We are not machines, but we share many similarities with computers.
We can be programmed to believe anything.
This is how our perception of reality is formed.
Everybody is convinced that his program is the best one.
Everybody thinks that he is right, but sometimes – it’s a virus speaking, not the truth.
The false ideas inserted in your head are nothing but malicious software meant to extract your resources. The goal is to put you in a serving state for the rest of your life.
This is seen in every aspect of life from muscle building to love. We have programs/apps in our heads convincing us that what we are doing is right or wrong. They are there to navigate us and influence our mental management.
Everyone is fighting to insert his version of the program in your head since the beginning.
A tiny part of that malicious software is focused on muscle building.
Today, it’s time to activate the anti-virus force once again and expose some false training ideas that have penetrated the natty firewall through the heresy spread by the writers of muscle fiction.
BIG LIE 1: CALF TRAINING MATTERS FOR SIZE
Muscle maniacs love the story about Arnold who successfully transformed his average calves into absolute monsters.
Here’s the short version: Arnold went to his mentor Reg Park and started training his calves on a regular basis with super heavy weights. Some sources say 600lbs, others go up to 1000lbs. The logic behind the plan was simple – the calves get a ton of work from basic everyday movement and therefore need unreal motivation to grow. The method worked. Arnold returned with high-end calves that could compete with the best.
That makes for a nice story and some parts of it may even be true, but this still doesn’t mean that you can overcome your bad calf genetics with training. Arnold’s calves were never really that bad. They were average at the very least. Moreover, Arnold has some of the best muscle building genetics. Drugs or no drugs, he had a look that many consider unmatched to this day. How he trained is irrelevant. You will never be him just like he will never be you.
In real life, hypertrophy is a mythical process that almost never takes place past a certain point.
This is even truer when it comes to calves.
Here’s an epic truth that will make some motivational muscle speakers want to kill themselves.
CALF SIZE IS GENETIC AND TRAINING THEM HAS NO LARGE IMPACT ON THEIR SIZE.
That’s a fact of life that even the hormones injected in bodybuilders on a daily basis cannot change. There are many professional Olympia competitors who take everything there is to take currently and still end up with exceptionally small, sleepy calves.
What if I told you that I have seen old women with calves bigger than those of professional bodybuilders? It happens all the time and people who leave the house will back me on this one. Look around, you will see a ton of people walking with big and even striated calves. Those are not from training in 99.9% of the cases. Sure, if someone has decent calf genetics, he or she will amplify the size even further with hardcore exercise, but the bulk of the muscle will come from his genetic preprogramming. If he or she was programmed for calf bulk, he will have it. Meanwhile, muscle hungry ectomorphs will keep on raising calf after calf only to get nothing in return.
Sorry, bros! There’s not enough growth hormone for your calves.
Here’s a logical question:
What are we doing wrong and what are the old ladies with the huge calves doing right?
I don’t care about your calf routines.
I don’t care that you are bulking.
I also don’t care that you have the ”right” formula.
There are no formulas.
I don’t care that you’ve built a special machine to do ”heavy ass calf raises”.
At the end of the day, your calves will remain small if they are destined to be small.
Does this mean that all calf training is basically pointless?
No. It just means that most of the time training your calves for hypertrophy is a complete waste of time. Nevertheless, having strong calves and Achilles tendons is very important for sports and life in general.
How do you know whether you have good or bad calf genetics?
The short version: Look at your calves. If they are big and stand out, you have good calf genetics.
The long version: When it comes to size, calves with long muscle bellies and short Achilles tendons dominate. Longer muscles are bigger muscles. On the other hand, the lengthier the tendon, the less potential there is for muscle growth. Calves with long tendons are known as high calves and are often seen on sprinters.
BIG LIE 2: YOU FAIL BECAUSE YOU DON’T WORK HARD ENOUGH
One of the biggest lies ever told is that most people fail to build muscle because of poor training. The gurus love their programs and do everything to protect their little babies. Whenever a method fails, the individual is to blame instead of the routine. It’s never the fault of the program. It’s always the person doing it that takes the blame for the lack of results.
Of course, sometimes people are really lazy and don’t do the work because it’s easier to stay at home and swipe that iFone, but there are many, many lifters who train sufficiently to earn their fair share of growth. Some even train much harder than the Hodge Twins and the Jeff Seids of this world.
I can be accused of many things, but not trying hard isn’t one of them. I am no stranger to brutality in the gym. I know how it feels to be mentally destroyed just by the thought of working out. I know how it feels to have aching bones, joints and muscles in the morning every day. I’ve pushed through the pain a few too many times. And yet, here I am – no muscle mass beyond the basic fibers I was born with.
That’s why every time I hear someone accuse natties of being inadequate in the iron dungeon, I want to slap that person.
The reality is that fake natties don’t train that hard. Just look at the popular YouTubers. What’s so special about their training? What are they doing that the natties aren’t?
