You know it, I know it, and—unfortunately—the dude with Will Harris wheels repping them out in the corner knows it.
He’s doing them, and he doesn’t need to.
You, on the other hand…
Manning up to leg day isn’t easy for the biggest at the gym; for the rest of us, its murder. Unfortunately, bodybuilding is one of those ‘get what you put in’ clichés.
And every training article you’ve ever read wasn’t lying when it told you that, hands down, nothing gives you a total body gut-check like spending time parallel to the floor.
So suck it up, call your mother to tell her you love her, and get under that rack.
There’s things to consider, sure, when you line up your shoulders under the bar—whether or not you’ve upped your life insurance premium, how long it’ll take for your girl to move on—really, though, the only secret to getting the dreaded squat right is actually doing it.
It doesn’t matter if you’re racking a plate a side or ten; as long as you’re breathing right, tightening that Transverse abdominus, and dropping low, you’ll have the respect of everybody around you for giving it a go.
And therein lies the magic—sooner or later, even if you’ve just got a naked bar draped across your delts—you’ll find that ‘sweet spot,’ the point in the descent when you can feel your entire body say “THIS. IS. WORKING.”
Going heavy isn’t the trick; remember, a standard Olympia bar is forty-five pounds, and you’re pushing all your upper body weight into your wheels when you work your way down.
Whether it’s six reps or twelve, going full-bore and getting your ass parallel to the floor is all it takes to turn little-girl stems into the kind of proportionate-to-my-upper-body quads, hamstrings and glutes you (probably) so desperately need.
So the next time you see that rack free, pick up your cell phone, make the call, and give it a shot.