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Thread: Is it possible to project someones genetic potential before training?

  1. #1
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    Is it possible to project someones genetic potential before training?

    Like anysport some poeple are more talented at bodybuilding than others, I am somewhere in the average category (no talent)but wondered if there are key things an expert could spot about a new trainer that would say they have very good genetic potential and have a talent for the sport which are not very obvious to the untrained eye?

    Obviously wide shoulders are goodand bigger bones good too. But what other characteristics are good especially as some champs of the past for example Rich Gaspari did not have very wide shoulders naturally.

  2. #2
    Not Done Yet ShockBoxer's Avatar
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    I'm guessing your photo album is the only real way to assess 'genetic potential' right now. I know there's work being done with assessing the myotocin (sp?) production (or, more accurately, the thing that normally limits myotocin production) and tracking its levels in families and athletes.

    But yeah... look at your family. For example, every guy in my father's family 'looks' strong. We all fall into what my mom calls 'burly and surly'. Broad shouldered, deep chested, and our faces at rest look angry. We're all short (5 foot to 5'8, with only one or two men passing the 6 foot mark out of 35 males, including first cousins) as well, which just makes our shoulders look even broader. 'Squat' is a good way to describe it once we get fat.

    We gain weight very easily, we lose weight very easily (the males. the females have a brutally hard time losing weight, even on doctor proscribed diets), we gain muscle very easily, we lose muscle even easier.

    How does your family look? Is it filled with 'beanpoles'? Prone to hyperobesity? Filled with people that look like greek gods without ever touching a weight?

    I'm sure there are 'hallmarks of a natural lifter' but I don't know about hallmarks of a natural bodybuilder.
    Last edited by ShockBoxer; 08-09-2005 at 06:40 AM.
    The Reconstruction Project (Journal)

    Age: 34, Height: 5'4, Weight: 185, BF: somewhere between 15 and 45%

    Weightlifting Start Date: July 26, 2005 - Bench 95 x 6, Dead 110 x 8, Smith Squat 180 x 8
    Bests: Bench 185 x 8, Dead 400 x 1, Zercher Squat 295 x 3


    Stop thinking and go lift - Paul Stagg

  3. #3
    Senior Member Wannabelean's Avatar
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    I think it is pretty easy to tell who is going to grow/get strong pretty fast based on how they already look or how strong they already are.

    The only way you are going to lose muscle even easier is if your diet sucks. Not trying to be an ass, but that is my opinion.

  4. #4
    Not Done Yet ShockBoxer's Avatar
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    My sister gained 40 pounds within 8 weeks of quitting amateur figure skating because of an ankle injury. She went from lean and able to do a double-sow-cow (or whatever) to ... not and was (and is) completely devastated. Even the doctor was startled. She certainly wasn't pounding back 3500 calories a day to achieve this (nobody in my family eats much more than a thousand on a daily basis except my brother and I. Seriously. I fitday'd my mom last week for a lark and it came to 625 on one of her rare "I ate breakfast" days).

    Our bodies apparantly just LOVE to break down muscle into fat. I know all I've gotten is disbelief from the forum here but unless I like looking stupid (I don't) I have no reason to exaggerate. I'm trying to SAVE myself from this family trait.
    The Reconstruction Project (Journal)

    Age: 34, Height: 5'4, Weight: 185, BF: somewhere between 15 and 45%

    Weightlifting Start Date: July 26, 2005 - Bench 95 x 6, Dead 110 x 8, Smith Squat 180 x 8
    Bests: Bench 185 x 8, Dead 400 x 1, Zercher Squat 295 x 3


    Stop thinking and go lift - Paul Stagg

  5. #5
    Bodybuilding Mythbuster
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    Quote Originally Posted by ShockBoxer
    My sister gained 40 pounds within 8 weeks of quitting amateur figure skating because of an ankle injury. She went from lean and able to do a double-sow-cow (or whatever) to ... not and was (and is) completely devastated. Even the doctor was startled. She certainly wasn't pounding back 3500 calories a day to achieve this (nobody in my family eats much more than a thousand on a daily basis except my brother and I. Seriously. I fitday'd my mom last week for a lark and it came to 625 on one of her rare "I ate breakfast" days).

    Our bodies apparantly just LOVE to break down muscle into fat. I know all I've gotten is disbelief from the forum here but unless I like looking stupid (I don't) I have no reason to exaggerate. I'm trying to SAVE myself from this family trait.

    Muscle cannot turn into fat or vice versa. If you eat a lot but stop training the muscle shrinks and you gain fat.

