T Nation

Blocky Look from Different Juices?

I was watching this old video of Boyer Coe and they were talking about how bodybuilders look different these days than they did years ago . In the old days there was the Steve Reeves or Frank Zane etc look but today they all look blocky with big everything including waist /gut. A comment I heard was that unlike the roids of yesteryear the growth stuff these days makes everything grow , not just the muscles you’ve worked. Is there something to that?

Growth hormone increases the mass of all the organs, hence, one of the reasons for the thick bloated look in the waist

I’m wondering about when did bodybuilders go from db type steroids to these growth hormones?

In the 90-ties. The debut and era of the mass-monsters.

I always preferred the physiques alike Boyer Coe and Mike Mentzer. Big guys with symmetry, what they today refer to as “classic physiques”, but still not without steroids unfortunately.

Having a look at the “pharma” section on this forum, it’s a bit disturbing to read about people who think steroids will give them a startup into bodybuilding, a shortcut into fat-loss - without any serious training experience. What most people don’t know is that the majority of products is made in a garage lab, but with nice labels on. It can be dangerous for obvious reasons.


I like Apple, pineapple and sometimes orange.

I’ve seen a number of counters to this, especially Dave Palumbo, who say it’s more diet related. A lot of top tier athletes have started controlling their midsection better on stage.

Lately I’ve been talking to aspiring “classic physique” competitors and they often reveal their gear usage pretty readily. None of these people should be on gear yet (both not ready in age or physique) and the dosages they’re taking is ridiculous.

I think this is more to do with the actual size of physique and the stimulus needed rather than the gear usage. A 300 lbs 5’10" shredded open class bodybuilder (Big Ramy) is going to have a much thicker waist than a 185 lbs 5’9" golden era bodybuilder (Frank Zane) just to be able to handle the over 100 lbs of added mass.

Even today Zane would be well under his weight cap for Classic Physique.


Golden era guys had primo, dbol, and deca. That was pretty much the staple for them. Nowadays you have tren, tons of GH, and insulin in crazy high doses.

I’m guessing those help these guys grow much larger than Dbol? What I was wondering was did the Dbol basically help areas you hit with weights grow but these new drugs make everything grow , organs and all ?

I think another big factor in this, aside from the anabolics, is that you’re comparing guys who were 5’11"-ish and 190-210 pounds to guys who are 5’11"-ish and 250 to 290 pounds.

You’re packing 60-100 pounds more muscle onto the same basic frame, so things’re going to get “overstuffed” all over.


Dave has a small waist now sitting at like 170lbs

I agree with everything that has already been said bigger guys bigger waists, more food etc.

I have 3 other working theories. 1st is missing the mark. Overeating to carb up while taking diuretics is going to stop everything while you keep filling the balloon. Especially if the stories like Kai eating 5lbs of boiled chicken breast while carbing up are true.

2nd is insulin use. It stores fat especially viscerally so even though a BBer looks shredded from the outside they still have hella visceral fat. Visceral fat is usually the last to be lost.

3rd is Waist trainers and Lifting belts. So a waist trainer if it works just rearranged your internal organs. Obv it didnt work (at least not permanently) but what it does do is teach your abs to either constantly push out to maintain structural integrity (think constant iso holds for serious hypertrophy muscle gainz) OR teaches your abs to constantly completely relax so controlling your midsection gets harder on stage.

Now for the Lifting belts if you use it correctly every time you do a rep you are also doing a max effort ab rep. “It engages the abs” is just a really silly way to say it trains the abs harder than anything else. Most BBers use a belt as an industrial strength waist trainer either way, when I am focused on BBing Idont use a belt.

I mean look at Ben Pollack (biggest waist ever proportionately to his size while at stage leanness…I doubt uses slin), Joe Sullivan (has visible abs at 30%+ BF) and Eddie Hall (abs at 30%+ BF).

Personally I noticed that my waist got a lot bigger when I started using a belt. I also noticed that with slin. This cut will tell how permanent either was or if I just kept getting fatter. Obv rooting for fatter.

EDIT: High estrogen will cause a bloated look so anything that aromatizes has that potential but that can be quickly fixed and no BBer on stage likely has much estrogen in their bodies. Having said that a lot of them do drop their Test to nothing and again if no test and only estrogen might cause some bloating…only speculation on that.

Why would you doubt Ben Pollack uses slin? Of course nobody knows but if you put a gun to my head and I had to guess I would definitely guess he uses slin. Pollack is fucking huge. And insulin use is way more common than you’d think now a days. I find it hard to believe he put on 55 pounds of stage weight in 15 months without insulin and GH

1 Like

He looks to be on a pro stack, and that includes slin. Just my opinion though.

1 Like

I actually forgot about his recent bulk for that yea it would almost be silly for him not to use it.

Before that though as a PLer I doubt he would include it in his PED stack. Having said that I do think how tested lifters get around tests is GH/slin combo which is impossible to test for but still a hella stack even strictly for strength.