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

Itís 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
    Banned KingJustin's Avatar
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    Is Maxing Out Inherently Unsafe for Beginnners?

    So my dad started lifting again after taking 12 years off. He asked for my advice, talked about his goals, etc. After he did 3 months of full-body workouts with semi-high reps (mostly 8-15 stuff for 2-4 sets), I told him to just do the CrossFit WODs. He was worried about lifting really heavy weights, especially for deadlifts.

    Is this an issue that he should be concerned about? He has the form down on everything really well, and he is about as strong as me. He is like 48 years old, and he thinks he could pull something in his back or mess up a disc or something by jumping into heavy deadlifts.

    So, what's the deal? Is there something inherently 'unsafe' about maxing out? Can all beginners warm-up, get the form down, and jump into an intense 1-rep max? Can my dad?
    Last edited by KingJustin; 12-21-2007 at 12:36 PM.

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  3. #2
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    Why not get him to do Rippetoe's Starting Strength program - its tailored for beginners with a setxrep scheme of 3x5 for just the basic compound lifts.

    Why max out right away? Its not like the numbers are going to be mindblowing.

    Probably safer to have your PRs come from sets with reps of 3-5.

  4. #3
    Banned KingJustin's Avatar
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    Well, he started at 265 lbs and he was fat. He's down to 229 and he's up to something like 335 bench and 365x5x5 on deadlifts. He wants to continue to lose weight/fat and he really wants to get better conditioned while at the same time increasing his all-around strength. I figured CrossFit would work well for him, but I didn't think about the fact that it requires you to max out fairly often. We're debating whether it's inherently dangerous or not. If we decide it is unsafe, it's easy enough to make the minimum # of reps on dead/squat variations 5.
    Last edited by KingJustin; 12-21-2007 at 12:08 PM.

  5. #4
    still dislikes Art Atwood Hatred's Avatar
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    Don't max out while dieting. It's counter productiive and is certainly a greater risk for injury. Your dad is right and this is why.
    Out of the night that covers me,Black as the Pit from pole to pole,I thank whatever gods may be for my unconquerable soul. In The fell clutch of circumstance I have not winced nor cried aloud. Under the bludgeonings of chance my head is bloody, but unbowed. Beyond this place of wrath and tears looms but the horror of the shade And yet the menace of the years finds, and shall find, me unafraid. It matters not how strait the gate how charged with punishments the scroll,I am the master of my fate: I am the captain of my soul.
    Twitter: @joshuagbsn Follow me as I laugh at the world, and you.

  6. #5
    Banned KingJustin's Avatar
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    Sort of hypothetically, what if he's not dieting? Still unsafe?

  7. #6
    still dislikes Art Atwood Hatred's Avatar
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    Let me rephrase.

    If he is losing weight he is in a catabolic state.
    means he is eating less than he is burning= Dieting. Whether intentional or not.
    It's a great way to hurt yourself.
    He may be fine but 100% max effort should be avoided unless he's competing.
    Out of the night that covers me,Black as the Pit from pole to pole,I thank whatever gods may be for my unconquerable soul. In The fell clutch of circumstance I have not winced nor cried aloud. Under the bludgeonings of chance my head is bloody, but unbowed. Beyond this place of wrath and tears looms but the horror of the shade And yet the menace of the years finds, and shall find, me unafraid. It matters not how strait the gate how charged with punishments the scroll,I am the master of my fate: I am the captain of my soul.
    Twitter: @joshuagbsn Follow me as I laugh at the world, and you.

  8. #7
    Banned KingJustin's Avatar
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    The reason I say sort of, is because he is doing a modified version of galileo's old diet. Protein only day (rest day), refeed day (workout day), repeat. Basically.

    Basically the same as carb cycling I guess. Since he's been on this, he has gained at least a couple pounds of muscle while losing weight. So I don't think he's in a catabolic state, basically.

  9. #8
    still dislikes Art Atwood Hatred's Avatar
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    Ugh. Ud2.0?

    That's a great way to overcomplicate things when almost anything will work to a certain point of leanness. (as it says in Lyle's book.)

    Then tell your dad that... he may or may not hurt himself and hope for the best.
    He'll probably be fine.

    If it were me I wouldn't bother maxing out for what he's doing. That's essentially ego lifting and that's when **** goes wrong. If he reaches a point where he is comfortable with a weight then go for it.

