"That's the classic nature of people, though. We'll skip the basics and get pissed when the sexy stuff doesn't work." - Martin Rooney
"Did you ever notice those who criticize the strong or the elite are usually weaker or less successful than those they pass judgment on. And those who are strong or elite in their respective sports rarely condemn those who are not as strong or as successful as they are." - Louie Simmons
"Far too many bodybuilders spend too much time exercising the smaller muscle groups such as the biceps at the expense of the larger muscle groups such as the thighs, and then they wonder why it is that they never make gains in overall size and strength" - Reg Park
When it comes to training, the guy who's been in the gym for 10, 20, 30 or more years AND who is still in good shape, lifting heavy weights, in perfect form is almost certainly someone you should be talking to if you have only been lifting for 1-9 years.
The guys who have been lifting for 1-5 years and look amazing, lift crazy heavy weights or both, are genetically gifted and can do almost ANYTHING and get results. These guys are impressive but have no bearing on the majority of us. Admire from afar.
Here's a little 'chart'.
- Under 6 months - Just do the basics. Nothing more. You know nothing so simply squats, deadlifts, bench press, chins, dips, shoulder press, rows, curls and abs is all you need. Your probably between 15-25 anyway so let youth do it's job. Just learn perfect form and add some weight now and again.
- 1-2 Years - Same but up the intensity. You should be beginning to understand hard work and have done some 20 rep squats, know what 5x5 is and how to use single and double progression. Hopefully 20-30lbs heavier.
- 3-5 Years - Should have gained 50lbs of muscle by year 5. If not get another hobby. Hopefully you are approaching the 3/4/5 mark for the big 3.
- 5-9 Years - Begin to experiment on yourself whilst progressing on the key lifts. This is the time to 'add your own twist'. Sometimes you'll hit and sometimes you'll miss.
- 10+ Years - Hopefully you know what you're doing but MANY don't. If not. Go back to the BASICS. 3/4/5 is your minimum at this stage.
For those of you young fools taking steroids to short cut this process between the ages of 18-30 then good luck looking good (inside and out) when your 35-100! You are damaging you endocrine system which may or may not recover.
This is from a steroid site.
"There is a risk of permanently damaging your HPTA (editor note: basically your balls, your physical growth and how much test/estrogen you produce) if you take AAS too young, you could end up with symptoms of andropause and HRT for life. Symptoms could be Limp dick, low libido, depression, low energy, low endurance, erection problems and many more.......are these the types of symptoms you want to have in your 20's?.''
Not only that, why are you taking them when you have no where near reached your own genetic limits. It takes 10 years at least to max out your own genetic limits. For some much, much longer. And really, who knows your genetic limits.
I know many, many high level strength athletes from strongman to weightlifting to track and field take them in their 20's BUT...and I am not condoning them...they are making their living from their strength. Most of you are NOT!
Yes I know some people get away with it. Arnold was supposed to be taking them when he was 15-16 but Arnold WAS a genetic freak and no doubt had the ability to sustain his steroid use. Some can. MOST can't.
Steroids after 30. Make your own choice but if the goverments wanted to legalise them I would suggest they make them legal after the age of 30. That's when T Levels begin to drop for most and when people (men) tend to get somehwta more responsible.
Going back to respecting those who have trained for a long time with success. There are of course the other ones you should ignore. These are the USE'DA crowd.
"I use'da bench 500 for reps"
"I use'da know a guy who squatted for 4 days straight"
"I use'da know a guy bigger than Dorian Yates"
These guys should be avoided because they never did anything. They probably knew a a few guys who did do something, probably trained for a few years and then gave up for various reasons.
So stick to the basics. Listen to old guys in good shape who can still bench 300lbs and squat 400lbs for reps. And stay away from Use'da guys.
PS...If you don't know who those men are who made those quotes then go and find out!
Reg Park, Arnold's IDOL, bench pressing 500lbs a LONG, LONG TIME AGO!!!