With training programs, bodybuilding myths can run rampant, which, unsurprisingly, can lead to a negative mental state for the athlete and their coach. Some people get into bodybuilding because they want to build muscles and some just want to have the “biggest dick on the planet.” Fortunately, there are several ways to gain muscle without relying solely on steroids or supplementation. In this post, we’re going to focus on three myths that could be damaging your progress.
Myth #1: The only way you can gain muscle is by training hard.
This is what we all saw during our first year of gym class. How much you work out as a teenager may not translate the same in bodybuilding. You will need muscle building in order to become strong as an adult. If you don’t train hard enough, you won’t gain any muscle—but there are things you can do to increase muscle mass. For starters, make sure you eat the right foods, exercise regularly, and sleep well. These are essential components to gaining muscle mass so you need to eat properly. Another simple way to grow muscle is to drink lots of water. This can help with dehydration and can also keep the blood flowing during workouts so that it doesn’t pool into the legs. Since muscles are made up of water, water keeps them alive and makes them pump more blood to them. Lastly, training hard builds muscle and if you don’t train hard enough to build muscle, you’ll never attain your goal.
Myth #2: You must train until the point that you feel pain.
This is where most men cheat. While it’s true that you must train to be able to gain muscle, this is how you can be cheating yourself if you’re not trained in the traditional sense. Most guys know that protein is necessary for muscle growth but they also know that they should supplement before they lift weights, but they don’t realize it’s also vital to be properly hydrated and sleeping well before training. When you’re training for a big goal like getting stronger abs, it’s important that you sleep beforehand so that you can be completely hydrated before working out and being at a full capacity. Not only does training hard build muscle mass, it builds endurance as well. So, if you want to achieve a ripped figure, getting well rested is very important.
Myth #3: Working out will give you a new manly look.
This one has been covered in detail by fitness stars like Rob Gronkowski, Ben Stiller, and Mike Tyson. However, let me share my experience with this myth. I trained for over six months leading up to last year’s New Year’s Eve contest, then decided to take other classes after the contest was over. Once it became clear that I wanted to use my time well, I didn’t show up at those events. Instead, I spent hours studying and practicing as many forms of resistance weight training as I could. Then, once I finally got to compete for world titles in Europe, I showed up to the event with absolutely nothing else than two weeks of strength training under my belt. Yes, I trained hard, but it wouldn’t have mattered that much. What matters is the results from showing up with no preparation or pre-existing knowledge of squat and deadlift variations. Ultimately, I lost about 40 pounds of fat, improved mobility, and even gave myself a nice shape. That’s why you don’t want to be doing anything too intense. It can definitely hurt, but it doesn’t matter; you want to show that you’re putting in work and hard work pays off.
Myth#4: Only bodybuilding or extreme gym goers can make it.
Let’s start with steroids. They’re proven to be great for enhancing muscle growth, but how much good testosterone does steroids produce? We have a long history of science demonstrating how low levels of testosterone can affect athletes’ performance. Thankfully, research shows that there isn’t a set number of steroids needed for optimal muscle growth. There are three types of steroids used for bodybuilding: mesterol, beta and beta-hydroxy-butyrate. To get the best results, be careful to eat the right amounts. Mesterol is metabolised quickly, while beta-hydroxy-butyrate is metabolized slowly and thus takes longer to produce. Beta-hydroxy-butyrate gives a boost of extra calories, while mesterol does the opposite, producing less calories. Mesterol should be avoided if possible because it’s the main steroid involved in your training program. If you’re going to use steroids, choose them carefully. You want to give yourself a steady supply of energy, not too little and not too much. Also, if you’re using steroids, be careful when switching between different brand. Some brands create toxic additives such as caffeine that can lead to health problems. Therefore, be aware that a switch in brand can change how fast you metabolise drugs. And also be aware that mixing these two can cause your hormone levels to fluctuate wildly. Make sure you only mix them with each other, not with other supplements. Finally, avoid consuming a day-after pill after training. Just be careful not to consume it later in the day.
Myth #5: Bodybuilding is fun.
What many of us would like to believe is that getting strong really isn’t that bad—especially if you like sports. But you simply cannot do that without proper nutrition and exercises. Don’t believe that bodybuilding is only cool. Nowadays, bodybuilding is becoming big business. Many male bodybuilders look like celebrities from social media. Celebrities like to show a lot of stuff for publicity. Well yes, they do, but most bodybuilders and pros actually train hard throughout their bodies, instead of looking sexy. A study published in 2015 showed that bodybuilding isn’t just something to do if you love sports or just enjoy having large breasts that your friends can look at. It is a serious sport and it requires physical and mental endurance. It’s also really tough to make money with bodybuilding. From advertising and sponsorship to licensing fees and taxes, it almost seems like something a child would play in his/her free time. If you look hard enough, bodybuilding is a real job and the people behind it are making millions.
Myth #6: Training hard and eating a strict diet are the keys to gaining muscle.
If you’re interested in bodybuilding, you’ve probably heard this a thousand times. Sadly, this myth goes unchanged. All bodybuilders need to eat right, and they’re all telling you that if you train hard, you’ll gain muscle. As it turns out, however, gaining muscle is also a myth because of the lack of evidence supporting that. Sure, it would be fun to eat whatever you want, but it doesn’t really count towards reaching muscle goals. Here’s why… First, we have to remember that you shouldn’t train hard every single day. Your metabolism tends to peak a few days to a week before competition starts. Second, your muscles are made with fats; therefore we don’t see them gain strength unless you’re giving them adequate amounts of carbs and protein (which I highly recommend against doing). Third, bodybuilding isn’t easy to achieve. It requires a ton of dedication, determination, and patience to achieve your goals. For example, it took me a month, 10 rounds of crunches, 5 sets of bench presses, 6 sets of back squats, 1 hour of upper-body dumbbell work, and a total of 60 minutes of cardio to get ready for my upcoming series of competitions. Next, don’t try running in place if you’re trying to gain muscle. When you’re sprinting or jogging, your body is forced to adapt to the pace and the space that the track provides. Plus, if you’re building muscle, you can’t really control where you land. This means that you simply won’t be seeing gains. Lastly, you can’t always tell yourself that something works if you’re not training hard enough. On Monday night you might see gains, and Tuesday you might see none. Try again the next weekend and see if you have any success. Unfortunately, we don’t see muscle grow because the science behind it is still pretty scanty. So, keep in mind that the fastest way to gain muscle is probably to watch TV shows like Biggest Loser or Full House and think positively about anything. Get out the heavy lifting every couple of weeks. Keep moving your upper body and lower body and you should be able to see a difference. Be patient and understand that you’ll get there eventually.
Myth#7: You can build muscle by walking around your local mall.
This one is easy to spot. Over the course of ten years or so, I’ve seen countless women who were confident in their figure gain muscle by walking around their mall—and more often than not, from a standing position. One reason for this is that you have more room to move around and you see your body progress. Moreover, the whole body benefits as you progress through your routine. Walking can be tiring and isolating. So, if you’re looking to gain muscle through walking alone, it’s basically impossible. That said, this one is very subjective. Everyone is different and what works for someone may not work for another. If you want to build muscle, you must be willing to walk around the park