11 Biggest Myth Of Bodybuilding
When you are at gym working out you hear all sorts of things not all of them are wrong but as you grow older in that environment you are bound to catch a few myths of bodybuilding which are being carried from generations and some of them are still believed and practiced. One of the examples of such myth is you need to do crunches and crunches will actually burn away body fat on your stomach and there are some exercises to burn body fat around your chin, well clearly scientific facts suggest otherwise but every other guy you see who is trying to get rid of belly fat is doing crunches and hundreds of those per week or even worst hundreds per day, people even try to do crunches at home to get rid of belly fat, but various researches have proven otherwise references for spot reduction as a myth are given in the end, in this article I will talk about 10 less obvious myths that are part of bodybuilding and fitness industry for decades
1. You need to train every day to big
This is one of the biggest myths of bodybuilding that you need to train every day to get bigand one day of training you miss is day you are getting weak. I hear this alot and many trainers I see seldom miss a day at gym, so what’s the problem with training every day? Problem is your muscles don’t grow at gym they grow when you are resting and getting enough rest and enough nutrition someone who is not using steriods is unlikely to go anywhere in long term if you train every single day of the week, with low intensity you may get away with training every day. In my experience training 4 days a week with high intensity is best for growth just make you are hitting every muscle group once every 7 days
2. Everyone’s recovery is same
Well ever heard your colleagues saying that all you need to do is clear you head and lift weight you will recover and will be able to lift more weight then you normally do because it has worked for them it will work for you? This is again a myth of bodybuilding that recovery is same for everyone, not everyone recovers equally some of us are genetically blessed and they have fast recover while others are not that lucky when it comes to gaining muscles quickly. As I keep on saying bodybuilding is all about communicating with your body and when you understand your body better and train according to your recover you are sure to maximize gains
3. You can eat anything as long as your workout is high intensity
This is again one of the biggest myth of bodybuilding, I hear people say and even some trainers that you need to keep on eating and don’t count calories, part of this is right you need to eat to grow as without getting enough macro nutrition you will go no where trust me on this one but you need to count how much protein you intake and how much carbohydrates and how much fat as each of these macros are responsible for different functions in our body if you don’t calculate your macros and eat what you want chances are you will overload yourself with one macro nutrition and miss on another and as a result you will end up going in circles trying to figure out what’s wrong with the way you are doing things.
4. High repetitions are for cutting and low repetitions are for size
This is again one of the myths of bodybuilding I hear too often I even see people trying to lose fat doing 15+ reps with very light weight and when I ask them they answer that they are trying to cut body fat and guess what happens? They are losing muscles but very little fat. When you are cutting you need to perform same exercise as you did for cutting and almost with same weight as I explained in my previous article bulking and cutting, the right way and how to lose fat without losing muscle as you can see cutting doesn’t require high reps it just requires caloric deficit and bulking requires you to out perform your previous workout and through progressive overload you can bulk and gain muscles as long as you eat enough protein and challenge your muscles enough
5. Train for longer duration
This is another myth of bodybuilding, I always train under an hour and seldom my workout goes beyond an hour some times it does but never more than 1.5 hours that too happens maybe once a month. After one hour hormone levels begin to decline in your body and glycogen stored in your muscles is likely used up if you train at high intensity, and worst after 120 reps you will that you are not lifting as much weight as you need to stimulate your muscles group. With low rest period under 90 seconds you should be able to perform 120 reps in around 45 minutes and if you are training smaller muscle group 90 reps should take you around 30 minutes. Longer workout means you are tiring your body. You are not suppose to torture yourself in gym, you are suppose to enjoy your training break enough muscle fiber and tire your muscle enough to make them grow that’s it.
6. If there is no soreness, it means you are not growing
This is also a myth of bodybuilding that if you are not having muscle soreness that means your muscles won’t grow and you haven’t trained hard enough, muscle soreness is always good to have and makes you feel better but don’t train for soreness just focus on lifting enough weight and and reps per muscle group and you are likely to grow muscle soreness is not an indication of growth and not having soreness doesn’t mean opposite.
7. Your muscles will turn into fat after you stop training
This myth of bodybuilding really makes me laugh, muscles never convert to fat, muscle tissue is made of protein and fat is simply stored energy, muscle cell and fat cell are totally different. This myth of bodybuilding originated because people see bodybuilders gaining fat when they are not working out that is because bodybuilders eat lots of calories as muscle mass demand more energy even if you are not working out and as we know more caloric intake than calories spent is always going to end up in fat gains
8. You can gain muscle and lose fat at same time
This is another myth of bodybuilding that says that you will gain muscles and lose fat at the same time. Well this is not possible unless you are a beginner, once you past that stage if you want to gain muscles you will have to have positive energy balance in your body and positive energy balance will mean you will gain fat and its impossible to gain muscles and lose fat at the same time even if you do cardio every day without caloric deficit you can’t lose fat and without caloric surplus you can’t gain muscles
9. Some exercises are for building mass and some are for shaping
This is another example of myth of bodybuilding which is responsible for new trainers scheduling their workout wrong. One example of this would be dumbbell flyes. Mostly people believe that flyes are only to get your muscles in shape and they don’t contribute towards building muscle size. This is a myth I personally guarantee that flyes build muscle as long as you lift enough weight to tire your muscle and stimulate growth. One disadvantage is that with compound joint movement you are likely to boost more testosterone which is not possible with isolation but this is only because isolation is hitting target muscle which you want to hit instead of doing compound exercise which is multi joint movement
10. The more you sweat, the more fat you lose
I hear this alot people say, I sweat alot and I haven’t even been exercising that much but still losing fat, I have lost a few pounds just because of hot weather. Most people believe that sweat will cause your fat to melt away. Well this is dumbest myth I have ever heard yes you need to raise your heart rate enough so you get to that fat burning zone, and yes in fat burning zone you will sweat but this doesn’t means you will lose fat simply by sweating. You will lose weight there is no doubt about that but that will be water weight as I am sure you have read in school 90% of cell is water and when you lose some water after sweating you are losing weight but that is water weight not fat
11. You need to eat lots of protein to build muscle
This myth of bodybuilding is created by supplement industry in order to sell you those protein shake they make you believe that you need at-least 1.5 to 2 grams of protein per pound of your body weight but research shows that you only need 0.8 gram of protein to gain muscles and infact anything more than 0.8 gram have little to no effect, these numbers are of course true for natural bodybuilder only. I eat from 0.9 to 1 gram of protein per pound but that is because I enough eating, protein alone is not enough for growth you also need carbohydrate as I explained in my article how much carbohydrates per pound of body weight. You need carbohydrates and good fat along with enough protein to grow
These are some myth of bodybuilding and we follow atleast one or more of these myth and no matter how much someone tries to convince us otherwise but we still believe one or two of these myths because you know what they say a lie heard 100 times sounds like truth and it does. Let me know in comments section what myths you come across during your time at gym or around your muscle nerd buddies.
- Perry, Elena (2001). “Targeted Fat Loss: Myth or Reality?”. Yale Scientific.
- Nickol, Carolyn (2001). “Spot Fat Reduction”. University Fitness Center, University of Cincinnati.
- Wilmore, Jack H.; Costill, David L. (1999). Physiology of Sport and Exercise. Human Kinetics.
- Dave Harshbarger. Wellness Program. West Virginia University.