1.Train Hard & Smart
You may shoot 1000 arrows, but if none of them reaches the target, nothing happens. You may hit the target 1000 times, but if your arrows have the strength of a summer breeze, it matters not.
Progress requires both – power and accuracy.
Many people go to the gym to simulate. Those would be the soy boys and girls who make sure their butts leave an impression on the seats of every machine for 3 sets of 10. Naturally, the rest periods are filled with texting, Tinder swiping, YouTube binging…etc. The next time the trainees return to repeat the exact same workout. This is not training. The proper term would be machine maintenance and testing.
Training hard demands an acquaintance with the kind of pain that mutes everything around. If you are lifting in front of cardio bunnies in daisy dukes, and your brain has the capacity to hear and decode their conversations during your work sets, you can’t possibly be training that hard.
In addition, you will go nowhere without a direction and long-term planning. The goal, however, is not to destroy yourself every time you fight gravity. Many unaware muscle apprentices do all kinds of torture in the weight room, but their lack of focus and vision leaves them frustrated and sad. Those would be the triceps kickback boys who obliterate every body part until the muscles are drowning in lactic acid capable of filling oceans. Yet they remain fragile? Why?
Because they are training without a purpose and chasing feelings rather than measurable results.
Progress in the weight room comes in three main forms:
- strength increase
- muscle gains
- fat loss
Your lifting and nutrition should reflect your goals. Luckily, if you are training for strength, you are also stimulating growth even if you don’t want to. As long as you are not eating too little, you will grow. On the other hand, if you are training to lose weight, a caloric deficit is in order.
Steps to ensure progress
- Choose a few solid exercises (compound movements)
- Get strong by following some sort of programming (training cycles)
- Eat in a way corresponding to your goal (weight loss, weight gain or maintenance/slow bulk)
- Don’t stop. Don’t get discouraged. Don’t change your routine too often. Don’t forget that little progress is still progress.
2.Don’t Try To Gain Muscle and Lose Fat At The Same Time
Losing fat and gaining muscle at the same time is close to impossible for the natural bodybuilder unless master obesity is in place or the lifter is still a beginner. But even then one of the processes will be dominant. Of course, the industry wants you to believe that there is a mega secret diet that could add 10lbs of muscle to your frame while cutting 10lbs of fat, but that kind of magic becomes a reality only when steroids and other drugs are imported in the body.
After the beginning stages, it is better to focus on one mission for a reasonable amount of time instead of expecting to become super shredded while acquiring extra muscle mass.
3.Spend Less Time On Forums and YouTube
It’s midnight again. The scroll wheel of the mouse is squeaking. The light of the LCD monitor is exposing the dusty air that has been inhabiting my room for the better part of the day. I’m hunched over, as always, trying to decode the muscle game by filling my mind with as much info as possible. I’ve opened so many tabs that even NASA’s supercomputer would go out of RAM memory. As a bonus, a YouTube video starts infecting the space with vibrations. It’s the former mercenary Jason Blaha with another clip on Layne Nordstrum and Mike O’Tren. My brain begins to rewire under the pressure of the info…
But why am I complaining? We live in the Era of Information. I should be grateful for having the ability to info-bomb myself, right?
“Our ancestors would kill to have access to the same tech,” says a voice in my head.
“Yeah, right. The cavemen don’t know what they’re missing. They would kill to spend their days in front of soulless machines instead of being out in nature…” answers another.
I feel dirty and press ALT+F4 until the beast is sleeping…
Truth be told, the more experience you gain in the weight room, the less you need the forums, blogs and YouTube videos. You don’t have to know everyone’s opinion to make a decision. People didn’t have the same amount of information before but did just fine in the lifting sector. Also, don’t forget that humans tend to lie a lot on forums and online in general.
And if you are afraid that you will miss out, don’t. Forums don’t evolve. They stay the same. If you leave a forum today and return after one year or more, you won’t notice a difference.
4.Don’t Take Any Supplements
In most cases, supplements are a complete waste of time and money. Unless you have some sort of deficiency, and there’s a medical reason to take a specific product, you are better off forgetting that supplements even exist. And by the way, that’s also true about multi-vitamins and even fish oil. I am not saying that those products have a negative impact on you, but if you are eating a sufficient amount of good food, the benefits are slim to none.
If you don’t believe me, do the on/off experiment. Take supplements for 3-6 months and then go off for the next 3-6 months. After the initial adaptation phase, which is mental to a large extent, there won’t be any difference…especially in terms of body composition and strength.
Don’t forget that most supplements are essentially incomplete food in the form of powder. Therefore, they are as effective as food at best. According to some, whey is not even absorbed fully because it doesn’t come with fat. But even if it is absorbed to the last gram, it’s still incapable of producing the miracles promised to you.
5.Don’t Trade Aesthetics For Numbers
I get it. You lift more when you weigh more. But if you are natural, you can’t weigh a lot without having the physique of a sumo wrestler. Don’t listen to the clowns promoting dirty bulking. Unless you are very tall and/or your frame is mega thick, you will be hard-pressed to break the 200lbs barrier in a lean condition (10-12% body fat).
Is benching 30lbs more worth the extra 30lbs of fat on you? I know my answer. I’ve been on the fat side and didn’t like it. When I lost the weight (44lbs), I felt relieved. I was me again – not the over-bulked boy that the misleading industry wanted me to be. My old clothes were fitting again. I was light and free. Was I weaker? Yes. All my lifts went down. Yet the quality of my life improved.
I am almost sorry to inform you, but you are not going to break any records naturally anyway (unless you come from Krypton). If you know this, why are you bulking like a sumo wrestler? If it was muscle mass, I would understand, but the extra weight is fat and water. Why bother?
P.S. Girls don’t like bulky boys with bloated faces and 40-inch guts…unless you are rich and high status.
What is the point of building a better physique if you are going to cover it with clown clothes? Hate it or love it, clothing makes a huge difference in the way people perceive you. Don’t believe me? Dress like a rapper and go outside. Notice how people look at you. The next day put on a suit and repeat the experiment. Technically, you are the exact same man. Nothing has changed…and yet people’s perception of you is different. But more importantly, your perception of you is different too. I am not saying that you should wear a suit. It’s not very practical unless you are an oil magnate. But putting more effort into dressing better could bring you many benefits.
Avoid super baggy clothes because they hide your curves and actually make you look smaller and childish. The main purpose of clothing is to compliment your frame and physique. The right clothes enhance your looks.
No, I am not talking about buying some mega expansive designer brands. It’s not about paying more. It’s about making better choices. Buy pieces that fit you and look good on you.
7.Don’t Follow “Magic” Routines
The fitness world is full of magical cookie-cutter routines promising magnificent gains. Every big boy has a secret that will allegedly make you as big as him. Well…he does indeed. That secret is called steroids – not 5×5, 10×3, 8×6 or some other nonsense.
The only fast gains that you are ever going to make will be within the first 6-10 months of training hard. After that period is over, your gains will slow down substantially regardless of the routine you decide to follow. This is the nature of the game.
Do yourself a favor and forget about fast gains. This happens only in the steroid world. I don’t care that some bro got “amazing results” and is now generous enough to share his monster gains training plan for just USD 50 if you buy it within the next 10 minutes.
