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    Member ljazz's Avatar
    Join Date: Jul 2002
    Location: Cookeville, TN
    Age: 53
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    (K)eep (I)t (S)imple

    (K)eep (I)t (S)imple

    What supplements should I use?
    How many sets should I do?
    Mr. O. does X reps and Y sets for his back 2 times a weekÖ..will this work for me?
    If I use PHís, am I still considered natural?
    Double split?
    Full body?
    Heavy Duty?
    How much rest between sets?
    How much can you bench?
    Whatís my bodyfat?
    Is Skip Lacour really natural?
    Can I get that big without drugs?
    How many times a day should I eat?

    This is just a small sampling of the questions seen on this forum. This is just a small sampling of the questions that have kept me from reaching my full potential.

    Boy, I started out strong. But where did it go wrong? How many times have I started, only to get confused and frustrated, only to give it up again?

    As I prepare to give this activity we call ďbodybuildingĒ another shot, I reflect, clearly, on the past failures. What I see is a metaphor that can be used for everything in my life. KIS. Simplicity. In life. In the gym. I havenít enjoyed the trip, and I havenít put it all together in a fashion that keeps me working towards my goals. Even if I think Iím moving towards those goals, I find that I let things pull me off of the path to meeting them.

    I also reflect (looking at my training journals), and realize itís all right in front of me! The answer is there! The times in which I made my biggest gains were those times in which I wasnít ďtryingĒ something new. They were times that were easy to forget about, because things just flowed, without much thought or confusion.

    Guys (and Gals), itís easy!

    If you want to get big, you have to do everything big. Itís plain and simple. Donít let anyone tell you any different. Follow along. You donít have to be a scientist or nutritionist to understand this. What Iím going to tell you is based upon my own observations and my own trials and errors.

    When I first started seriously lifting, I had just gotten to Ft. Sill, OK (Go Army!). I weighed all of 173 lbs. I wanted to get big, and lift big, just like the other guys in that dank place called Gouldner Gym. In my pursuit, I lifted as much weight as I could, ate at the mess hall several times a day (mmmm Army food), and relaxed whenever possible. You want to know something? I left Ft. Sill 2 Ĺ years later weighing 235 lbs. Since I was overweight by Army standards, I had to have my fat percent checked. It never went over 12%.

    Hmmmmmm. Lift Big. Eat Big. Rest Big. Pretty damned simple right?

    What happened? Well, life happened. Things got complicated. Another baby, sore back (weíll talk about injuries later), work, bills (damn those credit cards), and I wanted my quick gains to come faster, so I started dabbling in every program I could get my hands on. I quit lifting big, I quit eating big, I quit resting big and I stopped getting big. Hell, I lost 15 lbs. Then I quit and got fat.

    Oh yeah, I started again, and quit again, and started again (you get the picture). Same story each time. Started out big, complicated things, then quit. Maybe Iíll tell you all about it in another article (The History of Jazz).

    Lift Big

    Some of this follows the whole Max OT concept (gasp!). If youíre not familiar with it, then check out But please understand, Iím not a Delia disciple. I donít even like AST supplements. He didnít invent the concepts of Max OT. Theyíve always been there. Hell, I was using them 15 years ago, and I didnít even know it.

    I know Max OT is tough on the joints. Rest Big. If itís still sore, lightení up and work around it.

    ďBut Jazz, everyone says do 8 to 12 reps.Ē I donít care what they say. You have to get stronger. Look at powerlifters. Heavy singles, doubles, and triples. I canít get as strong as I want, or need, if I do 8 to 12 reps, and I bet you canít either. You have to lift big to get big. 4 to 6 reps makes sense, doesnít it? Itís right in the middle of 1-3 and 8-12.

    I donít have the time, nor am I going to complicate things by using periodization. We, as bodybuilders, do not have the time to concentrate on each of the goals in a typical periodization model. We are looking for only one thing from a periodization model, and thatís hypertrophy. Yes, I know we want to get into cut up phases, but that just modifies the Eat Big concept and adds some cardio. Some of us may even want to incorporate a power phase, but all of this is with the end goal of adding muscle mass. Periodization is for athletes competing in a sport. Bodybuilding is not a sport (Iím sure Iíll catch some hell for that statement----but we can save that for later debate). It doesnít meet all three of the skill requirements needed to be a sport (sport specific skill, mental skill, and athletic skill, all used during the actual competition). Bodybuilding is an activity, like preparing a car for a show. We build it and clean it up for show. Keep it simple.

    Eat Big

    You have to take in those calories. Lots of protein. Some carbs. A bit of fat. Iím not a nutritionist, but I know what works. 1 to 1 Ĺ grams of protein per pound of lean mass. Iím not going to worry too much about fat, because Iím not avoiding it in my diet, and a bit of fish and/or peanut butter is just what the doctor ordered. Iíll adjust my carbs based upon the scale and the mirror. If Iím getting fat, Iíll avoid them later in the day. If I need, or want more weight, then I add them back in. Keep it Simple.

    Rest Big

    I work out hard and heavy. I need rest. I firmly believe that if you can work a body part twice a week, then you didnít work it hard enough the first day. You need to recuperate. Listen, I love to workout, but Iíve got a life to live. Thereís work to do, a family to take care of, a bodybuilding forum to frequent, and muscle to build. Take care of your life. Make things simple, and relax. You know and I know, thatís when we grow. And donít forget to take some time off every now and then. Again, a week or two off every couple of months is just what the doctor ordered. Keep it Simple.

    What am I going to do now? Here it is:

    1. Iím going to post some pics for you guys (check out the pictures section). Youíll get to see some fat jazz.
    2. Iím going to live these tenants.
    3. Iím going to post follow-up photos, so youíll be able to follow my progress.
    4. Maybe Iíll compete, maybe I wonít. I would like to, but it will have to fit into my ďsimpleĒ way of life. Iíll keep you all posted.

    So, do you think Iím full of crap? If you donít believe what Iím telling you here, then donít do it. It wonít bother me a bit. Just do me one favor. Look at your training journals and find those times when things were really coming together Ė and then find when they slowed down and/or stopped. Why did the gains stop? Did you screw with the diet? Did you screw with the training? Were you over thinking things? If you should take only one thing from this article, let it be this: Keep it simple.

    What about the questions back at the beginning of this article? Does it matter? No, because Iím not the expert, and I really donít care.

    Any questions?ÖÖ.then email me.

    I'd use steroids if my nuts weren't small already.
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