This Obsession With "Science Based" Exercise Needs To Stop

This Obsession With "Science Based" Exercise Needs To Stop

what's up guys now we got here against Saint kind of piggybacking off my main video from last Friday I want to go into a little bit more detail about the whole science-based exercise of movement or evidence-based training or whatever you want to call it it's all essentially the same thing but basically without sugarcoating it too much I find it for the most part to be pretty dumb and before you get all riled up and start writing out your hate rants just hear me out first the problem is twofold really for one it's allowed certain people to kind of BS their way into gaining notoriety simply because they can spew out study results and I kind of touched on how I feel about a lot of exercise science research in my last video so I won't delve too deeply into that again but the problem with this approach really is that the majority of the information generally lacks practical applicability it's all kind of looked at in a vacuum but it's not really worth anything like that so unless you've then gone out and applied the bits and pieces that can actually be applied in some way or another which are feeling far between in my opinion and then determine what's actually useful and what's just garbage then the information in and of itself doesn't have any value and how could you continually apply all of this information there's too much of it and there's more and more being done every day and half the new research refutes half of what the old research said and it would just be impossible to keep up with it all while actually using any of it for long enough to see any actual results in your training so no one can ever really be completely up to date with the research in a truly meaningful manner and so ultimately we've ended up with a whole slew of popular influencers or whatever the hell you want to call them that have become very adept at the art of mental masturbation simply for the sake of consistently churning out content but a lot of these people have no practical experience and they haven't achieved any notable results for themselves and I just regurge relatively useless information while leaning on science is a means of credibility and sadly even to justify very lazy methods of training so that's a little pet peeve of mine professions that exist for the sake of themselves are stupid and they act under the guise of being educational when the knowledge they're passing on is utter my new show with the homeless no practical application to anybody that actually wants to see results well that's an unfortunate occurrence but anyway I really want to focus on less on the people who disseminate this information and more on the effect that it has on the people who it's targeted at and so that leads me to my second point which is the rampant spreading of this abundance of self purportedly important but in reality generally useless and bloated pool of knowledge causes a great deal of over analysis and in action as well as misguided action even just a cursory browsing of any lifting forum or YouTube Fitness comment section will present you with hordes of examples of people who have no idea where to begin they don't even know what the fundamentals are but probably simply due to sheer volume at this point they've certainly taken all of these tiny little pointless details to heart they don't know enough to know what they don't know but they've been so inundated with this self-important overly analytical crap that they think they need to worry about what direction their pinkies are facing when they do their lateral raises in order to maximize lateral deltoid activation but they're not even doing overhead presses they fret over whether the hack squat or the leg press is gonna build bigger quads but they've never done a barbell squat in their life they're worried about creating a perfect meal plan with all their macros dialed in down to the fucking grams with the exact amount of protein per pound of body weight the research shows is needed to build optimal amounts of muscles but they're not even gonna adhere to that plan for more than four days anyway and all they really need to do is learn a little bit of consistency eating habits and focus on getting just a little bit more protein and total calories in and then doing that every single day just yesterday I had a random teenager walk up to me and stop me in the street to ask me what my meal plan is because I'm buffest fuck I told him I don't have one and he couldn't believe it because obviously you have to have a meal plan and know precisely what your exact macros and total calories aren't eject right or maybe people are just overthinking shit because they get constantly fed my new chef no pun intended that doesn't apply to them by people with minimal practical experience who love to overcomplicate shit in order to sound smart citing research studies is fucking a 1 though right so these people are bombarded with all of this pointless information that they think they have to utilize in order to get the best results and there's so much of it that they just don't know where to start so they analyze and they overanalyze and they overanalyze and they create perfect meal plans and perfect training plans and they make sure all their joints and muscle groups are perfectly in balance before they begin laying their foundation because you can't build on a shaky foundation but the thing is it's not perfect now and it's never gonna be perfect and you'll go a lot farther if you stop worrying about the new research and all the miniscule details and just get to work on the fundamentals which are what they are and are never going to change never let perfect become the enemy of good I like to consider myself a pragmatist so even though no one asked I'm gonna give you guys some practical advice right now pick a handful of compound exercises that are harder than something else you'd rather be doing pick a handful of rep ranges that you like and enjoy and progressively overload those rep ranges for a few years and make sure you bust your ass when you're eating the gins get a lot of sleep drink a lot of water if you want to gain weight and get strong then eat more protein and more calories than you are right now if you want to lose weight then still eat more protein than you are right now but eat less calories and go for a fucking walk regardless just because do these things and do them all every day and do that for a long fucking time and then in your free time call your mother I'm sure that would make her so happy or take your girlfriend out or chill with your boys but stop analyzing and researching and worrying about the pointless details in my new chef of training and exercise science and exercise nutrition there are a million other better ways to be spending your time and I guaran-fucking-tee you that if you follow the basic rules that I just outlined you'll get farther than 99.99% of people that you're ever gonna meet in your lifetime and you don't need to worry about any of the science or your macros or whether you should be doing fucking banded wrist curls or wrist curls with a barbell consistency hard work and the fundamentals those are literally the only things that matter and you can forget absolutely everything else and I promise you not only will you not miss a fucking beat but you'll be so far ahead of the rest of the pack that they won't even be able to see you anymore anyway that's all I got for now guys please be sure to LIKE the video don't forget to subscribe to my channel and definitely leave me some love in the comments down below also if you're interested in online coaching with an emphasis on practicality and the tried-and-true basics feel free to shoot me an email at i'm cary elite at and i'd be happy to pass some more information your way keep training hard and I will catch you guys next time you

