The Five Biggest Contradictions in Fitness
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The Five Biggest Contradictions in Fitness

Its no secret that when people contradict themselves, it has the effect of making the flaws in their actions or statements seem glaringly obvious. But what about when WE ourselves get caught contradicting ourselves by someone else?

By: Nick Tumminello Added: January 6th, 2014
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  1. #1
    BB'er turned PL'er Phenom's Avatar
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    Do people make lifting seem like much more of a science than it really is?

    Odd question, but all the time I hear people debating or just talking about seemingly useless information concerning lifting. For example, how many variations of curls do you see at your gym? I can't go a single workout without seeing at least 10 different types of curls. Preacher, standing, hammer, one arm, two arm, cable, concentration, back against the wall, curling a 45 plate with both arms. The list goes on. Another example is any cable machine with changeable grips. "Doing tricep presses with your hands closer will do this to your tricep, while doing them with this grip will do this to your tricep blah blah blah."

    When people ask me what grip to use for tricep extensions or even cable rows, I tell do whatever you feel comfortable with and don't lose sleep over it. Same thing when it comes to curls, "what's the best type of curls for MASS!?!?" I say, do whichever style you want, there's no need to turn it into this big complicated issue.

    It cracks me up seeing people spend an hour on the bench press doing every variation possible; flat, incline, decline, wide grip, narrow grip. Or when I see people hitting their forearms from every angle possible; wrist curls in front of their body, behind the back, with their forearm on a bench, etc.

    Anyway, is it worth the trouble worrying about the differences in results from such slight differences such as what grip you use? I just hate it when people complicate lifting when it doesn't need to be so complicated.
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  3. #2
    Senior Member Jorge Sanchez's Avatar
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    How dare you come in here spouting your common sense wisdom.
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  4. #3
    Just watch me ... Built's Avatar
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    Hmmm. I would argue they make it less of a science than it is.

    The science part of it is simple: eat more than you need, you gain. Eat less than you need, you lose. Lifting directs calorie traffic: Lift heavy while you gain and you'll get bigger muscles. Lift heavy while you lose and you'll KEEP more muscle. Heavy compounds are more effective and more efficient. Plenty of peer-reviewed research to back this stuff up.

    The rest of it, the endless tweaking, keeping the gains going, lots of science behind that too; target the right research to the desired outcomes.

    But trying to target your upper inner pecs, or thinking you can change the shape of a muscle by how you train? That's not science - those are fairy tales.

  5. #4
    Wannabebig Member ResistancE1's Avatar
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    I agree. Truth is anything will work as long as you keep adding weight and maintain a healthy diet. Phenom, I see that your representing the bearcats? Haha, I go to BU also. The funny thing is we probably workout in fitspace at the same time, and maybe even have talk to each other and well never know. Heh.

  6. #5
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    yer i agree, IMO all you really need is squat, deadlift, bench and pull ups, and if you keep adding weight every week and your eating enough you will get bigger to some degree weather your using 12 reps or 6 reps eventually your body is going to have to adapt to the progressive overload on the muscles . how many skinny guys do you see benching 300? or deadlifting 400?
    Matty

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  7. #6
    WBB's Juggernaut/Liason BigCorey75's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Built View Post
    Hmmm. I would argue they make it less of a science than it is.

    The science part of it is simple: eat more than you need, you gain. Eat less than you need, you lose. Lifting directs calorie traffic: Lift heavy while you gain and you'll get bigger muscles. Lift heavy while you lose and you'll KEEP more muscle. Heavy compounds are more effective and more efficient. Plenty of peer-reviewed research to back this stuff up.

    The rest of it, the endless tweaking, keeping the gains going, lots of science behind that too; target the right research to the desired outcomes.

