5 Training Myths

Training Myths Exposed Part I

High rep training will help tone your muscles, while low reps will get you bulky.
This myth has been popularized by infomercials and many personal trainers who are rocking 13 inch guns. The fact of the matter is that your appearance has to do with your body fat levels. The difference between looking lean and toned opposed to big and bulky is how much fat is covering your muscles. For most people, abs become visible when body fat levels reach single digits. The best way to get the body you want is to critique your diet. YOU ARE WHAT YOU EAT!

It is possible to spot reduce fat.
Many people assume that by focusing on certain muscles, they can lose fat over that specific area. This is often seen when women perform abduction, adduction, thigh master and the butt machine. They are under the assumption that by focusing on these areas, they will decrease the fat in the area and thus get a more toned look. Another example I am sure you are all familiar with are the people who perform a billion crunches because they believe that this will help them get a 6 pack.
Unfortunately, these methods do not work. Instead, our bodies’ burn fat from wherever it wants to and this also varies from person to person. Some people lose it in their face and shoulders first, while others may lose it in their stomach. Never fall victim to gimmicks claiming that you will get abs in 6 seconds or by putting in very little effort. Loosing fat is the accumulation of hard work, dedication and dieting.

Aerobic cardio is the best way to burn fat.
Read what the best way to burn fat is here.

You should be sore after every workout.
Almost every young athlete I have ever trained, judge a workout based on how tired they are following it and how sore they are the next day. Looking at it from their perspective, this can make sense because they are under the assumption that more is better. What they do not understand is the key to success and the key to getting results is progression. Most training sessions should build off the last. This can mean hitting a new personal record on a lift or hitting an extra set or more reps then the last workout. For beginners, the objective is to increase work capacity and overcome muscular imbalances so they can learn the core lifts. Chances are, if you are constantly sore and fatigued, you are overtraining and should reevaluate your goals. Is your goal to get tired and sore? Or is it to get bigger and stronger?

Never let your knees go past your toes while squatting.
Many people are under the assumption that your knees should never go pass your toes while squatting because this will be detrimental to knee health. This myth surfaced with the rise of knee injuries caused from squatting. Instead of worrying about the knees going past the toes, the focus should be on proper knee alignment. Knee buckling is very common in people who have weak adductors and do not push their knees out or do not “spread the floor”. Pushing the knees out during the squat will help keep the knees in line with the toes and thus allow optimal squat position. The position of the knees during the squat depends on the length of your femur. Compared to taller guys, shorter guys usually have an easier time keeping their knees back. Lastly, please note that if your knees stay all the way behind the toes, that pressure must transfer somewhere (to the lower back and hips).

You need to train like a bodybuilder to increase muscle mass.
The most common mistake I see most trainees make is training like a bodybuilder. Using body part splits such as back and bi’s, chest and tri’s, or performing one body part a day are recommended in almost every bodybuilding magazine. The bodybuilders who use these training splits have freak genetics and use $100,000’s of steroids yearly. There is a reason why you see the same average Joe who uses these splits, gain little no results year after year. In order to see real results, trainees should perform compound movements like deadlifts, squats, bench press and military press. The best types of workouts are full body or upper and lower body splits. More information to come on this soon!!

Lift Strong,

Joe Meglio
Performance Enhancement Coach

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Leave A Reply (2 comments so far)

  • Robert Wynne

    …But what do you think about Pushing (Presses and Squatting) / Pulling (Pulling/Rowing and Deadlifts/O-lifts) Training Splits? Is there a way that design could be successfully employed? Thanks for any input you may have!

  • Robert,

    When it comes to designing a program, I look at certain movements the athletes need. Things like hip hinging, hip dominate exercises, horizontal pushing & pulling, open chain vs closed chain, unilateral vs bilateral etc…Program design is really dialed in. While, I keep it as simple as possible for the athletes, I make sure it addresses all their needs. Every exercise should help them become a better athlete, if its doesn’t than it shouldn’t be in their program.

    It would be hard for my to say if a pushing/pulling split would be good. Especially for baseball because I don’t recommend olympic lifts for baseball players. I love the lift, I just don’t think they are a good fit for baseball players.

    Here is a sample workout I have used with a college level baseball player:


    20-25 mins of med ball work
    -pair this with a mobility exercise while resting
    -1 overhead exercise & 1 rotational exercise=50-75 Throws

    Safety Squat Bar Box Squat- 6 X 3

    Bulgarian Split Squat 3 X 8-12

    GHR- 3 X 10-15

    Pallof Press 3 X 30s
    External Rotation 3 X 12

    Check out these two articles on program design for baseball players:


    Hopefully this helps. Let me know if you have any other questions brother!