Body by Science Workout

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Re: Body by Science Workout

Postby LadyGeek » Sun Jun 30, 2013 6:29 pm

On a different perspective, do you have a safety spotter with you when working out like this?

Exercise is all about intensity. I used to strength train with a Bowflex, but gave it up due to lack of interest. The number one reason I went with a machine is that I have no qualms about letting go when I exceed my capacity, i.e. it's safe to workout alone. Since it's all resistance (no actual weights), there's no mass impact if you have to drop it. Also, you don't have to worry about floor loading capacity when you're on the 2nd floor.

Currently, I have a chin-up bar across the door frame and use an elliptical trainer. The rest are calisthenics (and jogging). Simple.
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Re: Body by Science Workout

Postby pennstater2005 » Sun Jun 30, 2013 6:43 pm

I did a program about 7 or 8 years ago that was supposed to increase your bench press by 50lbs in 8 weeks. I did go from a one rep max of 275 to 340 albeit with terrible form on the 340, butt up off the bench then one side went up first followed by the other. Pain ensued shortly after that in my left shoulder. Not exactly a competition bench press :happy I actually hurt my shoulder from going too heavy too quickly with poor form. I have an MRI coming up to see if my rotator cuff is actually torn. Heavy lifting is only for those who are going to use proper technique. Ahh my shoulder hurts from typing :oops:
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Re: Body by Science Workout

Postby Sammy_M » Sun Jun 30, 2013 7:29 pm

LadyGeek wrote:On a different perspective, do you have a safety spotter with you when working out like this?

As for me, I use a squat cage with safety bars and movable pins. For flat bench, I just slide a bench under. It'd be utterly stupid to try this workout without a spotter or some safety device.
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Re: Body by Science Workout

Postby Bacchus01 » Mon Jul 01, 2013 12:27 am

Most NFL Linemen cannot bench 310 lbs 15 times.

Check out the combines. They are only doing 225 lbs and many of them do less than 20 reps.

This is insane amount of weight to do 15 times.
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Re: Body by Science Workout

Postby Rolyatroba » Mon Jul 01, 2013 3:23 pm

stoptothink wrote:Is the weight vest or dip belt going to choke or strangle you? I've done pullups, dips, and various iterations of weighted pushups for 15yrs or so (often with well north of 100lbs. of added resistance) and I am more afraid of hitting my head on the pulldown bar than adding resistance to those foundational movements. I think you stated it best when you said that this is a program for those with a short amount of time who want to stay reasonably fit, it is not an ideal means to exceptional physical conditioning.


That's the big thing about BBS--It is only a basic, minimalist approach to obtaining a higher amount of strength and metabolic reserve (in the form of additional skeletal muscle mass), than that which you get from doing nothing. It's not about body building or competitive lifting (both of which which require far more hypertrophy than this workout can give you). It's also about pursuing muscular adaptations that cannot be achieved by aerobic exercise alone.

As for the choke or strangle risk, no I am not worried for myself, but you have to make that disclaimer for some people, especially those new to strength training. I will say, however, that it is still cumbersome, and there are certainly risks pertaining to the anatomical position of the exercise. Doing push-ups with extra weight, for example, might pose a risk to your back once you get to a certain weight (albeit not as risky as the same for pull-ups). Weight machines are certainly the most convenient alternative for enabling progressive loading over time.

LadyGeek wrote:On a different perspective, do you have a safety spotter with you when working out like this?

A spotter isn't needed at all for the BBS workout, as it is detailed in the book. First, they recommend using weight machines (for the safety and convenience), and then, because you're lifting weights that are quite a bit below your 1RM weight (one-rep-maximum) and moving the weight in a slow motion, the risk for injury is highly mitigated.
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Re: Body by Science Workout

Postby protagonist » Tue Jul 02, 2013 5:47 pm

gatorman wrote:This is a great workout, I raised my bench press from 150 lbs to 310 lbs in 16 weeks, had similar gains on the other exercises. Get your doctor's approval before attempting.

Here is a summary of the exercise program:

5 exercises:
Bench Press
Overhead Press
Cable Row
Pulldowns
Leg Press

Make sure you do the exercises with perfect form.
Start with weights you can do 15 reps.
Do the pulldowns with an underhand grip.
On the cable rows and pulldowns, try and pinch your shoulder blades together at the end of each rep.
Raise the weight slowly over 10 seconds and lower it slowly over 10 seconds.
Do not jerk the weights and do not attempt to lift quickly.
Don't rest between exercises.
Exercise once per week, 1 set of each exercise.
Raise the weight on each exercise 10 lbs. per week until you reach a weight you can only do 5-8 reps.
After you reach that weight, try and increase your reps until you can do 8 reps again, then increase the weight.
The objective is to achieve momentary muscle failure at 5-8 reps.
Once you are doing 5-8 reps of each exercise the entire workout shouldn't take more than 10-15 minutes max.

Diet: Try to eat a paleo diet- lean meat, green veggies, fruits, nuts (but not peanuts). No dairy, no bread, cereal, pasta, legumes or grains. No corn,rice or potatoes.

Here is a link to the book:

http://www.amazon.com/Body-Science-Rese ... 451&sr=1-1

I hope it works as well for you as it did for me.

gatorman


Gator, the book is called "Body by Science: A Research Based Program for Strength Training, Body building, and Complete Fitness in 12 Minutes a Week".

12 minutes a week will transform your body??? I think I may switch my workout and try this for a bit when I get back from Europe, based on your testimonial. But, having worked out for years, it sounds like one of those claims that is just way too good to be true. Like "guaranteed 100% annual return on your investments".

Aside from increasing the amount you can bench press, have you noticed significant, tangible changes in your strength and your appearance?

Have you had experience with more traditional workout routines (eg 3 sets of 8-12 reps 3x/week) and can you compare?
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Re: Body by Science Workout

Postby protagonist » Tue Jul 02, 2013 6:26 pm

And another question....in my more traditional workout routine, I use dumbbell presses rather than barbell presses in order to avoid the need for a spotter.

Is there any reason not to do that with this routine? Does the bar offer any tangible advantage?

Thanks.
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Re: Body by Science Workout

Postby Rolyatroba » Tue Jul 02, 2013 7:55 pm

protagonist wrote:12 minutes a week will transform your body??? I think I may switch my workout and try this for a bit when I get back from Europe, based on your testimonial. But, having worked out for years, it sounds like one of those claims that is just way too good to be true. Like "guaranteed 100% annual return on your investments".

While this was directed to the OP, I can say this is not how one should look at this workout. I've said a couple of times in the thread, but it bears repeating: the Body by Science workout is a bare-bones, minimal effort program for obtaining a reasonable amount of physical fitness. It is nothing more than that, but that is the beauty of the program--you don't need any more fitness than this to dramatically improve the quality of life for a normally sedentary person.

So, if you've been working out already (some amount of strength training that is), the only thing BBS will do for you is save time. If you've already been bench pressing, this will not likely improve your 1RM bench press.

As for the dumbell presses, one thing that will be hard to do with these during the BBS workout is the final 10s of the exercises. The program specifies to continue moving the weight until you're unable to do so, but to keep pushing for another 10s or so. Very difficult to do with free weights, and it presents a pretty good risk of injury.
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Re: Body by Science Workout

Postby ataloss » Tue Jul 02, 2013 9:39 pm

when I switched to a bbs program I ended up decreasing my weights significantly. 50% in some cases. OTOH the goal is to fatigue the muscle not to move the larges amount of iron. Slowing down makes the lower weights very challenging. I think this has got to be better on aging joints and tendons.
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Re: Body by Science Workout

Postby gatorman » Wed Jul 03, 2013 11:09 am

protagonist wrote:
gatorman wrote:This is a great workout, I raised my bench press from 150 lbs to 310 lbs in 16 weeks, had similar gains on the other exercises. Get your doctor's approval before attempting.