8.Don’t Develop OCDs As a Result Of Lifting
The industry wants you to believe in the existence of a precise code that you must enter in order to open the growth safe. That’s why the system installs hesitation and self-hatred in you. They want you doubting yourself all the time. They want you to blame yourself and no one else for your failures. This mechanism preserves the perpetual loop and the money printer. [more].
You ate 1 waffle. You missed your post workout shake. You consumed 85 grams of protein instead of the projected 120 grams. Who cares? Really. Even if you hit all the targets (whatever they may be), you are still going to look like a natural at the end of the day.
End the guilt.
Stop the needless obsession and overthinking.
9.Don’t Try To Fill Your Whole Life With Lifting
Many muscle building addicts try to fill their entire capacity of free hours with lifting. Those would be the guys who buy unlimited gym memberships and start spending enough time in the gym to be mistaken for part of the staff.
What if I tell you that you don’t have to?
What if I tell you that you could be just as strong and big with less training?
Don’t believe me?
Start training 6 days a week. Do it for as long as you can. Then, switch to training 2 days a week. As long as your diet and energy expenditure stay the same, your body composition will not reflect the drop in frequency.
If you fear that training less will turn you into a human tree, simply replace the gym days with other sports – swimming, running, martial arts, shooting…etc.
10.Don’t Eat Clean All The Time
You don’t have to eat clean all the time. Even if only 80% of the food you eat is clean, you are doing better than the vast majority. Adding sin nutrition to the table occasionally will not destroy your efforts in the gym. If anything, it will ease the pressure.
P.S. Bodybuilders and fitness models rarely eat clean. They may do it before a show or in front of the camera, but for the most part, they import a healthy amount of junk in their bodies. Of course, the extra musculature and the drugs allow them to remain lean despite consuming bad foods.
11. Make People You Care About Exercise
The average humanoid is living an artificial and sedentary form of life. Most grown men can’t do five pull-ups with good form because they are too fat and weak. Most women can’t do a single push-up because they are fragile, lazy, brainwashed and deprived of the need to acquire physical strength.
“I am a woman. Why should I lift heavy,” says Becky.
One of the best gifts that modern humanoids can give to their bodies is movement. Undoubtedly, those close to you will benefit greatly from your knowledge. The key is to expect little from them. Not everyone will share your love for the iron and that’s fine. Something is better than nothing.
12.Don’t Use Your Smartphone To Track Anything
Smartphones want a piece of every market. There’s an app for everything today. The truth, my friends, is that most apps are useless code designed to keep you in a dopamine loop. You are better off skipping the extravaganza apps when possible.
You don’t need an app to calculate your warm-ups or the plates to put on a barbell.
Leave the phone down for a while. Take an old-fashioned notebook and a pen to log your sets.
Honestly, the only useful features of a phone in the gym would be the stopwatch function and the camera [to examine your form later].
13.Don’t Try To Educate/Convince People. [Don’t Argue]
You can’t convince people through arguing. The more you argue, the more they fight back. People convince themselves after acquiring the necessary experience. You can’t expect from people to admit that they are wrong even if it’s obvious. Our ego doesn’t allow it.
State your opinion and leave. Don’t get emotionally invested in similar fights. Let the kids learn on their own. Don’t worry. They will recall your words when it’s time.
14.Don’t Do Low Bar Squats
Powerlifters engineered the low bar squat to lift heavier weights. This was the original purpose of the movement.
Regular lifters who do squats to build their legs do not benefit from this modification because the stress on the quadriceps is reduced. In addition, the position of the bar often places too much stress on the shoulders and elbows even when the form is good. The vast majority of the population would do better with regular high bar squats. And don’t worry about your posterior chain. It’s working plenty hard during high bar squats.
Most people do low bar squats simply to claim higher numbers. But do those higher numbers really matter?
15.Don’t Anticipate Applause Or Support
Don’t expect the support of anyone until the table is covered in green, my friend. People respect you only when your actions are rewarded by the economy. Your family and friends don’t care how hard it was to reach a deadlift PR. If you are not making money or earning mega-fame, the world remains blind to your efforts.
16.Train Your Neck and Work On Your Posture
Schools, factories, TVs, computers and now phones have been trying to turn you into an ape for a long time. Just look around, and you will see many humanoids walking with a smartphone neck.
A poor posture destroys your aesthetics 10 times faster than a fat gut. To preserve your aesthetics, you need to fight this negative effect.
Neck training, back work, walking with the head up for prolong periods of time and confidence construction will help a lot.
17.Train As If Nobody Is Watching
The world shames beginners. You are supposed to be good at everything. This is one of the reasons why people stop doing new things after a certain age. When I first entered a gym, I was ashamed to record my sets because I was weak but did it nevertheless. Truth be told, nobody cares about you. People are focused on their own stuff. Unless they need you, you are invisible.
Train as if nobody is watching…because technically nobody is. They are all buried in their phones and nursing their self-centered existence on social media.
18.Don’t Run On A Treadmill Unless It’s Unavoidable
Treadmills function on the masturbation principle – you burn calories and your legs work as intended, but you are not going anywhere. You are paying to run at the same place.
Moreover, the running surface of a treadmill is perfectly flat which according to some running coaches is bad because the stress accumulates at the same trigger points. Therefore, running on uneven terrain like grass may actually be healthier.
If you want to run, do it outside – away from the noisy TV screens in the gym…away from the stupid conversations…away from the artificial environment created by humans to cope with the painful reality of the modern world.
19. Don’t Sacrifice Your Form For Numbers
Deadlifting with bad form has been one of my biggest mistakes in this life. Why did I do it? After all, I know how to deadlift properly… It’s simple. I wanted to satisfy my ego by impressing strangers who couldn’t care less about me or my numbers. As trivial as it may sound, it’s better to lift less with good form than push hard for nothing.
Many beginners think that their motivation to lift will never die and consequently fail to understand why some individuals quit the fight against gravity.
The truth is that there will be many times when you will doubt the mission. Maybe you are demotivated by the natty reality. Maybe you found another goal that you want to pursue. Maybe you are simply tired of sharing oxygen with morons in the weight room. Whatever the problem is, your desire to lift will drop sooner or later.
Once I quit all lifting for 18 months. I did my best deadlift ever and came to the conclusion that lifting is 100% pointless for me and stopped training. I thought that I was done, but one day, I passed by a pull-up bar and slowly got back into the game. Did I regret the pause? To be honest, I don’t care. But if I could turn back time, I would simply train once a week. It’s a lot better than doing nothing.
My advice is to never quit because you will always come back. It makes more sense to invest a minimal effort and maintain what you already have.
21.Don’t Compete In Bodybuilding Shows
Yes, brother. This isn’t a typo. In my humble opinion, true natties have nothing to gain from competing in actual bodybuilding shows. I am not kidding. Here is my motivation:
1.The competition consists of fake natties
There is no such thing as natural bodybuilding. I don’t care about polygraphs and sweet words. All I know is what I see. Even on a regional level, you will compete against typical gym rats who cycle test and a few other compounds on occasion while claiming natty for life. If you don’t agree, you could simply check for yourself.
2.Bodybuilding competitions are stupid (to me)
If you like bodybuilding competitions, you should obviously go for it. But I don’t think I am the only one who dislikes posing in underwear. You have to shave yourself, get a tan, dehydrate your body and then dance around…For what? A plastic trophy that you are probably not going to get anyway because you are natural…
Bodybuilding competitions are just another surrogate activity that people do to distract themselves from their otherwise plain lives. I am sorry, but this is how I see things.
