The problem with simple advice is the fact that it works.

Don’t you find it interesting that people are quick to discount simple advice because it sounds to easy. They’d much rather something with super complicated, typically because when something is complicated there can be a ‘logical’ reason for them failing: such as “It was too complex.”.
When you get a few wise words it seems too good to be true.
The problem can be found in the fact that short and simple advice is seen as too easy, however when applied it soon becomes clear that simple and easy are not two things that correlate very often.
Just because something is simple doesn’t mean it is easy.
Take this for example:
“To build muscle and get stronger you need to lift weights, pick 5-8 exercises to cover the whole body and add sets or reps where you can and when you’re doing multiple sets/reps with ease you add weight and repeat the process.”
^^ Nothing fancy, but very hard and people will give up.
A lot of people find a degree of embarrassment when they fail, especially when the advice given wasn’t super complex. It’s common for a bystander to say something like “Is that all you had to do?” which essentially means – how on earth did you fail at doing that…
Failing hurts the ego, especially when something isn’t hard on paper.
Nutrition is another prime example.
“To lose fat you’ll be looking for a calorie deficit (eating less than you’re burning), doing some weightlifting and sprint work will also help. Try to eat mostly whole foods and how a little of what you like now and again to keep you sane.”
Such wisdom will be kicked to the curb because it’s not a mind-boggling batch of numbers and percentages.
Give someone the above and they think you’re taking the piss.
Give them ‘Eat 1g or preteen per lean Lbs of body weight, 2g of carbs per lean lbs and 0.5g of fat per lean lbs’ and their eyes light up because it sounds technical, therefore it must be right when in all honesty it is not the sort of thing a beginner needs to focus on.
People starting out should be aware that the simple stuff is around for a reason, it works.
A lot of experienced people tell you simple things because they have found through trial and error that success requires very little deviation.
If you are a beginner keeping things as basic as possible will achieve a few things:
– Consistency
– Good habits
– Behaviour change
All three are needed for long term progress.
Once you get 3-5 years of training down the line you can start looking in to the more complex things, before that you’d do well to remember the good old rule of KISS.
Bit of a change to what you might expect the last S to stand for, but it think it sounds nicer because people aren’t necessarily stupid, just misguided and lead astray by too much bad information.
Go to a place filled with people who have succeeded in what you’re looking to do and ask 10 of them for some advice, ask them to give it to you in the simplest way possible and you’ll find there is very little difference in what they might say. A common theme will become apparent, trust me.
Now go, seek a simple start and then expand from there.

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Filed under Fitness, Nutrition & Health

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