Modern bodybuilders are about 50-80 lbs heavier than their ancestors from the era of Arnold Schwarzenegger. Many say that the advancements in the field of sports nutrition and training are behind the growth, but this is simply not true. The main reasons why today’s bodybuilders are bigger than Arnold and his friends are the larger doses of steroids as well as the introduction of growth hormone and insulin.
Back in the day of Arnold, insulin was basically absent from the muscle building stack whereas growth hormone was in experimental stages. The bodybuilders from the Golden Era relied primarily on anabolic steroids which at the time were widely available and of superior quality compared to the garbage sold online today. Ultimately, the quality of the drugs and the moderate use kept the old-school bodybuilders aesthetic. There were no competitors with growth hormone guts.
Ironically, the modern guys do not look better despite their larger size. Most people still prefer the bodybuilders from the Golden Age.
In the photos below, you can see some of the most aesthetic bodybuilders from the past – Danny Padilla, Frank Zane, and Mohamed Makkawy. None of those guys had the mass of the competitors today, and yet they all looked better.
In comparison, today we can enjoy physiques similar to the one below.
Similar anti-development is not unexpected given the fact that humans think in numbers and quantity instead of quality. The bigger, the better? Not really. At the end of the day, quality always wins over quantity.