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
    Senior Member Nate's Avatar
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    compound lifts vs isolation lifts (aside from hormone response)

    i always see people advocating compound lifts because of the hormone response you get from them

    i also see people saying that it is debatable weather or not that response is useful

    at any rate if we, for arguments sake, take the hormonal response out of the equation is there any reason why a routine that is comprised of mainly compound lifts is any better than one that is mainly isolation lifts if the volume for each muscle is about the same?

    assuming that your goals are body building.

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  3. #2
    Senior Member BFGUITAR's Avatar
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    Less time at the gym
    Instead of working back in one set of workouts and bis in another you can do chinups and work both very effectively.

    You use more muscles in your body which means more muscle growth and therefore a better physique, which what you want.

  4. #3
    Who me? Chubrock's Avatar
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    Your body works as a unit. Train it like one.

    Fuck, fight, or hold the light.

  5. #4
    Senior Member Nate's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chubrock View Post
    Your body works as a unit. Train it like one.
    what if your goals are body building and you really don't care about functional strength?

  6. #5
    DeaTH BeFoRe WeaKNeSs sCaRz*Of*PaiN's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nate View Post
    what if your goals are body building and you really don't care about functional strength?
    That isn't an option. That's simply how you're supposed to work out. The body grows as a whole. The body works in whole movements. Train it as such.
    "The only easy day was yesterday."

  7. #6
    Senior Member JHarris's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nate View Post
    i always see people advocating compound lifts because of the hormone response you get from them

    i also see people saying that it is debatable weather or not that response is useful

    at any rate if we, for arguments sake, take the hormonal response out of the equation is there any reason why a routine that is comprised of mainly compound lifts is any better than one that is mainly isolation lifts if the volume for each muscle is about the same?

    assuming that your goals are body building.
    Im not quite sure who is debating that more growth hormone and testerone in your system is not useful for gaining mass. Those are the 2 big mass builders in our bodies. So if you are a bodybuilder, and compound exercises make you release more of these two potent hormones, then you will get more size which is all you care about as a bodybuilder. (In theory.)

    Now, lets put this aside for a second. With a compound exercise, you can use more weight. More weight = more tension on your muscles. Since hypertrophy gains tend to be made due to a combination of time under tension and the amount of tension, using compound exercises over isolation gives you an easy way to up one side of the equation. As a bodybuilder, that would be useful. Further, people have a much larger potential for going up in a compound lift than in an isolation lift because, as a few have said before me, the body works better in larger motions. (Synergistic effects) Further, you gain more coordination which allows you more weight. (There isnt nearly as much coordination in a leg extension as there is in a squat. Hence why you have more room to go up on squats) So over time, you have the potential to go up much higher in a compound lift and put your muscles under greater tension.

    Leaving bodybuilding behind, compound lifts are just more economical with your time. I dont have time to sit in a gym for 5 hours doing 15 exercises to hit everything, and most other people dont either. Further, the compound lifts are much better for athletic performance.

    Jay

  8. #7
    Senior Member Anthony's Avatar
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    Nate, you've been here almost 3 years and you're asking a question like this ......... ?

    1) Size/looks are dependent on yor performance/strength increasing. If you don't get stronger/faster, there's a big fat chance you'll ever achieve bodybuilding success.

    2) The best way to get stronger is to move progressively heavier weight over long periods of time. Think years, not weeks or months.

    3) The best way to move heavy weight is by using your body the way it was designed to perform. This means multi joint movements, usually standing on your feet, often picking something up from the ground, and often putting it over your head.
    Facebook - BW166 SQ585 BP405 DL660 CL310

  9. #8
    Senior Member Nate's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Anthony View Post
    Nate, you've been here almost 3 years and you're asking a question like this ......... ?

    1) Size/looks are dependent on yor performance/strength increasing. If you don't get stronger/faster, there's a big fat chance you'll ever achieve bodybuilding success.

    2) The best way to get stronger is to move progressively heavier weight over long periods of time. Think years, not weeks or months.

