T Nation

Where Did You Guys Start Out?


Hey guys,

I'm a newbie that made a boxing-to-powerlifting switch a few months ago. I have been lifting for 3 months now. And tbh I'm feeling a bit insecure. It seems like I just can't lift as much as I see all the people on the forums and on internet claiming that they can lift.

About me:
I'm 19 yo,
Height is 1.82m ( = 6ft),
Bw is aprox. 85kg( = 187 lbs)

Benchpress - 1x 95kg ( = 209.5 lbs)
Dead lift - 3 singles of 130 kg (286.5 lbs)
Squat - not worth mentioning lol.

I can't start imagining some of the weight lifted by some guys. Maybe it's because I'm a newbie. I don't know. But it sure does hurt my balls lol.

So just wondering, where did you guys start out? What was your age, and do you remember the progress you made with weights?

Help a newbie out! :slightly_smiling:


You are doing fine. Those numbers will go up fast. I don't think I was in all that different a state when I started almost two years ago. Look at my training log and start at the beginning and then stop feeling bad. Work hard and don't worry what others are lifting. It takes time to get there.


When I started lifting weights, at 15 years old, I couldn't squat my BW. Now, 3 years later, on to 2.5 BW squat, at 210 pounds. Don't worry about where you begin. Stay consistent, eat right, sleep enough and you will go far.


You've been lifting for only 3 months, and already you're benching 200 and lifting 286?? Seriously? If you're telling the truth, then you are GIFTED.

Do you have any idea that there are guys in perfect health who struggle and sweat for years and still can't get their bench to 200? Do you realize some people have to break their balls again and again and again to get their DL past 300?

You're progressing at warp speed. Keep training for another 3 months, and then 6 months past that. After a year of training, you should be posting really impressive numbers.


Just remeber train with good form on every set. Learn the technique Now, before the weight gets heavy and you have to deload 4 or 5 time to get it right >.< Stick with it and you'll get there.

I was on and off since i was 15. I've been steady for 2 years but when I started back up I had a 185 bench 155 squat and 225 DL @ 275 (fat mind you). Now 375 sq, 240 bench, and 440 DL @ 190


started at age 43 @ 173# with a 135#Bench(OUCH!), 335#dead and 275#squat. One year later @193#bw- 215bench(still sucks!), 415# dead and 355# squat. Be CONSISTENT, sleep well, train smart, eat well and listen to people like Tate, Simmons, Wendler, Wenning and those others at the top of the lifting game. You will make progress and remember that EVERYONE can stall so find what bumps you off of those plateaus.

Lift STRONG(er) !


Started lifting - couldn't lift the bar for bench, could only half squat 175 lbs, and never deadlifted until much later. We all start somewhere. Realize many people claim things on the internet that simply aren't true, and the ones that aren't full of shit lifting big numbers most likely have been at it for quite some time.


I started lifting at 14 in 8th grade. Didn't really know what the hell I was doing, but I still made some awesome gains on a full body program three times a week. I started out benching 95 lbs. I didn't really know how to squat or deadlift, so I didn't.

Then, my freshman year of high school, I started out with a 170 lb. bench and a 265 squat at 145 lbs. I followed Wendler's 5/3/1 and got my bench up to 235, my squat up to 330 (they were half squats, still didn't really know what I was doing) and my deadlift up to 365 (with shitty form).

My sophomore year, I had a bad back injury, so that set me back and kept me out of the weight room. I learned how to squat and deadlift the right way and became way stronger than I ever could've imagined. I ended up benching 275, squatting 385 and deadlifting 425 by following WS4SB.

Now, I'm in my junior year of high school, 17 y/o, and weighing 185 at 5'7". I can't go back to squatting and deadlifting for another three weeks because of a broken leg, but once I'm back I have big plans. I plan to bench 350, squat 475, and deadlift 500 or more. I'll be following a full-blown westside template, so I'm hoping by eating like a hog and following my program to the T, I can become strong(er).

As for you, just keep doing what you're doing. Eat, run the prowler, and lift. Do those three things, and you'll achieve strength in no time. Best of luck to you.



Started about 5 years ago

Squat- 200 with shit form
DL- 225 was a struggle

Bench- 305
Squat- 415
DL- 475


Started about 5 years ago

Squat- 200 with shit form
DL- 225 was a struggle

Bench- 305
Squat- 415
DL- 475


I am currently 20 years old, so I know how you feel. Before I started training for powerlifting my PR lifts were this as a 17 yr old senior in high school- (raw)

Squat- injury
Bench- 340
Deadlift- 365

Now about 30 lbs heavier then I was then they are this-

Squat- 435 (injury)
Bench- 420

Dont feel insecure, be confident every time you get under the bar. Focus on YOUR lifts, not someone else's lifts. Pick one training plan and stick with it for at least 6 months. Don't be the guy who switches every week. Give your body time to adapt to the new style of training and really commit yourself if you are serious.
Best of luck, stay strong, stay foolish


Did My first meet 2 years ago after 2 months training
Weighed 175 at 17 years old
Squat 275
bench 209
Deadlift 425


Started training around 2 years ago. Only consistently for slightly over a year.

Weighed around 125lbs at 19 years old
Squat - no clue, i didn't squat much
bench - 135 for a couple reps
deadlift - didn't do this until much later
power clean - around 155

Now 175-180lbs
Squat - 375
Bench - 275
Deadlift - 415
Power clean - 225 last time I did it, but that was almost 6 months ago.


