Thinking outside the box….

     As said on my IG post, I will continue where i left off……    I will be the very first to admit I get very impatient and ultra frustrated with some of the current crew of bodybuilders and their total inability to think outside of this tiny little box they are in. Some of them (I’ll just say it) are just straight out DUMMIES and are severely limited in their way of thinking. Like SEVERELY to the point I wonder how they ever solve any kind of problem whatsoever put in front of them. I have seen some comments regarding my methodology (especially over the last couple days on other social media regarding my latest post) and I am just in disbelief staring at the computer screen at times and thinking “Are you seriously that dumb?” “This isn’t that hard!”…..So forgive me (I usually am a pretty darn optimistic, up-beat guy who likes to joke around) but i have to take these cats to task on their incredible inability to comprehend simple concepts that are so completely obvious! Like no wonder some of these guys are on a hamster wheel going nowhere fast when it comes to forging ahead to the next level in their bodybuilding journey…some of you cannot get out of your own way…

DUMMY BODYBUILDER #1 WHO IS SO LIMITED IN HIS THINKING: talking about the progressive training post (and i quote)  ” Great way to destroy every ligament and tendon in your body “, MY REPLY: “A very simple question for you? You the person right now reading this tell me what rep range you would like to train in (for every exercise/bodypart) that you personally feel you will not get injured in”……hypothetical answer from DUMMY BODYBUILDER #1..: “Dante i don’t think i would get injured if i did 14-22 reps for seated dumbbell curls”

MY REPLY: “Then i would suggest you do just that and train in a 14-22 reps range for seated dumbbell curls and train progressively in that range”….Damn! did you see how easy that was? Don’t you feel kind of dumb now? You should….Now i want you to take every exercise/bodypart and i want you to determine what rep range you want to train in with those exercises/bodyparts that you personally feel you can do so as not to get hurt in…. 8-16 reps? 12-20 reps? 20-30 reps? Ok got it down? Now train progressively in that range! Wow see how easy it is if you can just pause for a second and think things out before talking/posting and kind of looking idiotic? Heavy training and progressive training is not owned by the 1-5 rep club! It never has been. Heavy training and progressive training is in any rep range you deem feasible for your unique structure, injuries, strength level, and personal safety and comfort zone. Who said you have to do below 6 reps? NOBODY did! Science has fully shown that you can hypertrophy a muscle in a myriad of rep ranges.

    If you get hurt in training, sometimes its bad luck, we are after all doing repetitive movements with multiple pounds of iron over many, many years which creates repetitive trauma…. but a lot of the time if you get hurt in training, its your own darn fault! And it can be traced to something YOU DID wrong. If you have blown out knees,, nobody told you to bounce out of the bottom position on hacks and squats for the sake of weight used. …YOU DID THAT. If you have blown out shoulders, maybe you should have kept in a higher rep range and trained in a really tight form instead of so loosely. Progressive training builds muscle mass whether you use ultra strict tight form or ballistic choppy movements. The problem is when training ballistically most bbers who train that way end up with a multitude of injuries .I look around the gym and see people with awful form and quickly foresee a really dark future on their joint integrity down the road. Look around at some retired or over 40 pro bodybuilders who are all torn up and a lot of them were really sloppy with their form in their training. Like i said training heavy and progressively builds muscle regardless of form but when you see bodybuilders doing things like tearing lats at the top of pulldowns from rebounding with the weight from the stretched position and other forms of ballistic training, nobody told them to train that way, they chose to train that way.

    My opinion? Form is a standard. Progression is the goal but YOU NEVER SACRIFICE FORM FOR ADVANCEMENT OF POUNDAGE! EVER! You either do the movement in good form or the moment your form gets dangerous… the set ends!. Write it in the logbook. That’s the key to longevity in this endeavor. Myself? I will be 58 in a few months, I used to grind out 6-9 reps in my young buck days. Moved that up to about 9-13 reps until about age 34, then moved that up again after 34 years of age to about 9-20 reps, at about 42 years old I again moved the rep range up to about 12-25 reps (maybe a 8-12 thrown in on some movements i felt safe in) … in my 50’s i train pretty much 12-30 reps (some stuff in the 16-30 range)… it is and always has been progressive…always. For some reason people think 12-30 reps are “light”….I grind out things in that rep range so heavy that the young cats in my gym cant even approach. I just keep in that range out of the “potential risk” factor, I’m not willing to risk a tricep tendon tear or patella tendon tear by grinding out 5-8’s at this point in my life. Its not throwing in the towel at all, a 20 rep squat or a 30 rep leg press with a boatload of weight that you have never accomplished before builds muscle mass, a reverse grip incline smith press for 16-20 reps that you have never done before builds muscle mass. A 16-20 rep machine shoulder press at a weight you have never accomplished before builds muscle mass. I do it just like I did when i used to grind out lower reps in my 20’s, I wrap my elbows with my Inzer knee wraps, slaughter my log books last weeks stats and just grind…..There is a very simple mentality i have, you can take chances in your 20’s and early 30’s that you cannot take in your 40’s and 50’s via joint integrity. Jump off a 6 foot wall at 24 and your off and running, do that at 44 and you take a good chance of blowing out both your patella tendons….it is what it is.