    3) The best way to move heavy weight is by using your body the way it was designed to perform. This means multi joint movements, usually standing on your feet, often picking something up from the ground, and often putting it over your head.
    i think it is a good question ;_;

    and progressive overloading can be applied to isolation lifts also
    i don't see what is so different about 12 sets of cable cross overs vs 12 sets of bench in terms of chest development.

    it seems to me that your pec will create the same contractile forces on both lifts

    i mean if all we cared about was moving weight no one would ever squat, they would just dead lift

  10. #9
    Senior Member Nate's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sCaRz*Of*PaiN View Post
    That's simply how you're supposed to work out.
    i hope i don't sound mean when i say this but these kinds of answers make me furious.

  11. #10
    Senior Member Nate's Avatar
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    also i'm not trying to act ignorant or try and just argue for the sake of arguing

    this is just something i have been mulling over for a bit

    my workouts are about 95% compound lifts

  12. #11
    Eat Chicken Chris686's Avatar
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    You're asking why do compound lifts. I think the real question is "Why not?"

    -Hitting more muscles at once resulting in better overall growth and less time in the gym. This results in getting big all over (Duh... that's bodybuilding).

    -Faster progress using compound lifts. Anyone with any actual weightlifting experience knows this.

    -Functional Strength is important to everyone, whether they think it is or not.

    -Barbells with 45's on them are sexy.
    Forever Goal: Strength

    Weightlifting sucks. I just like to lift heavy things.

  13. #12
    Senior Member RichMcGuire's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nate View Post
    i hope i don't sound mean when i say this but these kinds of answers make me furious.
    And I hope I dont sound mean when I say debates like what youre presenting make me furious.
    First Bulk pics VS Starting pics, take a look!! http://www.wannabebigforums.com/show...=1#post1616109

    Progress pics of a cut using bodyweight only movements http://www.wannabebig.com/forums/sho...45#post2405745

    Generally, if you read a piece of advice on the internet, assume it's wrong until proven otherwise. This applies especially to "conventional wisdom". -Belial

  14. #13
    THUNDER THIGHS! Fuzzy's Avatar
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    I say, what allows me to use more weight is better.

    The end.
    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.

  15. #14
    Senior Member Nate's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chris686 View Post
    -Faster progress using compound lifts. Anyone with any actual weightlifting experience knows this.
    i wouldn't know because i have never done 100% isolation work

  16. #15
    Senior Member Nate's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RichMcGuire View Post
    And I hope I dont sound mean when I say debates like what youre presenting make me furious.
    why?
    what's wrong with my presentation?

  17. #16
    Senior Member Nate's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fuzzy View Post
    I say, what allows me to use more weight is better.

    The end.
    i guess what i am asking is:

    do compound lifts make you stronger faster assuming volume on each muscle is constant

    and if so, why?

  18. #17
    DeaTH BeFoRe WeaKNeSs sCaRz*Of*PaiN's Avatar
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    Yes, you will grow faster because you are working the body as a whole...growing overall as a whole...and getting stronger overall. Deadlifts, for example, almost work your entire body. You will grow faster and grow bigger than if you just focused on isolated movements. The body naturally WANTS to grow as a whole and the body's natural movements require multiple joints, muscles, etc... to be working together. Compound movements = functional strength.
    "The only easy day was yesterday."

  19. #18
    Senior Member Anthony's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nate View Post
    i think it is a good question ;_;

    and progressive overloading can be applied to isolation lifts also
    i don't see what is so different about 12 sets of cable cross overs vs 12 sets of bench in terms of chest development.

    it seems to me that your pec will create the same contractile forces on both lifts

    i mean if all we cared about was moving weight no one would ever squat, they would just dead lift
    You hurt my brain.

    I'll tell you what. Design a routine that is entirely isolation. Then design a routine that is based on compound movements.

