Since we like to be controversial but educational, let’s tackle another delicate issue: Steroids.
There is no denying it; steroids play a huge role in the bodybuilding and fitness world. And if we’re being honest, it plays a huge role in pretty much every sport except for archery. The fact is steroids work and they work extremely well. But contrary to popular belief, they are not the great equalizers athletes think they are. In other words, professional athletes are not professionals because they are on crazy amounts of drugs, but simply because they are genetic outliers. I consider myself a decent swimmer, but if I was to stand next to Michael Phelps, I would come to the sad realization that there is no way I can ever compete with him on his level. He is taller, has bigger hands and lungs, and has more flexible knees. Additionally, his ability to withstand the anaerobic threshold is quite unbelievable. So he would still beat me even if I was to take every known “performance enhancing” drug known to mankind.
The same goes for bodybuilding. I am the same height and of similar ethnicity as Arnold, but this is also where it ends. Sad case in point: the difference between our arms. His wrist is a good inch thicker than mine and his biceps insert almost below the elbow. Again, no amount of drugs will ever enable me to have Arnold’s arms… it’s all right, I’ll be okay.
The main reason for writing this post/rant is that I see young athletes relying so heavily on absolutely insane amounts of drugs and “supplements” because they think that this will get them to the same level as the professionals. Bottom line: It will not, and it never will. Not everyone can be Michael Phelps… just ask Ryan Lochte. The top guys are genetic freaks: they have better work ethic than most of us, digest food better, and recover quicker, AND get injured less… the list is endless.
Please, do not ruin your health by chasing the rainbow. Take pride in the physique you built, it will still stand out at the beach.
Until next time,