T Nation

NPC Nationals

A friend and I attended an Atlanta Hawks game this past weekend and noticed that the NPC Nationals were being held just across the street. The Hawks finished throttling the Celtics pretty early, so our morbid curiosities led us to check out the oiled up bodies of mostly naked men. (competitive bodybuilding sounds perverse when explained doesn’t it?) I had no idea what I was about to witness. The venue was packed with freaks, losers, and some things I lack the vocabulary to properly describe. I am 6’1" 230 at about 9% bf and felt like a swimmer around these people! There were LOTS of women (in the technical sense) bigger than me, I had to surpress my gag reflex several times. Every guy there, huge or not, was wearing an extremely tight shirt. It was a collection of some of the most pathetic people this f’d up subculture has to offer. I could practically smell the synthol. I also recognized some top pros from the Weider mags that had me brainwashed for my first few years of training.

Most were incredibly huge, but possessed distended guts which ruined the whole effect. This Kamali guy was shredded and his gut still stuck out further than his chest. The saddest specimen I witenssed had to be Greg Kovacs. I am sure he would have felt much better if he had given birth to those ten pound twins he was carrying. Shawn Ray was the only pro who appeared normal, i.e. no tight shirt and bloated stomach. Oh yeah, the contest. The bantamweights, lightweights, and middleweights had the best physiques; symmetrical athletic and shredded. The lightheavyweight winner won the overall (I think his name was Johnny Jackson). This guy looked phenomenal. It was good to see him defeat the blocky heavy and superheavyweight winners. All things being considered I am glad I attended. I will never again refer to what I do as bodybuilding. I will call it physique enhancement, striving for more cat, sanity preservation, simply training, anything but bodybuilding. I think what most of us do bears no resemblance to what these roided out losers are involved in. Sorry for the longwinded rant, just thought I would give you the report from a T-man perspective.

Actually, I think you’ve got it backwards. What WE do is bodybuilding, what the pro’s do nowadays is “bodybloating”. Except for a few like Shawn Ray, of course, who still have the outmoded idea that their waists should be smaller than their chests…

“Physique Enhancement”…I like that! Is does explain better what many of us are attempting to do. Outstanding, D!

Just a thought and you guys impression. From what I’ve read and heard,it really appears that THIS level of competition is where the most craziness is. Guys are “wanna-be’s”, with visions of Weider contracts, endless Ectasy, Cover photos and fitness babes for the taking running through their heads. They also represent the “gym stars” where they train, giving out some of the worst advice you’ve ever heard, especially for the beginner.


Now…I’m not suggesting that every competitor at this level fits this mold. But what I AM saying is that this level becomes the “training and breeding grounds” for the excesses we see at the Pro level. Any thoughts? Mufasa