T Nation

Results vs. Rhetoric

I wonder when I see some of the posts on this forum complaining about ‘stupid gym people’ describing guys who are ‘big gorillas’ or ‘some of the biggest guys in the gym’ and then making fun of them for using machines, the Smith machine, too many reps/sets, wrong exercises, etc etc.

If they’re big, especially if they’re bigger than you, doesn’t it make more sense that maybe your vast training knowledge isn’t all it’s cracked up to be?

Just because someone’s training doesn’t match up with the list of ‘things we believe’ that TC wrote about in a recent article clearly doesn’t mean that their training is bogus. It seems that whenever I see someone at my gym with a really good, large (as in 220+ at 6’), lean physique their workouts would be considered heresy around here: machines, high reps, cable crossovers, cardio, etc.

I think we should be less critical of people who have achieved better results than us, even if they don’t follow the same workout principles. Humility and common sense, that’s all.

JMB

Everyone needs to learn there is no single best practice.

You just need to find what works best for you. That big guy doing what you believe to be the counter producative movements already has found what works best for him, we should respect him for that, not mock his selections.

You’re right about this. But bear in mind the role of drugs and genetics. Superman and Batman, as TC noted a while back, which is not a cop-out by any means.

During his D-tap interview Berardi makes a postive comment about gasp Ronnie Coleman…he essentially says that while some people may diss him is not being too bright, he still deserves respect for being the best bodybuilder in the world.

[quote]JMB wrote:
It seems that whenever I see someone at my gym with a really good, large (as in 220+ at 6’), lean physique their workouts would be considered heresy around here: machines, high reps, cable crossovers, cardio, etc.


JMB[/quote]

That is the single most frustrating thing about training. I can’t tell you how many times I have been busting my ass in the deadlifting pit and looked over to see some guy with a great physique doing, oh, concentration curls. For the first few years of training, I said to myself, “Well that guy has paid his dues and now he’s just refining his physique.” But now I know that that is not always true.

Is it a genetic thing - different people respond differently? Or are Muscle & Fitness style workouts better than we make them out to be?

[quote]JMB wrote:

If they’re big, especially if they’re bigger than you, doesn’t it make more sense that maybe your vast training knowledge isn’t all it’s cracked up to be?
[/quote]

This is something I’ve been made very much aware of in the last year or so. The two biggest guys (250lbs+) I know happen to have one thing in common, they both do the ‘olde worlde’ 5 day split routine, and they both eat a lot of food. Nothing fancy, just workout hard and heavy, eat a bunch and repeat.

I dont care for how other people look at the gym. I have set goals for myself and will be happy if I reach them.

Its just like in academics, there is a great disparity in amount of time spent studying and the results achieved from person to person.

[quote]JMB wrote:
I wonder when I see some of the posts on this forum complaining about ‘stupid gym people’ describing guys who are ‘big gorillas’ or ‘some of the biggest guys in the gym’ and then making fun of them for using machines, the Smith machine, too many reps/sets, wrong exercises, etc etc.

If they’re big, especially if they’re bigger than you, doesn’t it make more sense that maybe your vast training knowledge isn’t all it’s cracked up to be?
JMB[/quote]

Good point. But you should know better. It is difficult to describe situations with words. And I am particularly pathetic at even simple prose.

I am in a crappy town in the desert in southern California. The norm here is steroids and big trucks for guys, coke and fake tits for girls. A bunch of clones. It’s a pathetic little subculture.

There are some “big guys” in the gym. They do not workout hard. They hardly workout. They are on the phone and talking to their “homies” more than anything. They put on muscle at phenomenal rates, and it has NOTHING to do with training. Then they lose muscle at a phenomenal rate. It’s scary to think how big they might be if they were even on a half decent program. They are a bunch of clueless kids.

And I’ll give credit where it’s due. The biggest, baddest guy in the gym is clean. What does he do? The same shit we do. Power cleans. Front squats. Pull ups. Dips. Etc. And he doesn’t act like a moron.

I’m 31, not 13. I am 6’2" and 225#s. I work my ass off and make pretty good progress. I know how it’s done, as I spent years doing it all wrong. My experience has given me the ability to recognize bullshit in the gym. And I will bet you a ginormous amount of cash that these “gym morons” will not look half as good or be nearly as healthy at 31 as I will be at 41.

Also, the Smith Machine still sucks. It has some utility, but in general there are much more effective ways to train. Until I see Waterbury, Poliquin, John, Staley, Thibaudeau, Cressey, Robertson, Shugart, et. al. suggesting and then showing scientific support for use of the Smith Machine, IT SUCKS. Who was this Smith guy anyway? Fucker.

Lastly, I have a suggestion. Next time any of you see a really big guy, go talk to him. Be cool about it and don’t talk to him during the middle of a set like a regular “gym moron”, but ask him a few things. Nutrition. Training. Rest. Supplementation. Volume. Intensity. Then draw your own conclusion.

BFG

BFG-
Obviously I can’t speak to your particular situation, but I stand by what I said.

I don’t have a problem with making fun of people who do stupid of dangerous things in the gym, I’m just saying that maybe some of the things we think are funny aren’t so funny, and clearly work for some people.

I’m also skeptical of discounting the knowledge of those who juice. As seen in the ‘Diary of a Steroid User’ articles, the use of steroids doesn’t necessarily equal impressive gains.


JMB

[quote]JMB wrote:
I don’t have a problem with making fun of people who do stupid of dangerous things in the gym, I’m just saying that maybe some of the things we think are funny aren’t so funny, and clearly work for some people.
[/quote]
I don’t have a problem making fun of pretty much anyone. Myself included. And I know that frequently I come off as an asshole. I’m edgy, but really I am a nice guy and I like to help people.

In general, I tend to give people the benefit of the doubt. I form opinions from information gained by exposure and through experience. But I remain more than skeptical though with the crowd at my gym. They are “gym morons” until they prove otherwise. It has been proven correct 9 times out of 10.

BFG

Coke and fake tits!?

BFG, need a roommate?