T Nation

What Naturals are Truly Capable of...


I really like the scientific side of bodybuilding just as much as the actual training. Now i know these thread normally turn to shit really quick, but im hopping to have a decent discussion with minimal flaming.

this is a collection of charts/information taken from some of the most knowledgeable and respected people in the scientific side of bodybuilding. two of these people based their finding on numbers taken from top pro natural bodybuilders, the genetic elite.

when these debates come up, the side that is against these findings usually has no solid argument. all they do is make up hypothetical situations or use extreme examples to try and prove their point. yet no one has been able to post a picture of 1 natural bodybuilder who has largely exceeded these charts. so until someone does your arguing nothing but semantics.


above is frank zane 3 times mr O.
- height 5'9
- contest weight 185lb
- off season weight 205lb

now this is someone with elite genetics and access to just about any drug he wanted of that era. yet we have people on here who claim to have natural powerlifting friends who are 5'7, 225lb and walk around at 6% bodyfat. FUCKING PLEASE.........


I completely agree with this type of thinking. I'm not saying people shouldn't strive to be their very best. I'm just saying that it is absolutely asinine for certain people to think that their very best is likely to exceed that of the legendary Frank Zane. Let alone as natural trainees. Not trying to crush dreams, but, for real. Natties better than Zane. Not a fucking chance.


Those reports are good, a few points

  • as you say there are some outliers so dont decide its your limit
  • the population that trains is so big now that outliers are more common in absolute terms
  • those who actually gain that level look pretty good
  • anyone who thinks 40lbs isnt much go buy 40lbs of meat and take a look at the room it takes up
  • many who self report much larger gains often forget or neglect that they started from a deficit ; underweight or young and still growing anyway regardless of training.

So its interesting stuff but no reason to stop shoukd you get close to these kinds of projected limits

Finally, it shouldn't really be so contentious either, get there first then think about the next goal seems a reasonable approach


yerp 40lbs is a massive amount of muscle to add. also yes these refer to people who started at average/healthy weight.


So true on this. I don't think some people realize how effective gear can actually be especially with some awesome genetics thrown in.


Agreed, let us have a decent discussion.

Yeah, way to start it off flame free.

Will not be tuning in to this thread.


40-50lb gain of muscle is intense then couple that with how much more glycogen and water that can take up that's some crazy gains. You will literally look like a different person.
People love to neglect water and glycogen when thinking about how much they are gaining
People need to compare gains at the same level of bf preferable low competition or at least single digits
Remember its a marathon not a sprint. Enjoy the process but also be realistic in your goals if you are determined to stay natty


I thought this was kinda useful, the different class winners from last year's WNBF Worlds Championships.

From left to right:
Richard Godzecki ~6', heavyweight (>190 lbs)
Brian Whitacre ~5'9, lightweight (<160 lbs)
Hayzer Cayli - ~5'10, middlweight (160-176 lbs)

Now, looking at Hayzer for a moment (guy on the right, and eventual overall winner), realize that this is a man with definitely exceptional genetics, who is 100% on top of his training and nutrition every day of the year (it's his job after all), who stands a mere 5'10 tall, and competes at about 175 lbs onstage.

Obviously this is contest condition (~5-7%). Those more mathematically among you can calculate what his approximate weight would be at 10%, because I see way too many people online (not merely on this site) claiming ridiculous stats of how much they would weigh at such a level of bodyfat, and it does nothing more than illustrate a complete delusion with how this all actually works.

Now, looking at this caliber of athlete, realizing that in person, they are DAMN HUGE (believe me, I've stood next to some of the top people in the sport!), should not give anyone any sort of complex where they stop trying (that's just stupid and completely defeatist), but it SHOULD give them a realistic understanding that maintaining a hell of a lot of ACTUAL MUSCLE (well beyond what the average person would consider 'muscular'), does not require ridiculously exaggerated scale weights if you are truly in possession of lean muscle.



That is insane.
Do you know how much Richard weighed in that photo?
All three of those guys looks amazing.


Hey Stu, how much confidence do you have in those top dogs actually being natty? How stringent are the WNBF's testing methods? I have no clue, but can't image that they have enough funding to do extensive testing. Out-of-competition testing?

ps: I think I have to alter my statement slightly regarding natties and legs in the other thread.


That puts a lot of stuff in perspective. I'm 5'10 and cutting at the moment hoping to come in at soemwhere between 165-180, think i would be tiny, but looking at those guys they look damn impressive as hell.


The illusion of size they give is phenomenal. Richard looks like he is 220.

And I gotta say these guys are probably more mid 4s for bf. they are shredded


I don't know his exact weight, but Kurt Weidner is 6' and competes around an even 200. If I had to guess, Richard looks maybe 215, 220 tops (and this man is unquestionably one of the genetic elite, even at his height). Puts an interesting slant when you hear people much shorter with more average frames and genetics claiming that they'd weigh more doesn't it?



He does have unfortunate talk man genetics when it comes to arms. Or his chest is just ungodly large


Remember that this is just one pose. That's why you can only get so much of an impression of someone's physique from one shot. The quarter turns and mandatories are chosen to give a complete picture of someone's build. That's why you can never truly trust the "one magic photo" that some people throw up online. It's always (intentionally) deceptive to some degree.

(I'm saying this as someone who has judged bodybuilding contests, as well as being a competitive Pro myself. I always do my best in every pose to flaunt a perceived strength and hide a perceived weakness!)



Very true. Dude is a beast non the less. Fantastic physique


Thanks Stu. Now I know I need to be roughly less than 160 to look like that at that height. Looks like I have a long way to go :frowning:

On a serious note, I like this thread. No nonsense civilized discussion.


Was that statement regarding "stringy legs" by any chance? I looked at the picture and cracked a smile when I remembered someone here had said that.


Wow! Those guys look incredible. Very inspiring to see that such physiques can be built naturally.


naturals can use insulin without it being detected.. im sure they can get away with peptides and maybe even GH as well..

also, Frank Zane did not have "elite genetics".. unless you are talking about muscle shape in which case I agree..