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
    Wannabebig Member kanute's Avatar
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    muscle fiber training

    I was reading an article in MuscleMag about Fast, slow and intermidate twitch muscle fibers. It talks about the difference between the three and what is the best way to gain muscle mass. It says one of the differences between bodybuilders and strongmen is the fact that strongmen lift really heavy to the point where their muscles aren't doing all the work and their nervous system takes over.
    "As the load increases beyond the moderate range (50-60% of maximum), the nervous system discharges more frequently and the muscle fibers respond with greater increases in pulling force. So the entire time you were lifting weights exceeding about 60% of your maximum, thinking you were activating more muscle fibers, you were actually taxing your nervous system's energy reserves."

    Whereas, with bodybuilders they want the muscles to do ALL the work. They say that the best way is to involve all of the muscle fibers. The article says
    "that 90 percent of all available muscle fibers will be activated at a load of only about 50% of your maximum....forcing you muscles, tendons, and ligaments to the point of disaster - to fully stimulate all of your muscle fibers into growth. Volumn is the key to stimulating the muscle to develop and grow. A greater volumn of work for any given muscle is achieved by increasing both sets and reps of each specific exercise. Reps should probably never fo lower than 12 and could go as high as about 25 per set."

    It mentions that if your goal is to get stronger, than low reps heavy weight is the way to go....but if your goal is to gain size and develop your muscles, than high reps moderate weight is the way to go.

    Does anyone do this type of training? If so, have you gotten good results?

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  3. #2
    http://www.grappling.com russianwol's Avatar
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    I've read a lot about muscle fibers too.

    I guess from what I read is that you can't change the proportions of Type I to Type II, etc of muscles you have. So that's were the genetics come into place. I also know some people in their 50s that looks skinny but will crush your hand when they shake it.

    I find the muscle type training is really just a way to say - brute strength training vs muscle indurance. I train for both.
    "If I were not Alexander, I should wish to be Diogenes." - Alexander The Great

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  4. #3
    Wannabebig Member kanute's Avatar
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    Russian...so if i am looking to gain in size....which direction would i want to go? I always thought that in order to gain size, you need to lift heavy.

  5. #4
    Senior Member fury's Avatar
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    ye, im also a bit confused..ive ALWAYS heard that in order to put on size n gain strength u gotta lift heavy, like 4-6 reps at most..and if ur lookin to get cut, then u do round 10-14 reps lighter weite..
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  6. #5
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    Adaptation is going to be your greatest challenge no one method is going to work forever.
    Many methods can lead to mass gains. The body will adapt to any type of training thus the need to switch up higher rep to lower rep or explosive type training. All can lead to your end goal which is best (gravy) for you will only be determined by your genetics.


    Most people will respond best to 8-15 rep range with varing percent of max weight lifted due to the varing efficiency of everyone's CNS.
    Last edited by Blackcat; 12-11-2006 at 09:50 AM.

  7. #6
    As I Am Paul Stagg's Avatar
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    Stop reading Muscle mag.

    Stop worrying about muscle fiber types.

    Go to the gym, add weight to the bar. Eat.
    Squats work better than supplements.
    "You know, if I thought like that, I'd never put more than one plate on the bar for anything, I'd never use bands or chains, I'd never squat to parallel or below, and I'd never let out the slightest grunt when I lift. At some point in your lifting career (assuming you're planning on getting reasonably strong and big), you're going to have to accept that most people think you are some kind of freak." -Sensei
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  8. #7
    Senior Member hardgainer169's Avatar
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    Another related subject:

    Bodybuilders always say "squeez the weight up" and Heavy lifters say to explode the weight up. Is there a difference? Maybe this has to do with the muscle fiber and the nervous system.
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  9. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by hardgainer169 View Post
    Another related subject:

    Bodybuilders always say "squeez the weight up" and Heavy lifters say to explode the weight up. Is there a difference? Maybe this has to do with the muscle fiber and the nervous system.
    I watch the big dudes at the gym using nice slow controlled motions.... Whereas power lifters are usually very quick from the start....which probably helps train their muscle reflexes, nerves, brain....all that jazz. The object of power lifting is to lift it, and maintain your strength...why do it slow when you'll just loose energy. Of course dont negatives help gain strength also?
    6'2"
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  10. #9
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    Like anything else you have to learn to walk before you can run.
    Train with weights your comfortable with learn mind muscle connection. Learning this will take a varing time frame from person to person there is no standard time frame.

    KISS routine (keep it simple stupid) just do basic compound lifts 3 to 4 days a week.

    less is best You cant gain when you overtrain you lose. You would be supprised how little it takes to stimulate growth. I overtrained for years what a waste of my youth/

    diet is everything --this is your blocks to build rome

    Training routines are overrated its more mind muscle connection for mass, not just heavy weights this is for advanced lifters or the gifted.

