Almost every bodybuilder that I have ever fulfilled considers themselves “Hard-core᾿ or the the majority of dedicated, knowledgeable, or hardest teaching athlete in the gym. Over the 20 years I have spent in the sport I have already been asked many times what does it really decide to try be successful in the sport? My solution might surprise you but without a doubt it’s a question everyone has to ask themselves. What’s more is the answer you give yourself reflects regardless of whether you’re a Real Bodybuilder or Just another Wannabee!
Most magazines, scientists, plus competitor’s are quick to point to genetics as the deciding factor. During the surface there seems to be some truth to this when a person looks much deeper into the sport this is not necessarily the case. In fact in every contest I have actually competed in, or watched I use rarely seen the person with the best genetics win the show.
I asked my friend, legendary bodybuilding trainer Scott Abel the same question about what he believes makes a true bodybuilder successful, and Scott’s answer has been pretty quick. He summed up in one word᾿ “Heart᾿
Now Scott has trained over 200 titled winners on all levels through amateurs᾿ right up to Olympia opportunities including myself to a National Title as well as a birth into the Mr. Universe contest. He’s also had the opportunity to work with the broadest range of personalities, genetics, and mental aptitudes so his opinion carries a lot of bodyweight.
I tend to agree with Scott. Through my own experience coaching thousands of bodybuilders around the world I feel the real successes are the guys/gals who understand that bodybuilding has more to do what’s going on inside the mind than anything else.
Winning Is available in Many Forms
Winning and success come in many forms and so lots of people equate a trophy or a title with success. Considering how many of the top professional and amateur bodybuilders in the world have serious health problems plus rather chaotic personal lives it’s hard to equate success with their professional status or their drug-swollen systems. That being said, there are a handful of professionals who else embody the ideals of genuine bodybuilding but they are definitely few and far between.
Naturally , you have all kinds of guys/gals in the gym coming up with a host of reasons why these people haven’t stuck with their diet, followed through on their training schedule, and just not made the gains they desire. Although both cases represent opposite ends of the extreme; everyone fits someplace in between and many are still left asking the question᾿ What makes a “True Bodybuilder? ᾿
While everyone has to look for the answer for himself, my own definition of True Bodybuilding is significantly different than “The Hardcore᾿ Version portrayed within the top Magazines. Although at one time I actually aspired to be like the “gargantuan᾿ people who grace the pages of the periodicals, I had a change of heart once I reached the National Tournament Level. Here’s why.
Drug PACKED Bodybuilding – The Fast Track to Self Destruction
You see I noticed almost the entire competitive bodybuilding scene had almost nothing to do with “Real Bodybuilding᾿ In fact it was more like body devastation. Many of these athletes I was competing with and against, had become taken by the desire to build massive muscle tissues and resorted to using wide range of of drugs that damaged their own health. While their physiques and muscles are definitely impressive, they had constructed them at the cost of their health as well as the personal lives.
I personally consider this to be a psychological condition of condition similar to anorexia, or obsessive-compulsive disorder and indeed some psychologists have tagged the condition “Muscle Dysmorphia᾿ Many “hardcore᾿ bodybuilders have become so obsessed with contests, muscular size, body fat levels, diets, etc . that every other aspect of their lives has shrunk smaller after that their testes on a 10 12 months cycle.
I know how this dysfunctional psychology can limit one’s living because for 10 years I went down that path. Fortunately, I converted the corner and saw “the light᾿ so to speak, and recognized that there was obviously a lot more to life than a 20-inch supply. I understand how the pressures of athletic excellence lead some athletes to turn to drug usage. I am not condoning the act however I simply recognize how athletes rationalize drug usage and get caught in the “machine᾿ of high performance sports.
Although it appears things are getting worse in the sports world as opposed to better with the embrace volume of high profile athletes testing optimistic for drug use; I believe the particular increased awareness of what’s going on within sports will eventually change the span of athletics, including what I call the particular return to True Bodybuilding.
Don’t Play Russian Roulette With Your Health
Now what’s even crazier than using drugs for athletic performance, may be the sheer number of individuals, who use muscle building drugs thinking it a short reduce to an impressive body.
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Countless scores of young men and women in muscle building are resorting to any number of medicines to change their appearance.
These misguided individuals who often purchase these drugs around the underground market from “dubious sources, ᾿ are playing Russian roulette with their health. Often these medications are fake, veterinarian, or “home made᾿ drugs not intended for human being consumption.
Many of these men/women delusively think they will stop taking drugs after they add that extra inch for their arms or lose that next percentage of fat. As soon as they will stop the drugs, the muscles are gone, the fat comes back, and they start looking for the next “fix᾿ This units a vicious cycle of enslavement to the drugs, as the individual has unconsciously linked drugs to a much better physique and built a dependence on them to improve the cosmetic appearance of their body.
What’s worse is the fact that ever cycle of drugs damages the delicate balance within the body’s biochemistry, making it harder to improve, as well as setting oneself up for problems in the future. One only has too go through the rate of top professional plus amateur bodybuilders who are dying prematurely or contracting severe disease to illustrate the true cost of short-sighted thinking.
True bodybuilding is about self-improvement. Creating muscles, losing body fat, and framing or defining the physique, are more about expressing one’s essence compared to an absolute outcome.
Everybody’s ideal body is a little bit different and the just judge that matters is the 1 looking back at you in the mirror. Interestingly, what one views in the mirror has more to do with this program in one’s head than the true-image reflected in the mirror.
When Sport Becomes Art
I feel that any time a human pursuit reaches its highest form it becomes art. Artwork transcends boundaries, both personal plus cultural, and cannot be defined with the traditional linear models of thinking popularized by mainstream culture. Titles, dimensions, accolades, or even social approval usually do not reflect one’s inner journey or even personal experience and expression.
