Genetics: Is Your Bodybuilding Success Predetermined?

Yesterday I watched a video online meant to explain why modern natural bodybuilders are breaking the muscle size limits. The idea was that there are people with incredibly good genetics who are able to build an enormous amount of muscle mass compared to the rest.


The maker of the clips is actually the popular bodybuilder Marc Lobliner. He used the following example to back his thesis: Before Michael Jordan people didn’t know that basketball can be played that well. Consequently, there must be bodybuilders who can shock the entire world by building enormous amount of muscle mass naturally.

The logic behind this statement is that there are supposedly natural bodybuilders with genetics comparable to those of Michael Jordan. Well, this logic is flawed.

1. Muscle size has nothing to do with skills

To become a better basketball player who need to things – good genetics and skills. The second one can improved to the point where the effect of your genetic downsides is soften. In brief, to a certain extend you can overcome your limitations by working harder.

However, your muscular growth potential is not skill based at all. The limitations are physiological. No matter how hard you workout, all progress will come to an end. You can become very skilled at doing all kinds of exercises and following nutritional plans for building muscles size, but that is still not going to overcome the boundaries imposed by nature. Ever.

When we go back to the basketball example the same is revealed. In theory, if one of two players with similar physical characteristics works harder than the other one, he will most likely be a better player too. Cool, right? That’s skill development and it does improve with practice. However, no matter how hard any of the two works, neither would be able to perform physical stunts such as dunking a ball from the center of the field, because there are physical limits that cannot be broken without artificial boost of some sort.

It’s about time people understand that this muscle size game is limited by nature whether you want it or not. The only thing that’s up to is reaching that limit. Afterwards, it’s game over for everybody.

Sure, there are genetic freaks out there, but even the most gifted natural bodybuilders in the world will look like a lost pony among the Mr. Olympia line-up. It’s common sense really.

2. Your bodybuilding success is predetermined

Whether we want to admit it or not, our lives are largely predetermined. There are lot of things we don’t choose, or at least there is not sufficient evidence proving otherwise. Ironically, the very same factors make us who we are. Good examples are: place of birth, era, physical characteristics such as height and hair color, gender, parents…etc. Those factors condition us and make us who we are. It’s true that we all have preferences, but those preferences are formed by the mentioned factors.  A simple example would be the food eaten by different nations. The macros we consume may be the same, but the dishes are not. Your homeland exercises immense influence on your perception.

That makes our muscle size predetermined too. We can kid ourself that it’s possible to overcome everything with hard work, but that’s not the case. Try to overcome gravity by jumping really hard. It’s not going to happen regardless of your efforts. You will always come back down and that’s about it. Nothing can be done.

The only logical conclusion is that you should try and reach that limit and then just chill and accept the reality of life. Unfortunately, this also gives power in the hands of many speculators who like to say things like: “How do you know you have reached your genetic potential?”

Those guys make it sounds like it’s incredibly hard to determine such simple thing. Guess, what? When you have been training hard for five years and the last two you have gained nothing other than fat cells around your waist, it’s over as far as muscle size goes. Some permabulkers will never understand that.

3. Vodoo, magic, muscle spells…

I’ve heard all kinds of bodybuilding lies. At one point everything starts to resemble a cheap comedy show. One of my favorites are interviews with natural bodybuilders. The usual interview goes like this:

“I started when I was 7 years old. I looked at photos of Arnold and Franco. My dad bought me a  weight set for Christmas. It was like a dream come true. I’ve been hooked ever since. Today, I weigh 180 pounds at 5’7”, and my arms are barely 18 inches with all kinds of striations and veins on them. That makes me natural, but people don’t want to listen. I tell them:

‘Look at my traps! They are not abnormally large! Therefore, I must be natural.’

Those people are just haters who don’t know how hard I have to train and diet. They say they are doing the same, but they are not – even if they are.

I also go to bed early to increase my testosterone levels. That’s my secret. I will flex my guns for you now. Boom.”

Guys like that are speculating because it’s easy to believe the impossible when the “magic” is hidden from sight. When you can’t see something and you don’t know the reality of it, your imagination is allowed to go wild and make you delusional to the point of no return.

If I told you that you can grow taller by eating right, would you believe me? I guess not. Then why do you believe that you can build 18 inches arms shredded to the bone naturally?

Because you don’t see what the guys who have them actually do to achieve such results. It’s a combination of muscle vodoo and spells clouding the judgments of everybody.

The muscle guys are the illusionists and we are the naive crowd refusing to believe a well known fact: every magic trick done by man has logical explanation.

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