I want to get ripped and muscular, but no matter how hard I work out I still look out of shape. What should I do? Do I have to take steroids to get bigger?
The problem here lies somewhere in your nutrition, training regime, rest, or a combination of the three. The lack of anabolic steroids has nothing to do with your inability to attain a ripped and muscular body.
Steroids are not going to help you get ripped, either. In fact, most of them will make you look fatter and more bloated, especially if you’re not cut at all.
Back when I was in college, another guy at my gym wanted to compete in a bodybuilding competition. He was eighteen years old and was always asking people advice on how to get "big and cut." One bodybuilder told the kid to eat well, train well, and rest well.
What did the kid do, instead? Start taking anabolic steroids.
He became a little bigger, but looked puffed up and soft instead of hard and chiseled.
The point is that he should've listened to the bodybuilder's advice.
The same goes for you.
Here are some things you need to analyze about yourself before resorting to such measures:
How much rest a night are you getting?
Your body needs 6 to 8 hours a night for sufficient recovery.
Do you tally your total daily caloric intake and compare it to your BMI?
Do this to find out roughly how many calories your body burns a day. Then eat accordingly.
For example, if your body only burns 2,500 calories a day, but you’re taking in 3,000, then you may have a weight problem.
Are you ingesting an excessive amount of sugar and fat on a daily basis?
Sugar and fat aren’t necessarily bad, but many people overconsume them in the form of Pepsi, Monster energy drinks, fast food, etc.
Are you consuming at least 1 gram of protein per pound of your body weight?
Your muscles need protein for recovery after those brutal workouts.
Do you mainly eat nutritious foods like vegetables, meats, nuts, and fruit?
As opposed to processed foods…
Do you push yourself (not strain beyond your limits) when you work out?
Or do you choose the path of least resistance and lift lighter weights because it’s easier?
Are you one of those people who use the gym as a social hangout instead?
It’s nice to talk to a friend, but if you’re really serious about getting a good body, then you need to train serious.
Do you train your entire body?
Or do you only do bench press and curls, neglecting all leg workouts?
Do you cancel training sessions often?
Postponing trips to the gym adds up over time. Just remember: There is no time like the present.
Don't rely on your future self to pick up your slack.
Be honest with yourself when answering these questions. Lying to yourself only hurts you, no one else. If you fall short of one or several of these questions, then you have much room for improvement.