There are a lot of myths and misinformation floating around in the bodybuilding world. Pet workout approaches are often elevated into training essentials. “I used this and it worked man. This is the best way to build muscle.”
If you spend a couple months researching information on the Internet it’s easy to get confused. Many debates have turned into wars, and have been raging for decades. Here are a few of the noteworthy discussions that will probably never die:
- Which is better for building muscle: low volume (HIT) or high volume?
- Which rep schemes are best for building muscle?
- Are full body workouts as good as 3, 4 or 5 day splits?
- What is the best training approach for beginners?
- Are slow negatives/rest-pause/drop sets/whatever essential for gains?
Ask any of these questions on a forum and chaos typically ensues. One person will mock high volume training while the next will tell a story about how it worked exceptionally well for him. Another lifter will tout full body workouts, while yet another will call them an “old school joke.”
These debates go round and round and round, but most of them miss the bigger picture. What is this bigger picture? The fact that there are very few “essentials” when it comes to the muscle building process. How you train doesn’t really matter much as long as you:
- Remain consistent
- Use progressive overload
- Eat enough so you can actually build muscle efficiently
- Utilize a reasonably effective arsenal of muscle building exercises
- Use a reputable training approach; one that is tried, true and tested
To expand upon this concept of essentials and non-essentials, I put together a list of 5 things that you may not know about the muscle building process. Hopefully this list will allow you to relax, enjoy the ride, and focus more upon the true mechanisms that drive gains over the long haul.