises, also a bodybuilder thing)
                        First time I've tried a link, hope it works,
                        What do you think would be better. I thought it was aimed at beginners. Any advice would be welcome. Thanks.
                        FTM. I'm not biased, I hope everybody beats the mags!

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                        • #13
                          Thanks for all the tips/advice. I'm signed up for a gym and plan to do my first SS workout tomorrow. Wish me luck!

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                          • #14
                            What happened to LH?

                            Good luck. Hope you enjoy it.
                            FTM. I'm not biased, I hope everybody beats the mags!

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Thanks…so far so good! It feels amazing immediately afterwards but then the day after I was feeling super sore. In fact I was worried I wouldn't feel up to doing today's session but after the warm up it was fine.

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