T Nation

5 Tips You'd Give Yourself

We’ve probably had millions of threads like these but I’m bored so let’s have it!

Pick 5 tips you’d give young(er) you. Keep them specific to yourself; the shit you should have done differently.

Here’s mine:

  1. Fix your posture.
  2. If an exercise hurts then find an alternative.
  3. You can’t force-feed growth.
  4. Actually work out how much protein you should be eating (2 slices of bacon post-workout isn’t enough).
  5. Fix your digestion. Starting 5 out of every 7 days with diarrhoea is not conducive to gainz.

What say you, proud patrons of T-Nation?


Get a Belt!

Learn to use it properly!

Then use it!

Jogging sucks.

Don’t squat so deep.

Dont go on a dirty bulk for 4 years

Unless going out, go to bed really damn early

Stay ahead of things with posture and shoulder health

Train grip directly and use fat grips

  • Do a sport in high school. Any sport.

  • Actually listen to people who’ve “been there”.

  • Reading a lot doesn’t mean you know a lot.

  • 3 meals a day, not 3 different supplements a day.

  • Basics first. Behind the back cable laterals, smith machine front squats, and decline dumbbell flyes should’ve lost to militaries, leg press, and dips.

  1. Fix your damn diet
  2. Put down the kettlebell and train your fucking back
  3. Learn how to squat properly
  4. Give the bench press some love
  5. Do lots of reps of everything

1: Focus mostly on hitting set/rep maxes as opposed to 10 rep or 3 rep maxes etc
2: Consume much more veg, water & fibrous foods.
3: Make Pull-ups & squats your main exercises to focus for at least the first 2 years of training.
4: Monitor progress mostly in terms of monthly shirtless pics & weight lifted etc
5: Micro-load…like a motherfucker!!!

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  1. Learn to squat properly
  2. Commit to the press
  3. Loaded carries are sweet
  4. Don’t try to do everything at once
  5. Trust the big basics to build the physique you want

Consistency will always win out over programming.

Driving drunk and chasing skirts isn’t going to get you where you want to be.

Conditioning isn’t just a suffix to air.

Never stop moving.

There’s this thing called the conjugate system…

  • If you think someone else is training wrong, and they are a lot farther along than you, it’s you who’s training wrong.

  • Play a sport. It doesn’t have to be football either; whatever you think you’ll enjoy the most, not what is the most popular. It’s better to be awesome & want to be playing a sport you love, than be mediocre at a popular one you hate playing.

  • You won’t find a perfect program, and please, please don’t make one of your own or “improve” upon it (see #1). Just pick one you like & run with it - as long as you are pushing, pulling, using your legs, and using your lungs.

  • eat no less than 3 squares per day.

  • Just ask her out, dude.

  1. Keep it basic. Squat, Pull, Press, Condition at the minimum every training session.

  2. There is no perfect program. Pick principles you believe in and get after it consistently for a few years.

  3. Take conditioning seriously. Not fun to huff and puff after 5 reps of squats.

  4. Don’t worry about calories and macros. Eat 2-4 big meals a day consistently and build from there.

  5. People have been getting strong and big from the beginning of time before the internet. It’s not rocket science.

*Bonus: 6. Play a sport. Lifting weights makes you strong not athletic. Even tag or dodge-ball works.

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Do lots of squats and deadlifts.

And “just ask her out.”

  1. treat the bench press as a more technically difficult lift that is more likely to injure you than a deadlift. Because it is.
  2. the 140 lbs guy in the gym (me) does not know more about the ‘meathead’ who’s had experience on an actual bodybuilding stage. books do not trump a decade or more of experience.
  3. overhead pressing is really, really important. do it at least as much as you bench press, regardless of your current goals. you’ll value the mobility you attain/keep in the long run.
  4. there is no perfect program, and there is no ideal way to chase gains. High reps can support strength gains and you can still get bigger lifting less than 5 reps in a set regularly. Size and strength will go hand in hand for the better part of one’s lifting career, regardless of programming.
  5. consistency over the course of months and years is what produces change. trust the process.

I’m not that experienced but I’ve learned a lot these two years…

  • Find a new fuckin gym with a squat rack
  • Stop maxing out on everything, do sets around 6-8 reps then add 5 kgs next time
  • Don’t fuckin diet , you are fuckin 70 kgs what the hell are you trying to get lean for?
  • Eat,eat,eat.
  • Don’t just do compound movements without any assistance exercises, building muscle needs volume…

Practise technique often even with no weights
Eat clean
Sticking to proigramms even suboptimal ones trumps not doing so.
Proven supplements can be very effective used periodically ( near year round) I…e creatine. , glutamine , BCCAs esp creatine though .
True play sport early (sprinting, short runs are good for starting strength)
Keep it varied and use periodic breaks even months occasionally in training/

  1. Don’t get fat, ever.

  2. Progress with the least volume possible.

  3. Never drop conditioning work, even in a gaining period.

  4. Take time off to heal both physically and mentally.

  5. Don’t take it so serious. It’s ok to miss a day…more recovery!

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  1. Continue to train in martial arts
  2. Try to fit in at least 1 15 minute run a week
  3. Fuckin squat bro!
  4. Don’t stick with the adamant virgin girl for 18months thinking she will let you in.
  5. Put $200 on Leicester City FC in the 2015-16 season.

1-5: Don’t worry; it will heal

  1. Make training priority #1. This doesn’t mean it is the most important thing to you but it does mean training makes you better at those important things.

  2. Don’t stop

  3. It’s better to add 90 minutes reading (not training related) to your week than it is to add an extra day training

  4. Dont get fat

  5. If you get fat, don’t get old and fat


Don’t do sets of pull-ups multiple times per day everyday for extended periods of time or you’ll screw up your shoulder for life. I have other injuries but I regret nothing except this because it was just dumb. Point is, some form of injury is unavoidable eventually so make sure that it happens doing something worth the tradeoff.

  1. Do Conditioning
  2. Do Conditioning
  3. Do Conditioning
  4. Do Conditioning
  5. Do Conditioning
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