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Machines vs. Free weights

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Old 06-25-2005, 01:13 PM   #16
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Julia -- That's great that you are moving up.... Did you try a barbell to do a bench press instead of dumbells for your chest for some it's easier than the 2 dumbells at first... Welcome to our world, it's so much fun
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Old 06-25-2005, 05:21 PM   #17
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Quote:
Did you try a barbell to do a bench press
I considered that but decided against it because I can tell that my right arm (I'm left handed) is somewhat weaker than my left and I wanted to make it work on its own.

I also tried a move that I saw a professional athlete on TV doing. One leg stretched out behind me on a large stability ball, a 15lb DB in each hand and "lunge" with the leg that's on the floor. Talk about needing stabilizing muscles...
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Old 06-25-2005, 06:42 PM   #18
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This thread is really interesting. I do a few free weights, biceps and triceps, the single arm row, and side raises. I am still mainly machine based at the moment. As I get more confidence I will start trying some more free weights.

We don't have a lot of suitable equipment at our gym, only the dumb bells. And unfortunately the weights area is tiny with a lot of dumb guys chatting around the dumb bells. I used be scared of them but now I just smile and tap my feet for 30 seconds, and if they're still talking I just yell "oi move", and off they scurry! There isn't really the space for lunges.... but then we have great cardio, and most importanty, good instructors, so you gotta take the good with the bad.

Those videos were great, very informative.
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Old 12-23-2005, 03:48 AM   #19
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Has anyone tried the Bowflex adjustable weights? It seems like a good idea, but I'm wondering how they will hold up long term?
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Old 01-20-2006, 12:36 AM   #20
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I have been wondering about those, too, for home. Anyone?
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Old 02-18-2006, 01:07 PM   #21
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Old 03-28-2006, 02:32 AM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by trixiepup
Has anyone tried the Bowflex adjustable weights? It seems like a good idea, but I'm wondering how they will hold up long term?
I did buy some adjustable dumbbells from Target. They are Reebok brand, I think. I haven't used them too much, since I go to the gym 4 days a week and need to give my muscles time to rest on my off from gym days, but they seem decent and sturdy. Mine go from 5 pounds to 12.5 pounds per dumbbell. I will need to buy some heavier weights, too, at least 15 pound dumbbells, but for now these will do. My dh bought me an adjustable weight bench (the Danskin ones) for my birthday, too, so now I have somewhere to sit when I do weights at home.
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Old 08-02-2006, 09:21 PM   #23
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"free weight's all the way! you can hurt your self with both very easy! It sounds like your trying to build muscle,by doing 3 set's of 5 to 8 reps
I watched two people who used machine's or cable weight's both time the could do there max on the ''MACHINE'' one person was 100 pounds and the other guy's was 300. when they tryed to lift the "FREE" Weight's the came crashing down on the safty bar's or they would of been hurt!

Are you trying to build or tone? building more weight less rep's toning! less weight more rep's.........when I was a young man I had some big Gun's or Pipe's but now im in to toning and shaping. and if your trying to lose weight beside's plan on Carideo work out with that three or four time's a week. John

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Old 11-20-2006, 09:34 AM   #24
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meg im not so sure i agree with you when you say that free weights avoid injuries. Machines stop you jerking and make sure u complete the optimum movement corectly. the truth for most ppl is that free weights cause more injuries as ppl often use them incorrectly.
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Old 01-12-2007, 08:19 PM   #25
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Another thing you should consider is pyramiding. Basically, your first set would around 12 reps. The second around 10. Third around 8...forth 6. If you really want to push it, do it again backwards. Remember, the reps have to be with a weight that you can barely get the last rep out. If you are on your 3rd set and you do 8 reps, but you could have done 10...increase your weight the next time!

As for your original question...I'm with the majority, free weights are best. The machines are great if you have an injury or if you want to max out but don't have a spotter. When using free weights, it's a good practice to have a spotter while you're lifting. When I was around 19 or 20, I broke my chest because I didn't have a spotter...lesson learned!

Another good idea is to switch things up every few weeks. Your body tends to adjust to your workouts and you need to shock or surprise your body by changing your routine. Come up with several exercises for each body part and rotate them around every so often. Don't keep doing bench presses for chest...do bench presses one day and the next time you do chest to flat bench flyes or some other chest exercise.

As for the grunting, most probably don't need to, but when you really want to squeeze out one more repetition that grunt may make the difference...lol...as annoying as it may sound.
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Old 01-31-2007, 06:51 AM   #26
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I'm new here and came across this thread. Thank you all for the information. I've been using machines at the "Y". Now I'm going to try some dumbbells too.
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Old 04-19-2007, 03:51 PM   #27
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From what i can tell I get better mass from free weights and definition from machine weights.
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Old 05-05-2007, 12:39 AM   #28
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hi all - meg i read your story and saw you pics - u r an inspiration to me - if u can do it so can i. cathy
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Old 05-05-2007, 12:50 AM   #29
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im trying to figure out how to get my tracker in here all i get is words - how do i get the pic here? can anyone help me? cathy
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Old 05-07-2007, 10:40 PM   #30
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ok i got the tracker in - dont know if i can do it again
how is everyone doing? where is everyone? sunday me and a friend ran along the parkway that was closed for the long island marathon but we went real early so we didnt encounter any runners - i went to the gym this morn and worked out with weights for chest shoulders back and abs and then did the treadmill for 13 inutes- went again at night to take an ab class - and did the arctrainer for 15 minutes. had a good food day too.
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