You have a day to make $100,000 or you’re dead – literally – what do you do?
A) Start selling old paperback books on Ebay for $1 and have a garage sale to get rid of clothes you haven’t worn in years.
B) Sell your car. Sell house. Sell your kidney. Sell your neighbor’s elephant while he’s at work (gotta do what you gotta do).
Any of the above will bring you closer to your goal, but the first option ensures that you’ll never eat another piece of delicious birthday cake again while the second keeps you on this side of the dirt for at least another day because it gives you the biggest return on your time investment.
Let’s take this out to the gym. You have a year to radically change your physique for the better and can only choose two exercise:
A) Chinups and deadlifts.
B) Bicep cable curls and leg extensions.
When it comes time to train, look around the gym and you’ll see people using all these small rocks (aka choice “B”), day after day, with very little to show for it – these are the people who will look exactly the same a year or five from now.
Big rocks are big for a reason – they’re damn awesome, make things happen, and accomplish far more than small rocks alone. They’re all about synergy and multiple parts working together. Want big arms? Chins ups and dips will get your far better results than bicep curls and overhead tricep extensions, plus you’ll receive a better looking back and pair of shoulders as a bonus for your troubles.
Big rocks give you room for growth, for expansion, for year after year of becoming better than you were the day, week, month or year before. Are there limits? Absolutely, but the average person is so far from them that their time and energy is better served not even thinking about limits and more about what actions they can take to reach their goal.
Small rocks are isolation exercises, little ideas and obsession over the minutiae that doesn’t matter - they’re self-limiting and self-defeating by nature. You’ll have to work long and hard – much more than you would if you were employing big rocks – to make progress. You need a helluva lot more small rocks to equal the impact of just one big rock.
Small rocks asking nothing from you at all. It’s easy to stay within your comfort zone, do what you’ve always done and get what you’ve always gotten.
Big rocks don’t ask – they demand – that you become better.
Big rocks are also big because their potential for growth is ginormous. You may start bench pressing with just the bar, but after a few years of consistency and dedication to pushing yourself further and further, you’ll be far beyond that; you’re giving yourself a fighting chance from the start.
Tricep extensions? No matter how strong you get, you’ll always be limited by the amount of weight on the machine; your potential is capped at a low level. It”s like being the world’s smartest ant: no matter how much if a genius you are, you’re still an ant.
As much as I love training I have other interests outside of the gym, so I like to limit my time to 2-3x a week for between 45 & 60min. I also want to get the biggest bang for my time invested, which only leads me in one direction: towards the big rocks.
Very rarely does my training change. 3-5 exercises each training day, 2-3 sets with no more than 10 reps depending on the exercise. Variety isn’t a factor because boredom comes from a lack of results, and I have a small victory every session that keeps me going.
I’m not alone in this Eric Cressey, JC Deen, Martin Berkhan, Nia Shanks & Tony Gentilcore are just a few other fitness professionals walking the talk and filling the majority of their training with big rocks. I’ve yet to meet anyone who focused on what mattered in terms of training & nutrition and didn’t look good while doing it.
If you’re not on track, then you’re about to be. Here’s a quick rundown of what matters in terms of dieting and training. Focus mainly on these (throw a few small training rocks in there if it makes you happy, but they’re not necessary), be patient enough to see results and you’ll be rewarded by lifting yourself above the herd and actually achieving the Sexification goals that you set.
Big Rocks: Chinups, Pullups, Squats, Deadlifts, Bench Press variations, Overhead Presses, Dips, Leg Press, Pushups, Hip Thrusts, Lat Pulldown variations (pretty much any compound movement that you can add a lot of weight to in the long run).
Small Rocks: Cable Fly, Tricep Kickbacks, Calf Raises, Wrist Curls, Lateral Raises, Hamstring Curls, “inner thigh” machines, crunches x infinity (pretty much anything you’re not able to add a significant amount of weight to in the long run).
Big Rocks: A caloric deficit/surplus. Adequate protein intake. Consistency to the deficit/surplus. Movement.
Small Rocks: “Fat burning foods”, meal frequency, fad diets requiring you to swear religious allegiance to certain foods, excuses.
Questions? I’m here to answer any that you may have, so let me know!
Sexification Note: Martin Berkhan dropped a bomb of a post recently that I know you’ll definitely get something out of. Check it out here.
Photo Credit: GorillaNut