It’s Time to Forget About Bulgarian Training

Bulgarian training broke most of it’s athletes, it breaks the athletes who try to use it now. It was mainly used to keep the athletes exhausted and it’s clear that similar if not SUPERIOR results can be had by NOT training that way. Even if the results were superior and the average lifter could survive it, you can’t change the fact that the small increase in gains from training that much still won’t make them not suck at the end of the day.

The 20 Rep Squat

For no particularly good reason I want to write about something that has already had endless words written about it and that is the 20 rep squat (sometimes called more specifically the 20 rep breathing squat. This is kind of the original rest-pause training, an entire book has been written about it although if you gain 30 lbs in 6 weeks, it’s not gonna be mostly muscle and I imagine most have at least heard of it.

The Causes of Diet Failure Part 2

And I think that’s a sufficient amount on this topic. yeah, I could add endless other stuff, mainly having to do with various strategies such as regular tracking/self-weighing and many others but that’s just basic stuff. The above is some stuff that I think often is unconsidered in terms of what causes diet failure. Once again, I’m not saying that the success rate will or will not be improved by changing those or getting people to take a different approach to the process.

The Causes of Diet Failure Part 1

To be honest, and I’ve been saying this for a lot of years, I don’t think that the issue with dieting failure has much to do with diet (or exercise) per se. That is, we know and have known for a long-time HOW to get people to lose weight/fat (I’m going to use these interchangeably for writing style reasons just understand that body composition is more important than changes in body weight per se and let’s move on). Bottom line, almost everyone manages to lose some amount of weight or fat when they diet. That isn’t the issue.

Research on Women – Why Isn’t There More?

Since I got behind on writing this week (I had to set up for a 3 hour webinar yesterday), I’m running an excerpt from the forthcoming women’s book (which is coming along I promise) about research on women and why there isn’t more of it. It’s probably subtly different from what is actually in the book since I did a lot of rewriting but hopefully gets the concepts across. There’s exactly nothing practical here, it’s just kind of some interesting (I hope) blather to introduce the topic.

Train Like an Athlete to Look Like an Athlete

In any case, I’m going to start today by addressing one of those trite phrases that gets thrown around from time to time in the fitness arena. I’ve looked at one of these before, in an admittedly tongue in cheek way (get it?) but this article is actually serious. Specifically the phrase I want to look at is the one that makes up the title of this piece: Train Like an Athlete to Look Like an Athlete.

Do Drugs Only Help a Little?

So in addition to any direct effects drugs have, the very concrete fact is that without them, guys can’t even get to the top levels in the first place. The training isn’t survivable or recoverable without them to begin with; the recovery and benefits is insurmountable. Hell, it’s usually been felt that most athletes top out in progress after about year 3…unless they start using drugs. They allow you to move past any upper genetic limit that might exist and without them; you hit a performance wall you won’t ever get past without them.

The Hypertrophy Zone

The second point, that is actually relevant was that Wes Barnett (then one of the US’s top lifters and hopefuls) was there to demonstrate. He was a big dude and I asked the coaches what he did for muscle growth. They told me that he would just do a high volume of sets of 5. This, of course, blew my all-knowing mind, I knew that the hypertrophy repetition range was higher than that. How could sets of 5 get it done? Clearly there was more to the topic than I then understood but I’m getting ahead of myself.

Digging into the Bodyrecomposition Mailbag

Hi Lyle, I recently did a dexa scan to get an estimate of my body fat % – I’m female, 28 years old, weight train regularly. My dexa scan results: 5’3, weighing 59kg and an ‘average’ of 20% body fat. I say ‘average’ as the scan showed that the body fat % in my upper body (arms, torso) was 14% while my lower body (hips, thighs) was 27%. Is it fair for me to take the average of these and consider myself to be 20% body fat?

Squats Hormones and Growth

Now, the general argument for the whole squats/lower body training and growth has to do with the hormonal effect. This was an idea that came around in the 80’s and has kept going since then. And not only did it provide what I consider a red herring for training for the past 4 decades but showed how not to do science. Researchers had observed that, generally speaking, bodybuilders of the day were bigger than powerlifters. We might debate this but let’s roll with it.

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