I have to admit, I don’t like much about the lifting industry. Never have and probably never will.
Between the snake oil salesmen (which still exist), the false expectations (which are still pushed to naturals), and the 275,000 e-books that promise you the one and only best way to build muscle, I prefer to remain as distanced as possible from “the industry.”
I love the iron. I love barbells and dumbbells and PRs. What I dislike is the over-complication and obsessive compulsive nonsense that is forced upon folks who are seeking results.
Progress isn’t complicated. I can show anyone how to build muscle and strength, if they are willing to listen. The reality is that most won’t listen. How do I know? Experience.
I have been trying to help lifters for a very long time. When I provide solutions the responses are generally:
- Thanks, but I think I will stick with this high volume, overly complicated, bicep and chest-centric 6 day double split with plenty of isolation exercises instead.
- That looks great, but is it OK if I add ____, change ____, swap ____ and insert ____ and ____ and ____?
- Will this help me lose fat and see my abs?
I usually know within a week (or even minutes) who will be successful and who won’t. Those that take a program and run, living and breathing for progress without questioning much almost always succeed. On the other hand, those that worry about the minutiae right out of the gate usually fail.
Do I sound like an arrogant bastard? Most likely. But before you grab your pitchforks and come after me because I sound like just another schmuck who knows everything, hear me out.
I am not saying you shouldn’t question my advice. You can, and should. If you don’t believe me, or don’t trust my ways, don’t use my workouts and eating strategies. It really is as simple as that. If you don’t believe in what you are doing, you shouldn’t be doing it.
What I am saying is simple: the folks I work with who stay focused on progress rather than spending their time worry if every jot and tittle of a program are perfect are usually the ones that make rapid gains.
True story – bro.
Let’s get something straight: there are no “perfect” programs. Workouts are templates; they are starting points. Any real trainer worth their salt will know that workouts and eating plans will need to be adapted to the specific feedback being provided by the lifter.
Programs are starting points. Give them a try before rushing to make changes. And when you do make changes, make wise changes based on body feedback and results.
If something is working and your body feels great, stay the course. If something is working, but a certain assistance exercise is beating you up, swap in a similar assistance exercise to see if it feels better.
Avoid random changes based on whims. Evolve your training based on needs. This evolutionary process will lead you down a path to your own unique training style.
It is my hope that you will learn to transcend the need to “find programs”, and trust in yourself enough to be able to adapt any program to your specific needs.
Pick a quality program and run with it. Most programs work, if you work them. Make intelligent tweaks, not ridiculous ones.