Definitions or belief systems have no intrinsic meaning other than what is ascribed to them by various social groups. Curiously, each social group will ascribe a very different value on a subject, and each group tends to think that its opinion is the correct a single.
Art transcends all of these standard explanations and conveys a feeling or an emotion that is hard to contextualize with words. It is this essence that makes art fascinating. Often times a certain skills in the subject matter is essential to fully appreciate the experience. In other words, the more someone becomes familiar with a subject, in this case bodybuilding, the greater one can recognize, genius, greatness, or the artistic.
Watching Tom Platz boost out 20 plus reps along with 500 pounds goes beyond physical accomplishment. The process becomes art. One more example would be a football receiver scuba diving through the air, to catch a pass with one hand, in between two defenders, while simultaneously dragging each feet before flying out of bounds. These types of moments or events go method beyond the physical achievements or even quantitative description.
These “defining moments᾿ are what millions of viewers watch out for daily in sports. The event is generally a stage that presents an opportunity for that athlete to transcend the normal meanings of their chosen sport. The thing is, in order for an athlete to get to the “sporting promised-land᾿ or at least the highlight reel, years of practice, failures, unseen occasions, victories, and defeats have all been part and parcel to the “defining moment᾿
What is it that pushes someone to “be all they can be᾿ What is the “X-factor᾿ that drives people to crack previous limits of the past? Whilst it’s hard to contextualize the heart and soul of what makes a person a true bodybuilder, one only has to look at the Particular Olympics to get a deeper understanding of the between real athletes vs . “wannabee᾿ pretenders.
The Special Olympians: The Ultimate Example of Athletic Spirit
The sportsmen who compete in the Special Olympics do so with a spirit that in lots of ways demonstrates the highest ideals of athleticism. Although these physically and mentally challenged people may not break world records, or appear on the front page of the sports activities section of the newspaper, they illustrate the power of the human spirit. These types of remarkable individuals compete with a chastity, dedication, and determination that inspire anyone and everyone. It is this intangible spirit that comes from within that will propels each person to greatness and it is the secret to personal accomplishment.
“Wannabee’s᾿ perform activities for the glory, the particular prestige, or for narcissistic pride. Sometimes these actions manifest from a low self-esteem. I can’t inform you how many 250lb bodybuilders I have met who “thought they were small᾿ or even how many stunningly beautiful fitness girls complain that they are “too fat᾿ In my opinion these athletes represent the worst in the sport, and cast a negative image to the real athletes (bodybuilders) who work day in and day trip, to simply improve the physical expression of the Self.
Wannabee’s strut around the fitness centers like peacocks, they put down the achievements of others, make excuses for their very own shortcomings and exaggerate their own achievements. In other words they say “I am the “bodybuilder᾿ or “I’m Hardcore᾿ and so on but their thoughts of self-image is totally defined by what they see in the mirror or what the scale reads. Often the self-image of Wannabee’s are really distorted and borders on misconception.
When you let anything define you, whether it’s your job, your sport, or a relationship, you can bet you have a “wannabee᾿ or distorted belief system that will invariably lead to problems at some point in the future. Often times it takes a crash towards the bottom of society with fairly painful consequences for these individuals to have a “Reality Check᾿
Self Improvement could be the Essence of Real Bodybuilding
The real bodybuilder recognizes that Bodybuilding is definitely something that they do, not something that these are. There is a big difference between these two pictures of self because the first description limits oneself or what one can be, while the second opens up associated with a greater Self or broader definition on one’s Self.
The importance of Real Bodybuilding is simply the particular pursuit of self-improvement through physical activity that will enhances the development and perform of the physical body. This pursuit can lead to a deeper awareness of the interior or subtle workings of one’s own existence. I think Bill Gem has summed it up better than anyone else in the title of his best-selling bodybuilding book “Keys to the Internal Universe᾿
To further illustrate my point from a more extreme perspective, I will use this example. Some bodybuilders arrive at me and say I am teaching my legs as hard as can but I am not puking from sets. Can you show me how to train so hard that I puke?
While this sounds ridiculous, this type of mentality does continue inside bodybuilding. Puking from a fixed is often times viewed as a logo of honor or welcome accomplishment in the “Bodybuilding Brotherhood᾿ This type of mentality is what has kept the amazing power of bodybuilding away from the general public and transformed a positive form of personal expression into a “narcissistic, self-absorbed, anti-social, cult-like, behavior relegated to the “lunatic fringe᾿
Numerous companies create advertisements around this whole behavior by glorifying pain, suffering, and illustrating imagery of a 250lb man standing more than a bucket or a pool of be sick on the floor. While most individuals in culture would be horrified or disgusted simply by such a picture, many in the bodybuilding world embrace it, identifying success, or achievement with the process of vomiting.
As bizarre as it sounds, the above scenario is illustrative of how the particular act is often mixed up with the purpose of the individual. This is a very thin type of consciousness but a very important one to understand it one’s bodybuilding pursuits have to be crowned with success.
Heart is where someone pushes themselves to the limitations of their physical being. Any person; which tests themselves regularly, with weight lifting to improve their body, is a real bodybuilder. True Bodybuilding takes heart and it has absolutely nothing to do with how big someone is, how much they bench, or how many game titles they have won.
Real bodybuilding is about the journey of self.
It’s a way to express oneself while improving your health, your awareness, and your self-pride. Real bodybuilding helps to synchronize your brain, Body, and Soul connection plus enhances every aspect of one’s life. It’s a phenomenal tool for personal -improvement and self-discovery. After a lifetime of lifting you can still learn something totally new about yourself and you can still improve.