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View Full Version : Do you ever ask "why"?



redFury
09-28-2007, 11:21 PM
There are many people in this world that believe we need to continually challenge principles and methodology (across many disciplines) in order to continue to innovate. In other words, ask (and answer) the question "why?"

My question to all of you... is do you think its important to ask "why"? in regards to training practices?

Is it important to challenge the training methodologies that have been put in place, or just use them as is?

Is the time spent on trial and error attempting innovation pinned on us as powerlifters, or do we just use what others have tried and had success with?

Of course, the lessons learned and successful training programs already established are priceless to us powerlifters, but I am looking for your thoughts on the above questions.

Sensei
09-28-2007, 11:54 PM
The "why" is important and worthwhile, but (and I'm talking about athletes here, not coaches or trainers) it's pretty easy to get bogged down with the "why" and avoid the "do"... Way too many kids worry about "why" way too early and get absolutely nowhere.

Anthony
09-29-2007, 05:57 AM
If it works, it works. If it doesn't work, ask why until you find something that does.

RhodeHouse
09-30-2007, 12:43 PM
I think too many people worry about the why and make no progress. Jim Wendler said it best at the Boston Seminar that EliteFTS put on. The worst thing for young guys is the internet. To much useless and just plain bad information. Too many people with opinions that have no idea what they're talking about. Get in the gym and think about your training. Don't read stuff, train. If you don't get to the goals you want, try something different. Watch the guys that you want to look like. Ask those that have been there before you how they got there. Try it. It may work, it may not. That's the only way you'll figure out what works best for YOU. Does the "why" really matter if you get there? It shouldn't. Chances are, if you worry about the "why", you'll never get there. Here's the answer to "why". Because... No more, no less. Why did I get big? Because I listened to big people. Why did I get strong? Because I listened to strong people. I surrounded myself with people who are/were stronger than me.

We have a guy who benched 805. Big Rob McCray. For 2+ years he just SHUT THE F@#K UP AND LISTENED! We planned out his training schedule. We planned out his numbers in training. He did what he was told, and he succeeded. Now, he still listens to those (Vincent Dizenzo) who helped him get where he is. Big Rob doesn't read about training. He listens to those that know and then he does it. It doesn't have to be any more complicated than that.

Here's another "why" question. Why do you seek out all this information about how to do things instead of seeking out someone who you can do it with. (not a sexual reference, but a great spot for one) You spend so much time on the internet and reading books - why aren't you trying to find training partners in your area who share similar goals? I'd rather train at Westside than read about it. So, I called Louie and went to train at Westside. 14 hour drive to squat on Friday and bench on Saturday. Learned more in one weekend than I did reading ALL of Louie's articles. I travelled 2 hours every Friday to train at Southside with Vincent Dizenzo before i ended up moving to CT.

Instead of asking why, go find someone who has done it, shut the f@#k up and listen, and see how much progress you'll make.

Most of the fancy workout books out there should be used to precisely adjust the height of your box for squatting. The leftover books can be used in place of boards when board pressing. You could say,

"I'm doing the 'Science and Practice of Strength Training' Press today." Or, everyone's favorite, "I'm doing the 'Supertraining' Press today. Get me the 'Supertraining' Board."

1mmort4l
09-30-2007, 11:59 PM
I think too many people worry about the why and make no progress. Jim Wendler said it best at the Boston Seminar that EliteFTS put on. The worst thing for young guys is the internet. To much useless and just plain bad information. Too many people with opinions that have no idea what they're talking about. Get in the gym and think about your training. Don't read stuff, train. If you don't get to the goals you want, try something different. Watch the guys that you want to look like. Ask those that have been there before you how they got there. Try it. It may work, it may not. That's the only way you'll figure out what works best for YOU. Does the "why" really matter if you get there? It shouldn't. Chances are, if you worry about the "why", you'll never get there. Here's the answer to "why". Because... No more, no less. Why did I get big? Because I listened to big people. Why did I get strong? Because I listened to strong people. I surrounded myself with people who are/were stronger than me.

We have a guy who benched 805. Big Rob McCray. For 2+ years he just SHUT THE F@#K UP AND LISTENED! We planned out his training schedule. We planned out his numbers in training. He did what he was told, and he succeeded. Now, he still listens to those (Vincent Dizenzo) who helped him get where he is. Big Rob doesn't read about training. He listens to those that know and then he does it. It doesn't have to be any more complicated than that.

Here's another "why" question. Why do you seek out all this information about how to do things instead of seeking out someone who you can do it with. (not a sexual reference, but a great spot for one) You spend so much time on the internet and reading books - why aren't you trying to find training partners in your area who share similar goals? I'd rather train at Westside than read about it. So, I called Louie and went to train at Westside. 14 hour drive to squat on Friday and bench on Saturday. Learned more in one weekend than I did reading ALL of Louie's articles. I travelled 2 hours every Friday to train at Southside with Vincent Dizenzo before i ended up moving to CT.

Instead of asking why, go find someone who has done it, shut the f@#k up and listen, and see how much progress you'll make.

Most of the fancy workout books out there should be used to precisely adjust the height of your box for squatting. The leftover books can be used in place of boards when board pressing. You could say,

"I'm doing the 'Science and Practice of Strength Training' Press today." Or, everyone's favorite, "I'm doing the 'Supertraining' Press today. Get me the 'Supertraining' Board."


Damn! Great post Rhode!
I tend to agree, except without that word "why" humans wouldnt be humans, and innovative ideas and concepts would seldom advance.

