Setting Realistic Goals

Discussion in 'Training Logs' started by Pretty In Pink, Aug 8, 2018.

  1. Pretty In Pink

    Pretty In Pink Moved on MAP 2017 Gold Award

    I'm 27 soon to be 28 so I don't know how much I can grow.

    Really wanting to set some weight goals.

    Is 10lb of muscle in 15 weeks reasonable?

    Also, what are realistic goals for weights?

    I'm writing these goals down now so that I have a reference.
  2. Ero-Sennin

    Ero-Sennin Well-Known Member Supporter

    Have you ever weight trained seriously before?

    10lbs of lean muscle mass is more like a year long goal, not a less than four month goal. You might not even be capable of lifting enough weight to force you into growing yet if you're just starting out. You can't build big legs squatting only 185lbs, or big biceps curling 25lbs, or a big chest benching only 150lbs.

    I don't think weight gain is going to be the type of goal you want to start off with. Strength to bodyweight ratio in big compound lifts is probably where you want to put your goal setting right now. You can make some tremendous gains starting out where strength development is concerned. Strength isn't as much a muscle tissue thing as it is a nervous tissue thing. A larger muscle is only potentially stronger.

    What other goals beyond weight gain do you have in mind? You could certainly gain 10+lbs in that time frame by eating a lot while lifting, but it's not going to all be lean mass.

    If I were starting somebody out lifting weights my goals for them would probably be more along the lines of:

    1.) Learn deadlift, squat, bench press, standing shoulder press, and rows.
    2.) Do high volume in each of these lifts to build and reinforce motor skills (this goes a LONG way in strength development)

    Goal 1 is because good form is necessary, and many other lifts require knowledge in basic compound lifts to perform safely. They're also basically all you need to get bigger and stronger, all the other stuff is just fancy stuff (aside from olympic lifts, those are fancy while building power)

    Goal 2 would literally start off with 10 sets x 10 reps with a weight that all 10 sets can be accomplished with relative ease (difficult at the end, but no questioning if you're going to be able to finish the last rep). This would continue going up 5lb increments every 2 - 3 workouts on upper body movements, 10lbs every 2-3 weeks on lower body movements for about 2 months. At that point the motor skills have been formed through plenty of reps, and you can actually start implementing one of the programs in those books and whatnot by those trainer guys. You'll also be primed to jump exponentially in the amount of weight you can push for a 1 to 3 rep max over the next few months.
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  3. Mangosteen

    Mangosteen Hold strong not

    Yeah weight gain isn't linear or necessarily muscle mass

    An alternative to eros great suggestion is adding 2 reps to the last set for a few weeks before moving up weight e.g.
    Week 1
    2 sets of 6 reps at 50kg
    1 set of 6 reps at 50kg

    Week 2
    2 sets of 6 reps at 50kg
    1 set of 8 reps at 50kg

    Week 3
    2 sets of 6 reps at 50kg
    1 set of 10 reps at 50kg

    Week 4
    2 sets of 6 reps at 50kg
    1 set of 12 reps at 50kg

    Week 5
    2 sets of 6 reps at 52.5kg
    1 set of 6 reps at 52.5kg


    Also look in to setting SMART goals (specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, time bound goals).
    Weight to power ration is a good place to start as ero said so set short and long Term goals:
    - In 1 month I want good deadlift form (checked by a another person)
    - in 3 months I want to deadlift 0.5x body weight for five reps
    - in 6 months I want to deadlift 1x bodyweight for 5 reps
    - in 12 months I want to deadlift 1x bodyweight for 10 reps

    Each time you hit those time points, reassess : did it reach my goal, and if not why?, how can I approach my training differently To reach the missed goal?, is my next goal still attainable, should I push my goals back or move them forward? Do I even have the same goal in mind?
  4. Simon

    Simon Administrator Admin Supporter MAP 2017 Koyo Award

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  5. axelb

    axelb Master of Office Chair Fu

    Following most of the standard lifting programs you can set more scalable goals, like; deadlift ~1 times your body weight , squat 3/4 bodyweight, bench 1/2 bw within 3-6 months.

    When you start into it you will probably find it hard to gauge your potential, so after 3 months you can read adjust the goal based on how you progress and how your body reacts whist also doing martial arts.

    From there you could also gauge longer term goals: how much to lift by next year, in the next 3 years.

    I think it can benefit to set short and long term goals which give a great focus on where to get to,and the intermediate steps to get there.

    Simons thread is a great reference for that, log (personal or public) as you go along, add your own comments on how you feel about it, if your feeling ill or tired or hyped.