    But trying to target your upper inner pecs, or thinking you can change the shape of a muscle by how you train? That's not science - those are fairy tales.
    i Agree with this statement fully


    its like any other sport, (yes i consider weightlifitng and bodybuilding a sport, ill explain if ya want) but the basics are alwasy the bascis. with football it all comes down to blocking, tackling, running and catching, in basketball, its running dribbling, rebounding and shooting, baseball throwing swinging and running, with lifting weights its pretty much lift heavy and eat and rest. but there there is the science behind each sport, like zone blocking and zone blitzes for football to disguise coverage, running the triangle offense in basketball or perfectly executing the hit and run in baseball, or in bodybuilding, discoveirng which angle or exercise u get the best results out of.

    many things we over simplify, if you take a look into and do the research about just how muscle grow and repair themselves its enough to boggle the mind, i mean the indepthness in which it can be studied is amazing. if anything i can say its very over simplified than what it really it but like all things it comes back down to the basics.

    heres a good analogy ive heard before....


    take a big glass jar, now fill it with a bunch of big rocks, is the jar full??...no

    now take some small pebbles and throw in with the big rocks to fill in the smaller spaces they dont take up, now is the jar full???...no

    now take some fine sand and pour in the bottle to fill even the smallest spaces to fill up the jar to capacity, now the jar is full


    the basics are like the big rocks, variations in exercises and angles are like the small pebbles, and the ever growing personal experimentation and tweaking with the routine is like the fine sand to fill up the jar.


    the basics will get you there but only attention to details and the entire picture will get you where u want to truly be and truly get the jar full sort of speak...



    so yeahthe science can be mindboggling and is not the end all be all but is very important
    Why live if one can not Deadlift?- John Paul Sigmasson

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  8. #7
    indomitable will.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Built View Post
    The science part of it is simple: eat more than you need, you gain. Eat less than you need, you lose. Lifting directs calorie traffic: Lift heavy while you gain and you'll get bigger muscles. Lift heavy while you lose and you'll KEEP more muscle. Heavy compounds are more effective and more efficient. Plenty of peer-reviewed research to back this stuff up.
    If...

    a) This quote was stickied.
    b) People ever actually read a sticky.

    Then...

    c) Every diet/lifting forum everywhere on the planet would average a combined 4 posts per day.

  9. #8
    Unremarkable Questor's Avatar
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    My sig says all I need to say about this topic.

  10. #9
    Senior Member smalls's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Built View Post

    The science part of it is simple: eat more than you need, you gain. Eat less than you need, you lose. Lifting directs calorie traffic: Lift heavy while you gain and you'll get bigger muscles. Lift heavy while you lose and you'll KEEP more muscle. Heavy compounds are more effective and more efficient. Plenty of peer-reviewed research to back this stuff up.
    .

    As always, great post. The thing is SO MANY PEOPLE miss this stuff for all the foo foo magazine isolate this and squeeze that B.S. These are the principles that make all that overanalyzing unecassary yet this is the thing people dont beleive or get because it's too straight forward, black and white.
    Diet is key, the calorie is king

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  11. #10
    THUNDER THIGHS! Fuzzy's Avatar
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    Well, thats hardly science is it?

    I on the other hand love nothing more then staying over at my coaches houe wre we can spend hours discusing so much. Benching, posture, massage, steroids... thats the science side of it and I love it!

    But that other stuff is bull****!
    Being a strong teenager means nothing.

    My wrists hurt, but some people don't have wrists to be sore. My knees have tendinitis, but some people don't have legs to get tendinitis in. I seem to be going backwards with training, yet some people can't even walk let alone lift 400 pounds on a daily basis.

    Dust out the vagina, and keep on lifting.

  12. #11
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    the big 3 with some accessory work- doing wonders for me. i will admit that i was one of those pukes who made things entirely too complicated and thought i was educated because of how much Muscle and Fitness I read.

    im pissed at myself for wasting years with stupid ass workout routines and BS supplements. better to start late than never i suppose.

    lift, eat, grow - wish i would have known this when i was 17!

  13. #12
    Senior Member JamesBOMB's Avatar
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    Everyone I talk to thats just starting to get into it thinks WAAAYY to deep into it. They dont understand how easy it is. Its not a science or calculus question, its more of a 2+2=4
    6' 2" 22years old
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  14. #13
    The Man of Steel -Superman-'s Avatar
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    I believe it is more of a mental science. If you believe you can lift a certain amount of weight, I think you can if your mind is strong enough. It has worked for me so far as with other areas of my life. I believe I will lift a car someday too even though everyone laughs at me. People will try to tear you down because their minds are weak and they don't want to see someone else prove them wrong.