Here is a summary of the exercise program:

5 exercises:
Bench Press
Overhead Press
Cable Row
Pulldowns
Leg Press

Make sure you do the exercises with perfect form.
Start with weights you can do 15 reps.
Do the pulldowns with an underhand grip.
On the cable rows and pulldowns, try and pinch your shoulder blades together at the end of each rep.
Raise the weight slowly over 10 seconds and lower it slowly over 10 seconds.
Do not jerk the weights and do not attempt to lift quickly.
Don't rest between exercises.
Exercise once per week, 1 set of each exercise.
Raise the weight on each exercise 10 lbs. per week until you reach a weight you can only do 5-8 reps.
After you reach that weight, try and increase your reps until you can do 8 reps again, then increase the weight.
The objective is to achieve momentary muscle failure at 5-8 reps.
Once you are doing 5-8 reps of each exercise the entire workout shouldn't take more than 10-15 minutes max.

Diet: Try to eat a paleo diet- lean meat, green veggies, fruits, nuts (but not peanuts). No dairy, no bread, cereal, pasta, legumes or grains. No corn,rice or potatoes.

Here is a link to the book:

http://www.amazon.com/Body-Science-Rese ... 451&sr=1-1

I hope it works as well for you as it did for me.

gatorman


Gator, the book is called "Body by Science: A Research Based Program for Strength Training, Body building, and Complete Fitness in 12 Minutes a Week".

12 minutes a week will transform your body??? I think I may switch my workout and try this for a bit when I get back from Europe, based on your testimonial. But, having worked out for years, it sounds like one of those claims that is just way too good to be true. Like "guaranteed 100% annual return on your investments".

Aside from increasing the amount you can bench press, have you noticed significant, tangible changes in your strength and your appearance?

Have you had experience with more traditional workout routines (eg 3 sets of 8-12 reps 3x/week) and can you compare?


My strength (starting from an essentially deconditioned state) went way up in all the exercises. If I keep at it, and, because of job demands and work I do for various charities, that is not always possible, I see a definite difference in my appearance. But it is masked by the extra weight I am carrying which would probably drop off if I was stricter in adhering to a Paleo diet. I feel lots better when I do the workout on a regular basis, although eventually I did have to reduce some of the weights due to joint problems resulting from injuries I sustained during my college years. I'm now working out using a Bowflex machine I bought and I like it a lot. Because of the limitations of the machine, I've added a bunch of exercises and can no longer complete the workout in a short period of time. The total workout now takes about 45-60 minutes. That still is much better than the 6 hours or so I used to spend in the gym every week.

I did conventional workouts for years and I've decided I like the BBS approach better because I feel it puts less overall stress on my joints and allows me to maintain/build strength without having to make a major time commitment to working out. I feel I'm lots stronger than most folks my age (I'm now nearly 61) but I can't say with certainty that I'm stronger than I would be had I adopted a more conventional approach because there is no way for me to conduct the experiment using myself as a guinea pig. I am satisfied with how my body has responded to the the workout and would urge you to give it an honest try. If you don't get the results you want, you can always go back to your old routine. Everyone is different, so there is only one way to find out whether it would be a good workout for you- give it a fair trial and see if you get good results.

Have fun in Europe, it is a great place to visit.
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Re: Body by Science Workout

Postby protagonist » Wed Jul 03, 2013 11:29 am

Rolyatroba wrote:So, if you've been working out already (some amount of strength training that is), the only thing BBS will do for you is save time. If you've already been bench pressing, this will not likely improve your 1RM bench press.


Saving time....2 hrs 3x/wk vs 12 min 1x/wk is HUGE, even if the results are no better. Just so that they are somewhat vaguely comparable. I'm not looking for a competitive bodybuilder program, and I do separate aerobic exercise anyway. What I want to get out of weight training is overall fitness and strength, as well as (hate to admit it) vanity- i have a hard time admitting to myself that I am not 30 anymore, though I am twice that age, and accepting that reality creeps me out.

Rolyatroba wrote:As for the dumbell presses, one thing that will be hard to do with these during the BBS workout is the final 10s of the exercises. The program specifies to continue moving the weight until you're unable to do so, but to keep pushing for another 10s or so. Very difficult to do with free weights, and it presents a pretty good risk of injury.


Interesting. So is the recommendation to use cable machines rather than free weights? I do like them better than the Nautilus machines. I started working out with Nautilus about 25 years ago, but found I plateaued very quickly and had a hard time moving beyond a point so I switched to a mix of free weights/cable machines. I think it has to do with too much isolation of muscle groups with Nautilus, though others may have had better experience with it.

I suppose I should be less lazy and buy the book rather than just relying on a bogleheads post, though I imagine the entire meat of the book is likely summed up in this forum (at least for one who has prior weight training experience).

I always wondered why people use barbells rather than dumbbells. I used the bar years ago but I was always afraid of injury....getting trapped....etc. if I didn't have a spotter, so I switched. Maybe there is an advantage to the bar that I am unaware of.

I'll be back from France in mid-August and will give the BBS workout a good 3-4 month trial when I return. I'll report back regarding my experience with it then.
Last edited by protagonist on Wed Jul 03, 2013 11:34 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Body by Science Workout

Postby protagonist » Wed Jul 03, 2013 11:33 am

gatorman wrote:
My strength (starting from an essentially deconditioned state) went way up in all the exercises. If I keep at it, and, because of job demands and work I do for various charities, that is not always possible, I see a definite difference in my appearance. But it is masked by the extra weight I am carrying which would probably drop off if I was stricter in adhering to a Paleo diet. I feel lots better when I do the workout on a regular basis, although eventually I did have to reduce some of the weights due to joint problems resulting from injuries I sustained during my college years. I'm now working out using a Bowflex machine I bought and I like it a lot. Because of the limitations of the machine, I've added a bunch of exercises and can no longer complete the workout in a short period of time. The total workout now takes about 45-60 minutes. That still is much better than the 6 hours or so I used to spend in the gym every week.

I did conventional workouts for years and I've decided I like the BBS approach better because I feel it puts less overall stress on my joints and allows me to maintain/build strength without having to make a major time commitment to working out. I feel I'm lots stronger than most folks my age (I'm now nearly 61) but I can't say with certainty that I'm stronger than I would be had I adopted a more conventional approach because there is no way for me to conduct the experiment using myself as a guinea pig. I am satisfied with how my body has responded to the the workout and would urge you to give it an honest try. If you don't get the results you want, you can always go back to your old routine. Everyone is different, so there is only one way to find out whether it would be a good workout for you- give it a fair trial and see if you get good results.

Have fun in Europe, it is a great place to visit.
gatorman


Good answer to my question. Thanks, gatorman.
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Re: Body by Science Workout

Postby Rolyatroba » Wed Jul 03, 2013 5:15 pm

protagonist wrote:Saving time....2 hrs 3x/wk vs 12 min 1x/wk is HUGE, even if the results are no better. Just so that they are somewhat vaguely comparable. I'm not looking for a competitive bodybuilder program, and I do separate aerobic exercise anyway. What I want to get out of weight training is overall fitness and strength, as well as (hate to admit it) vanity- i have a hard time admitting to myself that I am not 30 anymore, though I am twice that age, and accepting that reality creeps me out.

