T Nation

6 Months In


Hi all, came across this forum while looking some info on knee health/stretches.

I'm very new to weight Training, started 6months ago as a bag of bones
with standard weight set/bench. previous this I hadn't every lifted barbel
then invested in an Olympic set and built a squat rack.

age 28
height 5;8
current body weight 78kg (172 lbs)
starting weight 66.2 kg (146 lbs)

I started with & I am currently doing Strong Lifts 5x5.
I train 3 - 4 times a week, but I can do more
also recently have trouble with my right knee when squatting, currently squatting 110kg,
the issue started when I got to about a 80kg squat.

I'm about to take vacation and when I come back I plan to plan to work towards gaining another 20 lbs, and cut some fat.

I am very interested in reading about other programs, and welcome all advise!



Firstly, congrats on the progress, keep it up.

Here's a starter (principles), just need to read 1st page or 2:


And if you're feeling lazy lol, here's a few routines that are all nicely set out:


Good luck and stay focussed


If you are having knee issues squatting I would highly recommend learning the proper technique.



thanks for the links guys,

the squat video is really helpful.


I'm sort of one stage ahead of you as far as weight goes (started at 155, now 195) and after spending a couple months doing what was basically my own 5x5 routine, I'm now doing BBB and happy with the results thus far. Sort of an unconventional program, but it works for me. There are 6 and 4 day variants.

Another much more popular program is 5/3/1. It's 4 days/week ideally, but there is a 3 day version. I've never done it myself.


Great progress. If you are going for aesthetics, now would be a good time to start doing direct work for your arms, calves, rear delts, etc. You don't want to get everything else too far ahead and then realize you have to play catch-up with the parts that don't get enough work from Stronglifts.


Look into 5/3/1.
24 lbs is nice progress btw, keep it up.


thanks for the comments/advice guys, really appreciated

I have just been reading about 5,3,1 . I like the look of this program.
but I wont decide just yet, gonna wait until I come back from vacation and do plenty of reading.

I would like to to be able to work out at home with minimal equipment
* squat rack
* bench
* Olympic weight set (140kg set, I will be buying some extra plates very soon)
* dumbbells

@ Jay Pierce, aesthetics would be important,(I still look crap by the way, but way better than I used to look)

so if I continue with strong lifts, I will definitively start doing direct work on various parts,
although my biceps and calves/legs in general bulked up a lot, my chest is still quite scrawny.

I think I may need to stick with Strong lifts until my bench press improves? open to opinions/advice on this
I have been told that I need to get my bench up to at least 70kg to see a significant change in chest size.

here are my stats to date.

Male. Age: 28. Height: 5'8". Weight: 78kg (172 lbs) (small frame)
Squat 110kg (242.5 lbs)
Bench Press 50kg (110.2 lbs)
Overhead press 40 kg (88.2 lbs)
Barbel Rows 57.5 kg (126.8 lbs)
Deadlifts 120kg (264.6 lbs)

started with an empty standard bar, was quite weak & feeble from being a desk joky with a poor diet.


The main difference between 'pure' strength training and bodybuilding is volume and exercise amount (bodybuilding = some more exercises which increases volume too). This isn't written in stone, and you can skin a cat mutliple ways.

So if you were to do something like 531, make sure you're doing at least 2-3 exercises per bodypart. Like chest/benching for example, you'd do at least 2 exercises (one for upper chest, and one for lower...some people do another exercise too). Same for shoulders, you wouldn't just do over-head press and call it a day, add more direct exercises too.

If you want to keep barbell benching in your routine, but you want to bring up the chest, simply add dumbbells into the routine (e.g. slight incline dumbell press & flat bench barbel press). Barbel training alone can leave the pecs under-developed in some people, so dumbbells are added (or completely replace barbel) and are great for bringing up the chest...


Thanks for that, I think I need to do a lot of reading and research, as I only really know the basic lifts from strong lifts

so on top of these (if I decide to do 5,3,1) I will add additional exercises.
I will do some further research and then post here for advice