What Is Classic Natural Bodybuilding?
Natural bodybuilding is the original and purest form of the sport of bodybuilding.
Classic, natural bodybuilding is the practice of building and developing a symmetrical and steroid-free physique that is fit for the stage. A natural bodybuilder, who is looking to develop a classic physique, has to try to build the illusion of:
• Wide shoulders and lats
• Thick overall upper/middle/lower back
• Small waist
• Squarish pecs
• Big arms
• Sweeping thighs
• Round calves
• Thick hamstrings
• High and tight glutes
Before anabolic steroids were introduced to the world in the 1930’s, the only way to build your body was through hard training, proper nutrition, and high-quality recovery.
Natural bodybuilders of those earlier eras like Eugen Sandow, Bobby Pandour, and The Iron Guru Vince Gironda, were able to build incredible physiques without steroids.
Modern, legitimate natural bodybuilders of today’s era also follow the same principles. We aim to maximize our strength, muscle mass, leanness, and symmetry through smart training, nutrition, and recovery tactics.
True natural bodybuilders do not engage in the usage of anabolic steroids, pro-hormones, or SARMS to improve their physique and performance.
This is the reason why us naturals cannot match our enhanced brethren in terms of muscle growth and muscle mass. We are remarkably smaller, but our physiques look extremely athletic and symmetrical when we are in top condition!
While most natural bodybuilders could easily get access to steroids or pro-hormones, we refrain from using them. The whole point of doing bodybuilding naturally is to do it without using steroids.
Now I don’t judge other athletes or bodybuilders for using steroids. I know for a fact that many of the athletes and bodybuilders that I like definitely used/use steroids to improve their performances and physiques.
Steroids are a part of all sports, not just bodybuilding. And steroids aren’t going anywhere anytime soon. My only gripe with steroid users is if they try to perpetrate and fraud as if they are actually natural. The fitness industry is filled to the brim with these types of unsavory characters.
A “natural” bodybuilder showing up to compete at a natural NGA or OCB show on steroids, prohormones, or SARMS is blasphemous and the absolute definition of fake hustle!
It’s important to note that steroid-free and drug-free are not the exact same thing.
Anabolic steroids, pro-hormones, and SARMs used for the purposes of dramatically and markedly increasing muscle mass, improving strength, and lowering body fat is what natural bodybuilders refrain from using.
But drug usage itself is extremely common in not just natural bodybuilding but the world.
For example, caffeine is a natural drug, and almost every single natural bodybuilder, including me, has consumed caffeine in the form of coffee, tea, chocolate or in a pre-workout supplement to improve their performance.
Ibuprofen and acetaminophen are also drugs used for pain. Lidocaine is another drug typically used when you are getting a cavity filled. I’m sure many of you reading this have used them at some point.
Some women use birth control drugs to prevent pregnancy. Some men use sildenafil (Viagra) to assist with their sexual performance. Some men and women use drugs like salicylic acid, benzoyl peroxide, or even Accutane to combat acne. These statements are just facts.
Natural drugs like caffeine, yohimbine hcl, and synephrine can possibly help natural bodybuilders perform and look better. But they are not even on the same planet as steroids when it comes to performance enhancement, muscle growth, or fat loss.
The bottom line is that the large majority of us use/used certain drugs but none of these drugs dramatically affect our physique development. The aforementioned natural drugs are also all legal and not on any banned substances list.
The same line of thinking can be applied to supplements like creatine, beta-alanine, and glutamine. These natural supplements can possibly help your performance, but there is no supplement in the world that will give you the results that anabolic steroids will give you.
As a professional natural bodybuilder, I’ve probably used almost every single natural supplement available.
From that experience, I would say that some natural supplements like creatine and caffeine are predictably effective and have a place in your supplement cabinet. But ultimately your consistency and effort with your training, diet, recovery, and mindset are the true keys to success.
You’ll go nowhere fast in natural bodybuilding if those four things are out of whack.
Why Use Steroids?
Many bodybuilders and athletes from other sports use steroids because they absolutely work to improve your performance and physique.
If you dramatically improve your performance, you can earn a better standing in your sport. And if you are better at your sport, you can make more money and gain more fame.
It’s so very easy to see why many athletes and bodybuilders would take steroids. The allure of money, power, respect, and fame can be extremely seductive and almost irresistible to some people.
We have countless examples over time from multiple sports that prove the effectiveness of steroids especially in power dominant sports like sprinting, football, and boxing. When you combine genetics, work ethic, and steroids you get an athletic monster.
In bodybuilding, steroids allow you to get bigger, stronger, and leaner in a way that is far past what your natural limits are. Steroids also allow bodybuilders to recover from training at a significantly faster rate than if they were natural.
This sounds great to many bodybuilders, but steroids also have a litany of bad side effects if they are abused in the way that most athletes use them.
We are seeing this in the modern world with many enhanced professional bodybuilders dying before they are even 50 and sometimes even 40 years old.
Steroids In Bodybuilding And Natural Bodybuilding
Steroids, in their early designs, were being used by bodybuilders as early as the 1950s in a limited fashion to improve their physiques. They were around, but not widespread like today.
Steroids truly became commonplace during the Golden Era of bodybuilding in the late 1960s and 1970s.
It was during this time that physiques began to get decidedly bigger and leaner. This trend continued and continues today in the ranks of professional bodybuilding.
Now in professional natural bodybuilding, physiques have gotten leaner over time due to better dieting principles.
But natural bodybuilders are not walking around at 5’9, weighing 220lbs, and only carrying 5 percent body fat. I’ve been on a few natural bodybuilding stages and have never seen this unicorn!
Many professional natural bodybuilders, including myself, compete at less than 160lbs. Even if we did everything perfectly, which is impossible, we just do not have the ability to retain all of our muscle size during a rigorous contest prep.
With that being said, there are bodybuilders who claim to be natural but are actually using steroids and pro-hormones.
The worst is when these folks decide to compete against true naturals in an actual competition. These charlatans have no character, integrity, or respect for the game.
Natural Bodybuilding Goals
My goal with my website is to show prospective bodybuilding competitors that you have the power to build an incredible physique without the use of anabolic steroids.
It took me 12 years to become a professional natural bodybuilder. And I did it without the use of steroids.
The journey to building an elite, natural physique will absolutely take longer and be harder, but you will always know that all of your results are only a result of your discipline, determination, and dedication to your craft.
I’ll holla at you next time.
The People’s Trainer,