Yes, the time savings is huge. Remember though, on the vanity issue, that this program does not come close to optimizing hypertrophy--it largely improves the neuromuscular component of strength (improved fiber recruitment, rate coding, and agonist/antagonist control). [Medical claim removed by admin LadyGeek]

protagonist wrote:Interesting. So is the recommendation to use cable machines rather than free weights? I do like them better than the Nautilus machines. I started working out with Nautilus about 25 years ago, but found I plateaued very quickly and had a hard time moving beyond a point so I switched to a mix of free weights/cable machines. I think it has to do with too much isolation of muscle groups with Nautilus, though others may have had better experience with it.

Yes, cabled, selector weight machines are preferred (but the book does have some coverage of doing the workout with free weights). As for Nautilus, the authors do advocate using cam-style resistance profiles, to sort of even out the load through the entire motion of an exercise. This is very beneficial if you're doing only one set to exhaustion, but can be tweaked if you desire further optimization (and have time to do so).
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Re: Body by Science Workout

Postby LadyGeek » Wed Jul 03, 2013 5:55 pm

As a reminder, medical discussions are off-topic.

Medical Issues

Questions on medical issues are beyond the scope of the forum. If you are looking for medical information online, I'd like to suggest you start with the Medical Library Association's User's Guide to Finding and Evaluating Health Information on the Web which, in addition to providing guidance on evaluating health information, includes lists of their top recommended sites in the following categories: consumer health, cancer, diabetes and heart disease. They also provide a larger, but less frequently updated, list called Top 100 List: Health Websites You Can Trust
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Re: Body by Science Workout

Postby 4stripes » Wed Jul 03, 2013 8:15 pm

it largely improves the neuromuscular component of strength (improved fiber recruitment, rate coding, and agonist/antagonist control).

Will have to disagree again. Sitting in a chair, following the mechanics that a machine has decided for you (regardless of your own anthropomorphy) does not bring the kind of neuromuscular connections that free weight barbell training does. Imagine lifting weights and also preventing yourself from falling over, like you might find in the real world! This is not only obvious to a casual observer, but is also noted in your ACSM link:

machine exercises have demonstrated less neural activation when matched for intensity for most comparisons to free-weight exercises (178).


It's so easy to quote the ACSM for about any cause because they've got something to say about everything fitness related, probably in an effort to not get sued. For example, ACSM has a statement pitching bosu balls as an accepted form of training, which is a good enough reason for me to generally avoid their undercooked advice. Taking training advice from the ACSM is like eating according to the FDA.
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Re: Body by Science Workout

Postby Rolyatroba » Mon Jul 08, 2013 2:43 pm

4stripes wrote:
it largely improves the neuromuscular component of strength (improved fiber recruitment, rate coding, and agonist/antagonist control).

Will have to disagree again. Sitting in a chair, following the mechanics that a machine has decided for you (regardless of your own anthropomorphy) does not bring the kind of neuromuscular connections that free weight barbell training does. Imagine lifting weights and also preventing yourself from falling over, like you might find in the real world! This is not only obvious to a casual observer, but is also noted in your ACSM link:

Your rebuttal here has taken my quote out of context. I was only stating that the BBS workout is not the optimal method of producing hypertrophy. I wasn't stating at all that the BBS method was superior to free weights in this regard, and in fact, I do believe that free weights would require more neuromuscular control (due to the fact that a free weight is not constrained to move only in a single direction channel).

Further, I'm not trying to say that weight machines are superior to free weights; I'm saying that you can get an adequate amount of strength and additional muscle mass (for better enjoying everyday life) from machines, using the BBS method, without the injury risk and relative inconvenience of free weights (not to be construed as medical advice).

machine exercises have demonstrated less neural activation when matched for intensity for most comparisons to free-weight exercises (178).

It's so easy to quote the ACSM for about any cause because they've got something to say about everything fitness related, probably in an effort to not get sued. For example, ACSM has a statement pitching bosu balls as an accepted form of training, which is a good enough reason for me to generally avoid their undercooked advice. Taking training advice from the ACSM is like eating according to the FDA.

I couldn't find a position statement on Bosu Balls on the ACSM site. The word "bosu" only appears on 26 pages of their website, mostly articles and forms related to developing balance; no position stands or joint statements though (don't confuse contributor articles with association positions). Please post a link if I"ve missed something.

Regardless, again, I'm not trying to dissuade on the use of free weights. "Less neural activation" is not the same as "no neural activation", so the above quote does not rebut what I am saying.
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Re: Body by Science Workout

Postby protagonist » Fri Aug 16, 2013 6:11 pm

Just back in the states and just bought the book.

Will start the BBS workout tomorrow and report back re: my experience within the next few months.

Three questions:

1. I skimmed the book today. Authors advocate that short, high intensity sprinting is a better workout than long runs/bike rides. If I read correctly, I think they also suggest no need for ANY specific "cardio/aerobic" exercise at all since that is covered by their once weekly high intensity weight training sessions. I'm not entirely comfortable giving up cardio altogether, though that could just be my personal bias since I am not yet a "believer". On first cursory skim of the book I didn't see any research that suggested that supplementing the weekly BBS workout with, say, a weekly short session of high intensity sprinting would be detrimental, though I think they imply so based on the need for the body to recuperate to build muscle. I'd be interested to hear the take of others who have tried the workout routine re: this subject of giving up separate "aerobics" entirely.

2. The authors are strong advocates for Nautilus machines vs free weights and make cogent, though not incredibly well substantiated, arguments. I am skeptical (started working w/ Nautilus in mid-80s and switched to free weights shortly thereafter since I plateaued early w/ Nautilus and saw no further gains....admittedly that could have been a function of the way I was using the equipment at the time, who knows). The fact that the authors own a Nautilus-centered gym makes me even more skeptical. Their alternate "free weight" workout discusses using barbells and there is no mention of using dumbbells. Since I workout alone without a spotter I have used dumbbells for exercises like bench presses and overhead presses for safety reasons (I use cable machines for seated rows, leg presses and pulldowns). Would you suggest switching to Nautilus (or Smith machines) for bench and overhead presses vs dumbbells? (I'm a lean guy and outgrowing dumbbells in the amount I can lift has never happened....my gym is well-equipped).

3. Core training with no ab crunches at all? Really?
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Re: Body by Science Workout

Postby gatorman » Fri Aug 16, 2013 8:18 pm

Pro- I think you might be able to get away with 2 sessions per week for the first six weeks or so, but I think after you'd likely just slow your progress. I think using free weights would be fine, especially if you can set up stations so as to minimize the amount of rest time between exercises. Also, you need to remember to concentrate on moving the weights slowly. Good luck! Please keep us informed as to how it goes.
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Re: Body by Science Workout

Postby protagonist » Fri Aug 16, 2013 9:13 pm

gatorman wrote:Pro- I think you might be able to get away with 2 sessions per week for the first six weeks or so, but I think after you'd likely just slow your progress. I think using free weights would be fine, especially if you can set up stations so as to minimize the amount of rest time between exercises. Also, you need to remember to concentrate on moving the weights slowly. Good luck! Please keep us informed as to how it goes.
gatorman


Thanks, gate. I will as soon as I settle into it and can evaluate.

I was thinking that to really test the system at first, perhaps I should do what the authors suggest, stick to machines and avoid additional cardio. I'll do one to two workouts/week depending on how I feel as per the author. I will give the whole thing a 4 month trial or so between now and December when I usually leave the country.