    From 155 lbs to 200 lbs (PICS/VIDS INCLUDED)

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    155lbs [07-01-06] 176lbs [09-14-06] 179lbs [09-21-06] 182lbs [10-02-06] 184lbs [10-18-06] 186lbs [10-23-06] 187lbs [11-08-06] 189lbs [11-19-06] 190lbs [11-21-06] 191lbs [12-21-06] 194lbs [12-31-06]

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  15. #14
    Senior Member brihead301's Avatar
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    There are some nice replies here to that original post. True, it really isn't a science - Lift heavy weights and eat a lot of food, and you will get bigger. Up until about 4 months ago, I really didn't understand that. I used to be one of those guys that did 3 things for biceps, three things for triceps, three for shoulders, etc... I didn't do legs, I didn't have any specific diet, etc....

    4 months ago I started focusing on the big 3 (plus 3 others) - Squat, deadlift, pushes, pulls, lunges, and twists. Every week I try to increase the weight in something, and I eat the right amount of calories. Now, 4 months later, I'm in the best shape I have ever been in, and that's after lifting for 5 years before I learned the right way.

    It really is very simple though. You just gotta keep bustin your a**.

  16. #15
    cakin Cirino83's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BigCorey75 View Post

    the basics will get you there but only attention to details and the entire picture will get you where u want to truly be
    I agree with this. Basics will give you results, but if you want bigger and better, that's where it becomes more of a science.


    It's science.

  17. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Built View Post
    Hmmm. I would argue they make it less of a science than it is.
    I think you and the OP are actually in agreement. He's using "science" in a sarcastic way, you on the other hand, in the traditional sense.

    To the OP, I think the answer is simple: People are always looking for a shortcut to a better body. Fact of the matter is that getting bigger, leaner, stronger, whatever, is hard work and takes patience and dedication. In a sense I can't necessarily blame them, (although on this board they DO take a verbal beatdown), because magazines, fitness "gurus", and all the other snake oil salesmen out there are constantly coming up with the next "new" way to "transform your body".

  18. #17
    General of Froot Soldiers TwiloMike's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Built View Post
    Hmmm. I would argue they make it less of a science than it is.

    The science part of it is simple: eat more than you need, you gain. Eat less than you need, you lose. Lifting directs calorie traffic: Lift heavy while you gain and you'll get bigger muscles. Lift heavy while you lose and you'll KEEP more muscle. Heavy compounds are more effective and more efficient. Plenty of peer-reviewed research to back this stuff up.

    The rest of it, the endless tweaking, keeping the gains going, lots of science behind that too; target the right research to the desired outcomes.

    But trying to target your upper inner pecs, or thinking you can change the shape of a muscle by how you train? That's not science - those are fairy tales.
    I totally agree.
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  19. #18
    Senior Member JHarris's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Joshua View Post
    I think you and the OP are actually in agreement. He's using "science" in a sarcastic way, you on the other hand, in the traditional sense.

    To the OP, I think the answer is simple: People are always looking for a shortcut to a better body. Fact of the matter is that getting bigger, leaner, stronger, whatever, is hard work and takes patience and dedication. In a sense I can't necessarily blame them, (although on this board they DO take a verbal beatdown), because magazines, fitness "gurus", and all the other snake oil salesmen out there are constantly coming up with the next "new" way to "transform your body".
    Great post. I'd like to add to this a little: everyone thinks they are more advanced than they really are. Sure, Pro Football X and Pro Bodybuilder Y do bicep curl variation Z for Q x R reps with a T second pause and.. blah blah blah. But what do you think they did first to get to those elite levels? That is what so many beginners miss!

    As Built (another very good post) pointed out, the basics to lifting are not that hard. It only starts to get very complicated at much higher levels, but the complications build on the basics; those never get tossed out the window. If you are trying to peak for 4 separate meets in a year and you are trying to squeeze every last kg onto a bar.. yeah, writing a program can be tricky. But an average gym-goer's workout is not.

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