  6. #6
    Not Done Yet ShockBoxer's Avatar
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    Good to know... but if my calculations are correct (3500 calories beyond maintenance per week to gain one pound) a weight gain of 4 per week for my sis would equal to 2000 calories over maintenance per day (3500 x 4 = 2000 x 7). Impossible... I can't even get 2000 trying currently without eating out. There's no way we had 2k family dinners when I was growing up on a nightly basis. Both my parents worked and we were poor so dinner was usually a pot of kraft dinner split 3 ways or a 650 cal frozen chicken pot pie each. *I* was the one that knocked back two chocolate bars and a can of coke a day as a kid.

    I have female cousins that weighed 100 pounds by age 4 as well. How is that even possible?
    The Reconstruction Project (Journal)

    Age: 34, Height: 5'4, Weight: 185, BF: somewhere between 15 and 45%

    Weightlifting Start Date: July 26, 2005 - Bench 95 x 6, Dead 110 x 8, Smith Squat 180 x 8
    Bests: Bench 185 x 8, Dead 400 x 1, Zercher Squat 295 x 3


    Stop thinking and go lift - Paul Stagg

  7. #7
    Senior Member Wannabelean's Avatar
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    She was consuming more calories than you think, period. If she drinks alot of sodas/alcohol or eats alot of high calorie food(even if it isn't that much) she will gain weight/fat.

    My point is that if she was once lean and muscular and she gained 40lbs when she broke her ankle, she wouldn't gain 40lbs by eating like a bird.

  8. #8
    Not Done Yet ShockBoxer's Avatar
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    Yes, but +2000 calories a day worth of sneaking? When she was home for 9/10 meals? I won't say it's impossible but she's only 4'10 and weighed 85 pounds before the gain. Wouldn't that many extra calories have made her sick to her stomach, no matter her intentions? I get stuffed/ill trying to break 2k myself... no matter the composition of those calories (10 small meals or eating two wendy's combos in a day doesn't matter.)

    I use her as an example because her and my immediate family are the only ones I can be sure of, though it happens family-tree wide. For all I know the other families are eating bratwurst for breakfast, drinking two pints of heinekin for lunch, and eating wienerschnitzel and fried mozzerrella sticks for dinner and washing it all down with the lard from the frier from the time they're infants.
    Last edited by ShockBoxer; 08-09-2005 at 09:38 AM.
    The Reconstruction Project (Journal)

    Age: 34, Height: 5'4, Weight: 185, BF: somewhere between 15 and 45%

    Weightlifting Start Date: July 26, 2005 - Bench 95 x 6, Dead 110 x 8, Smith Squat 180 x 8
    Bests: Bench 185 x 8, Dead 400 x 1, Zercher Squat 295 x 3


    Stop thinking and go lift - Paul Stagg

  9. #9
    Senior Member b_sinning's Avatar
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    I've been building mass faster and easier than I ever thought lately and really feel stronger everyday pratically. I refuse to be limited by genes. Mind over matter.
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  10. #10
    202 CarlP's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ShockBoxer
    My sister gained 40 pounds within 8 weeks of quitting amateur figure skating because of an ankle injury. She went from lean and able to do a double-sow-cow (or whatever) to ... not and was (and is) completely devastated. Even the doctor was startled. She certainly wasn't pounding back 3500 calories a day to achieve this (nobody in my family eats much more than a thousand on a daily basis except my brother and I. Seriously. I fitday'd my mom last week for a lark and it came to 625 on one of her rare "I ate breakfast" days).

    Our bodies apparantly just LOVE to break down muscle into fat. I know all I've gotten is disbelief from the forum here but unless I like looking stupid (I don't) I have no reason to exaggerate. I'm trying to SAVE myself from this family trait.
    If calories are that low, the body will try and conserve fat because you're starving it. That's not your family, that's how the human body works.

  11. #11
    Not Done Yet ShockBoxer's Avatar
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    That's exactly what I thought but was told by a few people around here that such a thing didn't happen. I figured there had to be a reason I started losing weight right at the same time I started eating a 300 cal breakfast in addition to the Wendy's combo (putting my caloric total at 1700 to 1800, which is my calculated BMR). This was before I saw the light and decided to go for quality calories instead of quantity.
    The Reconstruction Project (Journal)

    Age: 34, Height: 5'4, Weight: 185, BF: somewhere between 15 and 45%

    Weightlifting Start Date: July 26, 2005 - Bench 95 x 6, Dead 110 x 8, Smith Squat 180 x 8
    Bests: Bench 185 x 8, Dead 400 x 1, Zercher Squat 295 x 3


    Stop thinking and go lift - Paul Stagg

  12. #12
    Player Hater PowerManDL's Avatar
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    Neither you nor anyone in your family violates thermodynamics.