    Over the years when you look back and see patterns in how you react to certain training,which can help pave for future plans
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  6. Mangosteen

    Mangosteen Hold strong not

    PIP - please feel free not to answer me but since you started BJJ/MMA have you seen an increase in your weight?
    If the answer is no or yes but quite minimal (5 kg increase) then I would recommend keeping a food diary with your meal times in and post it on your log. We can give you dietary advice if the calories are looking a bit low.

    get an extra cheap quick and thoughtless meal in eevryday on top of your 3 meals a day:
    a banana (50p for a bunch of 7)
    1 to 2 scoops whey protein (the cheapest online brand is myprotein and cheaper in bulk)
    half a cup of oats (80p a kilo)
    1 to 2 tablespoons of peanut butter (my protein is a fiver for a kilo)
    1 to 2 tablespoons of nutella, cocoa or hot chocolate powder (hot chocolate powder is cheaper)
    milk or water to blend
    blend it all together, even without the whey protein its a lot of decent calories.
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  7. Pretty In Pink

    Pretty In Pink Moved on MAP 2017 Gold Award

    I think it was pretty much exactly five kilos. Started at like 65kg. I definitely don't eat enough. I do have a new blender now though, and do enjoy smoothies.

    Thanks everyone for the tips.

    I'm a little disappointed in how long it's going to take to gain any muscle mass but ah well it's a marathon not a sprint. If I'm going to do 3x10 light weights I might as well just do it every day because it sounds very frustrating when I know I can lift more. However I'll take the knowledge of you lot over my own.

    Regardless I'll be posting here any lifting I'm doing which should commence next month when I start college.
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  8. Mangosteen

    Mangosteen Hold strong not

    well assuming youre going to be doing bjj on the days you're not in the gym, its not like youll be bored :p
    honestly sorting out your food intake makes up a majority of how much muscle mass you'll gain plus getting good at the lifts first (like ero said) with reps is a new skill you need to learn along with learning how to feel the movement of those muscles.

    also remember not to chase 2 rabbits either - dont expect your strength to keep increasing exponentially if your going super hard when rolling every session.
  9. Pretty In Pink

    Pretty In Pink Moved on MAP 2017 Gold Award

    I'll be going to the gym the same days as kickboxing/BJJ. GGym in the morning and martial arts at night.
  10. Fish Of Doom

    Fish Of Doom Will : Mind : Motion Supporter

    Dude, your're going to grow just by being in the same room as a weight set, you just need to eat enough for it to happen :p

    Regarding bodyweight goals, since you do MMA and BJJ you could probably do worse than go by weight classes. Find the next highest weight class in either sport, fill it out, find the next one, fill that one out, etc. Don't focus on time as response to lifting will vary massively from individual to individual, just eat, lift, eat, sleep, repeat
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  11. Pretty In Pink

    Pretty In Pink Moved on MAP 2017 Gold Award

    Yeah that is what I'm aiming for. I'd love to be 77kg and cut to 70kg. Anything above that would be awesome but I doubt obtainable in the next few years.
  12. Mangosteen

    Mangosteen Hold strong not

    You might be surprised when you start eating more. You might be undernourished now so you might get a rebound effect.
    Food, volume and rest = growth.
    When in doubt keep it simple silly and don't chase 2 rabbits.
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  13. Ero-Sennin

    Ero-Sennin Well-Known Member Supporter

    (I'm going to go ahead and assume at this point you've never really been into weight training.)

    As a beginner it's very likely you could put on 20 - 30lbs and still look lean as heck within the first year of lifting. 10-15lbs of it could be lean mass as well. Those kinds of gains happen once in a person's lifetime, and it's when they start out. Instead of looking at those numbers as seemingly small, unimpressive things, let's try to reframe it a bit. Do you remember when you first started doing BJJ? Imagine that starting BJJ is basically the same thing as starting weight lifting. All the moves and techniques for submissions don't even matter at the start of learning to roll. Learning how to position yourself, and toughening up your body and figuring out when you are or aren't in danger are the primary concerns and for some people that takes a couple of months, for others a year or so. The parallel here is that learning the fundamental technique and training your nervous system to move weight a certain way is the exact same as starting out in BJJ.

    Trying to implement a program based on hypertrophy before you even have technique and strength down is exactly the same as thinking you're going to learn how to do a flying armbar the first month of BJJ training. Without the foundation, you don't go very far and the potential for hurting yourself increases.

    Enough with the "take it slow as a beginner, you have to learn" crap though and let's mention some of the things that just the small amount of training suggestions mentioned here are going to entail.

    You're going to feel your muscles get tighter and more full because they're going to store more nutrients in them and grow due to the new stimulus. While the numbers we've been describing sound low, the visual change is going to be very noticeable before you even move into lifting heavy weights. Doing a simple 10 sets x 10 rep for basic movements program, everything is going to start looking more chiseled and defined. After a month you'll notice the difference, after two months other people will start noticing the difference. Things are going to stop hurting so much, daily activities that involve any sort of strength are going to become significantly easier, and you're going to start feeling more perky with the hormone increase and upgraded energy storing/production systems that occur.

    If you stick to it, you're going to love it. When you start implementing a program to gain strength, you're going to be blown away by 1.) How quickly it happens and 2.) how much hidden potential you didn't know you had. One day you're going to be rolling on the mats and realize instead of using technique to counter technique, you relied on strength and were successful. Then you're going to go home scared of yourself and curl up in a corner, rocking back and forth questioning if you've succumbed to some some sort of dark side that ignores the countless hours of drilling and trying to implement technique that being able to deadlift 1.5x your body weight just made obsolete.

