T Nation

Beginner's Machine Routine

Hey all,

I’m just starting out (a process which has been simplified quite a bit by all the posts I’ve read, so thanks for those) and had a question re: a routine that is based on machines. I’m requesting such a routine (just to start with, certainly not long term) because the gym I go to has a very limited set of free weights (it’s a corporate gym so most of the floor space is, not surprisingly, dedicated to cardio) and the limited free weights available are always massively crowded at the time of day that I go (I’ve literally gotten to use the free-weight bench press once in 2 weeks).

Can anyone recommend a starting routine using only machines? Most of the basic machines are available, but I’m not sure what I can do in order to get multiple exercises in for each muscle group, number of sets and reps, etc.

For basic background, I’m 24, 5’6" and about 148 lbs (67 kg). Thanks in advance.

Cheers,
Raul

Id look at article and programs by Dr. Darden on here and his site.

Phill

Search on here and on Google for DoggCrapp. That might be up your street.

Actually, scrap that. Totally unsuitable!

I’d rather see a beginner’s bodyweight routine, actually. Limiting yourself to only machines in the beginning won’t be as beneficial as using your own body as a weapon (grrrrrr), which would have some of the benefits of using free weights (building stabilizer strength, better exercise variety, less repetitive motions, etc.)

[center]Super-Basic Mostly Bodyweight Program #39[/center]
Day 1
A. Overhead squat (holding either a towel or nothing at all) 4x5

B1. Basic push-up (full range of motion) 4x10

B2. Horizontal row machine 4x10

C1. Reverse Lunge 3x12

C2. Crunch 3x12

Day 2
A. Single leg, bent knee deadlift 4x5
http://www.T-Nation.com/readTopic.do?id=459685

B1. Technically correct Lat Pulldown 4x6
http://www.T-Nation.com/readTopic.do?id=1076164

B2. Shoulder press machine 4x6

C1. DB swing (use the heaviest dumbbell you can find, you only need one) 3x15

C2. Plank (hold top of push-up position) 3x30 seconds

Day 3
A. Random chest or ab machine of your choice 3x12

B. Random back or shoulder machine of your choice 3x12

C. Bicep machine 4x10

D. Tricep machine 4x10

E. Rainbow/lying hip rotation 4x8
http://exrx.net/WeightExercises/Obliques/WtLyingTwist.html

[quote]Colucci wrote:
I’d rather see a beginner’s bodyweight routine, actually. Limiting yourself to only machines in the beginning won’t be as beneficial as using your own body as a weapon (grrrrrr), which would have some of the benefits of using free weights (building stabilizer strength, better exercise variety, less repetitive motions, etc.)

[center]Super-Basic Mostly Bodyweight Program #39[/center]
Day 1
A. Overhead squat (holding either a towel or nothing at all) 4x5

B1. Basic push-up (full range of motion) 4x10

B2. Horizontal row machine 4x10

C1. Reverse Lunge 3x12

C2. Crunch 3x12

Day 2
A. Single leg, bent knee deadlift 4x5
http://www.T-Nation.com/readTopic.do?id=459685

B1. Technically correct Lat Pulldown 4x6
http://www.T-Nation.com/readTopic.do?id=1076164

B2. Shoulder press machine 4x6

C1. DB swing (use the heaviest dumbbell you can find, you only need one) 3x15

C2. Plank (hold top of push-up position) 3x30 seconds

Day 3
A. Random chest or ab machine of your choice 3x12

B. Random back or shoulder machine of your choice 3x12

C. Bicep machine 4x10

D. Tricep machine 4x10

E. Rainbow/lying hip rotation 4x8
http://exrx.net/WeightExercises/Obliques/WtLyingTwist.html[/quote]

Great post colucci

Thanks Phill. I try to be worth keeping around this joint.

While you’re at it, why not go to whoever is in charge of the gym and suggest they add more free weights.

It seems to me that if all of the free weights are being used, and all of the machines are free they may be willing to change things around for you.

Get together with several of the others that use free weights and lodge a complaint or at least make a universal request (pun intended).

Thanks, guys, all incredibly helpful. Appreciate the quick response.

Will let you know how it goes!

Cheers,
Raul

Also, do you think working the biceps once a week is enough?

[quote]raulguzman1 wrote:
Also, do you think working the biceps once a week is enough?[/quote]

Totally. You’re only hitting them directly once a week, but they’re doing some assistance work with the rows on Day 1 and with the pulldowns on Day 2.