Levelling the Playing Field: Optimizing Performance as a Natural Bodybuilder

Levelling the Playing Field: Optimizing Performance as a Natural Bodybuilder

The bodybuilding landscape is divided into two realms: enhanced and natural athletes. The distinction comes with a host of complexities, but today, we delve into the fundamental differences and how a natural athlete can close the performance gap.

Before we begin, it's crucial to note that training styles and philosophies are not set in stone. Every program must be tailored to suit the individual athlete's needs. With that said, let's tackle the elephant in the room: the advantage of enhanced athletes due to their elevated levels of protein synthesis.

Enhanced athletes, owing to certain compounds, boast higher protein synthesis, expediting their recovery process. This explains the now-rare practice of "Two A Days", where intense training sessions are split into two parts. But this doesn't mean natural athletes are left behind. Through meticulous gut microbiome optimization, stimulating growth during training, maintaining a clean diet free of xenoestrogenic compounds, and incorporating recovery methods such as cold plunges/showers and sufficient rest, natural athletes can raise their protein synthesis levels to those of typical enhanced athletes.

The importance of the gut microbiome cannot be overstated. Eating prebiotic and probiotic-rich foods, and possibly taking probiotics to boost microbiome efficiency, can greatly aid digestion. This is a critical point as many modern bodybuilders face a multitude of health challenges, including autoimmune disorders and digestive tract issues.

While enhanced athletes have the upper hand in protein synthesis, the process often strains other body systems. Steroids prompt muscle cells to ramp up protein synthesis, but they source nutrients wherever possible, leading to mineral deficiencies and potential autoimmune disorders. However, the natural athlete can bypass these issues by focusing on maintaining a healthy gut microbiome.

Interestingly, the gut microbiome shares a symbiotic relationship with testosterone, much like iron in the bloodstream. Artificial imbalances of either can lead to negative consequences, underscoring the importance of maintaining a natural balance.

As we explore these nuances, it becomes clear that the potential for natural athletes to match enhanced athletes' performance is indeed real. It might not occur as quickly, but the rate of progress could be surprisingly swift if the right protocols are followed. It requires a significant level of discipline and commitment, but the rewards are a healthier, longer life with fewer health complications.

What's more, optimizing the gut microbiome isn't just about physical health; it's intrinsically linked to mental well-being too. The gut produces about 95% of the body's total serotonin, a neurotransmitter vital for mood stability, wound healing, bone density, blood clotting, and sexual desire. Thus, an optimized gut microbiota equals optimized immune function, endocrine function, recovery, mood, and ultimately, a better-performing natural athlete.

In conclusion, while the differences between natural and enhanced athletes may seem vast, there are ways to level the playing field. It takes discipline, dedication, and a well-rounded approach to health, but the payoff is a stronger, healthier, happier life both inside and outside the gym.

Written by: Logan Potts, NETA CPT, Aspiring Classic Physique Competitor

Founder: 11dTraining.com & 11dTrainingClub.com

IG: loganapotts

Back to blog

Leave a comment

Please note, comments need to be approved before they are published.