3.The diet could wreck your hormones
Unless you are a mutant, you will never be bodybuilding lean without some brutal dieting. That comes at a price – you emotional stability. Reaching a true single digit body fat will require you to endure pain that is probably not worth in the end.
As a bonus, your male hormones go into depression mode when you are doing this. Not to mention the insanity that will begin to inhabit your life.
22.Don’t Waste Your Time With Gymnastic Movements Unless…
Here’s the truth – gymnastics is a sport favoring short men just like basketball favors tall men. The advanced movements like planches, iron cross and maltese are close to impossible for a man with long limbs to achieve. Tall men (over 5’11”) are a minority in gymnastics. Sure, they can acquire some of the movements, but it will take an extreme amount of time and dedication. Most will never get there.
Does it matter? Well, if you like training like a gymnast, you should obviously do it regardless of what anyone says. But I think it’s better to know the limitations instead of letting yourself be brainwashed by the sellers of bodyweight hope.
Many people want those movements because a guru once spread the idea that gymnasts owe their physiques specifically to difficult bodyweight elements. It’s true, but only up to a point.
Gymnasts’ bodies could become a reality without ever doing the advanced stuff.
Chin-ups and dips with added weight are better mass builders than planche progressions for instance. They place less stress on the joints while producing just as much growth stimulus.
If you are pursuing advanced movements because you think that they are capable of inducing some extraterrestrial natty growth, I would advise you to examine the situation once again.
For the vast majority of people, barbells coupled with chin-ups and dips would work better in the long run.
23.Understand That You Are Not A Saint
Far too many natties expect extra love because they remain injection-free. You are not going to get it. Nobody cares that you are “honest” and drug-free. This world worships other values…visual ones.
If you want to remain natty, you have to do it for yourself because you will not receive any validation from the outside world. Moreover, being natural does not make you a good person by default.
24.Don’t Try To Be Good At Everything
These days you are expected to be a ninja – a one arm pull-up master, a shredded monster, a good squatter…etc. If you are not, you are judged harshly by people online who as I understand are all genetic freaks breaking the limits.
Of course, it’s all an illusion. Focus on the basics and keep pushing forward. Don’t change routines and exercises often. It takes at least 1 year to develop significant strength in a movement. Don’t expect to acquire mastery in 3 months.
A narrow focus will lead you far. Use it to your advantage.
25.Become Aware Of The Natural Limits
It’s time for the sad melody.
When I first started lifting, I made the mistake of believing every single lie that the industry tells you. Everything. I honestly thought that you can become exceptionally massive without taking any drugs. I also accepted the false belief that most powerlifters are natural and owe their thick musculature to heavy lifting, bulking and sick programming prepared by high IQ coaches who turn paper boys into soldiers of fortune.
When I started to see needles in the gym trash, the picture called reality began to acquire more details. It took me a while, but eventually, I learned that it’s all a lie.
I got mad and didn’t let myself see the truth for a long time. I began to juggle routines while hoping that “someone is telling the truth.” I remember reading everything written by Serge Nubret (or whoever was behind his name online). I was naive enough to believe that he was natural and equipped with the blueprint leading to high-end natural muscular ascension.
Whenever I want a smile to take over my face, I think about those delusional times.
The truth is that the limits are way lower than many people realize. Becoming acquainted with the natty reality will save you from the traps of the industry.
If you want to learn more, I recommend this article and the book Potential.
do you think this guy is natural?
Hell no! The only thing natural is that pencil neck of his.
You are right about tall guys and the 200lbs(90kg) barrier. I’m 6’6 (198cm) tall, i weigh 200 lbs (90kg), i have 7 inch(18cm) wrists, 16 inch(40-41cm) arms (warmed), my lower abs are visible. However when i am dressed i look like i don’t even lift, i look fragile.
I used to believe all the bullshit form the glossy bodybuilding magazines too. For a while i was 106kg (233 lbs), but that was fat and i had a bigger fatceps. I layed off anything with starch and sugar, without starving myself, and without cardio, in about one year i lost 16kg (35 lbs), however my strength didn’t decreased very much. I’m 38 now and i’m happy with what i have.
So mr. Truthseeker you are not alone 😉
Probably one of the best articles I have ever read on this site. Maybe its just where I am currently at. I am enjoying the frequency. I myself am trying to loose the fat I gained that I confused as muscle. All the lies. I actually make better progress doing push-ups, bodyweight squats, dips and pull-ups than the conventional lifts. Fuck numbers. I have come to realise that this journey is about staying true to yourself, the more you drift and let the current direct you, the more hatred you develop for yourself. After close to a decade courting iron, I can honestly say, I have barely changed visually after my initial gains, I have just slowly with each passing year got fatter. Red pill yourself. Let the illusion die.
Keep it up.
Good luck with your journey, Brett.
Let me just say that I started reading this blog BEFORE lifting regularly 😀 I avoided a lot of mistakes and delusion. So thanks for the truth!
I have been at it for 3 years now. After the initial gains in lean mass, which is quite visible on me since I had not lifted shit for 40 years prior to my newly found self (was fat – skinny fat), things have stabilized nicely. The only thing that somewhat fluctuates is the muscle definition, which is a function of the amount of water and fat trapped under the skin. This does not bother me in the least. I look already good enough to myself and my wife. I just want to maintain strength and endurance, and I got to enjoy moving my butt after 40 years of being lazy.
I have no stressful lifting program / routine : 2/3 is compound lifts, 1/3 is isolation moves, and I tend to keep it the same. I train about 3 to 4 times a week, sometimes only 2, and a few times I don’t do anything. I commute by bike every work day (10 miles – 16 km) and enjoying walking as well. I generally stick to a routine for a couple of weeks, and then try a big lift on the 3rd week, just to check where I am. I am under no illusion that I will get super strong but at the same time, it’s nice to challenge yourself regularly if you take the time to prepare for it without killing yourself at it 🙂
We were actually 3 guys to start lifting around the same time. They were all very enthusiastic at the beginning but I am the only one who “survived” the first 3 months. They all kept they beer gut. I have become quite lean and I can see envy in their eyes 😀 I told them that working out is not only about strengthening the body but also the mind: you also have to learn to learn. It seems that so many people missed this during their younger days (I on the other hand taught myself many different skills since I was a kid – only takes focus and commitment – lifting is no different).
OK, that was way too much about me and my life. I just wanted to say thanks for the blog. I don’t know how you do it but it must take some dedication.
I really enjoyed that life story. Good to read
Good job, Thorgal. 🙂
I almost entirely concur with your list, but respectfully disagree on the vitamin and mineral supplement aspect of your diatribe.
While it is very true that supplements for muscle gain and physique transformation are pretty much a waste of money across the board (with pseudoscience backing up much of their supposed benefit, respectively), certain vitamins and minerals do have a place in a healthy and well balanced diet, and these benefits are supported by real science and (not surprisingly) common sense.
I find that Vitamin D3, Vitamin C, and a good Omega-3 (from fish oil or vegan sources, unless a large amount of seafood is consumed regularly) vitamins are cheap and convenient insurance to balance out a proper diet. CoQ10 and CLA also have their place too, especially is CVD is a risk factor with an individual, as these are proven to go a long way as a helpful preventative measure. And guess what: Just lately I’ve been supplementing with digestive enzymes and probiotics and all of my gastrointestinal discomfort and flatulence has been significantly improved, especially when taken with certain meals. I need no scientific study there to no the difference in how I feel.