    If you gain *weight* it's because you're getting more energy than you expend.
    Vin Diesel has a fever.. and the only prescription is more cowbell.

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  13. #13
    Not Done Yet ShockBoxer's Avatar
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    Another vote for there is no storing fat and gaining weight because your body thinks it's in the first stages of starvation.

    I'm going to go ask a nutritionist.
    The Reconstruction Project (Journal)

    Age: 34, Height: 5'4, Weight: 185, BF: somewhere between 15 and 45%

    Weightlifting Start Date: July 26, 2005 - Bench 95 x 6, Dead 110 x 8, Smith Squat 180 x 8
    Bests: Bench 185 x 8, Dead 400 x 1, Zercher Squat 295 x 3


    Stop thinking and go lift - Paul Stagg

  14. #14
    mmm... discipline
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    EDIT: I'm responding to the original question.

    Naturally mesomorphic people have a genetic advantage. But there's nothing you can do if you are not one of them, so lift and eat and be merry, and you will still gain.
    Last edited by Spartan936; 08-09-2005 at 01:46 PM.

  15. #15
    Player Hater PowerManDL's Avatar
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    Where is the mass coming from if not from the food you're taking in?

    Mass doesn't just appear from nowhere; this isn't a matter of asking a nutritionist, this is basic conservation of mass.
    Vin Diesel has a fever.. and the only prescription is more cowbell.

    Budiak: That girl I maced
    Budiak: macked
    Budiak: heh maced
    Budiak: I wish

    ShmrckPmp5: a good thing people can't fire guns through the computer...your ass would have been shot years ago

    Y2A 47: youre smooth as hell
    Y2A 47: thats why you get outta tickets, and into panties

    galileo: you're a fucking beast and I hate you
    galileo: hate

    assgrabbers are never subtile, they will grabb ass whereever they go,public or not, I know the type, because I am one. - Rock

  16. #16
    mmm... discipline
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    Where is the mass coming from if not from the food you're taking in?
    Introducing a hearty, soothing, healthy new beverage for the physically inclined. MASS!!! Guaranteed to pack that sexy weight on in no time! Now conveniently availible in six-packs!

    Results not typical. 8% alcohol by weight.

  17. #17
    Not Done Yet ShockBoxer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PowerManDL
    Where is the mass coming from if not from the food you're taking in?

    Mass doesn't just appear from nowhere; this isn't a matter of asking a nutritionist, this is basic conservation of mass.
    Think I've got it. Went poking around the World Health Organization website, read a few related articles, and googled a few more.

    Obviously, it HAS to be coming from the food that is taken in (no magic mass gaining). Not enough food to suppy your base metabolic rate fully so your body reacts by cannabilizing itself and storing it as fat. At the same time SOME amount of food is being taken in... more than enough to keep you alive. The body, though, has no way of anticipating this next meal so continues to store everything it can get away with (and things it shouldn't) as fat. You end up feeling weak, easily tired, listless overall.

    A grown male has no business consuming 300 calories on one day and 1400 on the next, then 500, then 1800, then 400, then 1500, then... and that's how I was eating. I don't want to know what kind of damage I did to myself... stupid is as stupid does and those days are past.

    That may explain the women in my immediate family, who tend to eat very, very little to try and manage fat, as well. We're starving ourselves but not severely enough to either die from it OR lose weight from it. Somehow we managed to hit the caloric deficit that triggers cellular mobilization and stuck there.

    It would also explain why I started rapidly dropping weight (20 pounds in two months, easy) by making an effort to bring my caloric total up to meet my base metabolic rate.

    That said, genetics does play a role in determinig BMR and it wouldn't surprise me if my families BMR is low to begin with. I thought for sure I'd be bulking on 1500 to 2000 based on my past experiences... but I appear to be maintaining or recomposing.
    Last edited by ShockBoxer; 08-09-2005 at 02:28 PM.
    The Reconstruction Project (Journal)

    Age: 34, Height: 5'4, Weight: 185, BF: somewhere between 15 and 45%

    Weightlifting Start Date: July 26, 2005 - Bench 95 x 6, Dead 110 x 8, Smith Squat 180 x 8
    Bests: Bench 185 x 8, Dead 400 x 1, Zercher Squat 295 x 3


    Stop thinking and go lift - Paul Stagg

  18. #18
    Senior Member DNL's Avatar
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    You can't really judge a book by its cover.

  19. #19
    mrelwooddowd Patz's Avatar
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    maybe your sister has an eating disorder...

    or that broken ankle has caused a very mild infection, which is causing her to hold water and pus in her system. maybe see if her temperature is VERY slightly elevated?
    Last edited by Patz; 08-09-2005 at 03:49 PM.
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  20. #20
    Player Hater PowerManDL's Avatar
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    Look.

