By Charles Poliquin
I see a lot of people
stumbling around the gym with little idea what they are doing. Of
course most of them like to think that they know everything. I
can say this because I was once one of them. The problem with the
way most people train is that it is very unproductive. Most
people follow routines taken from bodybuilding magazines, while
others copy the routines of friends (who themselves usually
follow routines from magazines), others have no idea what they
are doing and sort of wander around the gym doing whatever
exercises they feel like doing. The latter I can't really address
so lets deal with the former - those who follow routines from
Most people follow
the routines published in the bodybuilding magazines. Why?
Because the magazines are the most popular source of published information that
people turn to. Unfortunately the information from these
magazines is questionable. What's that? How could published
information by magazines which obviously stake their reputation
on their information be questionable? Lots of reasons.
First lets talk about
these steroid freaks they put on the covers. If you don't know by
now that all the professional IFBB pro's are on steroids then let
me enlighten you. These guys all spend about 100k a year on
steroids and growth hormone, which is why you never see a rich
bodybuilder. They spend all their money on drugs. Ever wonder why
Ronnie Coleman (Mr Olympia) who made over 100k in endorsements
last year still works a fulltime job besides? Many people don't
believe that these guys are actually on the juice because most
people just can't believe that someone in the public eye would be
able to get away with it. Well they can, and besides that, most
of the major bodybuilding contests don't even test for steroids!
Thats right in the one sport where steroids are most likely to be
abused they don't even test for it! So why don't they test? Its
all about money. The bigger these freaks get, the more people
will come to see them which means more endorsements and more
money. The contest promoters make big bucks off these guys so
obviously they aren't going to test them for steroid use because
they want them big to draw crowds. The magazines which stick
these freaks on the cover want these guys big too so that they
can sell more magazines, so obviously they aren't going to test
either. These guys are not good role models for natural trainers,
yet their advice fills columns in many bodybuilding magazines and
average people are taking their advice. Someone who juices up has
nothing to offer a natural trainer, yet people take their advice
anyway and are mislead because of it.
Another reason that
bodybuilding magazines mislead their readers comes straight from
the so called experts and gurus who are writing for these
magazines. Did you know that most of these authors are out of
shape, and few of them even work out! What, so I'm taking advice
from someone who doesn't even train? Beyond that, most of the
authors today just rewrite old information. Pick up a copy of a
magazine from the 60-70's and they have pretty much the same info
in them now as they did then, all that is different is the guy on
the cover. Much of this old information that these guys are
rewriting comes from the hey-day of steroid use, and much of it
is based on observations of steroid using athletes. So you're
taking advice from someone who doesn't train and is rewriting 30
year old info which itself was based on observations of steroid
users. Did you know that the popular weider principles - the
supposed staple of a professional bodybuilders training, was
itself based on observations of an elite group of steroid pumped
athletes in the late 60's?
So the advise you're
getting from these magazines is often crap.
Another source of misinformation
comes from all these supplement advertisements. All this so
called scientific research which these companies put behind these
supplements is often bullshit. Because of FDA loop holes the
supplement companies can say pretty much anything they want in
these adds short of making direct promises. Also the FDA does not
closely monitor the safety of these products. When the
prohormones were initially released many of the products had only
undergone preliminary testing on humans before being released.
Why? Because new supplement companies were looking for a quick
buck and hoping to ride the creatine craze of the mid and late 90's.
They figured with the incredible sales of creatine that of course
people would buy their product too. And they were right. Anyone
would love to think that some pill or some powder can give them
that edge, or aid their development. Everyone would like to think
that they can buy effort and dedication in a bottle and the truth
is you can't. Despite all the so-called scientific research which
claims this or that supplements effect, the truth is that very few of
these supplements have been proven to have any measurable effect
on performance or development.
And you know what else, these supplement companies know that
their products are bullshit but they'll try to sell them as long
as they can. Just look at the Inosine craze of the 80's.
Supplement companies portrayed this product as a muscle
preserver, much the same way that Cort Bloc and similar products
are pushed today. Guess what happened with Inosine? A few
scientists took a look at the stuff which these snake oil
salesmen were peddling and they found out that this stuff
actually had the opposite effect - it could actually destroy
muscle tissue. Boy great job these supplement companies did
putting out safe and reliable products huh?
By the way, most of the supplement
companies either own, or are owned by the bodybuilding magazines.
So often these magazines will write a whole article singing the
praises of some supplement that they are associated with.
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