Chicken, Broccoli, Rice, Repeat. Lift heavy and do LOTS of steady state cardio. Every day. The more the better.
Ever hear those words? If you’ve been around the competitive bodybuilding scene for any length of time, I’m sure you have. And if you’re on Facebook (of course you are!) you may have been privy to conversations between ‘coaches’ claiming that the above-mentioned dieting and training methods are ‘old school’ and should be left in the past.
Thirty, twenty, even ten years ago, the world was a MUCH different place. No social media, no billion dollar fitness industry, and very little education available for those of us interested in learning more about it. So coaches preached what they practised. They did the best with what they knew to be beneficial at the time. Many of these coaches had employed the ‘old school’ diet and training methods themselves, and figured it wouldn’t hurt to apply the same principles to their bodybuilding clients. And, for the most part, it worked. As long as the athlete sticks to the plan, it usually does.
Fast forward. Here we are in 2015 and there are more ‘types’ of diet and training than we can even keep track of. The supplement world has exploded. And the science behind it all is advancing faster than most of us can keep up. Good carbs, bad carbs, no carbs. Fat? NO! YES! Cycle! Eliminate. No… wait, I mean….
It’s not easy to keep up.
But good Coaches today are doing EXACTLY what coaches back then did: they are doing what they can with what they know RIGHT NOW. Yes, some are better than others. More educated; more experienced. The bottom line is that we have access to so much more now than we did, so it’s easier to vary training and dieting protocols. It doesn’t mean that ‘old school’ doesn’t work, it just means that we now have a lot more information from which to pull to make sure that every client is getting a plan that works with his or her specific body and goals.
I can pretty much guarantee you that eating chicken, rice and broccoli every day, while doing an hour of speed walking on the treadmill, will drop your weight. But there are SO many more things to consider: what KIND of weight are you losing? Fat? Water? Muscle? Are you getting in the required minerals and vitamins for your health if you’re sticking to such a restricted group of foods? What happens when your body plateaus and becomes accustomed to the exercise you’re doing? What about injury? What’s going to happen when you stop ‘dieting’?
So, yes, there is definitely something to be said about ‘old school’, and I don’t think those concepts should be completely abandoned. But rather than bash one method or another, we should research and implement a variety of modalities to find out which parts of each will work best for us or our clients. If you’re not willing to go with the changes, then you’ll be stuck in the dark ages.