"You can't make chicken salad out of chicken s#!t."
The above statement is definitely words of wisdom by P.J. Striet. Another oldie but goodie is "you are what you eat", and a favorite of mine from Dan Martin is, "garbage in, garbage out". Hey, there are probably dozens of these you can refer to but the truth of the matter is you need to eat nutritiously to reach your true physique/strength potential. Of course, there will be some exceptions to the rule, but for the most part these statements will hold true. Obviously, there are some genetic freaks that can eat Taco Bell and “have their cake and eat it too” and still obtain a ripped physique. However, everyone has an Achilles heel and these people have their own genetic weaknesses to deal with. Although their physiques are not negatively altered, that does not mean that they aren’t being detrimental to their health.
I knew a guy in college who was shredded and could eat crap and responded well to any training program. His name was Peter Helton. Peter was also naturally super strong. He was 175 pounds and 5'7" of solid rock. Within a few months of powerlifting, he was doing over 400lbs easily in the high bar squat with just a belt. Peter knew only one way to squat. And, that was as low as possible. In fact, I had to tell him to not go so low because we had planned on him competing in a contest. Peter could eat anything and not gain an ounce of bodyfat. He had defined abs at all times no matter what he ate in the dorm cafeteria. Peter ended up just missing a 600 pound squat and deadlifted 585 in his very first powerlifting contest. I believe that was his first and last contest. Peter had his weaknesses though. His arms were hard to develop. His calves were non existent. Both were glaring weaknesses of a body most would point to and cry "genetic freak." Discipline for working out consistently was a glaring weakness. This will be the downfall of ANYONE regardless of their genetic potential. I touched base with Peter recently (I found him through the magic of Google) and sure enough he never reached his potential in the Iron Game. He was not even lifting anymore. He had his weaknesses, just like everyone else - regardless of genetics. He had a key weakness that would sabotage anyone's game plan in the Iron Game regardless of genetics. He never stuck with it and persisted and stayed dedicated.
You must have discipline in your eating and training to maximize YOUR potential. Some people THINK they have it when they really don't.
Here are some questions to ask yourself:
When was the last time you missed a training session?
Could you go for 2 months straight without eating sweets or junk food?
Could you go a week without eating junk food?
Are you constantly changing your routine to "make gains"?
Do you go on a "diet" at various times?
Do you come off a "diet" at various times?
Do you make excuses for your lack of gains (to yourself and others)?
Do you constantly compare yourself to others?
Do you consider what others are doing in their training more than assessing what you are doing wrong in your training?
Do you need to be "motivated" at times to train?
Do you think you can make chicken salad out of chicken s#!t?
Here's a challenge until next time. Cut out all sugar and processed sugar for ONE week. Make sure you read the labels because processed food is notorious for sugars galore.