10. Endless sit-ups
Many New Year trainees erroneously believe sit-ups will target excess abdominal fat – zapping away unwanted deposits like a game of Space Invaders. Despite their modest efforts, while hording sit-up benches for hours, continuing to overeat will always retain the holiday chub.
9. Invisible Lat Syndrome
New Year trainees are at risk for Invisible Lat Syndrome, a deformity that limits an individual’s ability to hang their arms perpendicular to the floor. An unseen latissimus dorsi of gigantic proportions limits upper-arm mobility and often infects individuals with egos that far exceed actual muscular development.
8. Protesting the use of multiple benches
Training with giant sets or “running the rack” aggravates some people – as if the brief moment of extreme intensity leaves them feeling inferior. Despite their complaints over equipment use, they readily sit on a bench while carelessly going from one set to another with no urgency. Ironically, they require 45 minutes to complete three sets of a single movement, while the high-intensity set consumes only a moment.
7. Blind leading the blind
A new trainee helping other new trainees can be a disaster in the making – not only unproductive but potentially dangerous. Before adopting training advice as gospel, consider your source!
Before the advent of the spoken language, prehistoric man grunted proudly after respectable feats of courage. Modern man sometimes reverts to this primitive attention-seeking behavior when first embarking on a progressive strength-training program – by resisting the temptation to breath, for a teeth-shattering growl. By all means, breathe!
5. Twenty-set biceps
New gym-goers often feel smashing each arm into pieces of charred flesh is a requirement for sleeve-splitting dimensions. Often lasting an hour or more, the training volume leads to performance inroads that even an advanced athlete would struggle to recover from. Lack of fundamentals, coupled with inadequate nutrition and rest, eventually results in another year of inactivity.
4. Forced reps and spotters
A bench press often presents frustrating territory for individuals new to resistance training. Instead of surrendering to a 135-pound bench press, they recruit the assistance of a “spotter” to hammer out 225 for repetitions. They routinely fail to apply continuous and adequate tension, resulting in a diminished training effect.
3. “What do you take?”
New trainees are infamous for magic-pill questions. They don’t care about training theories or nutritional advice – they’d readily take on a hefty dose of gamma radiation for hulk-like muscles. Sadly, they refuse to spend a dollar on a training log.
2. Horrible form
Many things in life come with an operator’s manual; unfortunately, nobody receives a personalized set of instructions at birth. Many inexperienced trainees subject themselves to movements defying basic muscle mechanics. They allow an instinctive alarm reaction to override effective exercise execution. Injury risks are compounded by a lack of training knowledge and discipline.
1. The “I used to…” crew
Describing how much you used to bench does not qualify as chest training. Put up or shut up.