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What is bar weight anyway?


Mike_d85

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I made an effort to start tracking my progress at my gym for the weights I lift, but I have a problem:  How much to the dang bars weigh?

 

One odd-ball is labelled as 20Kg, but the 3 other (apparently unlabelled) barbells are different.  

Barbell type 1:

  • I assume most of the barbells are the same weight (around maybe slightly heavier than the 20Kg?)
  • Most of the barbells have round stoppers (whatever holds the weights out from the center of the bar) and seem to be about the same weight.
  • Seems to live on the bench press (no one moves that bar around like the others)

Barbell type 2:

  • hexagonal stoppers
  • Noticeablyheavier than the round ones.

 

Barbell type 3:

  • chrome bars
  • shorter weight holding area (grip area is the same size)
  • significantly lighter than the others.

I'm trying to use the same type of bar, and I'm just tracking the added weight instead of total weight.  To be honest saying "I benched 40 lb this morning" isn't very satisfying.

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Best option would probably be to ask someone at the gym. When I was doing lifting, 2 of the bars looked exactly the same, but one was 10lbs heavier than the other.  Our trainer bars were only 15 lbs (shorter than all the others), and the heaviest were 45 lbs (but other than were different color metal, looked exactly the same as the 30lbs ones... 

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Best option would probably be to ask someone at the gym. When I was doing lifting, 2 of the bars looked exactly the same, but one was 10lbs heavier than the other.  Our trainer bars were only 15 lbs (shorter than all the others), and the heaviest were 45 lbs (but other than were different color metal, looked exactly the same as the 30lbs ones... 

Yeah, that's part of the problem I have with the Y.  There's tons of employees, but no one really knows the equipment well.  It's just a hodge-podge of whenever they had it in the budget to update equipment.

 

If I owned a bathroom scale I'd just take it with me to the gym one morning and check.  The scales at the gym are on the other side of a basketball court and I feel like wandering through a pick-up game with a handful of barbells might be frowned upon.

 

PS.  That was 40lb on one side.  My arms aren't quite that noodly.

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I'm on Strava for my running now.

Check out Kick! too.  You unlock gear with your progress on Strava.

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Yeah, that's part of the problem I have with the Y.  There's tons of employees, but no one really knows the equipment well.  It's just a hodge-podge of whenever they had it in the budget to update equipment.

 

If I owned a bathroom scale I'd just take it with me to the gym one morning and check.  The scales at the gym are on the other side of a basketball court and I feel like wandering through a pick-up game with a handful of barbells might be frowned upon.

 

PS.  That was 40lb on one side.  My arms aren't quite that noodly.

What if you wander around the pick-up game with only one bar at a time? ;)

 

As a general rule, lifted weights are always listed as a total, rather than simply the total on one side. The reason is that you're lifting the entire weight with both arms (using bench as an example). The exception would be dumbbell lifts, where you list the weights separately, since they are two weights vs. one bar.

 

Also, doesn't 80lb sound better than 40? :D

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Heh.  Pick a weight and run with it.  As long as you're consistent with noting which bar you use.  The accurate log keeping is for your improvement.  If you want to assume, for bragging purposes, the bar is an Olympic standard of 45 pounds, go for it.

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Heh.  Pick a weight and run with it.  As long as you're consistent with noting which bar you use.  The accurate log keeping is for your improvement.  If you want to assume, for bragging purposes, the bar is an Olympic standard of 45 pounds, go for it.

Oh, so there is a standard.  And it makes sense that they feel the same as the 20kg (44.09lb) bar.  I think you win the internet.

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If there is a scale in the gym locker room, you should be able to figure it out pretty quickly.  Bars are sold in both English and Metric.  For a men's bar, 45 lbs and 20 kg are the two common weights that I am aware of.  Women's bars typically weigh either 35 lbs or 15 kg.  You can tell them apart by the thickness - a women's bar is somewhat thinner, designed to be comfortable for someone with smaller hands.

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