help! lifting @ PF.

so, as I have begun to venture into the weight lifting side of the gym, it occurs to me that the only free weights are dumbbells.

everything else is a machine, or a smith machine. I’m wary, because everything I’ve read here sort of warns against using those for fear of injury or bad position or whatever reason.

I’m super overweight for a female, and I hate to look like I have no idea what I’m doing. should I go straight for the dumbbells and try to figure out alternates for the typical squat rack? I’ve done SL 5x5 in the past, but this place is just not equipped for it anymore.

any advice is appreciated. 8)
«1

Replies

  • ritzvin
    ritzvin Posts: 2,849 Member
    Dumbbells will work perfectly fine for all of the arm stuff in SL. A good replacement for (higher-weight) squats and deadlifts may be harder (you may need to go with lower weight and higher reps out of necessity if not using the Smith machine, since you'll be limited to how much weight you can lift out of the storage rack and carry and position). And also- only doing squats in 1 of 2 sessions is also perfectly acceptable. Some other similar programs substitute it out on DL day for lat pull downs/pull-ups/chin-ups (that day is otherwise missing a pulling movement), and they most likely have the equipment for those.
  • ISweat4This
    ISweat4This Posts: 653 Member
    Can you work with a trainer? Lots of videos on YouTube.
  • cwolfman13
    cwolfman13 Posts: 41,082 Member
    Look for a good dumbbell program.
  • Cherimoose
    Cherimoose Posts: 5,210 Member
    so, as I have begun to venture into the weight lifting side of the gym, it occurs to me that the only free weights are dumbbells.

    Cable machines are essentially freeweights too, since the path of motion isn't restricted by the machine, so you're training coordination & stabilization like freeweights.. and sometimes even more so. :+1:
  • latentspring
    latentspring Posts: 27 Member
    I think a good dumbbell program is gonna be the way I go. I was concerned about trying SL again without having a way to get higher up in the squat regimen, but I guess I can cross that bridge when I get there.

    @Cherimoose - my PF doesn’t even have cable machines. it’s honestly insane how different of a gym this is from when I was previously strength training here.

    @TR0berts - thank you for the links! both seem great.
  • questionfear
    questionfear Posts: 527 Member
    I vote dumbbells. Also, does your PF have kettlebells? A solid kettlebell swing is excellent hip hinge work even if you can't really deadlift.
  • latentspring
    latentspring Posts: 27 Member
    @questionfear - I wish! medicine balls, yoga mats, dumbbells, and a stretch area. other than that, treadmills and strength machines as far as the eye can see.
  • spartan_d
    spartan_d Posts: 727 Member
    Can you work with a trainer? Lots of videos on YouTube.
    Planet Fitness doesn't have personal trainers. At least, not in the manner that experienced gym goers would consider to be trainers.

    They do have employees who'll offer some instruction, and they are sometimes referred to as "trainers." Don't expect them to have the same kind of expertise as an experienced and properly certified trainer, though.

  • questionfear
    questionfear Posts: 527 Member
    I promise I am not trying to bash PF, but are you tied to them for sure? And is there a Retro Fitness near you? Retro is $20/month, but they have a full complement of every weight/exercise gear you might need, from TRX to free weights. Just a thought. I know PF is slightly cheaper, but in terms of cheap chain gyms I think the extra $10 for Retro is worth it if you're looking to do anything with weights.
  • joemac1988
    joemac1988 Posts: 1,021 Member
    I think as a beginner you'd be fine with machines. The issue comes in when people start trying to squat/bench/deadlift heavy weight on a smith machine; that's a recipe for injury. The bar path is too arbitrary.
  • middlehaitch
    middlehaitch Posts: 8,386 Member
    Here is a another decent machine workout.
    https://www.bodybuilding.com/content/ultimate-beginners-machine-workout-for-women.html

    Cheers, h.

    @TR0berts thanks for posting the Lyle programme, I use to have it bookmarked, but somehow lost it. h.
  • I just wanna say good job community for not just bashing PF.
  • Cherimoose
    Cherimoose Posts: 5,210 Member
    heytimsla wrote: »
    I just wanna say good job community for not just bashing PF.

    What they lack in equipment they make up for in free pizza and candy. :+1:
  • Oh never mind. There the person who only works out in hells basement. Where the plates are made of molten iron and the resistant bands are cobras.
  • hesn92
    hesn92 Posts: 5,971 Member
    edited December 2017
    heytimsla wrote: »
    I just wanna say good job community for not just bashing PF.
    For the price you really can’t complain
  • spartan_d
    spartan_d Posts: 727 Member
    hesn92 wrote: »
    heytimsla wrote: »
    I just wanna say good job community for not just bashing PF.
    For the price you really can’t complain
    hesn92 wrote: »
    heytimsla wrote: »
    I just wanna say good job community for not just bashing PF.
    For the price you really can’t complain
    I wouldn't go that far. Apart from the ethical issues surrounding this business, this is one case where being cheaper can be costlier in the long run. However, that is admittedly separate from the issue of how to scrape by in a lower-end gym like PF, which is the main point of this thread.
  • nowine4me
    nowine4me Posts: 3,986 Member
    joemac1988 wrote: »
    I think as a beginner you'd be fine with machines. The issue comes in when people start trying to squat/bench/deadlift heavy weight on a smith machine; that's a recipe for injury. The bar path is too arbitrary.

    Totally agree. A good workout is one you’ll do. Use the machines until you progress and the move on to a different gym.
  • questionfear
    questionfear Posts: 527 Member
    spartan_d wrote: »
    hesn92 wrote: »
    heytimsla wrote: »
    I just wanna say good job community for not just bashing PF.
    For the price you really can’t complain
    hesn92 wrote: »
    heytimsla wrote: »
    I just wanna say good job community for not just bashing PF.
    For the price you really can’t complain
    I wouldn't go that far. Apart from the ethical issues surrounding this business, this is one case where being cheaper can be costlier in the long run. However, that is admittedly separate from the issue of how to scrape by in a lower-end gym like PF, which is the main point of this thread.

    Agreed. I think if you have a variety of gyms and your budget is >$20, Retro, WoW, and some other choices are better...but PF is better than nothing.