"Unachievable" Male Body Image?

Since I started to try and lose weight my laptop and phone have been flooding my screen time with male actors talking about how “unachievable” their body was for a particular scene in a film. And I will admit I’m not sold.
This is not “fat shaming”. Be what ever size you want and happy. Just don’t pretend that Johna Hill looked as good in 2010 as he does now.

My point being that - do you think bodies of Brad Pitt in Troy, or Henry Cavil in Superman are that far beyond the pail? I do not think so.
I think your average man (20-45, not massively over weight, no massive health issues) could get in to that kind of shape in 18 months. Doesn’t cross fit do this to people all of the time? How many guys do cross fit for a year and look great? Stick another 6 months on that for a slow gainer and I think 90% of guys are there. If they want it.

FYI - Chris Hemsworth in Thor Ragnarok - great film but (said this before) the guy is TINY. I go to a gym where there are a dozen people bigger and more cut that him at all times. I expected more from my Norse Gods.

EDIT - by unachievable these actors mean “in normal life”. IE it is impossible to balance a normal life and the demands of getting “the body”

Agree in the broad spectrum, but disagree here

Maybe with the help of AAS and nothing to do but train/eat properly though.

No. But those who are extremely good and train hard tend to look great. Your average joe going to a crossfit gym looks no different from a cyclist with a shirt on.

Hemsworth, along with most hollywood actors/actresses are taking AAS or other aesthetic drugs to achieve these looks. This, in addition to perfect lighting and a team of highly paid video editors makes them unachievable in essence because it’s like walking around with an Instagram filter on in real life.

All this being said: I’m content with having bigger arms than Hemsworth while being shorter and natty. Suck it rich people!


I agree with everything you said.

Only movie star I am wowed by is the Rock.

I’d argue the body you/they/I want is easily achievable, hard to maintain.

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I think they tend to be unachievable “walking around” physiques, primarily because they tend to be incredibly dehydrated for the shirtless scenes in order to be as defined as possible, but they are replicatable. I apparently made that word up, but I like it.

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Yeah, the Aussie has nothing on the Norse Gods. Alexander Skaarsgard (or however you spell it) in the Northman (haven’t seen the movie, only trailers) looks way more along the lines of a Norse specimen. Also, i highly doubt Vikings were concerned with abs over absolute strength and brutality.

your point in a picture

meh 6’4-5" 225lbs


candids from a movie shoot are disappointing

This is the other thing to keep in mind too about “unachievable”: they often aren’t even achieved by the actors themselves. Lots of play with lighting and angles.


Example of Norse specimen for you:

Samuelsson certainly had strength as a WSM winner. Still looks pretty good in his 50s.

Probably not even close to natty though.

Did you forget about a 7 time Mr. Olympia?


As to the original question:

They are very difficult physiques for average dudes to accomplish. Just look around at normal people and you will see that most look very soft with little muscle. I would say well over 90% of guys that look like Thor are on AAS. Possible natty for some, sure. Very few actually do it though.

I actually happen to love this topic, I think it’s interesting. I was actually just talking to someone about this, specifically, just a couple days ago, and I brought up Henry Cavill and Hemsworth. We were talking about AAS in Hollywood, and I have my own opinions about who is definitely using, who is likely not, and who is in the ambiguous range.

The Rock is one of the only actors who is obviously on. If you think the Rock is natural… I really don’t know what to say.

Is he? I have never seen him in person, but I don’t really agree with this. I guess he could be lying about his height/weight, but I’ve read for that role that he was around 220 at 6’3, and pretty damn lean. I don’t consider that tiny. Keep in mind, Arnold’s stage weight was generally considered to be 6’3/230 lbs. Obviously Arnold would be bigger than Hemsworth, but not by a crazy margin. At the very least… not tiny.

And as a side not on Hemsworth, I have also read that he drops his bodyweight below 190 between roles, which indicates steroids to me. The big swings in weight generally mean anabolics are going to be involved.

Cavil is a grey area. He could certainly be using, but he doesn’t HAVE to be to look like that. His progression has made sense for a natural guy, and I’ve seen ‘behind the scenes’ photos of him during the Witcher where his body looks significantly more ‘achievable’.

I’ve always assumed Christian Bale uses, based on his personality, and the massive swings, not necessarily any particular look he’s had. He could also be using things to affect thyroid function.

I couldn’t disagree more with this. I would say 90% of the dudes I’ve seen who take crossfit seriously still look like shit, after years. I don’t know what it’s like where you are, but I’ve been to 15+ crossfit gyms, and only one had a significant number of guys who looked above average. And only a couple with impressive physiques.

This is the grey area. And I agree with it. If you ask me about any single individual who looks like that, I kinda have to say I’m not sure. If you give me a population of 100 people who look like that, I feel confident saying 80-90% are on, I just don’t know which ones are which.


Prepare yourselves for incoming blasphemy.

He is lucky he was doing his thing in the 70’s and 80’s. He wouldn’t even get on my insta/tiktok feeds these days.

flip just said hemsworth is the same size.

not wow worthy. the rock would rest his elbow on the top of his head.

