Saturday, January 29, 2011

Truth isn't always the truth

I was planning on going over how to find your resting heart rate and thus your training range for cardiovascular exercise today, BUT, I read an article this morning that someone sent me and now I need to vent about that so the heart rate will need to wait for another day.  The article was in Men's Journal and titled "Everything you know about fitness is a lie."  I was immediately intrigued as I thought that someone was going to join my fight to stop all the misinformation.  The article had a promising start as the author correctly identifies the current fitness/health clubs as show rooms which are meant to sell memberships and how easy it is to get a 'certification' as a personal trainer.  Obviously, you can get a decent workout in one of these centers but why is the largest amount of space dedicated to cardiovascular machines and weight lifting machines?  Just when I was getting into it and about to throw out an "Amen Brother!! You tell them!" the article turned to 'the truth about training' and my enthusiasm evaporated, what started as such a promising article became a rehash of an antiquated training method.  He was shown the 'truth' by a strength coach, strength training 101, all you need is squats, dead lifts and bench press!!  Just keep adding weight and you will keep getting stronger!  This is revolutionary information!  How simple is that!  Why hasn't anyone talked about this before???  Well, they have,  this is a rehash of the good ol' "Bigger, Stronger, Faster" program from the 1980's.  Very Revolutionary!  Also long ago proven ineffective for training athletes, but don't tell  all the high school football coaches as a majority of them still believe this is the gospel.  For some reason, when it comes to training philosophies we leave the modern era of information and we chisel the philosophies onto rock slabs never to be questioned again.  Trainers, coaches, strength coaches learn a system and information be damned lock into the truth.  Now, this is not true of all trainers, coaches, strength coaches because we have continued to make improvements into improved training techniques and the best coaches always try to improve and learn.  Like with any change, there are those who are early adopters, then the mass of people start to move over, but there are always those who are stuck in what they already know.  Let's step away from training for a second and ask one question,  when dealing with a complex situation, do we really believe there is only one solution?  Why then when it comes to training is there only one thing that works?  The answer is that there isn't.  Heavy lifting is the perfect training regime if your goal is to be good a heavy lifting.  It was shown years ago that heavy lifting is way to slow of a movement to be functional for sports.  A training program is dictated by one thing, the goal of the person who will be doing the program.  There might be a short phase of heavy lifting but there will be other phases of training as well. 

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