Bodybuilding is a discipline that focuses on muscle development and fat reduction. It has a purely aesthetic purpose, so maximum muscle growth is not sought if this also involves an increase in adipose tissue (as occurs instead in sumo or other disciplines such as strongman or in the heavier categories of powerlifting).
Normally bodybuilding athletes (the American term) alternate bulk phases in defining stages and aim to reach the peak of form only at certain times of the year.
This practice is not seen as a sport, partly because it does not have a real athletic and performance gesture, on the other because the various federations do not agree on the regulation.
Finally, the doping factor remains a very popular practice both among athletes and amateurs and in the federations, it is not subject to WADA controls as is the case for Olympic sports.
History of modern bodybuilding
The bodybuilding Modern born in the United States at the end of the second war Mondale (1946), the Weider brothers, Ben and Joe, founding the IFBB (International Federation of Bodybuilding & Fitness). Later other international federations were born such as NABBA (1956), but nevertheless, the world reference remains the Mr Olympia of the Weider brothers.
In the 70s, thanks to champions such as Larry Scott, Sergio Oliva, Arnold Schwarzenegger and many others, bodybuilding became a mass phenomenon.
Unfortunately, this is also followed by the spread of doping substances that are very widespread in this practice. Today there are also natural federations that try to stem the phenomenon with doping controls, such as the WNBF.
History of ancient bodybuilding
The cult of the body was born and expanded in ancient Greece. Here the hero was not only strong and brave but also handsome. Beauty was the promise of happiness and harmony.
This conception will already fail with the Roman Empire and will be opposed by the church during the Middle Ages. With the advent of the nineteenth century, bodybuilding will regain strength, first in circuses, then in private clubs and finally in gymnastics gyms. Towards the end of the 19th century, Eugen Sandow will be the symbol of the new bodybuilding.
In the 1920s we will begin to separate from gymnastics and weightlifting, gradually taking different paths and purposes. The origin however remains common, a healthy, strong and beautiful body.
Nutrition in bodybuilding
While until a few years ago it was thought that certain foods made you big and muscular: eggs, milk, rice, chicken, broccoli, today science has shown that the rules for the growth of muscle mass and muscle definition are few and imperative. .
The calorie balance
For muscle mass, we need to take 10-15% more of our daily calories. On average we go from 300kcal to a maximum of 700kcal. The goal is to grow “clean”, trying to prefer muscle mass over fat.
For the definition, however, it is necessary to create a caloric deficit from 15% to 20%, we are talking on average of 350-550kcal. Drastic calorie cuts risk excessively eroding muscle mass by losing part of what we have built with the bulking phase.
The macronutrients can be calibrated both on lean body mass, and the total weight (taking into account that the person is of normal weight). Since it is difficult to estimate the real lean mass, impedance and plicometry have significant error margins, we will use formulas on the total weight.
Proteins: proteins should be balanced according to the caloric amount. The more calories we eat, the less we need and vice versa. On average, a bodybuilding athlete consumes 1.4-2.6g / kg of protein. Quantities well above the recommended quotas for sedentary people (0.8g / kg)
Carbohydrates: Natural athletes have benefits in keeping the carbohydrate quota high. This is because this macronutrient together with proteins has an anabolic and anti-catabolic effect. Indications range from 3-6g / kg of carbohydrates.
Lipids: Fats have been driven by diets for the gym for years. Today we know that the maximum hormone production of testosterone is reached with quantities of 0.8g / kg. Taking more does not lead to further benefits. Many athletes, to preserve the contractile mass prefer to cut this macronutrient and on average we go from quantities of 0.4-1.2g / kg of fat.