Do you do any additional "aerobic training", or do you rely on the assumption that you are getting adequate cardio from your BBS workouts alone?
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Re: Body by Science Workout

Postby gatorman » Fri Aug 16, 2013 9:26 pm

protagonist wrote:
gatorman wrote:Pro- I think you might be able to get away with 2 sessions per week for the first six weeks or so, but I think after you'd likely just slow your progress. I think using free weights would be fine, especially if you can set up stations so as to minimize the amount of rest time between exercises. Also, you need to remember to concentrate on moving the weights slowly. Good luck! Please keep us informed as to how it goes.
gatorman


Thanks, gate. I will as soon as I settle into it and can evaluate.

I was thinking that to really test the system at first, perhaps I should do what the authors suggest, stick to machines and avoid additional cardio. I'll do one to two workouts/week depending on how I feel as per the author. I will give the whole thing a 4 month trial or so between now and December when I usually leave the country.

Do you do any additional "aerobic training", or do you rely on the assumption that you are getting adequate cardio from your BBS workouts alone?

I think I get enough. I had a complete heart workup (non-invasive) about a year ago, there were no signs of heart disease, but no one in my family has died of heart disease, so I may not be typical.
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Re: Body by Science Workout

Postby protagonist » Sat Aug 17, 2013 2:30 pm

Report after my first BBS workout this morning:

My background: 6'1", weighed 162 lb when working out regularly last December, 168 lb this morning. Until last December worked out 5-6 d/wk alternating 2-3 traditional long gym sessions, mostly free weights with 3 sessions of heavy duty aerobics including a 10-12 mile run and other shorter, more intense cardio sessions. In Caribbean Dec 2012 through early May 2013, windsurfing almost every day but no formal workout sessions. Fell off the wagon when I returned in May 2013, though I took fairly frequent long (20-40+ mile) bike rides. In France for the last month where the most exercise I got was playing my sax and multiple sets/reps of lifting my wine glass to my lips.

My workout: I stuck to the BBS book protocol as closely as I could. I used Icarian machines for seated row, pulldown, overhead press and leg press, and dumbbells for bench press (my gym does not have Nautilus machines as recommended in the book). Averaged about 10 sec up and 10 sec down on each rep, one set of each. I guessed at the proper weights and guessed fairly well, doing 5-8 reps of each exercise to total failure and then kept pushing for another 10 secs, with the exception of overhead press (could only complete 3 reps) and pulldown (completed 10 reps). Occasionally I caught myself speeding up or doing Valsalva when it got hard, but rapidly corrected my form and increased my breath rate. I moved rapidly between exercises. No stretches as I used to do (the authors say stretching is at best useless).

Subjective experience: Each set was more painful and definitely had me working harder than when I was doing a more conventional routine of three sets of 8-10 exercises, 6-8 reps/set to exhaustion. I expected to feel completely dead, panting and dripping with sweat upon completion of the workout, but I didn't....my pulse and respiratory rates were only mildly elevated and I felt good afterwards, which was a bit disappointing and makes me question whether the authors' claim that such a workout can completely replace separate cardio training is valid. That said, when I was doing a more conventional routine I would end it with three sets of ab crunches on a machine against fairly heavy resistance and could still do more crunches on a ball followed by quite a few on the floor. After this workout I tried doing ab crunches on the floor on a mat and could not even complete one! So it must have done something. It was great to be in and out of the gym in under 45 minutes including dressing, prep, shower, etc....that used to take me up to three hours.

Plan: Next workout- maintain same weights on all exercises except overhead press (drop weight 10 lb) and pulldown (increase weight 10 lb). If I do not experience much pain in the next few days I may do either a second BBS workout or an aerobic set of sprints mid-week. If I do experience much pain I will wait a week before another workout, but may still do a short high intensity cardio session in between.

I'd love to hear any comments, including advice, from others who have experience with the Body By Science workout.
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Re: Body by Science Workout

Postby lightheir » Sat Aug 17, 2013 2:43 pm

I can guarantee that as good as that workout sounds for weight training, there is no substitute/shortcut for endurance training.

You will never compress the physiological impact from a 10 mile run that you used to do within an hour, and if you race, your race results will prove this dramatically.

For the weights though, I'd agree that working harder and shorter works extremely well for burst type strength and power.
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Re: Body by Science Workout

Postby protagonist » Sat Aug 17, 2013 2:50 pm

LadyGeek wrote:On a different perspective, do you have a safety spotter with you when working out like this?



The authors claim that if you adhere to their routine your risk of injury is minimized. After doing it once, I believe that to probably be true- I didn't feel a need for a spotter. However I did not use a barbell for bench presses or free weights for overhead presses for that reason (besides which the authors recommend machines and I am trying to stick to their recommendations for the most part).
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Re: Body by Science Workout

Postby protagonist » Sat Aug 17, 2013 2:59 pm

lightheir wrote:I can guarantee that as good as that workout sounds for weight training, there is no substitute/shortcut for endurance training.

You will never compress the physiological impact from a 10 mile run that you used to do within an hour, and if you race, your race results will prove this dramatically.

For the weights though, I'd agree that working harder and shorter works extremely well for burst type strength and power.


I don't race. The authors entirely dismiss the need for separate cardio training, claiming that the essence of cardio training occurs at the muscular level. I don't buy that claim, unless perhaps you include cardiac muscle (which responds to traditional aerobic exercise)....were it true, I think I would have felt completely knockered after the workout , as I feel after a long run, or a series of lactase threshold blocks, or a 20-25 minute series of 6-8 short sprints, all of which get my heart rate up to 140-160 with a need for a cooldown.

Immediately after this workout, despite descriptions in the book, I felt fine, not exhausted as after a traditional workout, or especially after an aerobic session. The soreness and exhaustion only occurred during the exercises, and it was quite intense at times. How about you, gatorman??

One other thing.....I did not see anything in the book suggesting starting at a weight which will allow you to do 15 reps and subsequently dropping it. My cursory reading of the book gave me the impression that they were suggesting starting by doing 6-8 reps from the beginning, bumping your weight when you could do 8. But I have not had the time yet to read the book thoroughly so I may be mistaken.
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Re: Body by Science Workout

Postby Rolyatroba » Sat Aug 17, 2013 4:21 pm

protagonist wrote:
lightheir wrote:I can guarantee that as good as that workout sounds for weight training, there is no substitute/shortcut for endurance training.

You will never compress the physiological impact from a 10 mile run that you used to do within an hour, and if you race, your race results will prove this dramatically.

For the weights though, I'd agree that working harder and shorter works extremely well for burst type strength and power.


I don't race. The authors entirely dismiss the need for separate cardio training, claiming that the essence of cardio training occurs at the muscular level. I don't buy that claim, unless perhaps you include cardiac muscle (which responds to traditional aerobic exercise)....were it true, I think I would have felt completely knockered after the workout , as I feel after a long run, or a series of lactase threshold blocks, or a 20-25 minute series of 6-8 short sprints, all of which get my heart rate up to 140-160 with a need for a cooldown.

Immediately after this workout, despite descriptions in the book, I felt fine, not exhausted as after a traditional workout, or especially after an aerobic session. The soreness and exhaustion only occurred during the exercises, and it was quite intense at times. How about you, gatorman??

One other thing.....I did not see anything in the book suggesting starting at a weight which will allow you to do 15 reps and subsequently dropping it. My cursory reading of the book gave me the impression that they were suggesting starting by doing 6-8 reps from the beginning, bumping your weight when you could do 8. But I have not had the time yet to read the book thoroughly so I may be mistaken.