My belief is that even the proper modern diet is too woefully empty in many nutrients, primarily due to mass production farming which robs many foods of their natural vitamin and mineral content. The same food 50 years ago is not necessarily the same food today, even if it’s organic, unless it’s wild game, fish or produce, which is the mass spectrum can be quite limited.
Also as one gets older the more you feel and realize these things, as your body becomes more sensitive to imbalances, and the proper diet and supplements make the difference sometimes. Either way I think supplementing properly is a cheap and easy affordable insurance against such things, and may benefit long term health significantly. (But obviously, forget using these to get super jacked and ripped, that’s a pipe dream.)
Also I omitted multivitamins from my list because I feel that assessing the right kind and doses is tricky; most are not properly dosed and contain too many of the wrong kinds of constituents, that could hamper absorption of certain vitamins of minerals, within the multivitamin. So these are a bit trickier and almost have to be tailored for use, or mega dosed in some cases which is not recommended.
If it works for you, that’s good. But most people delude themselves into thinking that they must take those things. A better diet would greatly reduce the need for extras.
Thank you for taking the time to write this comment.
I’m age 62, below-average genetics for building proportionate muscle mass, and I’ve been no-PEDs-now-nor-ever lifelong bodybuilding for forty-five years since age sixteen. What NattyOrNot advises in this article is exactly I discovered for myself experientially during my forty-five years of bodybuilding, including his advice on supplements.
When I was young and naive, I thought as you do about supplements, especially the “insurance” aspect. However, across the decades, I realized that, unless a person is actually diagnosed with a severe deficiency of a nutrient, supplements serve only to “supplement” the wallets of the sellers. Consequently, for the past thirty-five of my forty-five years of bodybuilding, I’ve used zero supplements, and experienced zero difference in health or performance.
Science which is used to support even the supplements you use is, upon close examination, evidencing a barely significant nutritional benefit — just enough benefit that opportunists and marketeers can factually claim “significant” without having to honestly admit that the “significant” effects on humans are, at best, so minuscule that no practical health difference manifests between using the supplements and not.
So, you might do as NattyOrNot suggests and experiment with NOT using any of those you’re taking for at least eight months. Be sure you’re not fooling yourself into unnecessarily spending money on them.
TruthSeeker had an article recently about the dopamine kick you get out of various things. Buying supplements has probably the same effect. Not that the supplements themselves yield such a dopamine boost, but the act of buying them certainly does.
When it comes to supplements, I get most things from real foods. The only one that I do supplement via tablets is vit. D3. I am a southerner living in northern latitudes. I can’t deal with the lack of sunshine very well between October and April. I know it’s only a band aid, exposure to sunshine does much more than triggering D3 production in the skin, but it’s better than nothing.
I would differ between lifting performance and “health”.
I doubt that additional vitamins and minerals make you a better lifter or bbler. Otherwise most of us would eat tons of this stuff.
What health concerns I think the matter is more complicated. It brings us to the question what´s “health” really is. Absence of any illness? A body in complete balance? Highest level of well-being?
It´s clear that industry wants us to consume as much as possible from these supplements. That doesn´t neccessarily means that all supplements are absolutely useless for our health.
After creating vitamin supplements to a source of health in the 60ties and 70ties these days the science goes in the opposite direction.
It´s not only the supplement it´s the nutrition in whole which is a subject of discussions which reminds me on religious wars. Organic food, vegan food, thousands of diets, thousands of bans and bids. Every day new articles of “scientific studies” which seem to proove this and that and paid by people who have financial or ideological interests in their minds.
I hope that one day we all get a clear picture what is healthy for us and what isn´t.
Till this day my mantra is: listen to your own body and trust in your own mind.
Thanks you for the comment Joe, much appreciated.
FYI: I am no spring chicken either, I’m a stone throw away from the half century mark, and am happy to say I look and feel many years younger due to my active lifestyle & diet.
However, discerning the beneficial effect (or possible long term detriment for that matter) of vitamin and mineral supplements is not as simple as it would appear sometimes.
For instance, we may be deficient for many years in something and test fine health wise, but over time these little things can allow detrimental effects, immune system deficiency, and/or illnesses to sneak up on you, despite what your physical condition and blood work might tell you (unless you are using said blood work to test and target deficiencies, which is a different matter all together).
A very simple example of this is vitamin C supplementation. We all know and have heard since we were kids that vitamin C is so important for bodily function, especially in the winter to help ward off and fight colds/flus by helping boost the immune system. To get this we can eat a diet high in citrus fruit (grapefruit, oranges, etc.), but how often do we really do this? And do we doe this everyday or once a week? Maybe once a month? It may be that our diet during this period doesn’t provide enough vitamin C, so a simple tablet of 500-1,000 mg more than covers the need. And since it’s so very cheap to buy vitamin C and convenient to take it every day, why not supplement?
I really believe that the supplement industry, which started on the right foot (much like natural bodybuilding, to draw a parallel) has been perverted by both lack of regulation and deceptive snake oil salesmen (making outrageous claims about their products), thus resulting in marring the industry as a whole. But there most certainly is benefit and science behind intelligent supplementation, as I can attest to with my previous digestive enzyme/probiotic supplementation example.
“And since it’s so very cheap to buy vitamin C and convenient to take it every day, why not supplement?”
This is why I don’t get the “supplements bad” argument. Sure, they don’t give you superhuman powers or make you live forever, but you can improve your nutrition significantly for a negligible amount of money – why not do it?
Actually, DONNE, your reference to Vitamin C supplements illustrates my point.
The average male requires approximately 100 milligrams of Vit C per day (the various hypotheses that mega-doses of Vit C confer certain health benefits remain scientifically unsubstantiated if not disproved). A wide variety of not only fruit but also vegetables contains more than that amount in one or two servings, so getting Vit C is relatively easy for most people with even modest income from normal daily eating. Therefore, supplementing with Vit C, if done at all, can easily be relegated to the occasional recourse of once a week or once a month, rather the inverse.
Also, since multiple vitamins and minerals occur in a fruit or vegetable (for example, red bell peppers contain not only sufficient daily amounts of Vit C, but also contain Vit A, Vit E, some of the B vitamins, and potassium, among other nutrients), meaning that eating what a relatively small quantity of vegetables and fruit supplies requires not merely a container of Vit C but also multiple containers of other vitamins and mineral to supply (multi-vitamin supplements are notorious for poor absorbability as well as notorious for questionable combinations of vitamins and minerals).
Obtaining Vit C and other nutrients from real food is typically no more difficult than using supplements.
No, supplements are (generally) not “bad” in the sense of harmful, but, they are usually an unnecessary expenditure, and their effectiveness compared to actual food has been exaggerated if not fabricated by marketeers.
One of the pleasures of losing weight is being able to buy clothes that show I’m lean. Not that skin tight nonsense, but close enough that it’s clear there’s a flat belly, no love handles etc.
Trouble is, in the world of fatties, I’m the one that looks suspiciously abnormal.
I don’t use a commercial app, but I record everything in a Google sheets spreadsheet. I found it handier than a book. I wrote a trivial algorithm to score a set and a total for an exercise and to plot the totals against date.
It makes it really easy to see progress through training cycles and to spot when I get stuck. My notebook was a mass of erased and crossed out bits and was impossible to analyse efficiently.
