Category Archives: Training Philosophy

Why I Lift, and Why You Should Too

exercising happiness

Lifting weights is good for you. You don’t need me to tell you that, it’s common sense. Most people intuitively understand that sedentarism is not a good idea, and that exercise (especially resistance training) will do their bodies a lot of good. Below, I’ve compiled 30 great reasons why you should adhere to an exercise regimen. Each of these reasons has at least one published paper supporting the claim. Aerobic and resistance exercise can help:

  1. Maintain functional ability
  2. Prevent osteoporosis
  3. Prevent sarcopenia
  4. Increase insulin sensitivity and decrease insulin resistance
  5. Increase metabolic rate
  6. Improve glucose metabolism
  7. Decrease systolic and diastolic blood pressure and arterial stiffness
  8. Decrease body fat and central adiposity
  9. Improve gastrointestinal transit time
  10. Reduce the risk of diabetes
  11. Reduce the risk of heart disease
  12. Reduce the risk of cancer
  13. Reduce the risk of falls, fractures and disabilities
  14. Decrease cardiovascular demands of exercise
  15. Decrease triglyceride, total cholesterol, and LDL cholesterol levels
  16. Increase HDL cholesterol levels
  17. Increase muscle and connective tissue strength and hypertrophy
  18. Increase mobility and flexibility
  19. Increase joint stability
  20. Improve balance and coordination
  21. Improve posture
  22. Increase brain/cognitive function
  23. Increase confidence, self-esteem, and happiness
  24. Combat depression and anxiety
  25. Combat metabolic syndrome
  26. Combat frailty syndrome
  27. Improve function in people with cancer, dementia, osteoarthritis, fibromyalgia, post-stroke disability, lupus, asthma, diabetes, ADHD, heart disease, Alzheimer’s, autism, bipolar disorder, COPD, epilepsy, low back pain, neck pain, chronic headache, and erectile dysfunction
  28. Increase strength, power, speed, and endurance
  29. Prevent ACL, hamstring strain, lumbar, ankle sprain, and shoulder injuries
  30. Improve quality of life

See? Exercising makes you happy!

It took me many hours of researching to compile this list, and this list provides compelling reasons why everyone should exercise. But let’s not kid ourselves. Though we all like being healthier and fitter, many of us primarily train for physique purposes. In fact, the primary reason why women exercise is for weight control (87.5% of women), and the primary reason why men exercise is for muscular definition (84.7% of men).

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You Should Definitely Avoid this Movement

If there’s one movement that I absolutely loathe, it’s the “movement” that attempts to convince readers to avoid certain exercises altogether. I’ve gone to great lengths in past articles to explain how unique lifters are in terms of anatomy and goals. I’ve filmed videos showing people how to gauge how deep they should go in a squat. I’ve written endless articles on exercise variations. I’ve discussed the biomechanical ramifications and pros and cons of certain exercises. And I’ve advised people on how to train around pain or injury. One thing I have never done is written an article telling lifters to never do a particular exercise (well, I wrote an article to mock these types of articles, which I’ll post below, but it was entirely sarcastic).

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The Ten Worst Types of Personal Trainers

In any field, you’ll find a large discrepancy between the most talented and competent individuals and the least talented and competent individuals. In the world of personal training, there is no exception. The best and most effective trainers exhibit markedly different characteristics compared to the least effective trainers. Listed below are the ten worst types of personal trainers.

The Progressive Overload at Any Expense Trainer

The progressive overload at any expense trainer might start off on the right path, teaching clients proper form with basic compound movements such as squatting, hip hinging, lunging, bridging, pressing, and pulling. But their expectations are unrealistic and their knowledge of sound technical form is lacking. Clients are expected to bump the weight up 5-10 lbs every single week, regardless of gender, age, or training experience. This is manageable for a while, but it soon backfires on the client. After several months of training, you’ll see this trainer’s clients knee caving during squats, roundbacking their deadlifts, bouncing the bar off the chest during bench press, cheating, relying excessively on momentum, and eventually getting injured, all in the name of moving greater loads. These poor examples of form are usually accompanied by shouting and cheering from the overzealous trainer.

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Should the Rehabilitation and Strength and Conditioning Professional Abandon “Traditional” Bi-lateral Leg Exercise for Single Leg Exercise Performance?

Today’s article is from Rob Panariello, a regular contributor to this blog. I always appreciate Rob’s insight, logic, and thought-process. I finally got to meet Rob in person at the NSCA National Conference last month, which was great. I’m very pleased that guys like Rob are still putting out content – we have some legends in the S&C game who have a ton of knowledge and wisdom to share, and Rob is one of these guys.

Should the Rehabilitation and Strength and Conditioning Professional Abandon “Traditional” Bi-lateral Leg Exercise for Single Leg Exercise Performance?

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