This is the point. If you train hard you can get that look. I will add my “only” evidence for this was 5 guy on a year long construction site I worked next to. All 5 took up Cross fit in the first few weeks. 2 of them took it seriously. They looked great. The other 3 kinda applied them selves and look kinda okay. And that was after 12 months. And its my honest feeling that of the 3 that didn’t do so well applied them selves it would have been different. And given another 6 month - they would have been in better shape any way. However I’ve never been to cross fit gym and these guys might have been outliers.

I think some are. Huge Jackman always looks AMAZING. But would you in particular need to dehydrate to look like these two?

Is it difficult because people don’t want to put the effort it or because people can’t get there ? This is kind of like the “can everyone dead lift 600lb” conversation. I think yes - if they show enough dedication and determination. So when you say “difficult” - 100% accept that. But unachievable.

I never knew he was so tall. It explains why he muscles look less “full”. Perhaps I’m what they are warning bout. Perhaps I’m what they are warning about. That my expectations are too high?

Well, I am bigger than Frank Zane in his prime. Doesn’t mean I have a better physique than Zane.

Not sure. I looked up a few pictures. They don’t look too far off.

Arnold in his prime destroys the Rock on a bodybuilding stage.

I agree. These physiques are attainable for a good amount of guys, if they do a lot of work to get there. I just think for most people that that amount of work isn’t going to happen.

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In both those photos they are greased up like pigs. I mean they look like they are soaked in oil and have good lighting. This is what 90% of the shirtless shots are IMO. A pump, good lighting, and some baby oil. Cavill especially doesn’t look that great when he’s not in proper lighting. Brad Pitt there was just lean, certianly not big. Chris Hemsworth is classic Hollywood style muscle. Shoulders and arms. You should see his legs, sticks. When he’s not ‘bulked up’ to 220lbs he looks like he’s 200 in his own exercise app. He looks downright skinny. FWIW at 6’3 I don’t consider 220 ‘big’. Tell me he looks much better than the average gym bro here…
Chris Hemsworth on Instagram: “This ones a monster, not for the faint hearted, go at your own pace and give it a crack! @centrfit Ten rounds Bicep curl x10 Overhead…”

My point in the little rant is I think all three of those physiques are achievable. Natty with time and probably enhanced, at least TRT style, in a short order phase. The Rock is definitely ‘ON’ as @flipcollar stated. His physique would require drugs, dedication, and at the very least slightly better than average genetics. He clearly has all three.

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Come one guys these “unachievable” pics are making me want to take up basket weaving. Let’s set the bar a little higher with the body dysmorphia:

Good everyday look. Insane look in person. Not human.

Brad looks like he hit some pushups for a few weeks and tuna / water and of course the baby oil.


I totally agree with this. For me, this falls into the category of ‘I don’t know which of you are on… but I’d bet it’s at least 1’, lol. There’s the conversation of ‘in a bubble, is this achievable’, and then ‘is this particularly realistic or likely’. Very different questions.

I also believe @carlbm is underestimating how much work A LOT of people have to put in to get strong, or look strong, when unassisted. I’ve lifted with too many people, over many many years, who absolutely put in the work and never looked like it. In particular, I had a guy I lifted with, lived with, ate every meal with for a couple years in college. I made MASSIVE progress. He essentially didn’t change, he stayed weak and small. And he definitely put in the work I did. It’s just not gonna happen for a lot of dudes. It’s easy to note the successes and ignore the failures.


maybe. it’s subjective. I was going to say that conan picture you posted could be you. I saw a deadlift picture of you, doesnt look that far off.

I didn’t realize AS was that tall. I thought he was 6 ft.

There is no way the rock is fibbing so that can’t be it.

Rock don’t even got abs.

However, if I could wake up tomorrow with either body, for me it’s the Rock.


Off topic a bit, but he had a severe abdominal injury when he was playing football (I believe) that basically doesn’t allow him to have abs.

I think I’d choose arnold tbh, but that’s because I like old school physique.

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Awesome, I couldn’t agree with this stance more. I don’t think any of these guys have it easy. They have trainers and nutritionist. The best. It’s their job to get into this kind of shape unlike the rest of us that slog the 8-10 hour day job and hit the gym for an hour before or after. So if anybody ‘could’ do it naturally they have the tools.

I also agree with you that some people ‘just don’t have it’. So certainly not every man could pull this off. I think the average man could with the tools that these Hollywood stars have.

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I choose the 6’5" :rofl: :joy: :rofl: :joy:

You think I’m obnoxious now. Holy cow.

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I don’t think anybody has ever said anything so nice to me.

Arnold is listed at 6’2". I am skeptical of that though. Same with the rock being listed at 6’5". I am a bit skeptical on that too. Here is him with Shaq in a group.

Shaq is listed at 7’1" and I believe that. Marky Mark is 5’8" (or listed at that height). I don’t believe the Rock looks 9" taller than mark, and Shaq looks taller than 8" taller than the Rock. There is a much bigger difference between the heights of the Rock and Shaq, than that of the Rock and Mark.

I would guess the Rock to be like 6’2"-6’3".

Currently absolutely. Prime versions of both, I’ll take Arnold. If I could somehow have Tom Platz’s legs with Arnold’s upper body that would be ideal.