Myths and lies in bodybuilding
While there is a great deal of very good information about bodybuilding and getting into great shape, there is also a lot of poor, damaging and blatantly wrong information. This article will take you through the most common myths and lies that tend to get passed around in bodybuilding circles.
To grow, you need to work out more
This is a very common myth in bodybuilding and something that really disadvantages bodybuilders. In fact, this myth is one of the most dangerous things you can do, not only to your gains, but to your body. In common language, this is known as over training, and is a trap that most bodybuilding professionals fell into during their early career.
Remember that the professionals who use chemical substances can recover much more quickly that the average person. However, even they may over train. This demonstrates how easy it is to overdo your workouts, and why it is so damaging.
If you lift weights with any intensity, then you must give your muscles time to heal and get stronger before you use them again. If you train every day, then you simply don`t provide your body with enough time for the recovery process. When lifting heavy weights with intensity, your body will be recruiting as many muscle fibers as it can. When worked to failure these muscles can take from 5 to 7 days to completely heal. This is the reason that split routines were created.
You need to think of rest as part of the bodybuilding process; as important as the workout itself (when combined into a proper lifting program). When you`re outside the gym, it is time to eat and recover, and that needs to be considered as important as lifting weights.
You can`t get big and strong when only training three days per week.
This is a myth that has been transmitted by most of the mainstream bodybuilding magazines. While most professional bodybuilders (who do not have other jobs) train much more than this, you can certainly make significant gains by training just three days per week.
Of course, your progress will be reflected by how focused you are, the intensity of your lifting, your form and your diet. There are certainly other factors besides the weights you lift, but many great physiques have been formed with three training sessions per week.
If you are going to adopt this routine, then ensure that you work the largest muscle groups in order to stimulate the most muscle fibers. This means working your legs, shoulders, back, chest and arms. You also need to ensure that you try to increase your lifts each week. Even if you just increase the weight by a few pounds, this means you are making progress and placing a progressive load on your muscles. As with everything in life, it is the quality over quantity that matters.
You can have the physique of a pro, naturally
This is simply a lie. There is no way that you can reach the level of muscle development displayed by professional bodybuilders, without taking anabolic steroids. This is simply a lie promoted by supplement companies in order to sell their latest, greatest product.
Even within the leagues of the pros, there are varying degrees of bulk, definition and muscle development. This shows even with a large amount of steroids, you also need to have the right genetics in order to reach the elite levels. As such, there are only a small number of people who could ever reach those freakish levels of muscularity.
However, don`t let this put you off, as everyone can improve their musculature, definition and size by using the correct bodybuilding principles. If you bring together the latest scientific principles for training, the best foods for achieving muscle growth, fast recovery and low fat levels, and get the right amounts of rest, then you can totally transform your body.
If you have never trained before, then you can easily add twenty to thirty pounds of muscle to your frame over the next few years. This is not difficult if you have the discipline, the precise training program and the right diet. However, look at reality and be rational about your goals, so that you stay motivated.
To get really big, you need to eat a very high-calorie diet
The old statement to get big, you need to eat big, is just partly true. In fact, this statement often gives bodybuilders the excuse to eat everything under the sun, and then to wonder why they have only added fat, not muscle to their frame.
There is no doubt you need to eat big in order to give your muscles the fuel they need to recover and grow, but you need to eat from a select range of foods, if you want to remain in good shape. Unless you have an incredibly fast metabolism, you will simply store fat when you increase your calorific intake.
The best foods to eat (even when in the bulking phase) are not high-calorie foods. Instead, eat your normal diet, but more of it when you want to increase your muscular weight. For some reason, many bodybuilders get sloppy with their diet and pig out on the worst of all foods when they decide it`s time to pack on more muscle.
When they do this, they may gain twenty pounds in the off-season, but much of it will be fat. As such, they tend to bounce back and forward in weight, only ever gaining one pound or two, but looking fat and unhealthy for half of the year. When you want to increase your lean body mass, start by adding more protein and clean carbs to your diet. You can then add an additional meal or two, or simply increase your portion sizes, but ensure the food is high quality, muscle building food.
Lift weights for size, do cardio for definition
This is a very prevalent myth and something that can steal the hard-won gains of many bodybuilders. It is true that you need to lift weights in order to build muscle size, but you also need to lift weights (heavy weights) when you are focusing on muscle definition also.
Many bodybuilders drop the heavy weights when they are trying to get cut, but this is a mistake. The myth of cardio can cause them to lose a lot of muscle, look small and feel energy depleted when they step on stage.
Remember that it is the heavy weights that got you into good shape, so it makes sense to keep using the same strategy. When trying to get into low digit body-fat levels, you certainly need to increase your cardio sessions, but you still need to lift heavy weights. Failure to lift heavy weights will mean a loss of strength and muscle, which has terrible effects on your physique.
It is true that doing more cardio will burn calories, and help you to drop the fat, but lifting weights does the same thing. There have been many studies that show that the body burns calories more efficiently when exercise goes longer than twenty minutes, when done at a moderate pace. The time period of twenty minutes is needed in order to use up the glucose in the bloodstream. After this, the body will use glycogen reserves for energy. Once this has been done, the body then uses fatty acids for energy, which means you are burning body fat.
Some sports supplements are as powerful as steroids
This is another lie that is promoted by supplement companies and the athletes who get sponsored by the companies. There is no way that any supplement (which are various forms of food) can give you the same effects as chemical compounds that directly affect hormones. As such, there are no current supplements that can act like steroids. However, there are some very effective supplements on the market, and they should not be overlooked.
There are many benefits to sports supplements, and they work very well when combined with a good diet. They can also give you the edge that you need in order to feel great in the gym, recover much more quickly and increase your strength in a safe and natural manner. Some of the best supplements to use include whey protein, creatine, multi vitamins, and glucosamine. There are also a number of energy drinks that will really help you in the gym when you`re feeling tired. If you have the money, then try other supplements but be clear they are not miracle workers.
As you have read above, there are a number of prevailing myths and lies in bodybuilding. Those that are most common have been answered above, so you are now clear about the truth. As bodybuilding is a truly individual sport, you need to know facts from fiction in order to progress and develop the body that you desire. Use the information you now have to save yourself time, money and effort by just focusing on what really works.