A lot of people walk around this great Earth of ours and think that there is only one way to train. There’s only one way to lose weight or one way to build muscle, they say.
Let’s call those people cavemen, because they haven’t caught up with the times yet. They’re still building fires with stick and rocks.
Don’t get caught up with that Stone Age malarky. Here are the 6 different principles in fitness you should follow and their differences.
1.) Bodybuilding - Believe it or not, bodybuilders are athletes. They compete for something. At least the professionals do. However, the moment you walk into a GNC and see a magazine or a bottle of powder with a vascular dude on it, people’s ideas of how to lift becomes trumped. There are a lot of folks in this world who train with a bodybuilding regimen. This leaves a lot of haters and a lot of lovers. It’s not as bad (and good) as you think though.
Here’s my thought: It’s a great muscle building approach. In fact, it may be the best muscle building approach if the diet is right. Ladies typically get scared of the muscle building approach, but in their mind I guarantee they’re thinking of Chyna. If-so fact-o, muscle building for woman can be a term used as building dense muscles. Muscles that don’t pop, but more-so muscles that are solid. The glutes are the women’s main problems. They think they can just gain mass in the buttocks like Kim Kardashian. It takes more than that; especially a relatively small muscle like an ass cheek. Things take time and the “muscle gaining” they see is more than likely a form of shaping and making the glutes more dense.
Back to the point, it’s great for building a dope body (hence ‘bodybuilding’). However, it sucks when it comes to fitness levels. Doing an arm set, resting a few minutes, then repeating is awful for your endurance. Some people just don’t care though. Some people just want bigger muscles. Which is fine . . . until you have to run somewhere, jump fences, or challenge your niece in a burpee contest. It’s not the only way to build muscle though. It’s just the easiest way; and by easy, I mean, you don’t really have to exert a lot of energy.
2.) Weightlifting - Weightlifting is my lingo is referred to as a conditioning or CrossFit style program. This is by far the best way to condition yourself and get your fitness levels up to a maximum. Without proper contraction focus and dieting, it can be relatively hard to gain muscle because of your activity levels.
Take a row for instance. The main style of weightlifting is circuit style. If you were told to do 20 Dumbbell Rows, 20 Push Ups, 20 Squats, and 20 Ball Slams in a row without stopping, this would give you a full body workout most suitable for the fit life. However, jerky motions, not concentrating on the range of motion, and not having a rhythm in your set takes away from the muscle building aspect of it. In order to build muscle though, it takes some focus on your sets. It’s ok to mix bodybuilding and weightlifting in the same program. If you do, you could possibly be the biggest and fittest human alive.
Take football players for instance. They don’t do arm days. They train for their sport through conditioning exercises and drills, but yet they need to be large enough to wrestle around 200 pound guys for 60 minutes. While they aren’t doing arm days or calf days; they are combining bodybuilding, weightlifting, and power techniques into their regimen. Speaking of powerlifting. . .
3.) Powerlifting - Powerlifting is actual quite simple. It consists of presses, dead lifts, and squats. Powerlifters are known for competing with one rep max exercises, but training with high rep activities. Out of bodybuilders and weightlifters, power lifters are your strongest beings. If I told you that a powerlifter, weightlifter, and bodybuilding did 4 minutes of squats with their bodyweight on their back, who would get the most? Although bodybuilding may make you look the best naked according to some standards, they are also the weakest of the bunch.
Powerlifting techniques are great to add into the repertoire. Pressing, lifting, and squatting will make you an overall stronger and better machine. Leave the one reps to the pros though.
4.) Olympic Lifting – Unless you are a competitor in these lifts, doing olympic style training to me is pointless. So . . . unless you are in the Olympics or competing in the next CrossFit Games, I’d stay away from these bullshit exercises of one rep. Barbell snatches, squat cleans, and jerks are great for low rep training. However, doing a jerk for multiple high reps is counterproductive, and doing snatches for high reps is just dangerous. Notice I say low rep. It’s perfectly suitable to do cleans, dumbbell snatches, floor snatches, push presses, and front squats for reps, but that’s not Olympic lifting. That’s called weightlifting. Olympic lifters do one exercise, for one rep, and try to break records. You most likely are not either of these unless you’re a CrossFit competitor or trying to win a gold medal . . . I’d leave these one reppers alone. Olympians are pure athletic beasts, though.
5.) Cardio Monster - Monday – Cycling. Tuesday – Run 3 miles. Wednesday – Zumba. . .
You get the drift. While you may not be strong unless you supplement another program, these people can easily run circles around bodybuilders, and the heart health is solid too. Your weight loss here will depend on your diet. So mainly, unless you just enjoy sweating or taking your mind off bullshit with a good sweat session, I’d leave cardio in the dust. It really doesn’t make us a stronger individual and you can just do a weightlifting program to build up endurance, weight loss, and heart health. If it’s one thing I love about cardio, it’s recovery. A nice uphill walk on the treadmill has saved my back after some brutal powerlifting days.
6.) Plyometrics and Calisthenics - If there was ever a fine line between trying to look good naked and “doing you”, this type of training is it. Believe it or not, you can build muscle on bodyweight exercises as long as they are controlled and concentrated with proper diet. Push ups. Dips. Pull ups. Box Jumps. Broad Jumps. Tons of stuff. This is great training. However, strength levels just don’t expand very much with just bodyweight. If I could, I’d do bodyweight stuff all day long, but unfortunately I have to add weights in my program to actual start seeing strength and more muscular gains.
No. I don’t mean gainz. . .
In the end, the best goal is to combine all of these types of exercise. Muscle building, keeping your fitness levels, mobility, recovery, and power. All of this can be achieved. You don’t have to limit yourself. The best athletes in the world combine all these types of training. You know what else they have? The best bodies and the greatest health.
This is where your body changes,