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It's Not a Realistic Comparison...
John Peterson John Peterson is offline
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10-14-2019, 05:35 PM
Hello Everyone,

I have received an e-mail asking me if I think that men like Benny B and Big Jim Forystek could have become even bigger and stronger had they put their effort into weightlifting instead of bodyweight methods.

Answer: I have no idea where the guy asking the question is going with this or why it is even a question.

Let me just say this. Based on meeting Big Jim in person and several discussions I've had with both men, I think that both Big Jim and Benny B have achieved their natural potential in terms of size and strength.

Using weights is no guarantee of anything. The only way some men achieve extraordinary increases in size beyond their body's natural potential is to take steroids and growth hormones. Then the question is, 'Is it or was it worth the consequences?' Example: Way back when I was in high school I knew one kid named AndyK (who died in his forties) that was taking great amounts of steroids for football and in his case, he developed roid rage and was often slapping around his girlfriend, Jackie. (he did that one too many times and one of Jackie's male friends did a real number on AndyK that I'm sure he never forgot) Did he get bigger than he would have had he not taken steroids? In the short term, he sure did and as a consequence, he had the worst stretch marks I have ever seen. In Andy's case, he got huge very quickly and ended up with a horrific knee injury ( the guy that defended Jackie used a low side kick on Andy's knee that had the poor guy screaming and writhing around on the floor. Andy didn't seem to understand that there are guys that can keep a cool head and pick their target without running in fear from a giant roid enhanced idiot) that ended his aspirations of becoming a pro football player. Truth to tell, I have never seen anyone gain that much weight that fast (about a year) and it wasn't all muscle.

In Andy's case he went from about 210 pounds and got up to between 275 to 300 pounds at 6' in height but there was no way that he even remotely had the combination of strength, flexibility, agility, and endurance that men like Benny and Big Jim have enjoyed. If Andy had fallen backward into a bridge from standing like BennyB he would have broken his neck at the very least and probably would have split open his skull and what brains he still had would have fallen out. Granted, he could do squats with 450+ pounds and could bench press close to 400 which back in 1969 and 1970 was considered something really exceptional. But I know for a fact that he could not perform a single Pull-Up and there was no way that he could have done 25 consecutive Hindu Push-Ups in a set or even 25 Atlas Push-Ups. He got big but that was it.

The bottom line for me personally is that I was never convinced that lifting weights by itself was either the only or even the best way to reach one's potential. Even back then the so-called "natural" muscle-building methods in which someone would follow Peary Rader's Squat Program by forcing themselves to squat 20 consecutive reps with a weight they could barely perform 10 reps with seemed anything but 'natural'. Not to mention that some of them were forcing themselves to drink a gallon of whole milk each day and many were doing that in addition to steroids. Did they get bigger? Yep, they sure did and if you wanted to look like the pro wrestler Dusty Rhodes or Adrian Adonis that was one sure-fire way to do it.

---John Peterson

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10-14-2019, 09:27 PM
Lol thanks John, I appreciate it......

Could I have gotten bigger and stronger if I stuck with the weights? Sure I could've but the funny thing is I'm roughly the same exact weight now then when I was lifting weights full time by the time I was 20. I was decent but not strong in the sense of a mighty powerlifter or whatever and I was in no where near the condition I am now at 35. The bodyweight style plus other methods have carried over to other endeavors and has kept me in great shape.

The guy most likely tried to get a rise out of you and just see how you reacted but in reality, you can't tell someone's facial expressions just through words.

As for Big Jim, the guy is fit and has done well with himself despite that heart attack some time ago. To be honest though, he is a bit biased when it comes to fitness and sees his method as the end all be all which it isn't. Not to discredit him but there are certain methods that have better quality as oppose to just being fit from a single method.

Me and Jim are fit in our own ways and certainly not superior to the other. He carries himself opposite of me where I have branched out and took bits of pieces of some of the best methods around and he has formed a comfort bubble of Charles Atlas style exercises.

I can't confirm to routines based on one method like he can, that's just not me and I would never have gotten fit the way I am now I'd I did one method. There isn't anything wrong with that it's just a fact. I had thought about steroids at one time in my life but never went through with it and for good reason. It just wasn't in me and when I hear people my age now dropping dead from abuse that adds on to the steroids being used and no not everyone who has done steroids died young, many have but not all of them.

For the guy asking where he was going with it, who really knows and who cares, if he truly wanted to know the full details, he could've asked Big Jim or myself personally, I'm not hard to find and I would've been straight with him about it. To be upfront about it, being bigger and stronger is irrelevant compared to being in REAL condition, the size and strength is just a bonus with me. Not many people get that because yes I am big for my size and under 6' tall and I don't have cannonball biceps or 6 pack abs or legs that Tom Platz had in his prime so despite those things, I make up for it by having solid strength endurance and can still knock off 500 Hindu Squats or do 500 Step Ups and 200 Ab Wheel Rollouts in a single workout plus carry 70 lb KB for well over 100 yards without putting it down. So yeah I don't have exceptional weight lifting strength but I do what I can with just about everything else.

The guy can come to me if he wants to know all about that. Funny that to ask about someone else, that person doesn't come to them directly, it's like, dude I'm right here.
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