Building an attractive physique is an intriguing concept. We all know what qualities make a body sexy (at least to us), but we don’t often consider WHY certain characteristics are associated with sensuality.
Why do we desire big shoulders in men?
Why do women find slim waists and healthy hips appealing?
As I’ve stated on the blog, the answers to those questions are based on HARD SCIENCE.
To recap, we consider the following physical characteristics attractive in individuals of each sex: An X-shaped body in a man denotes virility and strength; an hourglass-shaped figure in a woman denotes fertility and good mothering.
Because of scientifically confirmed NUMBERS, we see what is attractive partially through the eyes of those hunting for mates—we see these bodies as “hot.”
Because our minds are wired to seek symmetry and balance everywhere; to be drawn to it and to want to create it.
As a result, what we consider a good body is based in part on what we consider a body that projects certain features that indicate bodily symmetry…
which is founded on numbers such as “The Golden Ratio.”
The Golden Ratio is a number that appears all over the human body, from the length of the arms and legs in comparison to the length of the torso, and it appears to describe what proportions look best; that is, most appealing.
Indeed, artists and sculptors have long been aware of the golden ratio and have used it to produce sculptures and artwork depicting the ideal human body. (For instance, see Leonardo Da Vinci’s Vitruvian Man.) Plastic and dental doctors alike use it to reconstruct the human face.
It’s a fascinating piece of evolutionary psychology and science that makes you ponder.
So, how do we apply this knowledge to help you reach your fitness objectives and attain the body you desire?
The first step is to recognize that the physique for which YOU have worked so hard…
Your ideal body is made up of three components:
Intrinsic Symmetry Ideas Societal-Specific Created and Enforced Ideas
Personal Thoughts and Preferences
We’ve previously discussed the inherent and symmetrical parts, so let’s go on to the socially manufactured and enforced notions of what constitutes a “perfect body.”
This essentially indicates that the civilization you live in influences what you consider vital for having a decent body, and that this is generally specific to that type of society and goes beyond symmetry.
For example, in Western civilization, we place a great value on 6-pack abs, and no “ideal” figure is complete without them; this is true even though, from an evolutionary biology standpoint, our predecessors would have preferred a little fat.
Finally, you have your own thoughts about what it is like to have a “perfect body.” These are usually quite specialized in nature and go above and beyond both evolutionary and cultural goals.
For other guys, it may entail having a specific arm size; I know one of my goals since the beginning of my training was to have 17.5′′ arms. For a woman, it could mean having low body fat and fitting into a certain size of jeans without sacrificing your curves.
Okay, so what exactly is the Golden Ratio?
That’s what it is: incredibly fucking cool.
In mathematical terms, the Golden Ratio is a comparison of any two elements that enables us to proportion them optimally.
Algebraically, if you have two numbers, A and B, (A + B) divided by A equals A divided by B.
In most circumstances, this comparison will result in a ratio of 1:1.618. This occurs naturally throughout your body. For example, if the length of the hand is 1, the combined length of hand + forearm is approximately 1.618.
Similarly, the proportion of upper arm to hand + forearm is 1:618.
Looking at other parts of the body, the face is another excellent example. In fact, there are several examples of the Golden Ratio on the human face. The eyes are in the middle of a golden rectangle formed by the head. Each of the mouth and nose are situated at Golden portions of the space between the eyes and the bottom of the chin.
The figures are all over the place in places we have no control over.
Let’s speak about body proportions that we CAN control with diet and exercise.
If you have a waist measurement of 1, your goal should be to build shoulders with a measurement of 1.618. Men will be discussed first.
Using myself as an example, I have a waist measurement of 30 inches while in lean condition (but not competitive shredded). My shoulders are roughly 49 inches in circumference, therefore my Index is about appropriate (30.5 divided by 49 is 1.606).
To get close to the proportion, I’d have to either increase the circumference of my waist or decrease the size of my shoulders. I’m satisfied with the measurement, therefore I won’t do either.
Assume, for example, that a man had a 34-inch waist and 45-inch-round shoulders. His Index is approximately 1.323, indicating that he still has some work to do.
Let’s imagine our guy loses 10% of his body fat and reduces his waist measurement to 32–even if he doesn’t add muscle, his measurement has increased to 1.406.
He then goes on to employ a unique workout to bulk up his shoulders, gaining roughly 3 inches in overall circumference. Our client is now 1.5 at 48 inches and a 32 waist. That’s pretty close.
It’s a little trickier for women, because you’re looking at the waist in relation to both the shoulders and the hips.
I won’t bore you with any more arithmetic, but to put it simply, there is a resistance training program that is meant to maximize the shoulder to waist to hip ratio in order to get a woman’s body closer to its best-proportioned shape (as defined by the golden ratio).
I’d like you to consider the following:
If you’ve been attempting to get the “ideal figure,”
and that concept is founded on a synthesis of the Golden Ratio, socially constructed standards, and your own particular objectives…
maybe you’ve had some success with other programs…
How SUCCESSFUL could you become if you employed a program designed expressly for that purpose?
So, in your time in the fitness industry, you’ve done programs for fat loss, muscle building, and ab work…
You’ve done all of this in your desire to get fit and healthy, as well as to help you construct YOUR ideal physique.
Along similar lines, I know you’ve been successful, and I hope I can claim part of the credit, because some of the programs I’ve produced and advocated have aided you in your endeavors.
Now I’d want to take some MORE credit…because I’m about to introduce you to “…some next level type trash.”
In fact, I’d like to introduce you to a FREE software I’ve created for exactly what we’ve been discussing.
If you’re a man looking to construct an impressive body with strong, broad shoulders, a tiny waist, low body fat, and the Western ideal of 6-pack abs, this is a must-read:
This approach can assist in breaking the bodyweight preoccupation that so many other programs foster. Most women are obsessed with losing weight, which is something I dislike. I simply see it as a never-ending process; after all, how can they ever know when they’ve dropped enough weight?
The same is true for guys. How big is “too huge” is a wonderful topic that has always been difficult to answer quantitatively.
It is never enough. This, I feel, is what causes severe body dissatisfaction, frustration, and a loss of confidence and/or faith that getting in shape is truly achievable.
That’s why these regimens are so appealing: when you reach your golden proportions, you know you’ve arrived. It also serves as a map to show you how near you are to reaching your objective. You may not want to travel all the way to the golden target, but you can be confident that the closer you get, the better your proportions will be.
Most crucially, all of this is in relation to height, therefore the ideal ratios and figures are unique to each individual’s body. There will be no more comparing oneself to others. This isn’t about attempting to transform you into someone else; it’s about maximizing your body’s potential based on your dimensions.