Gym Advice – Some of the Worst

Thursday, August 21st, 2008
Photo Credit: Fieldsbh

Photo Credit: fieldsbh

“Lift heavy and eat big.”

Might be fine at age 18-25 but once you get any type of injury or you start to gain any fat, you’ve got very limited options.  That usually comes from two people….

  1. A current or past Mr. Olympia
  2. Somebody under 28 years of age

There’s a heck of a lot more to bodybuilding.  It’s not overly complex I will agree but it’s also not that simple.  And if you leave yourself in such a simplistic state of mind, when something happens (no gym, no heavy weights, injury, etc) you don’t have a good arsenal of other things you can do.

When I injured my shoulder, the “lift heavy” was bullshit.  Not possible.  I had to find other things to do with much lighter weight to overload my shoulders without pushing heavy weight.  Luckily I had so many options to choose from that my shoulders grew in size using nothing heavier than a 30 lb weight.

I get the point of the phrase… I do.  It’s why many people fail to make adequate progress.  But it’s far to simple and if you don’t move beyond that line of thinking, you’ll be one of the many that will be forced at some point.

Lift heavy, eat big but realize there’s more to the sport than lifting heavy ass weight and there’s about 1000 other ways to grow muscle without adding on pounds per week.

“Training is more important than nutrition.”

The point, if your nutrition is not up to par, you cannot support the growth and recovery for a hard training session.  It’s as simple as that.

Training harder is not the always the answer depending on your level of experience.  Are you a beginner?  Or have you been training for a while and got all those fundamentals under control?

“You can’t out-train a lousy diet!”
Famous lines used by strength coaches all over

“Bodybuilding is 80% nutrition” - Vince Gironda

Your nutrition must be up to par to support the harder training you may do.  If you simply train harder and you nutrition is not on the same level or higher, you can and will take steps backward.

Let’s put it this way…  nutrition is always CRITICALLY important….

It’s more important that beginner’s should focus on nutrition… because their diet is usually a mess to begin with.

At an advanced level where all the fundamentals are in place, improvements in nutrition become less significant and changes in training can make the most changes.  In which case, your training is more of a focal point.

It depends on where you currently are now with your training to really answer that in a general fashion.

“This macronutrient and calorie counting stuff is A HUGE WASTE OF TIME”

First off… Learning about nutrition is critical to success.  The initial baby-steps you take like calorie counting are an important part of this learning process.  Over time and once you learn the basics, it’s not as necessary.  Remember when you learned how to write?

You didn’t just start writing a novel.  Small sentences and words is not a huge waste of time when learning how to write and neither is counting calories and learning about nutrient ratios.

Maybe you don’t want to sweat the small stuff but you better know how to do the small stuff because it’s usually the simple things that hamper your progress.  For starters…

It’s not a bad idea to count calories and learn about macro nutrient ratios.  When you get stuck at 12% body fat and you can’t go any lower, the old trainer harder isn’t going to get you to 6% body fat and competition shape.

“Eat candy, junk food, whatever you can to gain weight.”

As I say… Lazy bodybuilders.  And downright the stupidest advice I ever received when I was in high school from the local guru.  There’s just no excuse for having bad nutrition to do anything in life unless you are just too lazy to do the right thing.  What’s next, how to brush your teeth with milkshakes to gain weight?


Have you ever received any bad gym advice?  If so, I’d love to hear them.