I used to dabble in the stock market.
I would do all the shit most people do, and research various stocks and look at projections and keep up with the ebb and flow of the market each day.
I'd win some here, lose a lot there. You know, the usual shit for a day trader who didn't know his head from his ass.
I have a very solid feeling I'm not alone in that regard. My guess is, a great majority of guys that have done day trading don't do as well as they would hope, and aren't having their Bentley detailed at this very moment because of their prowess as a day trader.
I never considered myself to be that smart about all that shit. Despite the fact that I spent hours and hours researching and studying about it. Mainly because I've always felt like being good at something was proven through the manifestations of that knowledge. If I were really smart about stocks like say Warren Buffet is, then I'd have made a lot of money.
I had a close friend that fancied himself to be very educated in the stock market. His knowledge and research surpassed my own by a country mile. Yet his success in regards to making money in that field didn't look a whole lot different.
That's the funny thing about knowledge isn't it? Unless you can prove that it's applicable, sustainable, repeatable, and that it flat out "works", what good is it?
There's been a huge shift lately in the strength and physique culture, where guys that are incredibly educated are being put at the forefront as experts in their fields because of studies and research. Now don't get me wrong, I'm not against studies at all. In fact, I read tons of them. And at times, I do learn a thing here or there. I'm not knocking science or studies here. Studies are fine. Knowledge is always a great thing.
However my issue is, "where is the money to show for how smart they are at trading stocks?"
"Experts" that claim to have all the answers in regards to hypertrophy, that have no appreciable amount visible muscle mass.
"Experts" that talk about their knowledge in strength development, who aren't much stronger than the average gym bro that's curling and benching all week.
"Experts" rocking a greater than 20% bodyfat, that have never been lean a day in their life who can tell you what it takes to "get shredded."
If a virgin told me that he had learned all the secrets of love making and seducing women because he picked the brain of the thousand best love makers in the world I'd still look at him and say "you've still never been laid." He may "know" that the average woman wants to have sex two to four times a week at 35 minutes a shot (I'm totally making that statistic up) but if he can't perform at those levels because a lack of experience is preventing him from it, then that knowledge isn't doing him a lot of good. In other words, he can't speak of his experience with that knowledge because he doesn't have it. Not only that, maybe he finds out that the women he is with want sex more, or less. Both in frequency and duration, and those studies don't really apply.
Having knowledge is not enough. There is that massive, massive hands on component that allows you to distinguish between what looks good on paper and what works in reality. If you don't have that part of it all, and that experience with it...then sorry, but your advice is useless to me. Some people may not like that but that's really just how it is.
I will give you an example.
A program or routine may get used in a study to show massive hypertrohpy as a result of its use. But if the majority of the people that use it find it mind numbing boring, most won't stick to it for very long. A very big part of training for most people is in fact, the enjoyment of it. After all, people that don't enjoy doing something won't keep doing it for very long most of the time, unless they are totally into self loathing. A training methodology generally has to resonate with the person using it. People end up sticking to certain programs or sets and rep schemes because at the most basic level, they like it. And there's something to be said for that part of training.
A while back I did 100 rep sets of barbell curls. Well I read that it shouldn't work, and had no merit, and basically that is was "stupid". You know what? My arms grew. And grew fast. And there were a lot of guys that tried it, but never did it long enough to see the results from it. You know why? Because they hated it. It was painful. And at times, very monotonous. If a study had been done to show that 100 rep barbell curls were the single most superior way to build big biceps fast, it doesn't mean everyone is going to do it. More times than not, people gravitate in life and in training to things that speak to them. Not things proven in studies.
I mean, at some point you have to just lay the fucking studies and text aside and go into the gym and kick your own ass for years on end. That's where you're going to find your own personal knowledge.
So as not to leave anyone out, I can't just single out the "experts" in their field as the sole violators of this issue.
Message boards are even worse, really. Full of guys that understand physiology and kinesiology to a degree that would make a well qualified Physical Therapist blush with embarrassment through their master copy/paste skills. All the while sporting 13" arms and 315 pound max squats, with less than 5 years of training under their belt.
These same neophytes spend their days arguing with or berating guys who are strong, have the experience and the knowledge, but scoff at what they write or say because....well, I honestly don't completely know. To argue for the sake of arguing, maybe? Pick apart a single sentence in an entire article? Their life sucks? Who knows. All I know is, if back when I started I had the access to the knowledge those guys do today, I probably wouldn't have spent time arguing on the net with guys that had paid their dues, and understand what works. But most people don't really want to be educated. They just want to be "right".
Now let me be clear about the flip side of things as well. Just because a dude is jacked or strong doesn't mean he's knowledgeable or "wise" either. I want to be very clear on that. I have said this many times in the past. Just because a guy is elite level strong, or pro-bodybuilder level big, doesn't mean he's going to have the keys to the muscular and strength kingdom. Ronnie Coleman probably isn't going to be able to relate to the guy that busted his ass for 10 years to gain 20 pounds of lean mass. Ronnie grew from virtually anything he did. So I'm not sure what he could offer to a guy on the other end of the spectrum when it comes to building muscle mass. In all honestly, probably not a whole lot.
The guy that can step onto a track, and bust off a 10 second 100 meter the first time he tries it doesn't have some secretive insight as how to run fast. He just does.
A guy doesn't need to be an elite world record holder in order to know and understand what it takes to get strong, however. But I do believe that he should have an appreciable level of strength. And a guy that talks about what it takes to get big, should have an appreciable level of mass.
The fact is, an "expert" in his field needs a bit of all of the things listed above. Knowledge, experience, application, and the ability to mesh all of those qualities together to really understand the process of what delivers results. Simply said...he or she simply knows what "works". After all, isn't knowing what works what REALLY matters?
Guys who know very little tend to believe they know a whole lot. But argue more than everyone else. The "expert" probably doesn't consider himself an expert at all. That's because the more you learn, the more you realize you don't know as much as you thought you did.
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