The programs are the same: Starting Strength, 5/3/1, StrongLifts, MadCow, SaneCow, Bill Starr 5×5, Reg Park 5×5, Gironda 8×8, PowerToThePeople, 4×4 Training, Smolov, Smolov Junior, Sheiko…etc.
The food is the same: protein this, protein that.
What’s the difference? There’s no difference.
The natties train just like the fake natties and still don’t look like the guys with millions of subscribers.
What’s the secret behind this contrast?
Simple. Drugs. Drugs. Drugs.
BIG LIE 3: HIGH VOLUME EQUALS MASSIVE GROWTH
When I started a version of Starting Strength and failed to grow (adding fat cells to your body is not my idea of growing) it was explained to me by lifting experts that Starting Strength does not have sufficient volume to elicit hypertrophy. I bought this concept on credit, even though today I see clearly that this statement is dumb for a few too many reasons.
I fixed the issue and did a ton volume routines over the years. I am not stranger to Serge Nubret’s and other pump routines. I’ve done it all – 10×10, 10×3, 5×10…etc.
Not only that but the last few months, I’ve been doing dips with 26.5kg added to me for about 100 reps distributed in ladders – 1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,1,2,3,4,5,6. By the time I am done, my shoulders and triceps begin to express extraterrestrial hate towards me. Despite all of this madness, I cannot report growth of ANY kind.
The reason is simple – more volume DOES NOT equal more growth.
The only thing it equals is an improved work capacity. You become more efficient at doing the task at hand over and over again.
Forget about routines like Boring But Big, German Volume, Serge Nubret’s Pump circus and other nonsense. It’s over. They don’t work…unless you count the placebo in your head and the mirror as an effect. It’s all an illusion.
The reality is that the popular muscle heroes have been promoting high volume training for three main reasons:
- It pumps the muscle and prepares your physique for video and photo shoots.
- It fatigues you deeply and makes you feel like you are doing something right.
- High-volume training is easier on the central nervous system than high-intensity training.
We all know that fake natties are afraid of heavy weights and rightfully so. Drugs make you stronger immediately even if your joints have not been prepared for the task. Smart fake natties lift lighter than their muscles want.
Big Lie 4: Legs Grow Fast
Many believe that the legs represent a muscle group that grows fast. There are all kinds of high volume leg routines meant to add inches to your upper legs and transform them into tree trunks. As you can already guess, the reality is a little harsher.
Legs don’t grow faster unless your genetics allow them to.
The extra size coming from those routines is fat due to overfeeding. One of the best places for storing fat are the legs and hips. You can add slabs of fat there before looking like a bulking soldier.
When a permabulker says that he can’t find pants because of his newly acquired leg size, he actually means that there isn’t a single XXL shop to buy clothing suited for his new fat logs.
Big Lie 5: Getting Big is The Result Of Muscle Accumulation Over Decades
”But scooby said that you can keep on gaining muscle for 20+ years…”
This is not how life works. Gains are never linear forever. You can’t keep on adding muscle indefinitely. Everything comes to an end at one point. Muscle growth is not like hair growth. It stops sooner or later regardless of your wishes or the broscience on YouBrainwashTube. Muscle growth is more like height growth. It ceases rather fast, and there’s nothing you can do about It.
The idea that you can keep producing muscle forever is just an explanation abused by fake natties.
Big Lie 6: There’s a big secret
Many believe that growth is hidden in a safe that you open with a proper combination of reps and sets, and even if one digit is wrong, you still can’t access it.
That’s a stupid and false ideology created by the system to keep you chasing your tail.
Every guru says that his combination of sets and reps works, but that’s a lie. You don’t fail to grow like the big bros because you don’t have the right numbers. You fail because your idols are on drugs and may also have better genetics. That’s it. There are no mysteries despite your desires.
Big Lie 7: There are many truths
People think there are 10 different kinds of truths. There’s supposedly a truth for everyone – for you, for me, for each person. That’s false. There’s only ONE TRUTH.
I don’t know the truth. All I know is that it exists.
Yes, there are many roads to the truth, but they all lead to the same place. The pathway variety does not change the fact that the truth is absolute.
Think about the mechanism of getting pregnant. Whatever the method, eventually the swimmer has to reach the egg one way or another. That’s the only way.
It’s the same with the truth. You can dance around the castle, but at the end – there’s only one king.
They want you to believe in the existence of various truths to keep you in the labyrinth.
Big Lie 8: There’s a serious advancement in nutrition allowing you to train harder and achieve better results
We love talking about human progress.
”It’s the 21st century! We are so ahead of the past!”
That may be true if we are talking about technological progress, which is the only part of our world that’s seemingly developing, but nutrition in the everyday life of the modern man is not better. If anything, the world has never been fuller of cancer-inducing foods. Powders mixed with sugar do not change that one bit.