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By: Obi Obadike
Years ago I used to be so focused on the scale and how much I weighed. I’ve since realized that the scale doesn’t mean anything in terms of your fitness. For some reason, guys can focus too heavily on their weight and think that number on the scale determines their level of muscularity and fitness. I remember weighing around 240 pounds a couple of years ago. I thought it was so cool to have 19-inch arms and a thick rounded face. Instead, what I had was the skinny complex. All guys have experienced this, and some still do.
Every time I looked in the mirror, I saw that skinny guy in high school.
So I was never happy with how I looked because I always thought of myself as skinny, even though I was getting huge. I remember how much I had to eat every day to look like that. To be honest with you, it wasn’t fun. My whole life once revolved around eating large amounts and weighing myself several times a day. Then I realized that this wasn’t my idea of health and fitness. I hated having to eat more than 4000 calories each day just to maintain a weight that was too heavy for my frame. And bragging about my weight to my friends lost its coolness after a while, too.
As I got older, I realized that my weight didn’t matter. Being lean and healthy is what is important. So I dropped down in size and guess what? Not only did I feel healthier, I was so much happier. Even if you are a natural bodybuilder or fitness model, your weight shouldn’t determine how you look for a photo-shoot or competition. Instead, use the mirror as your gauge. Typically, the leaner you look the bigger you will appear. To every aspiring fitness model that has emailed me—and there have been many—please stop playing the size game! It doesn’t mean anything when it comes to selling fitness magazines.
Some of the guys in fitness magazines and on stage winning competitions would surprise you if they told you their true weight. My good friend Kelechi Opara, “The Natural Freak”, doesn’t ever weigh more than 175 lbs for his shoots. As you can see from his pictures, he looks huge—at times looking like he weighs over 200lbs. He gives the illusion that he weighs more due to his year-round leanness.
At the Muscle-Mania show, my good friend and great natural bodybuilder, Aussie Sasho Ognenovski, weighed 177 lbs on stage, standing at 6 feet at the Muscle-Mania show. And the man was shredded to the bone! He looked like he weighed over 210lbs—that’s a 40-pound difference. But because he was so lean, he appeared to weigh more.
Being leaner always creates the illusion that you weigh more. Once you understand this concept, then your weight means absolutely nothing compared to your amount of lean muscle mass.
By the way, I am not saying that being less than four percent is healthy, because it isn’t. But find your balance and what works in terms of the ideal body-fat percentage and your health. Many guys use their weight to determine how much muscle they have, which—AGAIN—is false. Your true weight is your lean muscle weight, not the figure on the scale. The three things I use to determine how fit I am—physique-wise, not cardiovascular-wise—in the mirror, my bodyfat percentage and the fit of my clothes. Hopefully any male or female that is reading this note will stop beating themselves up. If you don’t like the number on the scale, it’s not the only gauge out there.
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