"Hey bro, I really want to put on some size..." , usually followed up by some long and elaborate story of a flawed (and more often than not, horrific) attempt at the latter.
We've all received some version of this dm. If you haven't; Newsflash. This article is definitely for you. If you have, keep reading. I need the views.
Generally, your answer will depend on how long you've been fondled by the large and callused hands of the fitness industry. Personally, I've been left violently inflamed and yet, my answers still come from a place of good fortune. Most of the time anyway.
The conversations are usually short lived and come to either of two conclusions.
Scenario A; Said person understands, we share pleasantries and go our separate ways.
Scenario B; (my personal favourite) I get called a lying, asshole and I am told that I ought to rather not say anything than spew out garbage. Usually followed by a flury of very patronising insults and passive, social media rants from yours truly. Pretty much like this one.
My answer you ask? Exactly what you've heard a million times before. Eat more, train hard, rest well and don't ask me for ped advice. I'm not your coach, nor your doctor and if your doctor so happens to have a mawhawk and a skull tattoo covered in tentacles, I suggest you look elsewhere for medical council.
I started training in an era where everyone claimed to be natural. It was a time of "fuck boy" hairstyles, being shredded year round and more importantly, being healthy... Boy, was I naive.
More so however; Boy, am I glad that I was.
Back then, my idols didn't need steroids. They ate, trained, rested and rocked spray tans to perfection. Or so I thought.
This turned me into a fully blown "peds are trash" virtue signalist. Man I hated them. Which is why, for the first time in my life, I am glad that I was lied to.
If I had known what it takes to look like them, I probably wouldn't have started what has now become an undying passion in me.
I lived the "natty" lifestyle that at the time I took for gospel for about seven years straight and inarguably, I looked good. A dehydrated shrimp, in comparison to those that I idolised, but good.
How the hell was I going to get that big?
We all have moments in life that at the time, crush our very beings and leaves us emptier than a Catholic collections basket at the donation center but is exactly what we need. Mine happened in 2013.
Long story short, I was told by someone that I too idolised, to wake up and that everyone I looked up to was in fact as radioactive as weapons grade uranium.
Did I listen? Nope.
It took my first bad breakup and a tonne of internally stored "fuck this", for me to finally take the plunge. In a slightly altered version of Mark Manson's words, everything was fucked. So I followed suit. At least I was going to look like the monsters that I idolised. Wrong, again.
I got bigger but very relatively. In my class of engineers, I was huge, sure. Though as you can imagine, physical prowess was not the general status quo.
With everything in life, there are levels. The guy that smokes the occasional joint and the semi denuded crack head that you try so hard to ignore at the stop light, while they scan through the entire contents of your car through your window, both take drugs. Same with peds. I will neglect the detail but if you're here, you know what I'm talking about.
Queue second pivotal, fitness journey (god I loathe that term) realisation. A Hard pill to swallow, for those of you that have read my previous post.
I wanted to be like my idols. So I did what it took to look like my idols. I trained like them, ate like them, took everything they took and yet, I was not like them.
Which brought me to a gut wrenching realisation. At first anyways, I've healed now. The answer was never the gear, nor the food, nor anything of the sort. The elusive secret pill that the Ronnies have been keeping from us, simply came down to hitting the genetic jackpot.
The big guys never lied to us. They just didn't realise that they were built different.
You see, before I started coaching people from different walks of life, I really did wonder if I was just doing something wrong. Even under the wing of my very own coach whose capabilities are lightyears ahead of mine and a vast majority of the population's, I dabbled in incredulity.
The truth is, give 50 people the same plan tailored and optimised to the T for each individual and one lucky fucker is going to blow up while the others do very well but hold absolutely no candle to said fucker.
Now I guarantee you that the pre-workout motivation video watching, Kai worshipping, fan girls amongst you that have made it this far in the post are going to have something to say, along the lines of, "Yes but hard work always beats tallent" and you know what, it's ok to be wrong. Take a seat.
So here it is boys and girls. If you've put in the work, gave it absolutely everything and are still outsized by that one lucky asshole that eats like a truck driver and has the training intensity of a sloth with ms. Blame your parents.
Jezz the mech. Out.