    Heaving heavy weight will increase strength for a limited time frame until you overtax your central nervous system. This is one reason why strength training has deloading days.

    If you watch most pl videos they make the lifts look like they had more in the tank. When your training and your partner is having to spot u most sets your taxing your cns more than muscle fibers lighten the weights so you can perform the movement and muscle the weight up.


    Good luck &
    Stay Strong

  11. #10
    C.S.C.S. ddegroff's Avatar
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    Your over thinking it.

    Heavy weight will recruit all of fiber types.

    Stop reading muscle mags, they are filled with complete crap.
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  12. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by fury View Post
    ye, im also a bit confused..ive ALWAYS heard that in order to put on size n gain strength u gotta lift heavy, like 4-6 reps at most..and if ur lookin to get cut, then u do round 10-14 reps lighter weite..
    That's not true at all.

    High reps won't make you cut. They might improve your endurance.

    Look, when you lift weights you are damaging the muscle fibres. When you eat and rest, you repair those fibres and they get bigger and stronger to compensate. I dont really believe whether you damage those fibres with 8 reps or 12 reps is really going to make a lot of difference. Your body can't count. It doesn't know how many you have used.

    Paul is exactly right. Lift heavy, eat and sleep your way to success. When your routine gets stuck, change it around but dont obsess over muscle fibre types.

  13. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by hardgainer169 View Post
    Another related subject:

    Bodybuilders always say "squeez the weight up" and Heavy lifters say to explode the weight up. Is there a difference? Maybe this has to do with the muscle fiber and the nervous system.
    I think it has more to do with goals.

    A powerlifting simply has to lift the weight. Their goal is to get that weight off the ground or to wherever they are putting it. Therefore the sensible way to do it is to explode and make it move quickly. Overcome the inertia quickly. Clearly trying to come from the bottom of a 600lb squat slowly is going to be much harder than pushing up quickly.

    However a bodybuilder isn't really lifting weights - he is stressing his muscles against resistance (in this case weights and gravity). Therefore to increase the time under tension, you do slower, more controlled reps.

  14. #13
    Senior Member EvanH's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kanute View Post
    Russian...so if i am looking to gain in size....which direction would i want to go? I always thought that in order to gain size, you need to lift heavy.
    If you wanna gain size you need to maintain a caloric surplus and lift heavy.

    mmph.

  15. #14
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    Muscle mag is a waste, my friend once read in there legpress is good substitue for squats if your having back probs is LP.

    Yes, it said that.

    Yes I told him it was BS

    Yes he told me I was BS, cause they were "professionals"

    I went on to state if squats done properly do not damage your back but make it stronger, and if anything LP is worse for back then squats because on a LP the weight is at a 45 degree angle pushing down on you as your back is aganist a inclined bench. In squats the weight is on your back and your back is straight and your back is tight, and ready for the weight.

    Not sure if I was right. But I think I was... I bet antony could correct me if need be.
    Last edited by Nik00117; 12-12-2006 at 11:18 AM.
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  16. #15
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    Depends on how much experience you have. The best method generally is moderate weights 8-10 reps upperbody 10-14 reps for the lower body. HEAVY TRAINING for mass is dependant on several factors that an inexperience lifter will only be put at risk for no need.
    Mass can be obtained as I stated in many ways why start off full blown when results can be had with with less risk. Start a heavy training cycle after 6-8 weeks of the above training then after 4-6 weeks of heavy training rotate to another style this avoids CNS problems minimizes risks of injuries and plateaus.
    A third training regiment to implement is pyramid training do an internet search there are many variations of this style training.
    diet is everything.

  17. #16
    C.S.C.S. ddegroff's Avatar
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    Reps don't change for upper and lower body. I would like you to provide the source that said that.

    Also CNS burn out can be caused by so many things. If your diet and sleep are in check you should be alright. Also, you can lift HEAVY and not go to failure. Going to failure every set is going to tax your CNS more than just going HEAVY.
    Make Shift IF diet
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    I've set it back - you might need to reboot, though..." -Built

    "Nothing can stop the man with the right mental attitude from achieving his goal--
    nothing on earth can help the man with the wrong attitude" - Thomas J

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  18. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Blackcat View Post
    Depends on how much experience you have. The best method generally is moderate weights 8-10 reps upperbody 10-14 reps for the lower body. HEAVY TRAINING for mass is dependant on several factors that an inexperience lifter will only be put at risk for no need.
    Mass can be obtained as I stated in many ways why start off full blown when results can be had with with less risk. Start a heavy training cycle after 6-8 weeks of the above training then after 4-6 weeks of heavy training rotate to another style this avoids CNS problems minimizes risks of injuries and plateaus.
    A third training regiment to implement is pyramid training do an internet search there are many variations of this style training.
    diet is everything.
    That is what worked for you but it may not work for everyone.