It's great that you're trying this. I've been on a somewhat altered version of BBS for several years now, and am very happy with the results from such a brief weekly workout.

You should probably look further into the cardio claims made by the author. I've read the book numerous times and have read many other exercise physiology books, and it is very clear that the vast majority of physiological adaptations from endurance training occur in and around the muscles (primarily increased volume and/or density of mitochondria, myoglobin and capillaries). The cardiovascular system, on the other hand, undergoes only minimal adaptations. There are a couple of points that make this very clear, the first of which is in the book and blew my mind when I first read it: find the part in the book about the study of cyclists training with only one of their two legs; the training improved aerobic power output of the trained leg, but no improvement in the untrained leg. If the adaptations from the training were in the CV system there would have been improvements in both legs.

The other thing is that when an untrained athlete begins training, increases in VO2 max--the primary measure of the CV component of aerobic power--are achieved relatively quickly, but are maximized early in a training career. Once VO2 max is maximized in an athlete, however, additional training will continue to increase aerobic power--via continued adaptations in skeletal muscle.

This is not to say, however, that strength training does much to increase aerobic power. It doesn't. And indeed the authors do not acknowledge this in the book (something I do fault them for, and I've sparred a bit on this in their forum). Like lightheir said, you've got to put time into training for high-level endurance activities.

My takeaway on their treatment of cardio is that strength training may be all that is needed for CV health. But with no long-term studies to support that theory, I still do a couple of 45 minute cardio sessions per week (plus it helps on the bike and on hikes).
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Re: Body by Science Workout

Postby lightheir » Sat Aug 17, 2013 5:02 pm

Rolyatroba wrote:
protagonist wrote:
lightheir wrote:I can guarantee that as good as that workout sounds for weight training, there is no substitute/shortcut for endurance training.

You will never compress the physiological impact from a 10 mile run that you used to do within an hour, and if you race, your race results will prove this dramatically.

For the weights though, I'd agree that working harder and shorter works extremely well for burst type strength and power.


I don't race. The authors entirely dismiss the need for separate cardio training, claiming that the essence of cardio training occurs at the muscular level. I don't buy that claim, unless perhaps you include cardiac muscle (which responds to traditional aerobic exercise)....were it true, I think I would have felt completely knockered after the workout , as I feel after a long run, or a series of lactase threshold blocks, or a 20-25 minute series of 6-8 short sprints, all of which get my heart rate up to 140-160 with a need for a cooldown.

Immediately after this workout, despite descriptions in the book, I felt fine, not exhausted as after a traditional workout, or especially after an aerobic session. The soreness and exhaustion only occurred during the exercises, and it was quite intense at times. How about you, gatorman??

One other thing.....I did not see anything in the book suggesting starting at a weight which will allow you to do 15 reps and subsequently dropping it. My cursory reading of the book gave me the impression that they were suggesting starting by doing 6-8 reps from the beginning, bumping your weight when you could do 8. But I have not had the time yet to read the book thoroughly so I may be mistaken.

It's great that you're trying this. I've been on a somewhat altered version of BBS for several years now, and am very happy with the results from such a brief weekly workout.

You should probably look further into the cardio claims made by the author. I've read the book numerous times and have read many other exercise physiology books, and it is very clear that the vast majority of physiological adaptations from endurance training occur in and around the muscles (primarily increased volume and/or density of mitochondria, myoglobin and capillaries). The cardiovascular system, on the other hand, undergoes only minimal adaptations. There are a couple of points that make this very clear, the first of which is in the book and blew my mind when I first read it: find the part in the book about the study of cyclists training with only one of their two legs; the training improved aerobic power output of the trained leg, but no improvement in the untrained leg. If the adaptations from the training were in the CV system there would have been improvements in both legs.

The other thing is that when an untrained athlete begins training, increases in VO2 max--the primary measure of the CV component of aerobic power--are achieved relatively quickly, but are maximized early in a training career. Once VO2 max is maximized in an athlete, however, additional training will continue to increase aerobic power--via continued adaptations in skeletal muscle.

This is not to say, however, that strength training does much to increase aerobic power. It doesn't. And indeed the authors do not acknowledge this in the book (something I do fault them for, and I've sparred a bit on this in their forum). Like lightheir said, you've got to put time into training for high-level endurance activities.

My takeaway on their treatment of cardio is that strength training may be all that is needed for CV health. But with no long-term studies to support that theory, I still do a couple of 45 minute cardio sessions per week (plus it helps on the bike and on hikes).


I can assure you, that this 'just train the muscles, not the heart' is oversimplified.

It IS true, however, that you can train the heart very well by doing just faster than conversational pace workouts (zone2 HR). The flip side, though, is that you have to push the mileage/distance if you do this.

And just doing hi-intensity workouts, in itself is a shortcut to burnout for endurance sports. THere are all sorts of quick fad (and some not even quick fad workouts like by Chris Carmichael) that encourage 'hi-intensity on low volume!' but invariably, it becomes unsustainable if you're trying to continually improve. Even if you keep it up for 4 weeks, both the mental and physical toll limits your improvement after that.

For weightlifting and power/sprint stuff, the higher intensity/super short workouts might actually be recommended, but that's a very different animal than endurance training, say for bike/swim/run.

If you take 2 identical runners, have one run 40 miles per week easy (but not so easy it's a joke), and the other do 10miles per week, with a lot of high intensity, the 40mpw runner will crush the 10mpw at every distance over 800m without fail.
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Re: Body by Science Workout

Postby Rolyatroba » Sat Aug 17, 2013 7:44 pm

lightheir wrote:I can assure you, that this 'just train the muscles, not the heart' is oversimplified.

It IS true, however, that you can train the heart very well by doing just faster than conversational pace workouts (zone2 HR). The flip side, though, is that you have to push the mileage/distance if you do this.

And just doing hi-intensity workouts, in itself is a shortcut to burnout for endurance sports. THere are all sorts of quick fad (and some not even quick fad workouts like by Chris Carmichael) that encourage 'hi-intensity on low volume!' but invariably, it becomes unsustainable if you're trying to continually improve. Even if you keep it up for 4 weeks, both the mental and physical toll limits your improvement after that.

For weightlifting and power/sprint stuff, the higher intensity/super short workouts might actually be recommended, but that's a very different animal than endurance training, say for bike/swim/run.

If you take 2 identical runners, have one run 40 miles per week easy (but not so easy it's a joke), and the other do 10miles per week, with a lot of high intensity, the 40mpw runner will crush the 10mpw at every distance over 800m without fail.

First, remember, as I've mentioned a time or two in the thread, this is a basic workout for a reasonable amount of fitness in very low volume. It is not touted to optimize fitness in any category, strength, hypertrophy, power, endurance or otherwise.

Further, the authors aren't trying to say that one should do strength training to achieve CV benefits. What they are saying is that you do get some CV benefits from a strength workout, and they go further to question the necessity of a high volume "cardio-only" exercise regimen to achieve health/fitness benefits. It is a fascinating concept that I think may have merit...but again we need some studies on that.

