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Old 04-10-2010, 10:10 AM   #11 (permalink)
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sorry for double post tried to edit to correct spelling of name...oops.
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Beth
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Current Weight: 5# heavier since I stopped using fitday!
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Old 04-21-2010, 11:10 PM   #12 (permalink)
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You can do squats and bench press with dumbells instead of the barbell. Since you state you are not that strong yet anyway just do the same motion with dumbells. This way you don't need a spotter. If you get to failure and can't get another rep you can drop the weight to the floor (not something I make a practice of but better than being trapped under the barbell). Once you max out the dumbells at your gym you can switch to the barbell. This will give you time to make acquaintences to spot you. You can also do squats and bench presses from the smith machine. This is also a good alternative when there is no one else around in the gym after you have progessed to the heavier weights on the barbell. For squats you can hold the dumbells at the shoulder or just let your arms hang at your sides. Hope this helps.
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Old 04-22-2010, 08:24 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Also, don't worry too much about spotters who don't look real strong. Unless something goes catastrophically wrong (say you pass out in the middle of your lift without warning) a spotter will only have to "assist". You will still be able to lift much (most) of the weight, just not all of it.

Mind you, if the spotter looks like a harsh word will break him/her in half then maybe ask someone else.

You can also try to strip off weight if you don't have a spotter. Start with the heaviest weight you can comfortably and safely handle, then after one or two sets take some weight off & repeat the exercise. Not quite as good as a spotter but it's safer than struggling with the last set and risking getting pinned under the weight you're trying to bench.
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