    For instance 10 x 3 (ten seps of three reps) worked much better for me than 3 x 6-8 or 3x 10-12 ever did.

    If there was a perfect program that worked for everybody, we'd all be using it!

  19. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Davidelmo View Post
    That is what worked for you but it may not work for everyone.

    For instance 10 x 3 (ten seps of three reps) worked much better for me than 3 x 6-8 or 3x 10-12 ever did.

    If there was a perfect program that worked for everybody, we'd all be using it!
    why did I generalize.
    I feel were splitting hairs and our on the same page.
    I offered several training techniques if you read my posts.

    Also when you say what worked best for you were you talking mass or strength? I'm curious

    Lower body has alot larger muscles, I dont need a source to tell me what I have learned over years of training. I do rember running across something on the subject a while ago though.
    Too many crap studies have been produced leaves me echoing a saying over and over(so smart their stupid).
    That is not directed at anyone either just some studies.
    IE: how about the all or nothing principal for IE: simply do inclines for a period of time isolates the upper chest. I dont disagree that the whole pec is involved just some claim you cant isolate and grow a specfic area of upper middle or lower,upper chest.
    As for the CNS I also covered this and agree there are many factors here just dont like simple train heavy to gain mass because of the plataue that will soon emerge. An approach that has different training principals will lend to a positive progressive gains provided nutrition and rest needs are met.

    What's heavy if I say I did 3 sets W/130lb db's for 10 reps did I go heavy?
    I would not view this as going heavy for strength gain but sufficent for mass gains.
    So GO HEAVY really needs to be defined.
    Experiment with different training techniques to see what your body responds best too.
    This is the fun part of the sport.

  20. #19
    C.S.C.S. ddegroff's Avatar
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    Lower body has alot larger muscles, I dont need a source to tell me what I have learned over years of training. I do rember running across something on the subject a while ago though.
    Ok I agree but why higher reps?

    What's heavy if I say I did 3 sets W/130lb db's for 10 reps did I go heavy?
    Did you struggle on 10th rep or was it easy. If it was easy then no. I agree that heavy is a relative term.

    I would not view this as going heavy for strength gain but sufficent for mass gains.
    Cool we agree. But diet has more to do with mass gains than rep ranges.
    Make Shift IF diet
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    I've set it back - you might need to reboot, though..." -Built

    "Nothing can stop the man with the right mental attitude from achieving his goal--
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    "Obsessed is what the lazy call the dedicated" - Slim Schaedle

  21. #20
    Tearing **** Up FortifiedIron's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Paul Stagg View Post
    Stop reading Muscle mag.

    Stop worrying about muscle fiber types.

    Go to the gym, add weight to the bar. Eat.
    Bump.

    Training by muscle fiber typing is pointless because of recruitment patterns and their amazing ability to display different characteristics.

    Kc

  22. #21
    Senior Member hardgainer169's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Davidelmo View Post
    I think it has more to do with goals.

    A powerlifting simply has to lift the weight. Their goal is to get that weight off the ground or to wherever they are putting it. Therefore the sensible way to do it is to explode and make it move quickly. Overcome the inertia quickly. Clearly trying to come from the bottom of a 600lb squat slowly is going to be much harder than pushing up quickly.

    However a bodybuilder isn't really lifting weights - he is stressing his muscles against resistance (in this case weights and gravity). Therefore to increase the time under tension, you do slower, more controlled reps.
    I'm still kind of interested in this subject. Can anyone confirm/refute that slow controlled movements squeezing the weight up is better for hypertrophy, and explosive movements better for power/strength?
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  23. #22
    Just watch me ... Built's Avatar
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    From what I've read, explosive concentrics and slow eccentrics recruit the most fast-twitch muscles, and muscles that are predominantly fast-twitch (such as hammies) respond well to lower-rep range work, while muscles that are predominantly slow-twitch (like side delts) often need longer stimulation to activate fast-twitch motor units.

    I'm finding my quads respond better to longer rep ranges, while I leave hammies working in the shorter sets.

    If you've got a lagging part that you've mostly been training in the low rep range, increase the TUT. Poliquin suggests 40-70 seconds of TUT for hypertrophy, and under 20 seconds for strength. Reading between the lines here, if you want hypertrophy with short sets, better increase the TUT with a slower tempo.

    My .02

  24. #23
    Senior Member hardgainer169's Avatar
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    Thats very interesting. I suppose one just needs to experiment to find out what works for oneself.
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    Remember - if it were easy then everyone would do it.

  25. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by hardgainer169 View Post
    Thats very interesting. I suppose one just needs to experiment to find out what works for oneself.
    Absolutely right!

  26. #25
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    Definitely, use what works for you.

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