RhodeHouse
10-01-2007, 10:52 AM
I agree with the "why". But, I just think you should worry about it after you figure out what works best for you. It's more fun to lift than to think - IMO. I've found over the years, when I listen to the guys I want to be like, the fancy science stuff is covered, just like the MD's say. My point is, lift weights, not books, and you'll get where you want to be.

daved931
10-01-2007, 02:17 PM
I only ask why I wasn't strong enough to lift xxx pounds. I like to reverse engineer things.

Why couldn't I bench press 335 tonight?
I failed at the transition point.

Why did I fail at the transition point?
Triceps weren't strong enough.

How do I change that?
Close grip bench, JM press, floor presses, etc.

I find that to be a more effective method and far less introspective. It works for me.

RhodeHouse
10-01-2007, 02:56 PM
I think that's exactly what I was trying to say. That's how I ask "why" as well. You're right, it doesn't need to get much more complicated than that.

BTW - I'm mad that you said it better than me.

Guido
10-01-2007, 03:39 PM
Uh oh, Dave. Don't make him mad. :)

For me it's simple: If what I'm doing now isn't working anymore, I will change it. I don't ask why, I just do it.

Fuzzy
10-03-2007, 08:23 PM
The way I see it...

My coach has taken on almost a parent role to me, I trust him more then anyone else, the one question he hears often is WHY.

Why am i doing this excersise, why do the supers train different to the middleweights, why do muscles knot up, why do trigger points relax a muscle, why raised heel shoes work, why Im jerking a million times a week, why Im training with max weights even though Im heavily fatuiged from the day before.

...and the funny thing is, its a question coach has to ask himself every time he writes a program, what does firas need? Well, more overhead work, but what kind, maximal work, or a few more reps. Is this excersise gonna fatuige him too much for double training tommorow, do i want him to be fatuiged during training, Do I need to give him weights I know hes gonna fail in order for him to learn?

programming is incredibly complex and highly individual.

The wonderful little question 'why' needs to be asked more often. Too many people who follow a westside template follow it to th T without sitting abck and thinking.... Why? Why am I doing lockout work when I need to e getting off the bottom, etc etc.

An olympic program I saw on here was a bomshell, power cleans after cleans, power jerks before plit jerks, WHY? The authour never asked WHY.

Training to be a strength ATHLETE is about asking why and knowing your weaknesses, athletes strive to fix weaknesses and never think about wht and how to fix them.

That one word, WHY, is whats gonna drive strength sports and sports in general, further and further.

Westside makes alot of sense. But I would not be surprised if a new system comes out that shuts it down, its unlikely but could happen.

On the topic of westside, thats the beauty of it, individualised training on a basic template, it allows th lifter to figure out were they are week and devot time to it, all te time the lifter will e asking, why this excersis? Why this rep range? and if they canot aswer that then it shouldent be in their program.

Fuzzy
10-03-2007, 08:31 PM
Why did I get strong? Because I listened to strong people. I surrounded myself with people who are/were stronger than me.

Instead of asking why, go find someone who has done it, shut the f@#k up and listen, and see how much progress you'll make.

Agreed! rhode, i thinks its fine for people to ask why but you are so damn right about surrouding yourself with strong big people and smart coaches. They say what to do, and you damn well do it. I aint gonna tell a superheavyweight gold medallist hes wrong.

I aks why because Im inquisitive, but I never let it affect my taining, thats all taken care of for me.

Its hard to succeed if your to rapped up bout little things.

daved931
10-04-2007, 09:58 AM
Don't ask "why." Ask "why not?"

ZenMonkey
10-04-2007, 10:59 AM
If no one asked why we would all be stuck in the stone age. "Why" should always be the first thing you anwser otherwise you are blind.

RhodeHouse
10-04-2007, 12:23 PM
Too much "why" in the weightroom and nothing gets done. Shut up and lift!

It just so happens, that the "stone age" of weightlifting is the same stuff that still works today. Kinda like the wheel. No reason to over-complicate a simple thing.

bill
10-04-2007, 12:39 PM
I just ranting a little about something similair in my journal. It's ok maybe to ask why at times, but if are lucky enough to find someone with some knowledge. Knowledge = (is very strong or big ) then that's probably a good friend and starting point. I know many things factor in to the strong or big idea, but most people regardless of genetics, drugs or whatever if they are big or strong have a good idea of what they are doing.

Now if you get stuck with out someone like this to help you out then ask why more. You don't have to ask often though, can learn much from this forum or westside forums. Just don't over analyze it or look into finding a perfect program. I've tried it, waste of time.
Eat big, lift big, rest and repeat.

redFury
10-05-2007, 09:39 AM
Too much "why" in the weightroom and nothing gets done. Shut up and lift!

It just so happens, that the "stone age" of weightlifting is the same stuff that still works today. Kinda like the wheel. No reason to over-complicate a simple thing.

I agree Rhodes, people just need to lift. However, there are many guys on our college powerlifting team that aren't having much success lately in one or two of the big three. Now, several of these people have been competing for 3-4 years and some have been pretty successful.

That said, they have stalled out on several of their lifts... and still keep doing the same things. Instead of asking "why" and being intelligent about their lifting, they essentially are stuck in limbo. Even worse, I can look at their training and form and see major holes in it, and I barely know anything about powerlifting. I've tried to passively get these guys to fix these holes, but they don't listen b/c I'm a "newb" or a "lifting freak" that has no real knowledge.

It's just frustrating b/c I want them to improve but they won't listen (unlike me). A lifting club is about getting everyone better, through support, advice, and heavy lifting. But our club is missing 1.5 of those 3.

RhodeHouse
10-05-2007, 01:01 PM
F@#K them if they don't listen. If guys don't listen to me at SouthSide, I don't care. It's of no consequence to me. Worry about your lifting and let them get left behind.