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Old 07-05-2006, 02:17 PM   #21
Nick Cummings
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While I agree it is important to evaluate your goals and consider why you seek success in them, it seems inconsiderate and presumptious to say that trying to gain weight is simply a product of ego. This is a fitness related discussion board. Why assume that everyone is the same and that because you do not pursue a certain goal that others should not? I do not think it is ego for a person wishing to play a sport, become stronger, or try a diffrent weight class in the sport they participate in. I also do not think it is ego for a currently smaller built person to attempt to add some muscle to their bodies. Increased muscle mass can have many positive effects including that it is highly correlated with a more active lifestyle for older populations. Unless someone classifies all fitness pursuits as ego it seems odd to classify certain ones that way. For some reduction of bodyfat is a serious fitness consideration, why can gaining lean body mass not be considered similiarly?
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Old 07-05-2006, 02:29 PM   #22
Jeremy Froley
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Well put, Nick!!
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Old 07-05-2006, 03:03 PM   #23
Jesse Woody
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Indeed, equating all goals of mass gain with ego is knee jerk, but I think Garret's post stands as a great reminder of why exactly it's so hard to gain lean mass in the first place. If our bodies are naturally resistant to extra weight, then we apparently need to think for a while about our motivation to override this natural tendency towards a certain set-point.
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Old 07-05-2006, 03:14 PM   #24
Nick Cummings
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Jesse, with respect to the set-point idea, couldn't one say the same thing about being obese? In my experience I have been between 8-20% bodyfat for probably all of my life. It wasn't exactly cake getting back down to 8% from 20% but that did not make it a less worthwhile goal for me. Just a thought.
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Old 07-05-2006, 04:01 PM   #25
Jesse Woody
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I guess the question that arises in that instance is whether you were obese while still eating clean foods and doing at least a moderate amount of physical activity. I would doubt that would be the case. More often than not, being unhealthfully overweight is a product of overeating, eating poor-quality foods, and/or a lack of activity. In that case it becomes a matter of skewing your lifestyle outside of this natural equilibrium, even though it's towards the other end of the spectrum a bit.
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Old 07-05-2006, 06:08 PM   #26
Kevin Kaeating
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i thank you nick for the support, for example world class sprinters , power lifters running backs or any other high excertion sport are certainly not built that way before thay start training , they develop these bodies to become a better athlete, which is what i desire, i know what 10 pounds of muscle can do for an athlete ive been there, i just wish i was at 5%bf at that point :-) it certainly is not for intimidation or any other cosmetic purpose just to be more..whats that word used so much here functional?
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Old 07-06-2006, 05:02 AM   #27
Sean Pizel
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I dropped four pounds on the zone these last few weeks, actually gaining a bit of muscle as the first two pounds were lost. Then my times improved dramatically. Then people starting calling 'BS' on me in the message boards. Now I have to gain all that weight back so I can kick their ***.

Fitness is very complicated.
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Old 07-06-2006, 07:33 AM   #28
Garrett Smith
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Placing a goal of sport or extra muscle above health is where the issues lie.

If one eats properly and exercises sufficiently, the body will naturally reach a set-point and will want to stay there. I would judge that Jesse and I have reached that point in our "physical evolution".

As has been discussed before, maximum performance in a sport (or in the mirror) rarely, if ever, correlates to optimal health. Prices are paid for short-term gain that have long-term consequences, however small.

The extra amount of mental, digestive, cardiovascular, and physical effort it takes the body to keep on an extra 10# of muscle (that the body seems to "fight" putting on) is not beneficial health-wise IMO.

Again, people most often just need to admit that they have placed a different goal above health. That doesn't mean they aren't pursuing *improved* health, it just means that they have chosen another goal to supercede that one in priority at the time and their decisions will be reflected in that choice.
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Old 07-06-2006, 07:42 AM   #29
Elliot Royce
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Garrett:

I would agree with you if we were talking about sumo wrestlers but not with an extra 10lbs of muscle. Do you think it's healthy for a football lineman to be underweight so he gets knocked on his butt and sprains something? Is it healthy for a hockey player to be thin as a rail so he gets a concussion when a check throws him into the boards? I could go on and on.

Clearly there are extremes which are unhealthy but I choose to believe that the body operates within a reasonably wide range of body composition.
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Old 07-06-2006, 01:26 PM   #30
Jesse Woody
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It's not healthy to be a football or hockey player in general, so Garrett's point still stands. In order to reach the pinacle (or survive) in these sports, you must make a sacrifice in overall health.

I'm certainly not knocking that choice, I have made much the same choice myself. There is a point where varied movement through your environment can be pursued healthfully, but at the extent I wish to pursue it I will be risking some long-term consequences. I think the point that is being made is just that one should be honest with themselves about their goals and what they really have to sacrifice to achieve them. Once you fully understand the consequences, you can make the decision one way or the other without any false sense of purpose, which is an important place from which to operate, in my opinion.
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