I've been a fairly successful amateur bike racer for almost 30 years, so I do know how to train the aerobic system (even though mine ain't that great--more of leadout/sprinter type). I hear what you're saying on base training, and I have read Carmichael's "The Time-Crunched Cyclist," if that is what you're referring to. I'm not sure I agree, however, on the need for a whole bunch of LSD miles, certainly for crit racers, for example, and perhaps only necessary to the extent of the distance one competes at.
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Re: Body by Science Workout

Postby protagonist » Sat Aug 17, 2013 10:39 pm

Rolyatroba and Lightheir- everything you said above makes perfect sense...I had some of the same thoughts as well....and I do think I will add some form of cardio training to my workout routine. At least a sprinting session and probably a longer run or cycle per week- though I somehow imagine that the authors would contend that would counteract some of the benefits of their program by not allowing the muscles to recuperate. I wonder if the authors were specifically involved in training team players, since they provided detailed specific training information for those who play baseball, football, hockey and (an outlier) golf. That seemed a bit odd to me, since very few adults concentrate on those sports (golf being an exception)- many more that I know run, cycle, play tennis or related sports like handball or squash, swim, climb, surf, boat etc...activities that do not require organizing large teams and that are easier on adult bodies...and they neglected to mention anything specific about training for those sorts of activities. I need to read the book more thoroughly.

I am interested if, and how, others incorporate aerobic fitness training into a BBS or modified BBS workout, and with what results. The authors seem to deny the validity of "aerobic training". I do want to build up my endurance, both to prepare myself for long windsurfing sessions (which can be quite exhausting), as well as just because it makes me feel better. My prior routine seemed to work well for that, at least to a point, but it was quite time-consuming, involving 1 1/2-2 hour runs or bike rides.

They also eschew stretching, which I thought always seemed to be a sacred cow. Are their comments about stretching valid?
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Re: Body by Science Workout

Postby Rolyatroba » Sun Aug 18, 2013 1:41 pm

protagonist wrote:They also eschew stretching, which I thought always seemed to be a sacred cow. Are their comments about stretching valid?

Pre-exercise stretching had been almost universally accepted by the exercise physiology community, but in the last 10 years or so that has been challenged with new studies. If you want to read about it, there's an article on the NYT web site called "Reasons Not to Stretch". I follow what is suggested in the last paragraph--in fact I've always had uneducated misgivings about the need for stretching and generally did not do, and that is now somewhat corroborated in the literature.
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Re: Body by Science Workout

Postby protagonist » Mon Aug 19, 2013 12:41 am

Rolyatroba wrote:
protagonist wrote:They also eschew stretching, which I thought always seemed to be a sacred cow. Are their comments about stretching valid?

Pre-exercise stretching had been almost universally accepted by the exercise physiology community, but in the last 10 years or so that has been challenged with new studies. If you want to read about it, there's an article on the NYT web site called "Reasons Not to Stretch". I follow what is suggested in the last paragraph--in fact I've always had uneducated misgivings about the need for stretching and generally did not do, and that is now somewhat corroborated in the literature.



Thanks. (By the way, I felt sore all day today, which is a good thing).
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Re: Body by Science Workout

Postby lightheir » Mon Aug 19, 2013 8:33 am

protagonist wrote:Rolyatroba and Lightheir- everything you said above makes perfect sense...I had some of the same thoughts as well....and I do think I will add some form of cardio training to my workout routine. At least a sprinting session and probably a longer run or cycle per week- though I somehow imagine that the authors would contend that would counteract some of the benefits of their program by not allowing the muscles to recuperate. I wonder if the authors were specifically involved in training team players, since they provided detailed specific training information for those who play baseball, football, hockey and (an outlier) golf. That seemed a bit odd to me, since very few adults concentrate on those sports (golf being an exception)- many more that I know run, cycle, play tennis or related sports like handball or squash, swim, climb, surf, boat etc...activities that do not require organizing large teams and that are easier on adult bodies...and they neglected to mention anything specific about training for those sorts of activities. I need to read the book more thoroughly.

I am interested if, and how, others incorporate aerobic fitness training into a BBS or modified BBS workout, and with what results. The authors seem to deny the validity of "aerobic training". I do want to build up my endurance, both to prepare myself for long windsurfing sessions (which can be quite exhausting), as well as just because it makes me feel better. My prior routine seemed to work well for that, at least to a point, but it was quite time-consuming, involving 1 1/2-2 hour runs or bike rides.

They also eschew stretching, which I thought always seemed to be a sacred cow. Are their comments about stretching valid?


I'd actually argue the reverse of the authros' claims - as an adult in our calorie rich society, the priority should be on endurance training and not at all on strength. You can get all the functional strength you need by doing endurance workouts, and a 20 minute moderately paced run gives way higher functional fitness for endurance than a weight workout. Weights are helpful for athletes with a specific need for strength in certain movements, or as a supplement to the endurance activities, but if you had a choice between the two as an adult, the endurance training (specifically running) is a better choice. More calories burned, weight-bearing, and faster workout, and cheaper.

But then again, a book that simplified it down to a "20 minute run every day, moderately paced" wouldn't sell too well, would it?
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Re: Body by Science Workout

Postby stoptothink » Mon Aug 19, 2013 8:41 am

Rolyatroba wrote:
protagonist wrote:They also eschew stretching, which I thought always seemed to be a sacred cow. Are their comments about stretching valid?

Pre-exercise stretching had been almost universally accepted by the exercise physiology community, but in the last 10 years or so that has been challenged with new studies. If you want to read about it, there's an article on the NYT web site called "Reasons Not to Stretch". I follow what is suggested in the last paragraph--in fact I've always had uneducated misgivings about the need for stretching and generally did not do, and that is now somewhat corroborated in the literature.


Pre-exercise static stretching is contraindicated, there is literally no EBR to suggest it has any benefits, but there is a multitude showing it reduces subsequent power production and may in in fact increase risk for soft tissue injury. There isn't even any debate in the exercise physiology world, don't do it. Active dynamic stretching and movement prep are different animals though.
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Re: Body by Science Workout

Postby gatorman » Mon Aug 19, 2013 8:26 pm

protagonist wrote:
Rolyatroba wrote:
protagonist wrote:They also eschew stretching, which I thought always seemed to be a sacred cow. Are their comments about stretching valid?

Pre-exercise stretching had been almost universally accepted by the exercise physiology community, but in the last 10 years or so that has been challenged with new studies. If you want to read about it, there's an article on the NYT web site called "Reasons Not to Stretch". I follow what is suggested in the last paragraph--in fact I've always had uneducated misgivings about the need for stretching and generally did not do, and that is now somewhat corroborated in the literature.



Thanks. (By the way, I felt sore all day today, which is a good thing).


I usually feel sore for about 2-3 days afterwards, so am sore 3 days out of the week and feel not sore the other 4. I'm not sure soreness has much correlation with hypertrophy or strength increase though. I think it is mostly an individual thing. I don't have any studies to back that up, just my impression based on a sample size of 1.
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Re: Body by Science Workout

Postby Rolyatroba » Mon Aug 19, 2013 9:19 pm

lightheir wrote:I'd actually argue the reverse of the authros' claims - as an adult in our calorie rich society, the priority should be on endurance training and not at all on strength. You can get all the functional strength you need by doing endurance workouts, and a 20 minute moderately paced run gives way higher functional fitness for endurance than a weight workout. Weights are helpful for athletes with a specific need for strength in certain movements, or as a supplement to the endurance activities, but if you had a choice between the two as an adult, the endurance training (specifically running) is a better choice. More calories burned, weight-bearing, and faster workout, and cheaper.

But then again, a book that simplified it down to a "20 minute run every day, moderately paced" wouldn't sell too well, would it?

