As a society we love to advance things – cars, computers, aircraft, buildings, medicine, you name it – we’ll make it better! However, when it comes to training and nutrition, it really does pay to keep it simple stupid!
Getting stronger, leaner, fitter or bigger isn’t rocket science. People have been doing it for years and years, long before fancy machines and supplements. Saying this, we’ve noticed way too many people troubling themselves with advanced routines and nutrition plans before nailing the basics.
The vast majority of guys don’t need to work their chest from four different angles with 14 different exercises. If you want a bigger chest just get strong at benching and dipping.
Ladies -you don’t need to do 20 different glute exercises on cable machines, assisted pull-ups and the leg press. If you want good glutes get strong at deadlifting and lunging.
DON’T MAJOR THE MINORS
Choose movements over exercises and you’ll see vast improvements in body composition, strength, muscle size and overall health.
Movements are things you do in everyday life – squatting, lifting, lunging, pulling, pushing, rotating and bracing. Anything else is an exercise. Exercises tend to be isolation movements like bicep curls and leg extensions.
There’s room for these exercises but they’re like the side dish – movements are your main course.
A perfect example of the KISS principle is arm training. Joe wants to increase the size of his arms and begins training his biceps with barbell curls, seated dumbbell curls, preacher curls, cable curls and so on. But Joe can’t do a single pull-up.
When you can do pull-ups for reps with extra weight around your waist I can guarantee you will have bigger arms.
To keep it simple you need to breakdown the movements of the human body and get good at their respective weight training movements.
- SQUAT – BACK SQUATS, FRONT SQUATS, LEG PRESS
- LIFT/HINGE – DEADLIFTS , ROMANIAN DEADLIFTS, HYPER EXTENSIONS, SWINGS
- PULL – PULL-UPS, CHIN-UPS, PULLDOWNS, BARBELL ROWS, DUMBBELL ROWS
- PUSH – BENCH PRESS, SHOULDER PRESS, DIPS
- ROTATION – WOODCHOPS
- BRACE – PLANKS
Get good at these movements first. Then you can start using exercises to help improve these movements.