T Nation

Why Can't I See It?

I’ve only been training, what I consider hard, for less than a year.
I’ve had great results - how do I know? Only because the body fat tests say so, but more importantly the size of my pants say so!
Now, do I see improvement from where I was Last February? Absolutely. But it is not enough (I’m sure some T-men and Vixens can relate).
I look in the mirror and to me it’s like, that’s got to get bigger, need to be more vascular there and there…yadda yadda. But most of my friends or people I haven’t seen in a long time (went home for the holidaze) are like “you’re gettin’ huge, dude - are you on roids or somethin’?” And I’m not, by the way, just Biotest products!
But my point is, I just don’t see it. I only see where I’m lacking. I guess it’s appropriate to post my stats, but I don’t have a recent photo, so that’s not gonna happen.
I’m 6’2" 215lbs 8-10% body fat.
I heard somewhere there is actually a disease that bodybuilders get, like anorexia, where they just can’t see it and they have to get bigger and bigger…
I guess my question is, is this true or just rumor? Has anyone else heard of this? Been through it? Going through it? Have advice on it? Thanks for the help!

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Bigorexia. Put it in a google.com and you’ll find heaps of info on it!

Early in the post you said you see improvements from last February, but later you say you just don’t see it. I’m guessing from your tone that you do see improvement, but are overly critical of yourself. If this doesn’t get you down, it can be a good thing. The given information does not point to something as serious as body dysmorphic disorder, but more likely you see room for improvement and don’t know how to value your progress as much as others. Like I said, it can be a beneficial thing if you don’t let it bring you down. Remember reading in some previous issues about Arnold ‘willing’ muscle growth?

If you’re looking at yourself in the mirror everyday, evaluating your build, you’re not going to see the smaller changes that the others whom you haven’t seen in awhile do. That’s why you see progress since February, but not, say, September. Taking frequent pictures would probably help.

I think being a little bit harder on yourself is good. That’s how i am. If one day you look in the mirror and say “Ok. That’s big enough/lean enough.” Where do you go from there? I see a lot of guys at the gym I go to who are 5’10", maybe 170 lbs, walking around acting like they are huge. Not sure what they see in the mirror but it sure is different from what I see. When I look at myself in the mirror, I am never satisfied with how I look.

Thanks all for the comments.
I did a google on Bigorexia and Oze was right, there is a ton of stuff on it out there.
Also known as the ‘Adonis Complex’?
I don’t know how serious it is. It only gets me down some days. But I do exhibit a lot of the symptoms - as I’m sure many of us do.
I’m working on getting a digital camera so I can take regular photos and watch for time-elapsed changes. Maybe that will help.

I am very critical of myself. But also of everyone else. Makes me sick to my stomach to see an overweight person snacking on something while driving and smoking a cigarette all the while sipping on their diet coke. Blah.
This is a good thing up to a point. I find myself always pushing myself. This is good, but like yesterday, I’ve been very sick to my stomach, yet I had to get to the weights. Nothing like I would normally do, but I couldn’t just sit there and skip a day.
Same with when I injurred my neck a week or so ago, had to keep at it. Can’t stop.

You know, you’re first post didn’t really raise any red flags to me in terms of having an Adonis Complex, but your last post did. If you’re working through injuries because you feel you HAVE to workout, then you’re headed for diaster. You’re liable to permanently damage yourself and never be able to workout again. You think I’m kidding, just ask around. There are people out there that who will live with back pain for the rest of their lives because of squatting or deadlifting with poor form due to them trying to work through or around an injury. There’s nothing wrong with being committed… but being obsessive is a whole 'nother story.

I agree with Tyler. Training through injuries and sickness is a recipe for disaster. Let your body heal.