T Nation

Help With Goals!


I have some questions I could use some help with.
A little backgroung about me-
I haven't been lifting for very long- 6 months.
I started training come off of a broken wrist, so I had to begin lightly for most upper body exercises as most of them were very painful. (ie, heavy bench, pulldowns, any type of curl or pressdown)
My wrist is now fine and I have been doing heavy (for me) Compound movements.

I am very unimpressed with my gains up until now. I eat according to the anabolic diet because any carbs I eat seem to turn into fat and I feel fine just eating them on the weekends. I am not afraid to put on fat with muscle, I do however feel that I do better with lower carbs. I eat upwards of 4000 calories a day.
I am 183cm and have gone from 74 to 85 kilos since august. I don't know or really care what my bodyfat is but I'm sure its stayed the same. Last year at the same time I weighed 101 kilos with very little muscle so I dieted downto the 74 kilos. I do not consider myself a former fat boy because my fatness was due to a piss poor diet and being lazy.
I train in a bodybuilding gym where most of the guys have been training for at least 15 years, and all of train pretty much only in between the 10-12 rep range.
I see a lot of guys growing much quicker than me (some of them due to other "resources" and some not)...
Some of my lifts are stuck for example

My bench started at 50 kilos after moving from machines to free weights and is now at 70 for 6-8 reps

My squats are with 60 kilos for 6-8 reps and dont seem to go up either. I cannot seem to raise either of these.. (These are just 2 examples)

So I guess my questions are;
Are my goals as far as gains go unrealistic? Are 11 kilos alright for the time period?
And do you guys think taking perhaps a week off would help to be able to raise the weights on the excercises that I am stuck on?
Thank you very much in advance for any constructive help.


I'd suggest picking a program from one of the ones on this site and following it.

However, how often are you in the gym? How often do you do the same lifts? As a relative beginner, now that you are healed up, you should be able to make gains.

How many sets of 6-8 do you do? Can you build up to doing an extra set and then drop that last set and go up by five pounds?

Hell, just put on those extra five pounds and force out the same sets and reps. You can't do this all the time, but if you've been static for a while, you can try it.

Are you doing chins and rows? Have you done work to strengthen that wrist?

More questions than answers I'm afraid...


I am at the gym every morning besides sundays. I have no job until I move in Feb. and my only friends here are the guys from the gym. I am very consistent which is why I don't understand my minimal gains. I have missed only one workout since august and this was due to something which I had no choice in doing.
My training is like this;
Variation of Bench
Incline Bench

Barbell Rowing
Chins/Pull downs
Dumbell or Cable rows

Leg press
Leg Curls
Leg Extensions
An excercise whos name I dont know- holding the weights like a back squat but standing on a box excercising Calves


Dumbell Curls
Cable Curls
Preacher Curls
Barbell Curls

Shoulder press with DB
Military Press Standing
Lateral Raises
Front Raises


On most excercises I do two lighter warm up sets and 4-5 "heavy" sets

I will try this on monday which is the next time I bench again.

My wrist is back to normal now- I did the excercises prescribed by my doc and I think it is only slightly weaker than the other. I do chin ups and pulldowns. I also do barbell rowing and cable rows.


You seem to have more chest and arm work than back work.

You are also doing a lot of work six times a week if you are doing a 5x7 or so every day!

Why don't you try cutting down on the amount of lifting you are doing?

M: Squat

T: Chins/Rows/Biceps

W: Bench/Dips

T: GPP/Cardio

F: Deadlifts

S: GPP/Cardio


Better yet, simply pick a good program from on here. You'll notice I took out your second bench day and put deadlifts in your routine.

I also felt a bicep day was a waste, just do some on the day you are chinning, which also hits the biceps.

Anyway, in general, I think the phrase "you grow when you aren't in the gym" would be helpful. If you have to spend so much time at the gym (I was unemployed at one point so I can understand that) at least give yourself an easy day here and there.


Do you think that Chad Waterburys Total body training would be a good program for growth? I can see myself only going half the time if I do the entire body 3 times a week.


I think all of Chad's programs are good ones... a lot of folks around here have done the ABBH programs.

Give it a shot, see what you think.


I will start tomorrow with ABBH because I can not figure out how to set up Total body training. I will do the entire program and let you know how it goes.


I concur. About the only thing you can do is change up your workout with different exercises. I train only one bodypart a day and hit a wall, started a crosstraining routine, working everybodypart everyday. After 4 weeks I went back to one bodypart a day and I was seeing gains again.

It is a journey and everybodys is different.... GODD LUCK!



I started today and the 10x3 is a lot better than it looks on a computer screen. That last set really kicked my ass. I did flat bench and barbell rowing. When I got to the gym I thought about just adding the 5 pounds and doing my sets for benching like suggested but the only plates that werent being used were the 2 3/4 kilo ones, so I just used them instead. Granted it was only 3 reps per set but I have been stuck on that weight for so long that it felt really good to put up an extra 5.5 kilos!


Definitely start witha more sound training program. All of Chad's routines are quite good.