More rookie Gym questions: warmups before sets?

Thread starter #1
How many warmups do you do before you start counting your number of sets?
How do you determine the amount of weight to use for your warmup?
 
#2
I just work up to my maximum weight, so if I'm doing my sets of overhead presses and if my last set would be with a hundred forty lb. My bar weighs 20 lb and that's where I start 20 40 60 80 100 140 and then I move on to my next exercise. My only rest is changing the weights. I have a clock in front of me so I know how long it takes me to go through a set of exercises, I always watch the time when I'm working out to make sure I'm not slacking. In between my group of exercises I like to do a set of pull-ups or chin-ups and really stretch out my arms.
 
#3
I've learned to try and make warm-ups count (working through the motion of the exercise) without over exerting or taking away from my actual working sets.
Some guys probably take less to truly warm-up than I do, but I do this typically for my first exercise of the day:
So yesterday for example Set 1: 45 lbs x 8-10 reps based on feel (could easily do 20 at this weight)
Set 2: 65 lbs x 6-8 reps based on feel (again, only trying to get loose and a feel for heavier weight)
Set 3 (1st working set): 80 lbs x 10 reps
Set 4 (2nd working set): 90 lbs x 7 reps
Set 5 (3rd working set): 90 lbs x 6 reps

Obviously after your 1st exercise is done so you should be good and warm.
Each exercise after I do 1 set, decent weight, to get "the feel" for the weight and exercise (work through the motion).
Then 2-3 working sets (depending on how heavy I'm going).

I was chronically guilty of over-warming up over the years which was obviously taking away from my working sets.
 
#4
I use the rubber tubing with handles to warm my entire upper body. I just make sure I'm getting a every movement pattern in. Takes 5 minutes.
 
Thread starter #6
Thanks everyone for the tips. A little background I will be 65 in Nov and have never been in a gym until 10 months ago. I am learning thru simple trial and error doing my best to not get hurt.

I first started out with no warmups and just did the 3 sets of 10 reps trying to pick weighs that cause muscle burning at rep 6. For 6 months this got me no where.
I had no mind to muscle connection and when I left the gym after 2 hours (including shower and swim time) I had no pump. I blamed it on muscle atrophy at my age.

A few months ago Loki posted his workout so I adjusted the weigh way down but did the sets and reps he was doing. My muscles started growing and I could now feel them working, the mind to muscle connection was finely happening. Something I noticed was my first two set were always my weakest and set 3,4,5 I could really pile on the weight and by set 6 I was wasted and spent most reps I did not make it to 12 failure was 6-8

So that got me thinking maybe I should be doing warmups before each exersize and not starting my set count until I'm warmed up.
 
#7
How many warmups do you do before you start counting your number of sets?
How do you determine the amount of weight to use for your warmup?
Depends on the person and age. I spend about 10 minutes of cardio on a machine that works upper and lower body and I stretch during this time also, Then I stretch shoulders / chest with a bar and other stretches. Then start light. I estimate I start my lifts with 1/2 of my max weight during the sets. So if my final set of about 8 reps is using 60 lbs, I start with 30 lbs. Some lifts I start with no weight. Nothing delays gains like an injury.

One final thing, IMO counting reps is fine, but is unrelated to gains. Don't get hung up on the numbers. Focus on working until you can't do any more, to failure. Whether it takes 4 reps to get there or 14 is less important. I focus around 8 reps per set but I may fatigue to failure after 6 or may take 12 reps. Every day is different.
 
#8
How many warmups do you do before you start counting your number of sets?
How do you determine the amount of weight to use for your warmup?
I go on the exercise bike for 30 minutes before doing a leg work out, the reason for this is that it ensures there is maximum fluid in your hip and knee joints. You need maximum fluid when carrying out heavy loaded squats as it prevents bone to bone contact within joints, wish I learned this years ago.
 
#9
I walk 2.5 miles in mountainous terrain, then do compound/combination exercises like assisted pullups and light dumb bell squat-curl-press, and stretchy bands for sets of 15-20 before going to heavier weight.
 
#10
Thanks everyone for the tips. A little background I will be 65 in Nov and have never been in a gym until 10 months ago. I am learning thru simple trial and error doing my best to not get hurt.

I first started out with no warmups and just did the 3 sets of 10 reps trying to pick weighs that cause muscle burning at rep 6. For 6 months this got me no where.
I had no mind to muscle connection and when I left the gym after 2 hours (including shower and swim time) I had no pump. I blamed it on muscle atrophy at my age.

A few months ago Loki posted his workout so I adjusted the weigh way down but did the sets and reps he was doing. My muscles started growing and I could now feel them working, the mind to muscle connection was finely happening. Something I noticed was my first two set were always my weakest and set 3,4,5 I could really pile on the weight and by set 6 I was wasted and spent most reps I did not make it to 12 failure was 6-8

So that got me thinking maybe I should be doing warmups before each exersize and not starting my set count until I'm warmed up.
Hey, I am glad the new method is helping the muscles grow! I warm up using lighter weight but increasing my reps. For example on narrow bench for triceps I do 4 sets of 225 for 20 reps. My warm up is 135 for 2 sets, 30 reps per set. I do always count my warm up sets because they are challenging too, Sometimes when I transition to a new exercise (within the same muscle group) I warm up again since I am hitting it from a different angle.
 
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