T Nation

Best approach for a single exercise per bodypart?

Greetings all,

My apartment building has a crappy, but free, fitness “center”…more like fitness “room”. The only weights are machines: Chest press, lat pulldown, chest flye, leg extension, leg curl, biceps curl, triceps extension and overhead press. What would be my best approach in this limited environment? High volume i.e. 10x10 or 8x8? Pyramid up to heavy weights? drop sets? Please give your opinions. I have been working out off and on for years, mostly off, so I still consider myself a beginner. I want to build some mass, not do that sissy toning thing. Thanks much…Jayhawk

Not to be a dick… but pay the 25 bucks a month or whatever and join a gym.

honestly i dont think youll build much mass with that set up. pay the dough for a gym or buy some used free weights.

I was in the same situation and tried as best I could for a month to make it work. But, alas, I ponied up the $$ for a gym membership and haven’t been happier.

It’s worth it for your health and peace of mind.

Your best bet is free weights.

But if you really have to use those machines, EDT would probably be the best workout.

Yeah, I hear you guys. I would like to go to a real gym with real weights. The problem is that I live in Manhattan. The not-for-profit gym across the street is $1300 per year. I don’t even know how much the for-profit gyms charge. I guess I better break down the ol’ budget and find some extra money. I have to make it a priority if it is important to me, right?

Thanks for the advice,
Jayhawk in NYC.

Second all above- join the gym. Unfortunately, as many of us have found multiple times to our chagrin, apartment “gyms” are nothing more than a selling point:


Caretaker:“Oh yeh… it’s got a gymnasium (= a stepper, a bench and a couple 5lb DB’s), and a pool (= an oversized bathtub you can reach both ends with hands and feet if you stretch) for working out!..”


Duped potential resident is thinking: “Wow, this place must be a palace, it’s got everything I need!”


Use the apartment complex gym for emergencies only (e.g. holiday closings) or when you’re short of time. Think of the investment in gym membership as an “incentive” to keep you going regular. I can guarantee you’ll be working out more regularly and effectively this way


For those emergency days, try CT’s “Magyver” workout as posted in previous issues.


Best of luck SRS

Buy a bench and a set of powerblocks. You’ll always have them when you need them, weather you go to a gym or not. there’s alot you can do with dumbells.

In faith Billy

At the very least go with the bench/PowerBlock option. The PowerBlock is about $400 and a good bench maybe $100. If at all possible pony up for a gym. I just spent the last 3 years spinning my wheels trying the home gym thing, and I regret it big time. Since I joined a good gym I’ve made more progress in two months than I made in 3 years. Yes, they cost bucks, but it’s worth it.

$1300 is a little over 100 a month. if you can swing it, thats what you need to be doin.

It’s true that a gym would be the best option, but…

If you can’t use the crap in your free gym, why bother pennying up for the real deal. Give it a test run of about 3 weeks. If you can make it to the free gym 4 times a week and do the basics, then it’s worth the investement to go large with the NYCity gyms. Otherwise, why blow your hard earned cash…unless you find a gym with a bunch of hotties. In that case, you’ll definitely find time to at least show up and NOT look like a dweeb!

LJay