Right now I’m in pretty good shape. I’m eating a good diet with a healthy balance of carbs, protein and fats and I’m doing plenty of exercise – both cardio and resistance work. I’m an all-round amateur athlete at the moment and it’s awesome feeling fast, lean and powerful. I wake up with more energy and I’m more competitive in just about every sport I play.
But I wasn’t always like this. At a couple of points in my life I decided to shift gears and really focus on building size. I consumed large amounts of protein shake, I lifted very heavy weights in the gym and I bulked up massively.
And at the time, a lot of guys asked me what it was like. What does it feel like when you’re bursting at the seams of your clothes?
Let’s Go for a Walk
I always know when I’m reaching that point when people start making comments. When I’m at a general level of fitness, no one really says anything. But once I cross a certain line, I start getting comments from people in shops and just about everywhere else.
‘How are you big guy?’
‘Hey, how many times do you go to the gym?’
That’s nice for a start because it means you’re being acknowledged for all your hard work and people can actually tell you’re feeling bigger. This is a massive ego boost and when you check yourself in the mirror, it’s a great feeling too noticing that your triceps are looking particularly good today!
That said – you should be aware of the ‘body dysmorphia’. It’s a kind of paranoia that you’re smaller than you really are and just about every gym buddy I’ve had has experienced it at some time or other.
The way people respond to you goes beyond this though too. When you chat to guys in particular, you’ll find that they immediately show you more respect – even if you’re doing nothing else to deserve it! It’s a certain type of guy who instantly respects you for being strong, but it’s still a cool feeling.
As for women, don’t expect it to hugely change your success in this department! That’s a big misconception of being bulky – success with ladies is really much more about your confidence. That said, you will find yourself on the receiving end of more flirtatious comments and I remember parties in my teens where women would chant for me to take my top off. So it wasn’t all bad…
But of course it’s not just about how people respond to you – it’s also about how you feel. Being powerful is a great feeling and you’ll feel much more confident in your ability to take care of yourself and handle yourself. A lot of tasks become easier – from moving furniture, to opening jars – and that sense of power can actually end up going to your head! I remember having lots of power dreams that I was flying!
It’s not all good news though. You need to be careful how you train for instance or you’ll invite knee and back pain and start panting going up the stairs. Scratching your back is impossible and you’ll find you drink a lot more water too!