Have you read the book? While I am not saying it is the end all panacea for an un-fit, healthy-weight-challenged society, or even a well written/thought-out treatise for an easy-to-follow fitness program, I really do suggest you read the book to get the gist of what they are trying to say.

And one of those things is that a bad diet can only be partially counteracted by ANY exercise program. And another, for which I paraphrase: what would be a more beneficial weight loss strategy, a 10+ hour per week running/cycling program, or the basal metabolic benefits of an additional 3 lbs of muscle mass gained from a strength training program?

Further, the authors do spend a lot of time discussing the history of the cardio revolution; I'd be interested to see your reaction to what they say here. I can say it sure spurred me--a life long believer of the necessity of aerobic exercise--to look deeper into the benefits of this modality of exercise.

You say weights are helpful for athletes with specific needs, but I'd urge you to look up the term sarcopenia, to see if perhaps strength training might have benefits for larger segments of the population.
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Re: Body by Science Workout

Postby 4stripes » Tue Aug 20, 2013 4:31 pm

Since I workout alone without a spotter I have used dumbbells for exercises like . . . overhead presses for safety reasons.

Since this has been mentioned twice, I have to ask why one would need a spotter for an overhead press? An overhead press, in it's most traditional and useful form, standing with a barbell, does not require a spotter. This is because if the weight is too heavy, it's not going "overhead"--it will not leave your shoulders/chest. You simply put it back in the rack where you got it from. If you are doing it some other way that requires a spot, I suggest trying this traditional way. Learning to Press: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tMAiNQJ6FPc

Barbell press is also more conducive to training because it can be progressively loaded, unlike dumbbells.

Yes, a standing press will work your abs if it's heavy enough. For beginners 1/2 to 3/4 body weight is an achievable goal with consistent training.

I'd actually argue the reverse of the authors' claims - as an adult in our calorie rich society, the priority should be on endurance training and not at all on strength. You can get all the functional strength you need by doing endurance workouts, and a 20 minute moderately paced run gives way higher functional fitness for endurance than a weight workout. Weights are helpful for athletes with a specific need for strength in certain movements, or as a supplement to the endurance activities, but if you had a choice between the two as an adult, the endurance training (specifically running) is a better choice. More calories burned, weight-bearing, and faster workout, and cheaper.

This is generally what everyone thinks (more endurance), but look where that has gotten our society? Sure, if I want endurance, I need to train endurance, but what sort of "function" does that play in daily life? How often does one need to run 20 minutes? What's going to better move my air conditioner and get me up the stairs? 20 minutes of running, really? Or a 300 pound deadlift? I'll take the latter.

Additionally, newer studies show endurance athletes [link to article describing medical study removed by admin LadyGeek].

The problem people have with strength training, their lack of results, is generally because they're doing it wrong. What they think is strength training, is just arbitrary bodybuilding. With not enough weight. Most people significantly underestimate themselves and the amount of weight they should be lifting.

Take a look at these two endurance athletes, operating on different ends of the aerobic/anaerobic spectrum:
Olympic Tri Image
Olympic Track Cycle Image

Which one would you call to move your couch? I think the strong one, that does less long aerobic exercise, is the clear winner.
Last edited by 4stripes on Tue Aug 20, 2013 5:12 pm, edited 8 times in total.
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Re: Body by Science Workout

Postby stoptothink » Tue Aug 20, 2013 4:49 pm

Rolyatroba wrote:
lightheir wrote:I'd actually argue the reverse of the authros' claims - as an adult in our calorie rich society, the priority should be on endurance training and not at all on strength. You can get all the functional strength you need by doing endurance workouts, and a 20 minute moderately paced run gives way higher functional fitness for endurance than a weight workout. Weights are helpful for athletes with a specific need for strength in certain movements, or as a supplement to the endurance activities, but if you had a choice between the two as an adult, the endurance training (specifically running) is a better choice. More calories burned, weight-bearing, and faster workout, and cheaper.

But then again, a book that simplified it down to a "20 minute run every day, moderately paced" wouldn't sell too well, would it?

Have you read the book? While I am not saying it is the end all panacea for an un-fit, healthy-weight-challenged society, or even a well written/thought-out treatise for an easy-to-follow fitness program, I really do suggest you read the book to get the gist of what they are trying to say.

And one of those things is that a bad diet can only be partially counteracted by ANY exercise program. And another, for which I paraphrase: what would be a more beneficial weight loss strategy, a 10+ hour per week running/cycling program, or the basal metabolic benefits of an additional 3 lbs of muscle mass gained from a strength training program?

Further, the authors do spend a lot of time discussing the history of the cardio revolution; I'd be interested to see your reaction to what they say here. I can say it sure spurred me--a life long believer of the necessity of aerobic exercise--to look deeper into the benefits of this modality of exercise.

You say weights are helpful for athletes with specific needs, but I'd urge you to look up the term sarcopenia, to see if perhaps strength training might have benefits for larger segments of the population.


Keep in mind Lightheir is a competitive triathlete. As an exercise physiologist whose area of research happens to be obesity and who has competed in both endurance (triathlons/running) and power sports (D1 football, powerlifting) at a fairly high level, I do not agree with his assertion (especially the comment about functional fitness) and I can almost guarantee most of my colleagues don't either. Obviously a combination of both modalities is ideal, but the crossover effects from endurance training are not as great as those that can be experienced through high intensity weight-bearing activity. For most people anything is a step in the right direction.
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Re: Body by Science Workout

Postby lightheir » Tue Aug 20, 2013 5:07 pm

So, based on your premise, these sedentary, untrained individuals should aim for high intensity low-rep workouts - without getting injured? With no training base? And they're actually supposed to develop aerobic endurance from that?
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Re: Body by Science Workout

Postby stoptothink » Tue Aug 20, 2013 5:16 pm

lightheir wrote:So, based on your premise, these sedentary, untrained individuals should aim for high intensity low-rep workouts - without getting injured? With no training base? And they're actually supposed to develop aerobic endurance from that?


Not sure who you are referring to, but that is not what I or the poster stated.
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Re: Body by Science Workout

Postby LadyGeek » Tue Aug 20, 2013 5:21 pm

As stated in my post on page 2 here, providing medical advice; which is diet and (medical conditions or treatments), is off-topic.

Medical Issues

Questions on medical issues are beyond the scope of the forum. If you are looking for medical information online, I'd like to suggest you start with the Medical Library Association's User's Guide to Finding and Evaluating Health Information on the Web which, in addition to providing guidance on evaluating health information, includes lists of their top recommended sites in the following categories: consumer health, cancer, diabetes and heart disease. They also provide a larger, but less frequently updated, list called Top 100 List: Health Websites You Can Trust

This is a fine line to draw, please stick to the exercise aspects.
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Re: Body by Science Workout

Postby lightheir » Tue Aug 20, 2013 5:23 pm

Well then, are you actually disagreeing with my assertion that these sedentary untrained individuals would be better off healthwise by running for 20 minutes than doing circuit weight training for 20 minutes?

I'm focusing on the main health detractors that are plaguing adults - excess body weight, osteoporosis, heart disease as the main offendors. Not being strong enough to lift your friend's couch is inconvenient, but should be a lower priority for a middle aged sedentary adult until they get at least reasonable cardiovascular fitness, imo.
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Re: Body by Science Workout

Postby 4stripes » Tue Aug 20, 2013 5:32 pm

Let's say, 45 y/o male, overweight to obese. Has never run or biked. Is this age and condition and good place to start running? Or start walking, to work up to running? Why are we running, because everybody does that, and it doesn't require any training? That's not a very good reason to me. Many healthy individuals abandon running in their 40's and 50's because of the impact on their joints and knees. Road cycling is intimidating, and that much weight won't be pleasant on hills. So that seems like a recipe for failure for someone with no fitness at all.

