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10 Myths of Bodybuilding Every Newbie Should Be Aware Of

Updated on July 23, 2011

Avoid ever being a tool in the gym

You hear them all the time. On tv. At the gym. Among your friends. Even in magazines.


I've got no idea. In part, its probably because of misleading advertising. It could also just be the power of fad information lasting through the years. Whatever it is, not knowing the truth behind these myths could be a massive roadblock to gaining lean mass and getting chiseled arms and abs.

It’s time to unmask some of these myths.

Myth 1: Bulking is the process of turning fat into muscle but eating more. So it’s ok to get a little fat to turn that into muscle.

The truth is that when your bulking, your goal is not to gain weight in fat but in muscle.

“If you cut calories too fast you will lose muscle and if you add calories too fast you will gain fat. When you are trying to add muscle, don't be discouraged if you don't see your weight increase every single day. In fact if you do see your body weight go up every day, then that means you're gaining fat which is not what your aim should be.” – Chad Shaw

Myth 2: You need to eat 1000 calories above maintenance to gain muscle.

Actually, it’s possible to gain muscle mass while not packing on lots of fat. As little as 200 calories above maintenance may be all that’s needed to allow muscle to efficiently grow.

Myth 3: Egg yolk should be avoided because they contain the most fat and cholesterol of an egg.

During the Golden Era of bodybuilding in the 1980’s bodybuilders believed in eating whole eggs. Nowadays it’s common practice to toss out the yolk. The problem with this is that the egg yolk contains virtually all the protein and nutrition of an egg! ‘Large’ eggs typically have about 6-7 grams of protein. Without the yoke you’re only eating about 3 grams of protein per egg.

Consider this.

“Dietary cholesterol has virtually no effect on serum cholesterol. Even Dr. Ancel Keys, whose original “Seven Countries” study gave rise to the whole fat/cholesterol/heart disease madness in the first place, has said:“There’s no connection whatsoever between cholesterol in food and cholesterol in the blood. None. And we’ve known that all along.”That has been confirmed in study after study after study. “

Myth 4: I don’t have to watch my diet because as long as I’m training my body will naturally build muscle with the extra fat.

Even if someone is on steroids, they will not grow if they don’t take in enough building blocks and minerals. Nope. Growth Hormones are not the building blocks.

Myth 5: Steroidsare a miracle sent down from Zeus to us who wish to sculpt the Spartan warrior body of King Leonidas.

Think of steroids like injecting construction workers into your body. If you’ve got all these extra workers on site but not enough building material, or the right building material, you can’t expect results.

Myth 6: Doing many repetitions get’s you cut and defined while doing less repetitions packs on size.

The goal is always to keep your muscle at all costs. Especially while cutting. Muscle hypertrophy is still a requirement while cutting. So lighter weight and higher reps is pointless when your trying to gain size or cut. The only way to cut and maintain or even gain size is with a focus on diet and supplementation.

Myth 7: Longer workouts mean bigger muscles.

This isn’t entirely true unless you’re a seasoned professional. Workouts lasting longer than an hour not only cause people to drop out of their workout regimens more often. Also people who train longer than an hour are probably over training. These are the skinny guys who spend hours in the gym hoping to get huge.

Myth 8: If you’re not sore, your not growing.

The best indicator of your growth is progress in your workouts. A trainee can press two soda cans 900 times and be sore the next day or two. That doesn’t mean he’s growing.

Myth 9: Creatine is a steroid.

Steroids are synthetic versions of the human growth hormone testosterone. Creatine is not that. Genreally speaking, creatine helps increase the production of adenosine triphosphate (ATP) which serves as a catalyst for cellular processes in the muscles and other biological functions.

By increasing the volume of muscle cells with water, the muscles can perform longer by staying oxygenated. Once oxygen is gone lactic acid accumulates in the muscles.

Myth 10: The soreness you feel after a workout and the burn you feel during your workout is lactic acid.

Recently studies have shown that the soreness one feels post workout is actually micro trauma caused in the muscle cells. The trauma is said to be caused during the eccentric part of the exercise (the lowering of a repetition. This is also where the most muscle breakdown occurs).

The soreness is also said to be inflammatory hormones, macrophage and neutrophil activity.

To learn why 95% of people never succeed at building muscle and burning fat and how to be in the top 5% to do check out


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    • profile image

      Jonathan 2 years ago


    • Rob Winters profile image

      Rob Winters 6 years ago

      Your welcome dude.Yeah it's hard to see and approach strangers to inform them of their mistakes as you never can be sure how it will be taken. I will approach 'very obviously' new guys if they're on their own and struggling to properly perform one of the bigger lifts such as the squat or bench and try to give them a few pointers that'll set them on the right path and it's usually well received but those ego maniacs you sometimes see trying to push the whole stack whilst doing triceps pushdowns on the cable machines using atrocious form and arching their backs and necks whilst falling forward into the movement etc can be another story. They're usually convinced that they're 'The Man' and sadly beyond helping.

    • nickhart profile image

      nickhart 6 years ago

      Thanks man. Yea I've seen them too. This one short guy used to come in and just murder his biceps every time I was there. I have yet to master the art of personally informing strangers in the gym lol

    • Rob Winters profile image

      Rob Winters 6 years ago

      Good list Nick. Gym newbies often seem to come pre-loaded with many of the above myths and more. Like those guys that come in and bench every day of the week and wonder why they don't make progress. Aside from the ego driven folly of many new guys they're obviously (through no fault of their own) picking up a lot of misinformation out there.Voted up & useful:-)