A lot of people who want to build muscle mass the natural way ask this question, “How big can you get without steroids?” The answer can be different and tricky because we all have different body types. You might achieve a larger body due to strong genetics while I may have to work harder to get that large physique.
I’m concerned with this question myself because I’m planning to bulk up for the next months. To give a clear answer, I made an effort in conducting an extensive research online. If you want to know what I found out, keep reading.
Steroids vs Natural
If you’ve seen some bodybuilders with veins bursting out all over their body, you can be sure that that person is taking steroids. In fact, a significant rate of fitness models also takes steroids to bulk up. If you compare two people, one who takes steroids and one who doesn’t, you’ll get a big discrepancy concerning performance and muscle mass.
Results of a 10-week study published in The New England Journal Of Medicine show that a person who took steroids even without exercise was able to gain 7 pounds of muscle. With exercise, an individual who took steroids gained about 13 pounds of muscle.
A person who exercised without steroids only gained 4 lbs of muscle. The results clearly show that you don’t have to expect a massive muscle mass gain when going natural.
How Big Can You Get Without Steroids?
How you gain muscles depend on several factors including years of proper training and height. Here are two models/formulae that show estimated muscle gain results.
The McDonald Model
Body Recomposition proposes the McDonald Model to estimate the potential muscle gain according to years of proper training.
Year Of Proper Training Estimated Rate Of Muscle Gain
|||Per Month (Pounds)|
|1||20-25 (2 lbs/mo)|
|2||10-12 (1 lb/mo)|
|4+||2-3 (no worth)|
Now, if you have been training properly for four years, your estimated muscle gain would be 40-50 pounds. So, if you started with 120 lbs of lean body mass, you’ll accomplish a muscle gain of 160-170 pounds after four years of proper training.
Marc Perry’s LBM Formula
CPT Founder Marc Perry comes up with this Lean Body Mass (LBM) formula. The LBM counts everything excluding your fat. The formula is:
(Height In Inches- 70) * 5 + starting weight – Maximum LBM
So if your height is 5’8”, convert that to inches and subtract 70. You’ll get -2. Now, multiply -2 by 5 and you’ll get -10. Add -10 to your starting weight, supposing 160 pounds, so your maximum LBM is 150 pounds assuming you have 6% body fat.
Martin Berhan’s Formula
Natural bodybuilder Martin Berkahn created a more accurate method in predicting muscle gain. The formula is:Height in centimeters -100 = Maximum Body Weight in Kilograms When Ripped
For instance, your height is 5’8”. Convert this to centimeters by multiplying 5’8″ and 2.54. Your height in centimeters is 172.72. Subtract 100 from 172.72 to get the maximum body weight in kilograms when ripped, and you’ll get 72.72. To convert to pounds, multiply by 2.2, so you’ll get 159.984 or 160 pounds weight at 5% body fat.
Tips To Reach Maximum Genetic Potential
- Avoid over-training. When you work your muscles too often, you give them less time to heal, hence, zero results. You should spend a few days out of the gym.
- Keep a healthy diet. Since you’re working out, your metabolism is working fast to burn calories. To keep your body well-nourished, eat 5-6 meals rich in calories daily. You can space out your meals for about 2-3 hours.
- Concentrate on progression. To achieve maximum results, make sure that you’re progressing in your workouts. You can increase the number of reps or weight of your major program over time.
- Get lean first. You need to cut down your body fat because it’s often associated with lower levels of testosterone, according to this study. As you see, high level of testosterone means faster muscle protein synthesis, hence more muscles built.
Check more tips in this video here.
How big can you get without steroids? Well, that depends on your height and proper training. With your height, you can get the maximum LBM and maximum body weight when ripped. Proper training will give these following results:
2 pounds per month for the first year, 1 pound per month on the second year, 1.5 pounds for the third year; and 2-3 pounds per year on the fourth year and succeeding years.
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Are you ready to ditch the steroids? Are you planning to get big naturally? Let us know in the comments section so we can exchange tips! You can also share this article with your friends and family!