If it works, it does not matter what anyone says. Good luck, brother.
The right article coming at the right time in my life.
Thank you for the support, Nico B.
Cool article, one of the bests actually, wish i have read it when I started. I correlate with number 15, not only in fitness but in other areas of life, i speak 4 languages (5 if i am drunk and with a big ego), i learned only with the internet because I find traditional methods like a treadmill, i only went to traditional classes because of the chicks (and most of the hot ones would stop going when the class became advanced) till this day my parents believe that time is spend better being inculcate in the ways of the SJW at college, just because its “official” learning. Isnt the point to actually learn something? No it isnt, is about status (this is specially truth in the humanities), that’s the reason why people dont read books anymore, but still are going to college. Really why do people get a PHD in humanities? Its because they want to pet their ego’s when their names have doctor on it, if it was only because of learning they would just fucking read, I dont know like Jorge Luis Borges who never went to college. Also, I wanted to ask you something. You read the Unabomber manifesto didnt you? I find many correlations between some of your writing and his ideas (specially the destruction of the small comunity) and also you used the term surrogate activity in this post, i have never seen it anywhere else only in his manifesto. Love to read you, I actually know some of your quotes by heart hahaha.
Yes. People say they don’t judge a book by its cover, but we do. We often overrated ourselves. (“I will never do this.” ..and then we do the exact same thing). That’s why we want the titles. I never finished college either. People often shame me for it when they find out.
Yes, I’ve read the manifesto. He even mentions bodybuilding in particular as a surrogate activity. I have no choice but to agree. We surround ourselves with surrogate activities/simulations. This is especially true about the modern Internet age.
Yeah, and with incresed automation humanoids will seek even more surrogate activities. But its not that bad, i mean in some sense humans have been doing it for a long time (at least the aristocrats) the problem as far as i can tell is that people are unwilling or unable to see that they are surrogate activies, that’s why you got many pedantic engineers who said that they work to help humanity and that third world citizens are poor because they are lazy ,while they get their bananas from those very same countries. And in many cases when you see what they are doing one can only guess how is this going to help humanity and not only their wallet and egos. An example would be what Jaques ellul says in this video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-_ixXU1dmIU (3:46). most of those activities are just impulsed by the hunger for activity that humans have. I believe that humans would change for the better, if society realizes this as Blaise Pascal once said “All men’s miseries derive from not being able to sit in a quiet room alone.” Somebody already told you this, you seem to rewrite the same article over and over again, but people keep coming (and its not to know how to spot fake natties, most of us already know enough) but because you are a good writer and talk about things that nowhere else are spoken of. Keep it up man.
BB indeed is a surrogate activity, because the initial goal of achieving a poster-like physique is based on illusion, trying to fulfill the illusion by training natty is double illusion. Thus you are not creating your personality. But if you lift weights or do some other sports because you like doing it, not for the money, not for the status, you like doing it because you feel yourself within this activity – then this is not a surrogate activity.
Is a surrogate activity because is something you do to distract yourself from everything, its like if you were waiting for the results of your HIV test, and you work even harder those days because you dont want to think about it. As i said is not that bad in itself, i believe that religion was something similar, the problem is that they dont realize it. So we got the runner who already got his knees fucked, and keeps running no matter what. the bussiness men who keeps creating money that they do not need but sacrifice their health in the process.. Or what about the guy who bases his happiness in the shit he owns? I met a guy who fucked his knees because of his fatness, he was a math genius. Or what about this, at the back of my girlfriends house there is a forest in the middle of the city, you know what the fuck do the politicians are going to start building? A park, thats right they are going to cut trees to build a park, with an artificial pond that is going to cost money to mantain. why the fuck nobody who is involved in that proyect says that is a stupid and unnecesary idea?, and im sure there are plenty of people who have a college education involved in that project,. If you really think about it, they are no different from the guy that just plays guitar because it feels good and not doing it feels empty, but many of them like to presents themselves like ultra special human beings that work because of their strong work ethic. Society says that economic producitivity will make you happy (up till certain point) but look at japan, I once saw an statistic that said that people who lose their job where more likely to kill themselves, kind of strange if the only reason you got to live is working. I mean im sure these guys did not have a strong community and this is one thing that is not mentioned much in the media. So the system keeps pushing us to seek surrogate activities no matter what, even psychologists will tell you to seek a hobby that fulfills you. It also creates preposterous smart idiots. I once met a dr that was fat, she believed that by going to the crossfit as much as she could, and lift as heavier as she could, she would become slim and sexy, but then she would go out and drink vodka like a slav, and eat too much , I told her that the most important thing to loose weight was a caloric deficit, and than being stress free and not drinking estrogenic beverages would help, did not listen because “im a doctor”, but as truthseeker said, and that was something that i liked in this post, people convince themselves after acquiring the necessary experience ,she ended being a strong woman, but not a
slim woman like she wanted, like a powerlifter. And it was because she tried to gain muscle and lose fat at the same time,I dont know, the point is she did not listen because “Me a doctor”.Gym rats that start juicing, are also a good example, we all start lifting for the bitches, but gym rats after getting to a plateau and seeing that is not what they wanted make it the center of their life and personality, so they become mythomaniacs and said that they all do it because they are super-special and have a spartan discipline, but well who i am kidding, seeking chicks is not a surrogate activity, cant blame them, most girls nowadays have ridicoulous standarts. Most of what ted kacksinky says is that society is pushing us even more to seek surrogate acctivities to find fulfilment and meaning in our life, but no matter how much money you get or math problems you solve theres is something empty with our existence nowadays and we just keep trying to distract ourselves with all kind of stuff, work, television, videogames etc.
“but no matter how much money you get or math problems you solve theres is something empty with our existence nowadays and we just keep trying to distract ourselves with all kind of stuff, work, television, videogames etc.”
Thank you for this comment. I can see that it’s written from your heart. And I agree – the void is there, we’re just dancing around it.
And what’s your point exactly?? We all get it that there’s a mass manipulation going on in the society and that modern society is built on those manipulations.
Look at it this way. 100-200 years ago average person lived maybe 40 years at best, mostly doing hard labour. People spend all their time just to get basic things in life like food, shelter… Now, today, basic stuff is relatively easy to acquire (if one is not stupid enough to spend money on cars, iphones and other status symbols). After that the average person gets a lot of free time (never before in history of mankind) – of course there’ll be a void. But the void is there to be filled.
Saying that attempts to fill the void is just useless and is being made out of fear of existence – I think this goes nowhere.
Once again – either one find the activity that brings him true emotions and has enough intellect/presence of mind to do so. Or not – and then he “dances” around that void, not finding anything or pretending that he found something but only to showcase himself to others.
Besides, coming back to lifting weights… It’s more of a biological question that philosophical. I believe most guys who contstantly do such sports like martial arts, lifting etc. – they by nature have more testosterone in them. That creates a wave of energy/aggression that has to be utilized one way or the other. Neglecting it will do more harm and will lead to depression (or worse).
Whether the certain activity is distracting you from “the abyss of existence” or helping you to create your personality and stand out from the crowd – it’s a question one can answer only to himself.