I, instead, would put them in a weight room. Deadlift 45 pounds 5 times on Monday. Then do 50 Thursday. Then 60 the next week. Etc. If that's too much, just start lower. The base is built into the progression at the pace of the person.

The article I linked to was about bone health, and noted that some endurance athletes have less bone density than sedentary people.
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Re: Body by Science Workout

Postby lightheir » Tue Aug 20, 2013 5:45 pm

4stripes wrote:Let's say, 45 y/o male, overweight to obese. Has never run or biked. Is this age and condition and good place to start running? Or start walking, to work up to running? Why are we running, because everybody does that, and it doesn't require any training? That's not a very good reason to me. Many healthy individuals abandon running in their 40's and 50's because of the impact on their joints and knees. Road cycling is intimidating, and that much weight won't be pleasant on hills. So that seems like a recipe for failure for someone with no fitness at all.

I, instead, would put them in a weight room. Deadlift 45 pounds 5 times on Monday. Then do 50 Thursday. Then 60 the next week. Etc. If that's too much, just start lower. The base is built into the progression at the pace of the person.

The article I linked to was about bone health, and noted that some endurance athletes have less bone density than sedentary people.


1. Running dose NOT invariably lead to knee damage. It's one of the biggest sports myths out there.

2. Deadlifts for health? What benefits are you aiming for with the deadlifts for the group of people we're discussing?

3. Running is good specifically because we've been evolved for it. (See recent Nature paper about this.) Part of the proof of this is how wired our brains are for it - we don't even have to train a running technique - we naturally fall into the most efficient stride for our build for endurance running. (Contrast to swimming, which is years of pure technique work.) Plus you get get started by walking, and build from there. Running builds coordination, prevents falls in later years, and is enough to build a very, very functional core even without weights for acts of daily living.

4. Regular runners have good bone health in the areas it counts most - lumbar spine and femurs. Because it's weight bearing. Yes, weightlifting helps with bone health as well.
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Re: Body by Science Workout

Postby Rolyatroba » Tue Aug 20, 2013 6:44 pm

lightheir wrote:
1. Running dose NOT invariably lead to knee damage. It's one of the biggest sports myths out there.

I have come across that running isn't as bad for the knees as once thought. It spurred me to look up an old NPR piece from a couple of years ago--your assertion is corroborated here, but only for runners that haven't had any prior knee injury or surgery, for runners that run only at a moderate pace and only moderate distances, and not for those more than 20 lbs overweight.

2. Deadlifts for health? What benefits are you aiming for with the deadlifts for the group of people we're discussing?

You don't get a more whole-body strength exercise than deadlifts--legs, core, arms, shoulders. The only knocks I'd give this exercise is that it's hard to perform correctly at first, and it doesn't really stress the legs compared to the rest of the muscles used.

3. Running is good specifically because we've been evolved for it. (See recent Nature paper about this.) Part of the proof of this is how wired our brains are for it - we don't even have to train a running technique - we naturally fall into the most efficient stride for our build for endurance running. (Contrast to swimming, which is years of pure technique work.) Plus you get get started by walking, and build from there. Running builds coordination, prevents falls in later years, and is enough to build a very, very functional core even without weights for acts of daily living.

You really don't want to invoke evolution for this. Evolution doesn't work the way you're suggesting. From an evolutionary perspective, the only reason we run "naturally" is because when we evolved to walk upright, those that were most likely to survive were the ones that could run fast (ostensibly requiring good form)--or at least faster than their friend (as the saying goes).

4. Regular runners have good bone health in the areas it counts most - lumbar spine and femurs. Because it's weight bearing. Yes, weightlifting helps with bone health as well.

I'd guess that is true as you suggest, but you need your arms too. The low BMD cases I'm familiar with is that of elite cyclists; note these folks have virtually zero impact or significant loads to bear in that form of exercise. This isn't the case, however, with elite mountain bikers. They attribute this to the fact that MTBers spend a lot of time absorbing shocks, as well as using bodily strength to muscle their bike around rocks, roots, etc.
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Re: Body by Science Workout

Postby lightheir » Tue Aug 20, 2013 6:48 pm

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Re: Body by Science Workout

Postby Rolyatroba » Tue Aug 20, 2013 7:04 pm

lightheir wrote:Am invoking evolution.

Well, what you're saying is that running is good because we evolved to be good runners. Again, judging something as good, from an evolutionary perspective, only says that it was good for survival. It doesn't imply at all that it is good now--in a time where most running is done on asphalt or concrete, and in a time when running hasn't been necessary for survival for 10's if not 100's of thousands of years. Note that primates evolved the ability to walk upright several million years ago, but anatomically modern humans have been around for only about 200,000 years (maybe some of us today aren't all that cut out for running).
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Re: Body by Science Workout

Postby stoptothink » Tue Aug 20, 2013 7:25 pm

lightheir wrote:Am invoking evolution.

http://www.nature.com/news/2004/041115/ ... 115-9.html


What exactly does this have to do with the topic at hand or your original assertion?
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Re: Body by Science Workout

Postby lightheir » Tue Aug 20, 2013 7:31 pm

stoptothink wrote:
lightheir wrote:Am invoking evolution.

http://www.nature.com/news/2004/041115/ ... 115-9.html


What exactly does this have to do with the topic at hand or your original assertion?


Bringing up the hypothesis that running is actually a very good activity for 20 minute exercises (and more), with likely much more physiologic benefits to multiple systems (cardio, strength, bones, coordination) than 20 minutes of weight circuit training. Given there is good evidence we were evolved to do this, it makes sense from a physiologic standpoint that it's going to be generally beneficial to us, not detrimental, and likely more beneficial than some activities that we're not evolved for.

(Am awaiting the imminent threadlock from Ladygeek - bowing out of the circular conversation now)
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Re: Body by Science Workout

Postby stoptothink » Tue Aug 20, 2013 7:46 pm

lightheir wrote:
stoptothink wrote:
lightheir wrote:Am invoking evolution.

http://www.nature.com/news/2004/041115/ ... 115-9.html


What exactly does this have to do with the topic at hand or your original assertion?


Bringing up the hypothesis that running is actually a very good activity for 20 minute exercises (and more), with likely much more physiologic benefits to multiple systems (cardio, strength, bones, coordination) than 20 minutes of weight circuit training. Given there is good evidence we were evolved to do this, it makes sense from a physiologic standpoint that it's going to be generally beneficial to us, not detrimental, and likely more beneficial than some activities that we're not evolved for.

(Am awaiting the imminent threadlock from Ladygeek - bowing out of the circular conversation now)


You are going way off on a tangent and this has little relevance to modern life. Your original assertion which I responded to was that endurance running was more "functional" than resistance training. Randomly pick a group of endurance athletes and do the same with a group into resistance training; for literally any activity that isn't endurance running/biking/swimming, the resistance-trained group is highly likely to be better. Most life activities are intermittent and highly anaerobic in nature.
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Re: Body by Science Workout

Postby LadyGeek » Tue Aug 20, 2013 7:48 pm

The points have been made on both sides, further discussion would not be productive. Let's get back on-topic, but after a post-debate cool down.

Thread locked for a 24 hour cooling-off period.
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Re: Body by Science Workout

Postby LadyGeek » Wed Aug 21, 2013 7:47 pm

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