    If it's not immediately clear that the compound routine will provide more bang for your buck in terms of strength, power, coordination, time efficiency, etc ... then do some more reading.
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  20. #19
    Senior Member JHarris's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nate View Post
    i hope i don't sound mean when i say this but these kinds of answers make me furious.
    I laid out carefully what the large benefits are to compound lifts, and you went on to say afterwards that '12 sets of cable flies is the same as 12 sets of bench' because you thought the 'tension on your chest would be the same' when I made the point that the compound lift would put MORE tension on your chest.

    If you want to start a debate about this, fine. But at least read the responses people take the time to give. I think mine was not rude and was actually trying to give you my best opinion on the matter. My point about time under tension/amount of tension is really at the heart of your bodybuilding question.

    Jay

  21. #20
    Senior Member Sensei's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nate View Post
    i think it is a good question ;_;

    and progressive overloading can be applied to isolation lifts also
    i don't see what is so different about 12 sets of cable cross overs vs 12 sets of bench in terms of chest development.

    it seems to me that your pec will create the same contractile forces on both lifts
    ... The idea of "isolation" is ridiculous, but even if you could perform an exercise that isolated a specific muscle group, why would you want to? By eliminating synergists, the potential for overload and injury is greater. Inclusion of surrounding synergists will make the primary movers fire more intensely. Pavel calls this "hyperirradation". So no, cable crossovers are definately NOT = the bench press.
    Quote Originally Posted by Nate View Post
    i mean if all we cared about was moving weight no one would ever squat, they would just dead lift
    The jump in (il)logic here is amazing...
    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
    Blog: http://squatrx.blogspot.com/

  22. #21
    Senior Member bill's Avatar
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    It should be evidenced to you in the gym. Watch the same people doing endless preacher bicep curls, db curls etc etc...
    You don't see them squating with some bad intentions or doing heavy bench or overhead. The physique's they carry is pretty good evidence to me. Which one is better, the skinny guy doing curls or the big dude doing some chins, squats, deads,?
    Last edited by bill; 04-15-2007 at 09:32 AM.
    Remember, to get big, you have to get strong. The two are interconnected. Lift heavy, work hard, and size will come. Like night follows day. It works. Arnold
    Do work son. Big Black (Rob and Big)

  23. #22
    Senior Member bill's Avatar
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    As someone suggested, one reason of doing compounds is to increase natty test n growth hormone. So when talking of adding muscle, you can't not include the main precursors.
    Remember, to get big, you have to get strong. The two are interconnected. Lift heavy, work hard, and size will come. Like night follows day. It works. Arnold
    Do work son. Big Black (Rob and Big)

  24. #23
    Senior Member Nate's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Anthony View Post
    You hurt my brain.

    I'll tell you what. Design a routine that is entirely isolation. Then design a routine that is based on compound movements.

    If it's not immediately clear that the compound routine will provide more bang for your buck in terms of strength, power, coordination, time efficiency, etc ... then do some more reading.
    you're kind of a prick

    i asked a question, no need to get all high and mighty with me.

    here's a summary of your response "if you don't agree with me you need to do more reading"

    ok, you sure were helpful.,

  25. #24
    Senior Member Nate's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JHarris View Post
    I laid out carefully what the large benefits are to compound lifts, and you went on to say afterwards that '12 sets of cable flies is the same as 12 sets of bench' because you thought the 'tension on your chest would be the same' when I made the point that the compound lift would put MORE tension on your chest.

    If you want to start a debate about this, fine. But at least read the responses people take the time to give. I think mine was not rude and was actually trying to give you my best opinion on the matter. My point about time under tension/amount of tension is really at the heart of your bodybuilding question.

    Jay
    if that was the case why don't we all just do negatives with really high weight for a long time?

  26. #25
    Senior Member Nate's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sensei View Post
    Inclusion of surrounding synergists will make the primary movers fire more intensely. Pavel calls this "hyperirradation". So no, cable crossovers are definately NOT = the bench press.
    ok, that makes sense, thank you.

    The jump in (il)logic here is amazing...
    the reason i said it was because it was illogical...

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