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Fitness Jargon You Didn’t Know


The English language is a confusing one at the best of times, seemingly pointless rules (i before e except after c) are strictly abided to and completely ignored within the same sentence. The same group of letters will inexplicably make four different sounds while groups of different letters will make the same sound. You can have a sentence like that’s where we’re going to eat, and what are we going to wear? It’s enough to make this fully grown adult tear their hair out. Now add into that contextual and regionally bound terms created by gym bros and you may as well be speaking a different language. Luckily for you we have a handy dandy guide to make sure you can hold a conversation with even the meatiest of meatheads.

Your “split”?

This has nothing to do with your flexibility. Your “split” is the routine you follow throughout the week, how many days you train, and what body parts you train on those days. It stems from the idea that you “split” your body up into different sections that you train individually, like your biceps, or your chest. For example, you could have a 4 day split, push, pull, legs and a rest day. This would mean on day 1 that you train all your muscles associated with pull movements (biceps, back, rear delts), the second day would be anything associated with push movements (chest, shoulders, triceps). The third day would be your legs (hamstrings, quads, calves, glutes) before taking a rest day and repeating. The split you choose is up to you and your individual goals, for an example split, check out our online training programs here: www.musclecoach.com.au/#diet_plan

What are macros?

Marcos or macronutrients are the three different calorie yielding substances that make up food. Proteins, carbohydrates and fats account for the calories we eat in our diet. A very popular method of results based dieting is tracking your macros. This goes beyond simple calorie counting because each of these macronutrients play a different role in our bodies. The basic idea is that by tracking and manipulating how much of each of these macronutrients we eat we can achieve our desired body composition by burning more fat and building more muscle mass. For more information, you can check out our Summer Bodies Are Made in the Winter article. https://www.musclecoach.com.au/blog/categories/nutrition-articles/summer-bodies-are-made-winter-part-3/


DOMS is an acronym for “delayed onset muscle soreness” and its exactly what it sounds like. After a big legs session at the gym you walk out most of the time tired, but feeling more or less like you can continue on with life unimpaired. This can all change in 24hrs and simple tasks like tying your shoes, or getting out of bed becomes a herculean effort due to the associated pain of moving muscles suffering from these DOMS. No one knows exactly why our body delays this onset of pain but luckily we know how to lessen its effects. Try using BCAAs and glutamine both while and after training and protein straight after your training to increase repair and recovery and to lower these DOMS. And don’t stress too much, DOMS usually decrease in severity the longer you have been training, so stick to it!!


This is a fancy term for increasing the size of muscle cells, to in turn increase your total muscle mass. Hypertrophy is achieved by placing your muscles under progressively more stress by lifting heavier weights for more reps/sets. By doing this your activated muscles need to adapt and change to the demands you are placing upon them by growing larger to handle the increased stress.


If you hear someone talking about cutting, don’t stress, there isn’t a desperate cry for help from a lost and lonely youth. It describes the phase gym goers will go through when trying to lose body fat. During this period the person cutting may change up their routine, lower their calories and clean up their diet in an attempt to get into calorie deficit. Again check out this article here for more info on getting into a calorie deficit.  https://www.musclecoach.com.au/blog/categories/nutrition-articles/summer-bodies-are-made-winter-part-3/


Bulking is the exact opposite of cutting. When someone is bulking they will increase their food consumption and alter their training to maximise the amount of muscle they are able to build. This will often occur increasing their workload while at the gym and adding more carbohydrates and protein to their diet to give their body the nutrients to grow.


Is not as negative as it sounds, in fact in some forms of training, failure is the ultimate goal. Failure in the gym sense is when you cannot complete another rep because you have physically pushed yourself to the point where you cannot do any more. This oxymoronic word is music to gym goer’s ears because it conditions our body to build back up bigger and better, so that the next time we do that exercise we are better at it. But don’t kid yourself, failure isn’t where you grunt, pull a face and pull out half way through a set feigning exhaustion. It’s also not where you sacrifice form and use your whole body to do a bicep curl. It’s where, with good form, your muscle “fails” you by not agreeing to do anymore. This is hard for some people because it can be uncomfortable and it a big effort to push yourself to that point, but if you do and you give yourself good nutrition to repair you will increase your performance.

Good luck guys. Hopefully with this guide will help you navigate the gym a little easier and reduce the number of awkward encounters you have with people helping you up off the floor after being asked “what’s your split like?”

Author Alex Jeffs Muscle Coach Supplements National Sales Manager.

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