    Then you'll roll with people as experienced and stronger than you are and you'll realize you can't drop training technique : P

    The biggest obstacle you are probably going to encounter is nutrition, and there's plenty of help here where that's concerned.

    Also, this is what just 12lbs of muscle gain looks like to put it in perspective for you

    Photo taken from:

    ::disclaimer:: I don't know anything about this guy or his training program and if he used any sort of PEDS. The point is 12 lbs creates an extreme difference. 12-Pounds-of-Muscle.jpg
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  14. Pretty In Pink

    Pretty In Pink Moved on MAP 2017 Gold Award

    I think I'm probably undernourished to be honest.

    I will definitely be keeping it simple. Jab, cross, hook = Squat, Deadlift, Bench.

    So now I just have to decide on 3x10 or 5x5. To be honest I'd rather start with 5x5 and go three days a week but if 3x10 is more beneficial I'll do that.
  15. Pretty In Pink

    Pretty In Pink Moved on MAP 2017 Gold Award

    Lmao, I have been taught numerous times how to lift so I can lift correctly for the most part but I've also injured myself in the past so it's obviously not perfect (Deadlift's I think are responsible).

    I did not realise that was what 12lb looked like, I thought it would be WAY more subtle. If I can do 1/4 of that in a year I'd be thrilled!
  16. Ero-Sennin

    Ero-Sennin Well-Known Member Supporter

    Context is key!

    I didn't mean to be offensive in my assumption and I hope you didn't take it that way. It's great you know how to lift. I was reminded of how unnatural it can be for some people a couple months ago when the girlfriend and I started working out together. Jut getting proper form for a set of rows was difficult for her. Knowing how to do the lifts is a leg up on 90% of people. A straight or slight arch in the back while lifting something is rocket science sometimes. I wish we had kept going, but I burned a large portion of my stomach with hot grease after about 4 weeks and we never started back up : (

    Post videos of your lifts when you start!
  17. Pretty In Pink

    Pretty In Pink Moved on MAP 2017 Gold Award

    Nah man I'm total white belt in weight lifting. I can do the movements correctly but under strain my form might fail. I'll do 3x10's with a camera and then we can go from there. I'm lucky to know so many people who are into it :)
  18. Ero-Sennin

    Ero-Sennin Well-Known Member Supporter

    Are you implementing weight training at the same time you're training martial arts? As a suggestion from personal experience, I found it a lot easier when I was boxing to use weight training as a break in my normal training. So for example I would do 10x3min rounds heavy bag work, then do 4x10 185 bench press. 10x3min jump rope, then 4x10 185 bench as a break, etc.. If I was doing bag work with bag gloves that could easily be pulled off I would do sets during the rest period as well. I wasn't really trying to gain any muscle, but I was able to gain some power/speed doing this and volume was key.

    As an aside, I also at roughly 6k calories a day and still lost weight due to the volume of training I was doing. MMA already requires a massive amount of calories, weightlifting does as well, so getting enough calories will probably be a major area to pay attention to starting out.
  19. Fish Of Doom

    Fish Of Doom Will : Mind : Motion Supporter

    "So now I just have to decide on 3x10 or 5x5"

    Sets and reps are meaningless without the context provided by weight. 3x10, 5x5 or any other given protocol, to have a training effect, need to be done at a range near the limit weight for the rep range used (that'll generally be somewhere around 70% or 1-rep max for 3x10 and between 75 and 80% for 5x5), and you're going to start light and gradually build the weight up anyway (because if not we will send you an angry letter through the UN), so the specific protocol is honestly mostly irrelevant to you for now. I would suggest setting a rep ceiling (ie no more than 10, for example) and doing however many sets you want trying to get in quality reps up to that rep ceiling (example, 5 sets of up to 10). As the weight increases, hitting that rep ceiling will become harder, and total reps may go down as fatigue sets in and you can't continue to lift with good technique (you could end up with 10/10/8/7/7, for example). Having a minimum rep goal (for example, 40 reps) can then let you know when you should start decreasing the rep ceiling to continue increasing weight (for example to 8 for 35 total reps, then to 6 for 25 total reps, 5 for 20 total reps). I'd suggest 5 sets if you lift 3x a week or fewer, and 3 sets if you lift more than 3x a week or have very demanding MA classes (you can also compromise and do 4 sets :p)
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  20. icefield

    icefield Valued Member

    I might be simple but I think you might be over thinking it keep it kiss

    3 times a week do the following
    Exercise Sets Reps
    Prone Hyperextensions 3 10
    Full Squat 5 5
    Bench Press 5 5
    Deadlift 5 5

    Warm up sets
    What sets Park’s 5×5 routine apart from, say, Bill Star’s or Medhi’s’, is that the first two sets of five are warm-up sets.

    For these two sets, progressively increase the weight at similar intervals.

    So, for example, your five sets on bench press might look like this:

    1 x 50kg, 1 x 75kg, 3 x 100kg

    Once you can complete that last three sets of five reps for an exercise, add 2.5kg to the bar for upper body movements and 5kg for lower body movements.

    Then just rinse and repeat.

    First phase: three to five minutes between each set.

    The above has been around for 60years or so and was used by a guy who knew a thing or two about strength and size
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