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  1. Hey Alec, I have a serious question:

    I just got back from watching your video about the merits of Push-Press (which I consider a partial jerk) and I was wondering what your advice is when it comes to carryover. Does a stronger Strict press or Push-Press translate to a stronger bench, or vice versa?

  2. fuck yes real talk! everybody tries so hard to find shortcuts with science and making everything perfect and they totally forget the fundamentals of training. Just train like a beast, get strong as fuck, eat and sleep, that's it

  3. Oooooh this guy? lol, yeah just be a monkey at the gym and look dumb af and be stuck with chronic injuries. Work smart and hard, simple.

  4. Forest of the wolves gym crew checking in. 🙂 I still want to know about your 6 week training blocks?

  5. I'm just a simple man scrolling through the comments thinking to myself… "A GROWN MAN should never waste his time TROLLING on another GROWN MAN's YouTube channel."

  6. Bit off topic but noticed that nowadays one of the best ways for 'personal trainers' to get people to do some exercises that are bullshit or have minimal return is to justify their use by claiming how it 'attacks your core better' or 'it works on your core stabilization'… You'll see them simultaneously doing lunges and biceps curls with 5 pound dumbbells and claiming how you are conserving time doing these two together and yeah 'it engages your core more'… fuck off

  7. I don’t have a problem with science based so much……but lazy ass “meta analysis” is giving me a stroke

  8. Good point. They really are making things way too complicated and it's just because of the need to constantly create content. You only need to know a handful of tips and then the rest is just consistency and intensity.

  9. Still waiting on 2'nd South Park Beanie Channel!!!!! Please make the Beanie Bar a Franchise!!!!!!!!+

  10. Okay, well I just have to comment on this presentation – can't help myself! First however, a very brief background so what I will be saying is not interpreted as unfounded talk by some inexperienced guy who doesn't know anything about bodybuilding – then I'll offer some opinion (just my opinion, nothing more) for anyone who might be interested. I have been bodybuilding since age 17, competed for many years, and I am now in my 69th year of life. I have never stopped, and always trained with a serious mindset. I began in 1968 in southern California, two years at a local YMCA, and then a football player friend took me over to Bill Pearl's Pasadena Health Club and introduced me to Bill. At the time, he was in the early stages of prepping for his fourth Mr. Universe contest (he had already won the title three times prior). Bill Pearl was a legend at the time, and is now considered a master of what is now termed the Golden Era of bodybuilding. He wrote the book, Keys to the Inner Universe. All this is to say that I trained there at his gym throughout the 1970s, and trained with him personally in the mornings prior to sunrise for several years during the second half of the decade. Many of the top pros of the time visited the gym, often training with us for a while to learn all the modern secrets from the guru himself, Bill Pearl. I met and trained with many of the top guys during those years, and learned a mountain of information from them, but most notably I learned from Bill himself, who regularly schooled me in all that he knew, first hand, face to face.

    Back then, there was no internet. Back then, there was no YouTube. Back then, there were next to no scientific studies done on bodybuilding because it was considered a weird subculture that the public viewed as a bunch of sick homosexual men with no morals. Back then, the only advice came out of the bodybuilding magazines of the time, like Perry and Mabel Rader's Iron Man, Bob Hoffman's Strength and Health, and the fledgling Muscular Development, the editor of which was John Grimek, an icon from the roots of bodybuilding. The advice was monthly, and based almost entirely on what this or that top pro of the time was doing himself in the gym. There was no talk of scientific studies, no talk of macros, and little talk about exercises that might not be the best for remaining injury-free. It was all about sharing the fundamentals of bodybuilding with one another, our rather small subculture of bizarre guys who loved to spend time in gyms pumping iron. It was all about dedication, hard work, eating lots of food, lifting heavy, and being consistent. It was a true brotherhood of gym rats, just sharing their best ideas with one another, not based on science or studied nutritional evidence. It was all very basic. Nothing like what we see today online existed. It was another world, one which the new generations of today could not even imagine. Joe Gold had a little dump of a gym down at the beach, with the basic equipment that was necessary to build a huge muscular physique – it was nothing fancy at all – no high tech biomechanically perfect fitness machines like today. It was all very raw, chalk everywhere on the floor and equipment, grunting, groaning, a real low tech place where a few guys with names like Arnold Schwarzenegger came to work out with determined regularity (he also visited Bill where I trained). The average person on the street would never dare go inside, as it was a frightening place to anyone outside of bodybuilding.

