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Common Questions/Concerns/Misconceptions Regarding Strength & Conditioning and Performance Nutrition
Proper nutrition is over-rated when it comes to enhancing performance - I'd rather enjoy eating and not worry about it.
" False. Proper nutrition may be the single most important factor in enabling you to reach your goals athletically
I only need to eat 2-3 times/day
False. An athlete needs to eat every 2 ½ - 3 hours throughout the day, so 4-6 meals/day is more accurate. To take in the amount of calories needed to maintain body weight in just 2-3 meals will be extremely hard on the digestive system, lower your energy level and store fat.
It is more important for me to look good than perform to my potential
False. If you train and eat correctly (and take care of some lifestyle choices, i.e. drinking) you will probably like what you see, but the point of S & C is not to make you look better rather it is to make you perform better. You will have plenty of time to train for fitness/looks once your athletic career is finished.
Low Reps-Heavy Weight will make you big and bulky, so High Reps-Low Weight is the best way to train for "non-football players"
False. Low reps-heavy weight is for gains in strength and power, whereas high reps are for gaining lean muscle mass). Typical rep schemes and their appropriate physiological adaptations are as follows:
15+ = Conditioning/fitness
8-12 = Hypertrophy (Increasing Lean Muscle Mass)
5-6 = Maximum Strength Gains
1-3 = Maximum Power Gains
You are getting stronger and better even if you never increase the weights you are using
False. You might as well go for a light walk when you are asked to do conditioning. You must consistently put your body under increased stresses to force your body to recover and grow.
Cardiovascular training is the best way to decrease body fat percentage
False. Cardio training will burn some calories during the exercise bout and continue burning extra calories for 2-3 hours after, but most people put those calories right back into their system with a can of soda, etc. The best way to increase your metabolism, and thus decrease body fat, is to increase your lean muscle mass through weight training.
Fat-Burners are safe and effective supplements for losing body fat
False. Besides being banned by the NCAA, the common combination of caffeine and ephedrine placed into your system in high doses surrounding high-intensity exercise bouts can be very dangerous.
Cardiovascular Training is the best way to get in "Shape"
It depends. If you are training for an aerobic event (i.e. a marathon) than this is the best way. If you are training for a sport that is anaerobic, which is every sport at GU, than it is not the best way. You need to focus on the primary energy system when conditioning so that you will be is sport-specific shape and not general fitness shape. If done enough cardio can actually decrease you power and speed.
Increased bodyweight decreases your ability to perform
False. If you increase your body weight by increasing functional lean muscle mass you will be able to exert more force, increasing your speed and power output through all planes of motion.
Decreased bodyweight increases your ability to perform
It depends. If you lose excess body fat correctly than your performance can improve, but if you lose lean muscle mass your performance will get worse.
Eating "Healthy" means cutting out all fat, carbs, sugar, etc.
No. This type of "healthy" eating only applies to the general population (and not always to them either). Carbs are an athlete's main source of fuel (energy) and need to be an important piece of performance nutrition. Fat, in moderation, is also important for an athlete to stay healthy and perform well. Sugars are actually the worst of these three but also can play an important role in recovery after training.
You don't get the results you want so you assume the program is faulty
Most of the time when an athlete is in this situation it is because he/she did not completely buy into the program. The program works when done as a whole, which means if an athlete misses workouts, doesn't put forth the appropriate effort, has an unhealthy lifestyle, skips meals, etc. then the responsibility for the lack of results falls on the athlete not the program.
The easiest, and therefore the best, way to loose fat is to simply eat less
False. If you do not take in the amount of calories your body needs to recover properly your body will begin to store fat, stop burning fat, and will begin to break down.