   I do think its very beneficial while your in your 20’s to grind out some 5-9’s while your joints are indestructible…it builds a power base that allows things to adjust very easily when its time to move the rep ranges up. But try rowing big weights for 12-20 reps or squatting big weights for 12-20 reps or shoulder pressing a machine press for 12-20 reps with the whole stack and 45’s chained to it…..not exactly easy or a walk in the park. Do you know whats great about heavy weight, high reps? It gives you a lot of room to beat the logbook! Much easier to beat a rest pause set of 20-30 reps than it is do beat a 9-13 rep rest pause. Both build muscle! You guys have seen my instagram posts, I am chaining weights on machines and gym pinning plates onto apparatus…it aint’ light…and I’m doing it for 12-20 (sometimes 30 reps).

I digress

    DUMMY BODYBUILDER #2 WHO IS SO LIMITED IN HIS THINKING: <—This guy right here might be one of the dumbest people I have ever come across in bodybuilding. Yet he is out there in many forms, on IG, on Youtube, in forums. Do you know what this guy always says? “There is a limit to how strong you can get. Its not like you can bench press 1000 lbs for reps” and “everyone has a limit to how strong you get, you don’t just continue forever just piling on the plates forever.” ….I so want to comment on this I could probably go on for the next 30 minutes about it…Where do i start?! MY REPLY: Ok DUMMY BODYBUILDER #2 let me ask you a question like i asked the other guy. So DUMMY BODYBUILDER #2 (lets use chest for a hypothetical point of view) …you are telling me that you have maxed out the weight for 12-20 reps on 10% inclines, and also 20% inclines, and 30% inclines, 40% inclines, 50% inclines, 60% inclines, 70% inclines, you have maxed out the weight for 12-20 reps on all four hammer machines both with two arms and also unilaterally…you have maxed out the weight on various angles of dumbbell presses with a 2-5 second pause at the bottom in the loaded stretch…you have maxed out the weight for 12-20 reps on every chest machine in your gym, AND every chest machine that is found in 3 local gyms? What did i just give you about 30-35 exercises for chest? And you are telling me you have maxed every single one out in weight in the 12-20 rep range?! No your a bullshit artist, because if you did actually accomplish that on chest and every other bodypart, you would be the most massive bodybuilder your unique genetics would allow you to be. So in your limited, cant get out of your own way thinking, you are full of crap.

    Your job as a bodybuilder is to put yourself into successful mechanical positions over and over up to strength plateaus and at that point do one of three things, ONE) go to a new exercise and go up to a strength plateau with that one, TWO) Reset the current exercise you are on by starting with high reps again and going up in weight and down in reps over many weeks/months trying to go past the last strength plateau, or THREE) tweaking the current exercise somehow so its a little bit different this time around. It sounds like DUMMY BODYBUILDER #2 is so limited in cognitive ability that he thinks you have to do 35 degree incline barbell presses on the first day til the last day of your bodybuilding career and every day in between. I am sorry but that is a complete idiot and you will not progress that way.

    I have done this for so long now that I have 12-30 alternative exercises for virtually every bodypart that i can pull out at any time i reach a strength plateau. When you go back to that original exercise you replaced (somewhere in the future) you will find that by the time you get up o a strength plateau again on it, you will go PAST THE PREVIOUS STRENGTH PLATEAU!. That’s called progress!. I reset exercises all the time especially ones i love doing but I am currently tapped out on and I reset by starting at a lower weight and higher rep scheme and work my way back up in weight and down in reps, and most of the time i get past the PREVIOUS STRENGTH PLATEAU. I tweak exercises all the time to make them harder or more productive when i reach a strength plateau but want to keep a version of that exercise…it might be the grip, it might be a 2-4 second pause in the hole, it might be rest pause this time rather than a straight set like last time, it might be a slightly different angle. How do you guys think i came upon doing all these weird exercises ive done like rack chins and things like incline reverse grip presses for triceps? It was because i was tapped out on flat reverse grip tricep presses but loved the results that exercise gave me so i went to a incline version, with a much higher rep scheme.

    One of the very best things a bodybuilder can ever do for himself is travel to another gym after he feels he has gotten tapped out at his current gym. Every piece of equipment will have different perks, different angles, different mechanical positions, new machines, new strength plateaus to conquer. I am going to tell you how important it is that you train progressively first of all and second of all that you change the mechanical positioning if you can when you reach a strength plateau. If every single one of you reading this right now was on a deserted island that had a solitary fixed shoulder press machine on it with a 200lb stack, and you trained on that machine in strict form until you pressed that 200lb stack for 30 reps over time…you will at that point make minimal gains in shoulder muscle mass going further. Why? Because you are limited in load…you cannot go further than the 200lbs weight stack because thats all you have, and you have already accomplished it for 30 reps. Secondly you cannot change the mechanical positioning of that machine. So you are done. That is how important mechanical positions and even more-so progressive training is. But the aforementioned DUMMY BODYBUILDERS cannot figure that simple concept out for some reason. They only think in a small box and in a straight line.

    This is not that hard guys. The very day you conquer every viable piece of machinery that is worthy, in mechanical positions that you find are safe and allow progressive training, in both your gym and surrounding gyms…. with a lot of weight in the 12-20 rep range…..and just the road you took to get there (eating, supplements, wraps, enhanced) will be the day you will be so massive in size that you wont even be reading blogs like this….YOU WILL ALREADY HAVE ACCOMPLISHED WHAT YOU SET OUT TO DO.

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