© Laurence Agron | Dreamstime.com – Mamdouh Elsbbiay (Big Ramy)
Some bodybuilding home truths
It is an unfortunate fact of life that Bodybuilding results are limited for everyone. As much as we all would like to believe it’s a pursuit which will facilitate endless progress it is unfortunately very definitely a finite endeavor. There is a limit to what any person is capable or doing with regard to developing muscles to their full potential. However being a business endeavor it is dependent upon revenue which means it has to be sold to “Joe public” whether in the form of new ideas, incentives, new products, supplements or new anything, as long as it is sale-able.
It is a fact that much of the information and advertising you’ve read in the magazines about improving your physique is bullshit. The reason for this is simple – the deceit is intentional and it’s propagated for profit.
The marketing blurb you read in most magazines and on some websites does not accurately portray or inform the method of attaining your dream body. More than that, following advertised methods can often derail progress. Adopting a professionals workout regime for example if you are not chemically enhanced will merely lead to stagnation or regression.
The reason for the deception is simple: If you really knew the most effective way to maximise your bodybuilding potential, why would you need to keep buying supplements or new courses. Your repeat business could not be relied upon because you wouldn’t remain a customer for very long.
The abundance of misinformation perpetuated by the media is very believable as intended, I know I used to believe most of it myself and wasted a good deal of money on worthless books, videos and supplements which promised me much but delivered little.
Marketers follow the same tried and tested lines over and over again because they work – it doesn’t mean they’re telling the truth but it’s easier and more effective to market a lie. People would rather have abs and a cover model body in 6 weeks than have to train hard and diet hard for months or years because its easier and people generally want a quick fix. Marketers cater for that but in doing so sell the lie that it is easy or there is a magic secret, when nothing could be further from the truth. The marketers usually rehash the same material that has been said so many times before and they don’t care whether it’s right or wrong so long as it sells.
Nothing worthwhile attaining in life is easy and so usually must be earned the hard way. That is what experience has taught me and experience usually proves to be the best teacher. If it seems too easy, too good to be true, then it probably is.
We are also limited by our genetics
The truth is an individual’s physical potential is decreed at birth. As far as bodybuilding is concerned you will only improve to a certain level before your progress grinds to a halt. We all want to believe that growth is a continual progress and inevitable but that simply is not the case. Everyone has a genetic limit determining their potential for physical development.
With hard work and sound nutrition most can develop their physique if they are persistent enough, but unfortunately it takes many years and we all have that in built limit that is determined by genetics. We are also born with anatomical factors that influence are ability to excel in certain disciplines. If you’re male and born with narrow shoulders and wide hips you are very unlikely to reach elite status in bodybuilding for example. Ectomorphic builds are obviously unlikely to be predisposed to assimilating huge muscle. If you are vertically challenged you will be restricted in which disciplines you may be able to excel. We can’t all be Michael Jordan or Arnold Schwarzenegger.
The assertion that everyone is equal in their ability to grow muscle unfortunately does not hold water. Its a bodybuilding home truth that the majority of us don’t have the potential to build enough muscle (even with truckloads of steroids) to be a world class bodybuilder. In a world where countless individuals are using performance enhancing drugs from school level all the way up to professional athletes only a few make it to the top – drugs in themselves don’t make a champion. Our ancestry has made part of the decision for us, but that doesn’t mean we can’t do everything possible to tilt the odds in our favour. In many ways, those of us who’ve come from the shallow end of the gene pool can still achieve remarkable results and in the process become bigger than we were in character as well as size. When that happens and we start to believe in ourselves then we become powerful and are capable of astonishing feats. We may not all achieve super elite level but will become bigger and better people in the process. Many bodybuilding champions were not blessed with favourable genetics but overcame their deficit to achieve their dream.
The bodybuilder Larry Scott for example was told that he couldn’t succeed as a bodybuilder because he possessed little apparent genetic potential when he started training with weights in 1956, his narrow shoulders having been a particular weak spot. He went on to become Mr. Olympia. They said Shawn Ray was too short, Frank Zane, too small.
Despite physical limitations these guys worked hard to achieve the full potential that there genetics allowed and achieved awesome results. None of us can do anything other than work with what we were born with. In the end all we have to play are the cards that life dealt us But if played correctly can still give you a winning hand.