A Couple of Questions I Hate
Q – What supplements do you take?
A – I’d rather be asked what drugs / steroids I take, at least they bloody work! OK, maybe I’m being slightly unfair, Creatine works – for the first month anyway, and then any gains you’ve made are only kept if you keep taking it. The good news is that Creatine is pretty cheap so I believe it’s worth taking.
Between 25 and 10 years ago I took a lot of supplements and although I have gone from 9 and a half stone (133lbs) in 1984 to 18 and a half stone (around 260lbs) at 5’6 now, I really don’t think that I can give much credit to the supplements I’ve taken.
Maybe something did work, but with me there was a direct correlation between how much weight I use on the big lifts, such as Squats, Deadlifts, Benches, Presses, Cleans, and their variations, and how big and muscular I was.
I think the thing that really bothers me is the intent behind the question; they might as well ask “Chris, I really don’t want to do all that hard work you keep talking about; I want the easy route, please tell me the secret.”
So I tell them the secret, they just don’t like what the secret is. At my day job I’ll be fairly tactful about what I say, but the answer I give, tactful or not is to forget about supplements, grow some balls and put a bar on your back and Squat it. Pull a bar off the floor to your shoulders and Press it overhead, etc, etc. Do this frequently at first but less so as you get stronger; and put some damn weight on the bar!
Q – Can you show me how such and such a machine works (usually the Powerplate)?
A – Once again what the client is really asking is the following – “Chris, I really don’t want to do all that hard work you keep talking about; I want the easy route, please tell me the secret.” Does this sound familiar? (Hint – see above!) Instead of asking to see something which will help them achieve their goal, they want to kid themselves that they’ve taken action without really doing so.
I could go on, and on, and on with questions which really mean the same thing but I don’t want to put you off Dear Reader.
Here’s another category of question; they might be put across like this –
Q – “Should I eat Chicken breast or Turkey breast? I really like Chicken but it’s got 1% more fat than Turkey!
Or a similar style of question might be “You say to do heavy 5’s in your programme but Tom Blogger says to do sets of 7, and Bob Massiveguns say to do sets of 12, what should I do?”
A – Both of these questions are a case of paralysis of analysis. Chicken or Turkey? It doesn’t matter! 5 reps, 7 reps, 12 reps, it doesn’t matter! What matters is that you eat protein with every meal. What matters is that you do the basic exercises with a good weight on the bar, and strive to add more weight.
The strange thing with many who ask this type of question is that until they receive an answer they’ll do no training, and eat candy bars!
The key is consistent, hard work, and / or consistent eating habits. Choose a programme, choose a diet, work hard, be diligent and you will get results. And don’t sweat the small stuff, it really doesn’t matter that much.