    It's just that as we age poor form can do a number on you.


    make sure his form is perfect.
    Out of the night that covers me,Black as the Pit from pole to pole,I thank whatever gods may be for my unconquerable soul. In The fell clutch of circumstance I have not winced nor cried aloud. Under the bludgeonings of chance my head is bloody, but unbowed. Beyond this place of wrath and tears looms but the horror of the shade And yet the menace of the years finds, and shall find, me unafraid. It matters not how strait the gate how charged with punishments the scroll,I am the master of my fate: I am the captain of my soul.
    Twitter: @joshuagbsn Follow me as I laugh at the world, and you.

  10. #9
    Banned KingJustin's Avatar
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    Heh, I know that it's an overly complicated diet system, but he has made pretty impressive progress. 265 @ ~33% BF% to 229 @ ~20% BF since September. It works pretty well for him, and he wanted to stick with a variation of what he was doing. Whether he could do CF was questionable. I understand what the issue is, though, and we'll make some changes.


    Do powerlifters not max out when dieting?

  11. #10
    still dislikes Art Atwood Hatred's Avatar
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    That's why I put the "competition" clause in there. And it's still a risk.

    If you are dieting HARD it's rougher on you.
    Out of the night that covers me,Black as the Pit from pole to pole,I thank whatever gods may be for my unconquerable soul. In The fell clutch of circumstance I have not winced nor cried aloud. Under the bludgeonings of chance my head is bloody, but unbowed. Beyond this place of wrath and tears looms but the horror of the shade And yet the menace of the years finds, and shall find, me unafraid. It matters not how strait the gate how charged with punishments the scroll,I am the master of my fate: I am the captain of my soul.
    Twitter: @joshuagbsn Follow me as I laugh at the world, and you.

  12. #11
    Senior Member Sensei's Avatar
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    As long as he's been training and acclimated to lifting heavy, it shouldn't be dangerous. If he hasn't done anything close to a 1RM in a long time, you should probably start doing heavier triples and doubles first so that #1)he isn't overly stressed about doing them and, #2)he can learn how maintain form and exertion on a heavy, slow grind-it-out lift.
    A child does not learn to squat from the top down. In other words, he does not suddenly make a conscious decision one day to squat. Actually, he is squatting one day and make the conscious decision to stand. Squatting precedes standing in the developmental sequence. This is the way a child's brain learns to use the body as the child develops movement patterns. Therefore, a child is probably crawling, rocks back into a squatting position with the back completely relaxed and the hips completely flexed, and stands when he has enough hip strength. This approach makes a lot of sense and can be applied to relearning the deep squat movement if it is lost. -Gray Cook
    Lifting Clips: http://www.youtube.com/profile?user=johnnymnemonic2
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  13. #12
    HomeYield WillKuenzel's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by KingJustin View Post
    Do powerlifters not max out when dieting?
    Most powerlifters don't diet. Guys that are really good, generally aren't going down in weight but always up. You have the occasional exception like Mike Wolfe, but in his case, he didn't have to do anything real drastic to lose all that weight. He had to just work harder and think about eating cleaner. (I'm very impressed by what Mike has done. I hope that statement doesn't sound like I'm trying to take away from anything he's accomplished.) That's what most people tend to forget, it's not that difficult if you're consistent. It's just natural that most people will get lazy.

    Most competition (bodybuilding anyway) diets are too extreme for any type of true 1RM increase to take place. If you're trying to get into the single digit bodyfat percentages, chances are you aren't really powerlifting. (Again, there are exceptions so don't go tossing them around.)
    What is elite?
    "Those who work the hardest often complain the least." -anonymous
    Pain is inevitable. Suffering is optional.

  14. #13
    Problem??? CastedBaran's Avatar
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    I agree with Sensei. If he gets used to going down to 3's and 2's with good form, he should be fine with the max as long as he has very good form.
    Quiters never win and winners never quit.

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  15. #14
    THUNDER THIGHS! Fuzzy's Avatar
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    Maxing out and heavy singles are different things.

    i se no reason o not do some heavy singles to see what near maximum is.

    I know 6x1 singles with 352 felt vastly different to the gut wrenching ordeal of 401.
    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.

  16. #15
    Senior Member JHarris's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by HomeYield View Post
    Most competition (bodybuilding anyway) diets are too extreme for any type of true 1RM increase to take place. If you're trying to get into the single digit bodyfat percentages, chances are you aren't really powerlifting. (Again, there are exceptions so don't go tossing them around.)
    Most olympic weightlifters under superheavies at any real level are in single digit body fat percentages, though. I think you can diet/cut and still max out well. My squats usually don't suffer when I am losing weight. I think it really is just dependent on diet and workout quality.

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