+ RR RR as i said is not bad too seek entertainment, and true we have it so much better, but we have exchanged the most important thing in life, that is meaning, which is given by many factors including a small community, for stupid gadgets and prestige. Japan and the U.S are good examples. Really dude what do you prefer? to be a stressful japanese businessmen who has lots of money and no free time, or a costa rican, who may be not as productive and have a lot of free time, but this time is spent doing things with its small community. Nowadays i see college professors that in other days would stay happily at home with their grandsons, they keep working because they dont have any other thing to do (like taking care of their grandsons) their wife is dead and inactivity would kill them. Im pretty sure the reason why my great grandmother live almost to 120 years old had a lot to do with the fact that she had a strong community with her, and the reason why my grandfather is still alive (he takes care of his grandsons). What do we do nowadays? We locked old people because they aren’t productive anymore and they become a burden. And well, my whole point is that people who seek contentment in those activities (money, status, fame, big muscles) are never happy, they are happy while they feel they are walking, but you will always reach a wall no matter what. the gym rat after hitting a plateau starts juicing even more, the guy who just got his masters in gender studies starts to get his PHD (again if it were only for the sake of learning he would do other things) or the guy who seeks new gadgets. Dude, our great grandfathers would laugh if they saw all the stupid commercial stuff that we are constantly trying to get, and yet we are still unable to find contentment. But yeah, one has to find contentment within oneself, up till a certain point, ,this is why it is good to realized that they are surrogate activities, im happy with my surrogate activities, but I dont make gym the center of my life, like those ultra-special gym rats that go 7 days a week to pump the iron (with juice included of course) and l don’t blame myself for not looking like a Mens health model, nor I considered myself unworthy because I don’t like to code. This actually reminds me of a quote by Yuval Hariri, ” modernity is a surprisingly simple deal. The entire contract can be summarized in a single phrase: humans agree to give up meaning in exchange for power.” Just saying I rather find contentment than prestige and power, im a human, I cannot escape my software-hardware, just learn from it and try to make the best out of it. And well society makes us seek prestige and power, rather than contentment.
Yes, I agree with your points about small communities and family aspect in general.
As for baboons who are participating in a rat race – I don’t think they’re worthy of saving. They made their choice.
I don’t think there is any void at all. If you are here to contemplate it, then this is no void since you are here.
If we are to talk at this level, I’d say there is “consciousness”. It is today easily distracted and trapped in a material maze. If one can nonetheless keep awareness while wandering in this maze, meaning is still to be found. The “void” a lot of people feel is in my opinion a gap in the awareness – mind connection.
Training two times a week is not optimal for anybody due to how long muscle synthesis lasts after working out. Performance athlethes also work out more. There are scientific papers about best workout frequency.
While I agree with many of your insights, I sometimes cant help, but feel like you are so jaded that you wouldnt agree that there are better and worse methods because “lol naturals will be smoll anyway”. Suboptimal diet, suboptimal workouts and then you get suboptimal results.
Try the experiment. Train 2 times a week and see if you lose mass. I bet you won’t, except in your head.
Actually there was time i my life when i could train only twice a week (about six months). No mass and strength loss whatsoever.
Depends on the training. If you do heavy squats in 5+ working sets with reps always more than 10 – your legs and lower back will be sore for at least 3 full days. Next do heavy deadlifts – again 5+ sets with reps 10+ g – your legs and back will be sore for 4 days minimum. Here you have it – 2 times per week. Yeah, you can squeeze some small stuff like bicep curls or bench press in between, but that’s peanuts compared to multi-set 10+ reps squats/deadlifts.
Performance athletes are on drugs. Period. And after all this is their job, also they don’t aim for being shredded, but performance and are usually genetically gifted.
You know that if you train 3 times a week and double that 6 times a week(basically double your weekly volume) that doesn’t mean double gains ? There are scientific papers about almost any bullshit you can find: google “10.1007/s00421-010-1601-9”. In short about this study: genes > everything. Sometimes even drugs.
You probably will reach your natural limit faster training 4x than 2x week. But you probably can reach your potention with 2x week
The main point is that you won’t lose muscle reducing frequency. After your build yor muscles naturally, training is all about maintnance.
The word “optimal” is the most stupid in fitness. If you think about organizing your whole life around training and eating optimaly to get an extra 2 lbs of muscle, why not juice with moderate doses for 20lbs of muscle?
“The main point is that you won’t lose muscle reducing frequency.”
Maybe not, but you will probably lose strength. I have found that I progress much better benching and squatting twice per week than once per week. One of the workouts can be done with light weights. Pressing overhead multiple times per week will also help your OHP poundages go up.
Small muscle groups can be improved by hitting them more than once per week. Overall, I find 4x/week to be the ideal frequency. Oddly enough, this has changed as I’ve gotten stronger.
when you are advanced you cant train too much, is it the same to deadlift 30 kilos than 100 kilos? no, if you want to recover from lifting 100 kilos you will have to wait more to do it again, than if you lifted 30 kilos, and the same principle applies with any exercise. So, contrary to what steroid junkies will tell you, noobs are the ones who must (or rather can) train everyday, advanced lifters have to rest more, unless you are a juicer, juice helps you recover faster.
Depends upon what you mean by “training to times per week”: do you mean, “two workouts per week” ( which might amount to, for example, as few as one workout of squats on Monday then another workout of pull-ups on Thursday); or, “two workouts FOR EACH MUSCLE GROUP per week” (which might consist of two full body workouts per week, or, of a split routine which works each muscle twice per week but spreads over four days)?
Because, the science does majorically support twice-per-week-for-each-muscle-group workout frequency as being as near-optimal as possible (and a program of compound movements such as overhead presses, squats, pull-ups, dips, and straight-legged deadlifts accomplishes that goal).
Hi Joe! Happy to read some lines from you!
I think it depends on the intensity the lifter put in a workout whether one or two workouts are better. A beginner can easily train a muscle group twice a week. He will grow if intensity is high enough and all other requirements (rest, nutrition a.s.o.) are o.k. Maybe a beginner grow faster with two workouts per muscle group. An intermediate lifter may train 2 x times a week a muscle group and will switch intensity. Weights are higher, recovery needs some longer. One workout with lighter weights the next closer to the limit.
After reaching the natural limit I think one workout or two workouts doesn´t make a big difference. If the lifter realize that he can do what they want without getting better some stop to visit the gym 4 x times a week.
I myself could keep my strenght for years with about 1 training per week. That means around 60-70 days in the gym per year. Sometimes 2 x a week. Sometimes no training for 1,2,3 or 4 weeks. Because of work, business trips, holidays. Body weight and strenght stayed the same.
Hiya GLOVE…how goes it for ya?
Yes, I should have taken time to qualify my comment regarding twice-per-week-per-muscle-group frequency as applying to the majority of average-gened guys who have not reached their PED-free genetic hypertrophy limits.
After genetic mass ceilings are reached (using 12% bodyfat as a reference point for how much muscle a guy can maximally carry naturally), frequency can drop to once or twice in seven days per muscle for long-term maintenance, as long as intensity is sustained. Additionally, aging affects frequency (for myself, at age 62, my recovery capacity naturally declined significantly past age 55); consequently, a past-age 45 guy who’s been maintenance training since achieving his genetic ceilings before age 22 may discover that once-per-week-per-muscle group is optimal for him. I do a muscle group once each four to five days for the past few years, using about three to six worksets per muscle group per workout.