    Your theory, that of muscle breaking down and being stored, would not result in any change in overall weight. Again I ask you....if this is the case, where is the extra material coming from?

    The body is a closed system, and added matter isn't just going to show up just because one tissue breaks down and goes somewhere else....in order to be heavier on the scale, you have to bring more matter into your body.

    I can't state it any more simply than this; matter has to come from somewhere. It doesn't just magically turn up.
    Vin Diesel has a fever.. and the only prescription is more cowbell.

    Budiak: That girl I maced
    Budiak: macked
    Budiak: heh maced
    Budiak: I wish

    ShmrckPmp5: a good thing people can't fire guns through the computer...your ass would have been shot years ago

    Y2A 47: youre smooth as hell
    Y2A 47: thats why you get outta tickets, and into panties

    galileo: you're a fucking beast and I hate you
    galileo: hate

    assgrabbers are never subtile, they will grabb ass whereever they go,public or not, I know the type, because I am one. - Rock

  21. #21
    Not Done Yet ShockBoxer's Avatar
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    Like I acknowledged it's coming from the food eaten. Food insufficient to ward off stage one starvation (cellular mobilization and fat storage) but sufficient to ward off stage three (death). Hopefully sufficient to have warded off stage two (organ damage) as well but I won't know that for a few more decades.

    Quite simply I *averaged* far too few calories for my metabolic needs (the effect of doing so are well documented and fit my experience perfectly). Had I known that was possible I would have said that in the first place. It is. Fat happened. Blood pressure rose.

    This is it in a nutshell.

    Most food (all really) gives me indigestion or great pain so yeah... I tend to have to force myself to eat. Divert my attention and I won't and then later I'll wonder if I ate anything today, decide it's not important, and go to bed... even as recently as a month ago. Fitday and taking up WBB1 has changed that. I could have used both a decade ago.

    Still think there's a genetic predisposition towards obesity in my family. I guess since I'm the only one who cares enough to track right now I'll find out first hand. If I bulk on 1800 to 2000 cals of clean food then I'll know.
    The Reconstruction Project (Journal)

    Age: 34, Height: 5'4, Weight: 185, BF: somewhere between 15 and 45%

    Weightlifting Start Date: July 26, 2005 - Bench 95 x 6, Dead 110 x 8, Smith Squat 180 x 8
    Bests: Bench 185 x 8, Dead 400 x 1, Zercher Squat 295 x 3


    Stop thinking and go lift - Paul Stagg

  22. #22
    Senior Member Doobs's Avatar
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    You won't get anywhere near your genetic potential on 1800 cals/day.

  23. #23
    Not Done Yet ShockBoxer's Avatar
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    Empirical evidence (weight tracking on an average of 1900 daily calories on Fitday for two weeks) shows that 1900 is my maintenance calories. I might not hit my genetic potential on 1800 cals but in the end it'll probably be far fewer than the average member here.
    The Reconstruction Project (Journal)

    Age: 34, Height: 5'4, Weight: 185, BF: somewhere between 15 and 45%

    Weightlifting Start Date: July 26, 2005 - Bench 95 x 6, Dead 110 x 8, Smith Squat 180 x 8
    Bests: Bench 185 x 8, Dead 400 x 1, Zercher Squat 295 x 3


    Stop thinking and go lift - Paul Stagg

  24. #24
    DeaTH BeFoRe WeaKNeSs sCaRz*Of*PaiN's Avatar
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    I think it is pretty easy to tell who is going to grow/get strong pretty fast based on how they already look or how strong they already are.
    I've seen bean poles turn into trees after a few years (naturally). You can't just look at someone and guess their potential.
    "The only easy day was yesterday."

  25. #25
    Back in business WBBIRL's Avatar
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    No you cannot "guage" potentional....

    As for the whole metabolic idea.... I am a 300 lb 18 year old boy. I probably have 60-75 lbs of fat on my body. By all estimates, and by accounts from ALOT of other people... I should be able to cut on well over 2k cals probably close to 3k... but that doesnt happen. I lift 5 days a week and do cardio atleast 3 times a week. My calories NEVER go above 2500 and average 2000, and I drink at least a gallon of water every day. All most all sweets have been cut from my diet, soda, chips, cookies, ice cream, candy, cake, blah blah blah. Ive been hovering at 296-298 for that last almost month. Another member of this fourm, Built, is a 130 lb 41 year old female... now not even considering the fact shes 41 (as you get older your metabolism slows down) shes a girl whos somewhat close to 1/3 my weight and she cuts on what I maintain on.

    Now try to explain to me how a female twice my age and 1/3 my weight can cut on an ammount of calories that would keep my weight consistant.

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