    So those were the first years of my introduction into bodybuilding. I have been watching the evolution of this sport for 51 years so far, and have no intention of ever quitting. It's so deeply ingrained in my psyche and blood that I see it as essential as taking my next breath of air. With all that protracted introduction out of the way, which hopefully reveals the radical difference from the 1970s bodybuilding world and the 2019 bodybuilding world, I'll offer my personal two cents worth of thought on Alec's eight and a half minute talk here. I enjoy watching all the high tech stuff on YouTube these days, and I view many of the videos Alec discusses here. I hear the same talk about this and that scientific study, how to adjust my "macros" for the best results, and on and on about the minutia of today's "necessary" knowledge for anyone who wants to be a success at bodybuilding. This type of material has really taken off with the advent of YouTube, where anyone can start a channel and offer up what they see as indispensable advice to the masses of wanna-be bodybuilders. Much of what I see on YouTube has merit, but there is always a certain amount that causes me to chuckle because some young guy who has little experience in the sport is talking like he (or she) has been around forever, and knows for a fact that this way of doing an exercise is the best possible way, or eating like this or that is the best possible way to gain the most muscle. I would not call most of what we are seeing worthless – I do think there is much value to be had from it. But, the new bodybuilders who are just starting their journey, who want to know all the "secrets", will not be able to sort through it all to find the best path simply because there is a MASSIVE overload of material, often much of which contradicts other material that seems just as soundly based. Who does the new trainee believe? He ends up spending countless hours every day on YouTube attempting almost in vain to figure out what he should be doing in the gym and the kitchen.

    The high tech era of today is valuable, and offers much knowledge and wisdom, and I must admit that I learn more and more after all my years in the game. For example, I used to do, along with all the top guys, behind the neck presses, behind the neck pullups, upright barbell rows, and exercises that have currently become less than optimal for remaining injury free. Back in the day, we did all kinds of stuff, with no studies, but what we did have was a raw determination to train hard, eat big, and be part of the bizarre boys who were not part of the general public. I would not go so far to condemn today's discussions and advice online in social media such as YouTube as worthless, or use any derogatory terminology about it or the people offering it, but I'll just say the main difference is that fifty years ago, the only advice we had came in the magazines and from other big bodybuilders in the gym. Now, anyone with a computer can put advice out there for the masses, The content is not restricted to the wealthy and powerful media owners. I think Alec's best point here is that there is an extreme overabundance of material because anyone can offer it now, and the trap for the new trainees comes in trying to determine was is good advice versus not so good. Back at Pearl's Gym, it was just raw talk in the back rooms of testosterone driven men who wanted to win the top titles of Mr. American and Mr. Universe (the Mr. Olympia competition was just getting started). The advice back then was very limited compared to today, and it was NOT based on scientific studies, or new young guys who saw an opportunity to become the latest social media YouTube star.

    So much for my thoughts. They are only what's in my head, perhaps worthless to some, but based on more than half a century of personal bodybuilding experience in the trenches, from the "good" old days to what we see now. Thanks for reading! The bottom line is to train hard, eat well, and let the body recuperate. Become good enough that personal intuition will guide you, not some website that delves into the minutia of calorie counting and portion size to the point that one becomes obsessed with it all. Probably the most important thing of all is to HAVE FUN in the gym, which is the key to decades of pumping iron! See ya' …


  11. Pal, you have no qualifications trying to give advice to people on how they should train with no background in exercise science, offering suggestions based purely on anecdotes. You offer training advice based on what works for you, your leverages, your training history, your strengths and individual weaknesses. How does this make you different from Bloho and BetaDetermination? They both literally do the same shit. Also, I don't know what fucking gym you train at, but nobody uses studies like this. Lastly, I'd like to say your approach to exercise science and "science based" exercise selection is fucktarded. You can misinterpret studies and, yes, new studies are conducted and published on a regular basis, but you forget major things. You forget the idea of what existing studies suggest, the quality of the studies conducted, the scope of the data, the variables among other things. The way you talk about science-based training makes it seem like people are mongoloids who run to Pubmed, look for EMG readings, read the abstract and then do what the paper says. A lot of aspects of your own training stem from an existing understanding of the impact certain exercises have on your body and physiology. You clearly do not grasp these concepts. By all means, please continue making training videos, your approach is cool shit, but you're not nearly qualified, nor are you sensible enough to teach anything to do with exercise science.

  12. I would rather listen to the DYEL science guys than some bro that took a whole bunch of steroids, built a decent physique and strong lifts, and gives advice

  13. The irony of this video is that you yourself are actually part of the problem here ! What i mean by that is with respect to exercise application for example you say that people MUST barbell squat to develop their thighs which isn't true ! As a matter of fact a leg press IS A SQUAT because a squat is simply a knee/hip bend & extend motion ! If you like to barbell squat then that's your choice & that's fine but don't tell everyone else that they MUST do so also . A powerlifter must squat obviously but if your intention is to build/develop your thighs then it makes absolutely no sense to load your torso/spine to work your thighs . I used barbells when i first started training and i still use dumbbells to this very day . The issue i have with many barbell advocates is that they seem to think that barbells are magical tools which have magical properties ! LOL !

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