T Nation

Common Knowledge

  • 99.9% of the really jacked people got huge by using 4+ day splits

  • 99.9% of the huge bodybuilders out there are STRONG

  • You won’t build muscle unless you progress in your training (progressive overload - more sets, more reps, more weight)

  • Hypertrophy is a function of volume according that the load is heavy enough (the more you train without exceeding your recovery capacity the more you’ll grow)

  • Effort, mental focus and consistency are key; the worst routine done with all-out effort is alot better than using the best routine half-ass

  • There isn’t one special way to train secret or technique that will make you huge overnight

  • Articles are not the bible

These are a few things that I think should be common knowledge on the bodybuilding forum, yet they are discussed and argued over an over again. The xperienced guys here should add some more.

Not all that experienced, but:

  • There is no magic routine

If you are not gaining weight, you need to eat more. That’s it.

1.excess calories = size gain
2.calorie deficit = size loss
no change means… adjust for 1. or 2. depending on goal.

-Contrary to what some might say, the best way to get big is not to run up to the guy with the most degrees but the smallest arms.

90% of the progress made by those who really stand out comes directly from CONSISTENCY. Those people don’t skip meals unless there is a damned good reason for it. They don’t take weeks off for finals. They study for finals and STILL make it to the gym. The smart ones will also ace the finals.

-A calculator is not your path to success, especially as a beginner.

The one thing most big guys have in common is that they ENJOY THIS. They don’t make it so complicated that they burn themselves out in a month. They enjoy the heavy weights and even the ability to get away with eating some things sedentary people can’t.

-The key to success is NOT to do everything perfectly.

I truly get the feeling that some people haven’t even started lifting yet because they think they are searching for the “perfect program”.

There is no such thing. There never has been.

most supplements don’t do shit

-Learning how to cook will only help you. Food is just as important as iron.

-Setting “attainable goals” is often a recipie for failure.

-People who have gotten big have taken the time to find what works for them, and they stick with it.

-Most people who have actually gotten big are happy (almost eager) to help beginners.

-Humility is good. There will always be someone bigger and/or stronger than you.

-Never miss a chance to shut up. You can still learn something.

-It’s not nearly as complicated as people make it out to be. Most of this stuff was figured out 100 years ago. Don’t be suckered into fads.

-Be patient. Work hard and think-long term.

Getting big is one of the most simple things you can do in life.

Eat a lot, drink a lot of water. Lift heavy shit consistently and progressively.

Be aware of your level of development: be honest with yourself, and train accordingly. Do you really need ‘super duper aqua pumpaerobics’ to progress?

Don’t ask which is the ‘best’ program: look at the biggest guys and find out what are the common elements in their training. The rest should fall into place.

Extra stimulation doesn’t always equal extra gains, especially for beginners.

Don’t spend more time obsessing over science and terminology than you do training and eating. The gym is your laboratory - if you find something interesting, then try it in the gym: don’t try to dissect and rationalize it, then try to defend it to other people without trying it first.

Experience is knowing if something works or not, not how many books you’ve read or how many articles or studies you can reference.

Bodybuilding is all about staying ahead of your own adaptive capabilities. Your body doesn’t ‘want’ to change. You will have to convince it to change by training to levels of discomfort and eating to levels of discomfort in order to stand out. You will not reach an exceptional level of size by worrying about how other people perceive your weight gain.

Likewise, keeping your six pack at maximum definition for the ladies should be put on the back burner if you are genuinely serious about this.

So many people are afraid that their body is going to change,when that is the whole point. Why else would you take up bodybuilding?

If you aren’t serious, don’t complain and make excuses.

  • If your biceps aren’t growing and you are making progress all over then to stop curling is VERY stupid.
  • Genetics are very important in this game

If you discount the big guy’s lifts and physique because he doesn’t use textbook form, you’re an idiot.

If you claim that bodybuilding is your life but you get asked if you do cross country, you’re doing something wrong.

If you’re making the progress that is commendable, you will find your friends and family giving you less and less crap until they just say “Yea he must fucken know what he’s doing.”

The biggest guys really are interested in helping others, assuming they see the right mindset and effort in you.

This sport takes fucken common sense so if you don’t have self-awareness of yourself and of those around you, this isn’t for you.

The biggest guys are not the ones who primarily contribute to threads complaining about how stupid other gym members are or how someone “screwed” up their workout.

3 of the following 4 truths are correct can you spot the fake?


1 month of gym access usually has more humor than a comedy special.

Prepare a workout log before you go to the gym and take it with you.

Use workout log to reserve equipment you use.

Don’t use DB’s above 25 lbs because you’ll get too Swole overnight.


I read most, disagree with the first thing player put, but meh, seen all this before.

I think it was Jim Wendler who said “If the clothes from store fit you right then you are doing something wrong.”

[quote]waldo21212 wrote:
I think it was Jim Wendler who said “If the clothes from store fit you right then you are doing something wrong.”[/quote]

While it is a funny comment and something to aspire to(being forced to wear custom tailored anything except xxxl t-shirts) it’s definitely not going to happen overnight, or even your first year, people that know Jim know how to take it but posting this to every little kid just starting to grow is dumb.

This shit is a marathon, you won’t be all yoked up by this time next year unless you’re already pretty big now, and you won’t be pretty big until you get in the gym and get some weight moving and some food digesting. Go read the profiles of the people on this site you consider big, and see how many years training they have listed, and it’s very likely to be 10+.

[quote]tribunaldude wrote:

Agreed, but you never know if someone might be reading who is trying to learn something, or needs to hear some basics.

Doing things on a bosu ball doesn’t make it more functional.

[quote]Brant_Drake wrote:
tribunaldude wrote:

Agreed, but you never know if someone might be reading who is trying to learn something, or needs to hear some basics.[/quote]

I think this is the most useful thread going.

For beginners to intermediates, it is saying shut up, stop worrying so much, and lift. Follow some program, but don’t get caught up always chasing the best program, there isn’t one.

For novices, it is saying here are some key areas you might want to look at to take your program to the next level.

For advance lifters, it is saying. Here are the foundation/fundamental elements every program needs. You have the knowledge on how to get there, and this thread helps you build your program. An aside, I was involved in golf instruction for a long time. Basically, there are five or six fundamentals that every teacher bases his teaching on. If you master these, you can make up “your” keys to the golf swing. Same goes for weight lifting, you understand the fundamentals you can make a solid program. The problem is the more someone knows the more they forget to focus on the fundamentals that got them there. This brings it home.

Use post workout supplementation. Make sure your shake has Carbs AND protein, not just protein, which is what most people believe is the correct way. It’s one of the most important factors in recovery and muscle growth.

Eating a solid meal after lifting instead of drinking a shake is not adequate, so get that out of your head.