I started out last January, I've lifted on and off in the past for a few motnhs here or there, but I had no idea what I was doing and never got anywhere.

Any, I'm 35

In January
Sq : 135
BP : 135ish
DL : 200ish

Sq : 455
BP : 315
DL : 500

Keep hitting it consistently and don't give in to wanting to not lift.... no matter how much you hurt.


15 years old
120lb bench
120lb power clean
160lb squat

22 years old
340lb bench
250lb power clean
405lb squat


"You've been lifting for only 3 months, and already you're benching 200 and lifting 286?? Seriously? If you're telling the truth, then you are GIFTED."

I agree with above statement. Unless you have very high bodyweight you are gifted.

I started lifting right after my 16th birthday. I was very skinny and I remember my ultimate goal was to lift 135 on each of the benching movements.

The first time I went to the gym my buddy took me I remember he was decline benchin 185 and I thought he was superman because I was struggling with 25 lb plates on each side very wobbly and kept hitting the bar holders on the way up. I bought a bench and sets of 15 20 and 25 lb dumbells and started working out at home with my buddy because I was too embarrassed to go to the gym.

I remember during the early days once I got to a 25 lb curl I felt really strong and that was my favorite excercise to do and I was stuck on 35 lb shoulder presses for a really long time and once I saw a guy shoulder press 70's and I was amazed.

I also remember maybe 6 months into training getting pinned on a 115 lb flat bench and having a guy save me from killing myself.

Like many people I started off curling and benching every other day and not squatting or deadlifting quite honestly I don't remember why I think it was because noone showed me how to do them and I did not know how important they were my buddy that showed me how to work out was bench/curl oriented.

It is hard for people to understand how much work and time it takes to get to a certain level of strength.
I hear this all the time guys at the gym whispering to each other when they see someone strong "steroids I call it like I see it" or "he must be on steroids" always from the guys first starting out when it's obvious the guy is not on steroids based on his aesthetics.

You are very fortunate to have found this site during the early stages of your training.


If you add 5 pounds a month to your lifts, in 4 years you will be a lot stronger than many people on these boards. You're 19, and the majority of powerlifting records are set by those 25 and up. It's a function of time and consistency.

If you think that benching 210 pounds after a few months of training is gifted, especially at age 19, I don't even know what to say. If you're 19 and can't bench just over your bodyweight in a few months of training, you aren't eating enough or training hard enough, end of story.

I remember bringing a friend with me to the gym on a day I decided to max deadlifts. I taught said friend to deadlift and he insisted on working up to a max too. He pulled 365 without too much struggle - I convinced him to stop there due to form breaking down. Nearly 2x bodyweight on the first day! With neural improvements alone there is no reason he couldn't push a 3x bw deadlift within a few months of training. Now THAT is gifted.


started training strength about 7 months ago:

lifts when i started @ 72kg/158lbs :
squat - 90kg above parrellel/ 198lbs
bench - 70kg touch and go/154lbs
deadlift - 110kg / 242lbs

after getting in contact with meat and him telling me im a fool i moved unto 5/3/1 for 3 cycles/3 months (great program and i credit it for bringing up my lifts to what they are now, but its not my sorta thing, i got bored)

lifts now after doing 5/3/1 & now moving unto unplanned westside ie having no reason for doing an exercise my lifts are now @ 85kg/187lbs
squat - 110kg/242lbs off slightly above/slightly below/parrellel box
Bench - 100kg/ 220lbs raw & 110kg/242lbs in slingshot (both touch and go)
deadlift - 140kg / 308lbs

None of my lifts have been given 3 white lights as i have not competed yet. You srs have nothing wrong & if some fool judgeing you at your gym fuck them. Theyve been doing the same shit every year and look exactly the same. Best thing i did was 5/3/1 - but im an impatient bastard and get bored as fuck doing the same shit even though i made substantial gains.

just stick with a program of your choosing and milk it out & dont get injured and you will live a prosperous life with a beard and woman drooling over your squat.

that is all. Go forth and conquer.


The first time I lifted heavy was for strength testing for JV football in August 1999. I benched 150 and leg pressed 315 at a bodyweight of around 160.

The first powerliting meet I did was in August of 2006 and I squatted 520-530, benched something in the middle 300s, and deadlifted something in the low 600s.

I havent done a raw full meet in a while due to some stupid injuries that I just don't care about anymore. My next meet is Dec. 10th and I am shooting for a raw 680-700 squat, 420+ bench, and a high 700 deadlift.

It takes a really long time to get strong.


January 2009 - Started working out
145 lbs, 24 years old
Bench: 95 lbs
Deadlift: well I started with a quarter on each side because I didn't know what to expect but I think I then immediately moved up to around 185 lbs
Squat: Don't remember, rarely did them and probably never did them correctly.

July 2010 - Switched to a PL gym
180 lbs, 25 years old
Bench: 160 lbs
Deadlift: 315 lbs
Squat: 305 or so I believed.... once I switched to a PL gym I filmed myself to find my depth wasn't there so dropped back down and could hit depth at about 250

195 lbs, 26 years old
Bench: 240
Deadlift: 495
Squat: 355

Everyone starts somewhere and we've all got different proportions to work with.