Monday is Chest and Tris
Tuesday is Back and Bis
Thursday is Shoulders
Friday is Legs (unless I’m feeling tired, which is most of the time, then it’s arms again….maybe some abs)
This is what I see every week. Plan on doing some bench press on Monday? Forget about it, they are all taken. It’s the same routine over and over and over again. Let me make myself clear, when people are in the gym working out, at least they are in the gym, I’m not going to complain about that. It gets frustrating when I hear constant complaints about bad elbows and bad shoulders and bad knees and bad backs….and this is coming from the same guys who are wearing knee wraps and belts and elbow sleeves because it “helps with support”. The other day one of the guys in the gym was talking about pain and said,”If it’s not my shoulders, it’s my back. If it’s not my back, it’s my knees. I’m going to be a crippled old man by the time I’m 40.” And fitness professionals wonder why people are scared of resistance training.
So what’s the point? This doesn’t have to be you. Resistance training should be a part of everybody’s fitness regimen because it is great for mobility, flexibility, stability and any other ility you can think of. The problem is that everyone has followed the bodybuilder routine for so long that we believe that is the only way to workout.
Want to know how to workout? Next time you’re at the gym, walk up to biggest guy you can find and ask him about his routine. Listen to what he says and do the exact opposite of what he says. If he says to do one body part a day, do every body part in one day. If he says workout every day, workout every other day. If he says do 5 sets of an exercise, do 2 or 3 sets. If he says wear a belt, don’t wear a belt. Do you see what I’m saying? Even if your goal is to gain muscle. People have put on much more lean mass with much less work working out a couple of days a week (for proof click HERE).
I admit, I am being a little bit of a hypocrite right now. For a good portion of my life I lived in the one-body-part-a-day club. I bench pressed on chest day, did back squat on leg day….and was ALWAYS in pain. My elbows hurt, my knees hurt, my back hurt. I’m not going to say I never have pain now, because that would be a lie. I will say that I do not have it often and it is rarely, if ever, significant enough to affect my routine.
Allow your mind to be open enough to accept that there may be a different way of doing things, that the beaten path may not actually be the way it has to be. This article is not about turning away from one way of lifting. It’s about opening yourself up to other ways…that may prove to be more effective.