Natural bodybuilding represents a mythical concept.
There is no such thing as natural bodybuilding. Since Arnold’s era bodybuilders have been relying on anabolic drugs to break the new barriers and get bigger and bigger. While that may be good enough for the judges, there are thousands of people who are left in the pit. Those would be the average natural bodybuilders who have regular jobs and just workout to look good without competing. Of course, there are also real natural bodybuilders who compete, but they are an extremely small minority.
To shed some light on true natural bodybuilding, nattyornot.com presents you the main rules of natural bodybuilding.
1. Forget about looking like you lift with your clothes on
True natural bodybuilders look unimpressive and slim when covered in clothing. Those who look big and bulky are usually at least 20% body fat, even though they believe they are “shredded” because the first two abs are showing when flexed. I am almost sorry to inform you that fat rolls do not count as abs.
Conversely, natural bodybuilders often look bigger in a lean condition and without clothes because the musculature is actually visible. Having a pump also helps.
Note: True naturals with a high body fat don’t enjoy the benefits of this optical effect. They just look fat.
2. Forget about doing many exercises
In general, exercise variety sucks. It’s better to focus on a few movements and get really good at them. The bodybuilding routines that include 10 exercises per body part are grossly overcomplicated routines designed to convince the noobs that they are doing something magical. Simplicity is where it’s at.
3. Forget about finding a secret supplement that produces steroid-like results
Legend has it that some natties eat bull testicles to boost their testosterone levels.
There is also a large group of natural muscle constructors relying heavily on supplements to achieve magnificence. Those unaware people treat the labels as gospel. Unfortunately, or not, supplements are less effective than food.
4. Forget about dirty bulking
Natural bodybuilders have no business dirty bulking. Gaining weight for the sake of seeing the scale move up is about as useful as jumping on a frozen river just to see how strong the ice is.
Past a certain point, eating more will simply make you fat and kill your aesthetics. Food does not magically transform into muscle mass.
6. Forget about gaining muscle and losing fat at the same time
Unless you are a beginner, you can’t gain muscle and lose fat at the same time. When you are losing fat the body is a state of decomposition so to speak. How are you supposed to gain an appreciable amount of muscle mass when you are in a state of deprivation. What stimulus does the body have to build muscle when it’s already lacking the energy it needs to maintain its current composition? Sorry, but the body only wants to survive – biceps size comes second. There are many programs out there promising you to build “sexy” muscle while losing fat and getting ultra shredded, but most of them are simply soulless marketing.
7. Forget about being full while in a lean state
When true naturals get to 5-8% body fat, they look borderline skinny, malnourished and depleted. Keeping your muscles full while cutting deep into the single digits is a hard task when you are natural. In most cases, natties look flat when dieting.
8. Forget about “getting too big”
If you are a true natural bodybuilder, you can never get too big. I am sorry, but the strangers on the bus won’t ever treat you as an alien. You may impress them since the majority of the population consists of potatoes, but they won’t look at you and say – “Damn. This guy is the Hulk.”
9. Forget about competing in “steroid free” competitions
There is no such thing as drug-free competitions. There are only “drug tested” competitions. And there is a big difference between “drug tested” and “drug-free”. Very often the most impressive natural bodybuilders are not natural at all.
10. Forget about getting shredded while eating bad food
Do you know who popularized the IIFYM (If It Fits Your Macros) diet? Guys on steroids did. You can’t get super shredded while eating Chinese for breakfast, McDonald’s for lunch, ice cream as an afternoon snack and pizza for dinner. If you are natural, eating bad has immediate effects on your looks. You don’t have to eat clean all the time, but your overall diet shouldn’t be loaded with junk either.