However, for guys who haven’t reached their PED-free genetic muscle maximum yet (which typically requires four-to-five consecutive years of intelligent progressive training, eating, and recuperating, with probably 80% of that maximum being reached by the end of the second year), most of what I’ve experienced personally, observed during my forty-five years of bodybuilding, and read in the majority of scientific studies evidences that twice-per-week-per-muscle group frequency is optimal for the majority of average-gened PED-free guys.
There seems to be a total-volume-per-week-per-muscle-group minimum as well, with that volume being spread between two workouts per week per muscle being most practical (although spreading the total volume across three workouts per muscle per week has some theoretical validity although probably impractical for the typical guy with typical time constraints).
But, definitely, always with the emphasis on intensity in the form of gradually-but-as-often-as-possible progressing in resistance, primarily in the basic compound movements such as squats, leg presses, overhead presses, pull-ups, rows, dips, and straight-legged deadlifts. Not necessarily HIT nor Heavy Duty intensity (although those do work for a few PED-free guys), but “gradually adding poundage over months and continuously getting stronger, in order to stimulate muscle growth” until hypertrophy ceilings are achieved.
BEGINNERS might gain fine on three times per week per muscle frequency, since they aren’t usually anywhere near stressing their CNS with the relatively lighter resistance they use at that stage. Before 1970, it was the norm to put beginners on three-day-per-week full body programs; but even Intermediates and some Advanced guys used that three-times/full-body program, on what was called a Heavy/Light/Medium system which essentially included one full-intensity workout per week (“Heavy” day) then a relatively “Light” intensity and finally a “Moderate” intensity workout each week.
Hi Joe. I´am fine. As long as I write about lifting I´am alive!
End of the 70ties I was an enthusiastic follower of Heavy duty which was not very popular in the BB world at that time. I red everything from and about Jones and Darden. About the Colorado experiment and things like that. I had good gains but after a while I understood that these high intensity systems shouldn´t be done to the excess.
The 3 x times a week full body workouts I know from the old magazines only. I never tried myself.
Done in a proper way as described by you I think it´s better than these endless pumping sessions bbler did in the 70ties.
Specially at that time I met a number of desperate natties who spent hours and hours per day in the gym and couldn´t understand that their muscles refused to grow.
70’s routines work great for naturals. It’s low volume trainers such as yourselves who struggle to get to 170lbs whilst ironically crying about ‘genes’ and ‘overtraining’ without putting in the work. Stop spreading misinformation.
Truth Seeker, the last few articles have been solid. I like how the truth behind the articles actually extend beyond bodybuilding and fitness. In this article, I particularly enjoyed the bit you mentioned about mixing up the work outs and spending less time in the gym. I just started incorporating swim sessions to replace two ‘gym days’. So now I’m in the pool 2 times a week and same for the gym. Looking forward to new articles!
I actually do something similar except that I swim only once a week. Good luck!
I understand protein powder can be not neccesary if your amount of healthy food is enough, but then how can you have enough protein intake? I can’t eat 5 pounds chicken everyday.
And also: eating oatmeal in just water isn’t very tasty.
I think the 5 x 5 program is actually very good.
You don’t need as much protein as the industry says. Eating over 100 grams a day unless you are doing protein fasting is hard to justify when you are natural.
Your articles this year have been on point! Really enjoyed them. Keep it up man!
Last few articles I should say*
Thank you for the support, Robert.
3.) less time in forums: please write less articles. No. Keep on. I´am kidding!
5.) Aesthetics, weight: more a personal matter of taste. And health of cause. Some like it lighter. Some heavier.
7.) Magic routines: Yes! there ARE NO magic routines. In the end it´s easy. If you don´t understand weight lifting purely by intuition after a while you´ll never learn. Use your own feeling how muscle grow. And your own head. That´s the key.
9.) very very important point. Life is much more than lifting!!! Maybe the most importnat point!
11.) in my early lifting days BB was a subculture.
It was something special. Today millions seem to be interested in. Some of you will like it. Not me…
15.) Interesting point. In the beginning many lifters do it to get more attention. If you want to train your lifetime long you more and more do it FOR YOURSELF. The paradoxy: you get less self centered.
20.) for me it was absolutely o.k. to stop for a while. To get my head free from self hate NOT to get a drug body without drugs.
21.) I did. With 19. Photos are still existing…
23.) Cool. I never had a problem with. Partying till 4 a clock in the morning and going to the gym not really sober. Not bb-political-correct…
Don´t try it at home!!!
25.) that was MY biggest problem!!!
Last sentences, very important. I always miss it in truthseekers brilliant articles!
If you do it in a proper way weight lifting should bring joy in your life. As a natty it´s sometimes difficult. Believe me. I know it.
On long term you must LOVE the training. Otherwise leave BB. Do something else.
Thank you for the support, Glove 🙂 I am happy that you like the article.
Please do a nattyornot review on Zach Zeiler.
One of the best articles I have ever read on this site.
Congratulations to author!
Thank you for the support, Angel!
Great content as always.
If you have a bodybuilder who is not Pro, or IFBB, but who compete in more local shows and use steroids. Do they use steroids only around contests? Like cycles. And if they compete for 10 years does that mean that they use steroids during those 10 years and stop after that? Or is it addictive so they need continue taking steroids?
And how do they get their PED?
Bodybuilding/fitness advertisement is no different from the FOREX/trading Ads that promote you can multiply $20 of investment into thousands in 3 months. They both catch the unexpirienced, but time doesnt excluded anyone to learn things the hard way. I agree with you, the greatest gift natural “bodybuilders” can be given is time, to convince themselves.
From my personal experience of Low Bar Squating for the past 5+ years in the 225lb+ working set area doing 3×5 twice a week, I have not had issues with lower body development to include my quads. My legs are not huge, but their not chicken legs and proportionate to my upper body development. Sure my quads might get a little bigger if I squat high bar or even switched completely from back squats and just did front squats. I did high bar squat 8-10 years ago and got up to 300lb, so my legs might have been developed from that time. I have not seen those numbers since because I seem to reach a 265lb-285lb squat working set threashold were my lower back says screw you and I am done for 3-4 months till I can train again. I have learned from my own experience that I do not need to lift maximal weights. Just enough that requires some effort (70%-80% of my max), but nothing that breaks me in order to maintain muscle gained from years of lifting. I am 36yrs old and I have wrecked my body from attempting to lift maximal efforts several times over the years and realize doing this is counterproductive. I want to be in there for the long hull and I know what I need to do.
On the point of 2 sessions as compaired to 2+ sessions a week. I can have had just as much benifit or more from training 2 times a week as to when i was training 4 times a week. When I trained I could train with greater focus and energy due to plenty of recovery time. I was not as beat up from my lifts. I also knew I was still training my whole body twice a week, which well, what people doing 6 day body part splits that work a body part twice a week. Yea, if I did body splits twice a week and neglected my lower body or upper body, yes, then I would loose some strength in the areas I am neglecting. Doing and Press, Pull, a Legs twice a week or doing a Upper body day and a Lower body day is fine. I am more of a fan of Press, Pull, Leg 2-3 times a week since. I have never been a fan of the body building body part splits as I do not want to waste time in the gym trying to work a muscle at every angle possible. Yes, that can take alot of time.
Don’t go to the gym a lot, go swimming I can’t just go swimming, go outside for a run, not when it’s 20 degrees. Just put the tredmill at a slope of 6 and your knees will be fine, good article but stop trying to put your agendas and personal BS into your articles no one cares.
