The other day I was in the gym getting my lift in and guy approaches me. It went a little something like this:
Guy: Hey man.
Me: What's up?
Guy: Are the press machines any good?
Me: (confused look on my face as he was doing a leg workout)
Guy: The leg press machines...are they any good? I have done squats, leg extensions, and stiff legs. I was wondering if I should do those as well.
Me: Well the leg presses are ok...however, you have done all bilateral lifts meaning you are using both legs together to lift the weight. You need to incorporate some unilateral work, you know, lunges or step-ups or something of that nature.
Guy: So the leg presses aren't that good?
Me: They are ok, not the best, but you need to work some unilateral movements.
Guy: Leg Curls! Yeah, I'll go do some leg curls!
Me: Yeah, that's exactly my thought....
Here's the thing...if you are going to ask someone for advice, actually listen to what they have to say. If you are asking for advice, you are acknowledging that the person is knowledgeable about that topic. So why ask for advice and then do the exact opposite of what the person tells you. I think that getting advice from a professional is a great way to better your knowledge and your time in the gym. Just a few simple tips here and there can take you to whole new levels in your training. Don't be too proud to ask for advice in the gym. Find a trainer or someone you respect and ask them the questions you have. Have them check your form. I am a trainer and have been lifting almost a decade and I still ask for advice and form checks. I am constantly contacting different people to give me a few tips or see what their thoughts are on this or that.
I encourage you to ask for advice, take in that advice, and try it out. You never know what kind of gold mine you may find. Don't ask me why your shoulder hurts and what to do about it and then when I tell you to stop pressing for a couple weeks and work on strengthening your back tell me you are just going to stop lifting all together. That is not taking my advice, even though you will blame me when that break from lifting makes you weaker and your shoulder pain comes back immediately. Take advice and use it to make yourself better.