Fabulous bodies are real. They are not built out of an obsession with six-pack abs or an extreme ripped look. Every muscle is purposefully built to be in proportion to the rest of the body to give it a pleasing look. Symmetry is never sacrificed for size.
Being real is also about being balanced with your lifestyle. It’s not about spending crazy hours in the gym or eating boiled chicken and vegetables out of your tupperware container. It’s about loving yourself (and the cheesecake) and striving to improve in a holistic manner.
Now lets look at four major points which differentiates a fabulous body with any other ‘body’:
1) Fabulous bodies are within the sexy weight range.
Dr. Casey Butt has done a brilliant job of finding us a sexy weight range for men that women find attractive.
Sexy Weight Range = Minimum Lean Body Weight: 23 * H 2 – Maximum Muscular Body Weight: 26 * H 2
In this equation, height (H) is in meters and weight is in kilograms. You can convert feet and inches to meters here.
Let’s take an example of an individual who is 6 feet tall to illustrate this point better.
His sexy weight range, assuming his body fat is between 9 percent and 14 percent, is 77 kg – 87kg (170 – 192 pounds).
This sexy weight range came from a study by MJ Tovee funded by Newcastle University.
In the study, thirty female undergraduates rated color pictures of 50 men in front view. Waist to chest ratio (WCR)—a measure of upper body shape, waist to hip ratio (WHR)—a measure of lower body shape, and BMI were measured for each man. Images were presented in random order with each subject’s head and body obscured.
Results showed that individually all three characteristics were contributors to attractiveness. However, WCR was the principal determinant of attractiveness, accounting for 56 percent of the variance, whereas BMI accounted for only 12.7 percent of the additional variance. WHR was not a significant predictor of attractiveness.
What this boils down to is that shape (WCR) is more important for male attractiveness than size, which clearly explains why Steve Reeves was the most admired man of the twentieth century. Even though his weight was well outside the sexy weight range, his shape and especially his WCR (chest: 49/waist: 29=1.68) was exceptional. That’s what one should target.
2) Fabulous bodies have body fat between 9 – 14 percent.
Arnold Schwarzenegger competed at around 9 percent body fat in world bodybuilding championships. Steve Reeves had a similar body fat percentage when he became Mr. Universe 1950. Why then do average people like you and me, who simply want to look good in a slim fit shirt or on the beach, want to go below 9 percent body fat? Well, again it’s a matter of personal preference, but in my mind, focusing on achieving low body fat ranges is counterproductive and can take the fun out of working out.
I still remember when I got my fashion portfolio done way back in 2007. The effort it took to achieve a range of 7 percent body fat took the life out of me. Thank God I didn’t have too many responsibilities at the time, but even so, everything came to a standstill. I was eating boiled food, had dramatically reduced my salt intake, and was spending hours in the gym every day. It really didn’t felt that good. I am sure there are better ways to achieve these body fat levels, but for fathers, husbands, and entrepreneurs like you and me, devoting enormous amounts of energy and time just to look extra ripped is futile, and in most cases unnecessary.
I honestly think staying within the 12 – 15 percent body fat range is ideal for most of us. Aiming for low single-digit body fat is overwhelming and almost like a full-time job. Up to 15 percent gives a slight visibility of six-pack abs, and it’s good enough for most of us.
I have been maintaining the 12 – 15 percent range for quite some time now, and I’ve hardly had to give up any of my favorite foods. Life is meant to be enjoyed, and building a fabulous body is about balance, both in the gym and outside. In the end, I strongly feel your fitness and health goals should enhance your life, not consume it.
3) Building a Fabulous body requires working out only 2 to 3 times a week: Building your dream physique is about being real with your lifestyle. The whole idea is to optimise the effort vs. benefit ratio, i.e., maximum results in minimum time.
You pick up any literature on old school bodybuilders from the golden era of bodybuilding in 1940s even 50s and these guys used to train 2 to 3 times a week with weights and followed full body routines.
They focused on compound exercises most of the time and hence were able to reduce their workout time dramatically. Make no mistake, working out 2 to 3 times was pretty intense for even for those bodybuilders. You and me are average people with average genetics.
4) Building a Fabulous Body doesn’t require eating 5-6 smaller meals a day: Old school body builders used to eat three square meals a day. Protein supplement were unheard of (except for Weiders and Hoffman’s, not sure of the quality,though!). In fact they used to make their own shakes at home and rely on milk, eggs, and meats to get their daily required protein. I went from eating 5 to 6 meals a days to 2 or sometimes even 1 meal a day with tremendous results. This is not a starvation diet, its about eating the same number of calories but in fewer meals. Read my detailed article on Intermittent Fasting to know more about this way of eating.
Steve Reeves had a goal. He wanted to to be the world’s best developed and also the healthiest man in the world. But in todays society when you think of a bodybuilder you only think of ‘muscles’, ‘steroids’, ‘inartistic’, ‘vain’ or a ‘freak’. Thats very sad to hear as I believe that weight training is a fine art and an activity with tremendous benefits.
Its the popularity of bodybuilding contests which distorts people’s opinion about weight lifting. Young people simply follow them. I was one of them, and I failed miserably to find any kind of balance in my life in the past decade. Always struggling for size and then for extremely low body fat levels. It was a yo-yo life. But no more.
In the last few years I completely transformed my physique by implementing certain KEY yet RADICAL ideas.
Throughout this blog and in my book you shall discover these RADICAL IDEAS that will set you free from all the information overload and misguided conventional wisdom.
What do you think about Fabulous body pillar no #1? Have anything you like to add? Let me know in the comments below!