*people, sorry about the last line but some of it is true, don’t expect everyone to be like you. some people just like going 4-5 days a week and still have time for friends and family.
“some people just like going 4-5 days a week and still have time for friends and family.”
I never understood the “I don’t have the time” argument.
4 workouts x 1.5 hours = 6 hours per week.
Many of us spend much more than 6 hrs. per week watching TV or bullshitting on the internet. I’m guilty of this as much as the next guy. “I don’t have the time” really means “I have the time, but I would rather do something else”.
I know but I just had to disprove that argument people use it all the time.
At the same time, it is his blog, he can write whatever the fuck he likes.
Personally, I go 3-4 times / week, it’s not difficult, I have a somewhat split routine and I use my lunch break (the duration of which is very flexible) to hit the gym, which happens to be located 100 m away from my workplace.
So yeah, I don’t spend this time sitting on ass with my colleagues indulging in big lunches but it is not a hindrance at all when it comes to the social aspect. It robs no time at all from my family time either.
So it is possible, but TS’ opinion is his and I always have a good time reading it, even though I’ve known for a while that he just rehashes the same ideas but packaged slightly differently 🙂
Yes he can write whatever the hell he wants, but trying to make fun of people going 4-5 days a week does not help, some people respond to volume also you can make good friends in there not every one is stupid and lastly, everybody’s body is different. The last line is very true but, he does keep people from believing the fairy tales of the fitness industry so he get high respects from me and many others.
awesome article. It’s unbelievable how big of a lie natural bodybuilding really is.Ive been lifting for 4 years in a progressive fashion without missing more than a handful of workouts, and after the initial noob gains despite lean bulking my 6’2 hardcore ecto 6 inch wrist physique has never developed much more in terms of mass. i am 6’2 and about 173 pounds which sounds pathetic but i really feel i’m near my potential. i’m strong af for my size deadlifting 485 and benching 280.I also have a max weighted pullup of 152.5 for a single. yet despite my strength many people would still consider me skinny and in clothes i actually look like someone who should start lifting lmao! I’m evidence of how a small frame and being all tendons and probaly inadequate hormones on a tall person can make gaining muscle nearly impossible because of the extremly low natural limit i’ve learned about. Some people like me despite gaining mad strength just cant build very much true lean muscle. Funny thing is i could still get leaner i’m probaly 13 percent bodyfat and im actually overestimating unlike most. and id weigh even less if i got down to 8-9 percent!! thanks for all the advice truthseeker,i bought your book and really enjoyed it,your too real.
You got some crazy strength! As a fellow ecto @ 6ft, I do believe u are fully capable of reaching up to 200lbs mass! It’s the simple “just eat more!” protocol 😀 Add 1 more meal or up the calories in the meals u do eat. And be consistent with the calories. Thou I do suggest calorie cycling to keep the fat off.
The top professional bodybuilders in the ‘sport’ flew in from all over the world, mostly U.S, to participate in the 1980 Mr Olympia in Sydney, Australia.
As anyone interested in bodybuilding now knows, Frank Zane, the winner of the 3 previous Mr Olympia titles and Mike Mentzer, the rising star of bodybuilding were two of the favourites…until Arnold entered the ‘contest’ at the eleventh hour, which was against the rules of this particular event but hey, it was Arnold.
Does anyone really think and believe Arnold would fly half way around the world to enter an event after a 5 year retirement unless he already knew he was going to be ‘awarded’ the title ( If you do believe he won a fair ‘contest’ you are not going to like what I tell you about Santa )
Arnold is also a very good friend of Paul Graham, an Australian strongman, who just happened to be the promotor of the show…just
a coincidence Im sure…nothing to worry about.
In conclusion, bodybuilding shows are not overly important and the 1980 story ( and they had the sequel in 81 starring Franco…Arnolds best friend…EVER! Arnold was the promoter in 81…does 2+2 still equal 5? )
along with the freak show they call bodybuilding today and it is not hard to see why it is not taken seriously…the less you look like these unhealthy drug users the better!
Strength training/bodybuilding is a wonderful part of life and benefits body, mind and soul, if done the right way, without drugs, so you look better on the outside as well as on the inside your body.
You HITters are so bitter and angry. HIT is Dead.
I have been weight training off/on for 40 years and recently returned to weight training. I am 55 years old, and returned to weight training four months ago because I was simply FAT. I am 183 cm tall and weighed 100 kilos four months ago. I started working out three times a week doing full body workouts and my diet focused on fish, chicken, eggs, white rice, vegetables, milk, and drinking lots of water. I did use supplements such as vitamin c, vitamin d, fish oil capsules, but NO protein powders or creatine. I lost 15 kilos, and gained muscle. My primary focus was getting lean and used weight training machines, cable exercises, barbells and dumbbells. My rep ranges and exercises were different on every workout from low reps (3-6) moderate (8-10) and high reps (15-20). I did add rack pulls, box squats, farmer walks and neck exercises during my second month of training and I believed they helped a lot in my fat loss and muscle gain. I had friends that had not seen me in in 6 months and could not believe how lean I got plus they said I looked buff. They asked if I was on TRT or steroids and I said no but they could not believe it. I told them I would take a blood test if they paid for it and no one would take my offer. I really wanted a free blood test. A full body workout routine worked the best for me and I am still making muscle gains and losing body fat. I don’t drink alcoholic beverages or smoke. Most people don’t believe I am 55 and believe I am in my late 30’s or early 40’s.
This article once again is spot on. I read the Flex magazines growing up and thought man I can look just like these guys if I hit the gym basically every day and eat a ton of food and take the legal supplements from the companies they were sponsored by. It had to work. Just needed to work hard. It didn’t. What we now know to be the farce of the “bodybuilding industry” is that all of these guys in the pages of that magazine were on gear of some sort. So, I slowly began to realize after busting it over and over again in the gym that I simply was not going to look like that. In fact, due to the fact that I was a real natural, I slowly gained fat over the years. I became a “shirt guy (looks good in a shirt but not out of one)” and once I hit 240 I decided that was it. I upped the cardio, changed my eating lifestyle, and when I did go to the gym I upped the pace of the workout and didn’t concern myself with the amount of weight being pushed or pulled. 6 months and 60 pounds later I hit 180 and looked better than ever. Did I look like the Flex magazine guys? No. But that was ok, especially now that I know the truth. Thanks Truth Seeker.
#25 shot my nerve. thank you truth seeker.
I.m so greatful for your articles. Fitness industry is full of bullshit. I remember that i set a goal, until 30 years old, i wanna look like Lazar Angelov. ???. I.m 24 right now and i.m not even half away to achive that physique.
Another outstanding article.
What do you think about multivitamines?
Ps: the 5×5 stronglifts + some extra isolation exercises are actually pretty good.
I used lots of supplements including multivitamins during my first ten years of PED-free bodybuilding; I’ve used nearly zero of them in the last thirty-five of my PED-free bodybuilding and noticed zero difference in performance, energy, strength, and lean mass.
Multivitamins (generally) won’t harm you, except for your wallet. As best I can conclude, multivitamins are a needless expense — as long as you’re eating anything resembling an ongoing menu that includes spinach, broccoli, bell peppers, sweet potatoes, other dark leafy vegetables, and perhaps a little of citrus fruit, you’ll get adequate vitamins during each week for building and maintaining energy and muscle.
@ joe santus
Thank you for your respond.