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The Ugly Truth about Getting Shredded

If you want to drastically look lean and strong, you should know this first.

Find out the ugly truth about getting shredded from a professional natural bodybuilder.

Navigating the journey from a lean physique to a shredded one may seem like the pinnacle of fitness success, especially with the constant exposure to influencers maintaining chiselled physiques year-round.

However, behind the scenes lies a darker reality that many may overlook. In this article, we’ll unravel three harsh realities that accompany the pursuit of being shredded and provide a more practical approach to achieving and maintaining your desired physique.

The ugly truth about getting shredded was highlighted by Jeff Nippard. He is a natural professional bodybuilder and fitness coach who shares tips and training programs on his YouTube channel.

Unlike many influencers online, he decided to get to the dark side of losing body fat and increasing muscle mass to appear as shredded as possible. See below 3 dark truths about getting shredded and some tips from him to do change your body while staying healthy.

Tia-Clair-Toomey-Madison-Triplus-CrossFit-Games-2018Source: Photo courtesy of CrossFit Inc

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The Ugly Truth about Getting Shredded

Below are Nippard’s 3 ugly truths about getting shredded that most people don’t talk about.

The Illusion of Size:

Reality 1: Lighting, Flexing, and the Natty Triangle Achieving that shredded look often involves strategic lighting, flexing, and selective camera angles. Our fitness enthusiast, in a moment of transparency, reveals that looking jacked is a temporary state, usually limited to specific circumstances. He introduces the concept of the “natty triangle,” where individuals must choose two out of three options: being shredded, natural, or big. While a select few might embody all three simultaneously, for most, it’s a balancing act between these elements.

Mental Struggles:

Reality 2: Body Dysmorphia and Unfulfilled Expectations The journey to extreme leanness can lead to an unexpected mental battle. Body dysmorphia tends to intensify at very low body fat percentages, diminishing the ability to perceive one’s physique objectively. Confidence and body image improvements may plateau or even decline as individuals push into shredded territory. The relentless pursuit of perfection often blinds them to the progress achieved, a realization that usually dawns only in hindsight.

Unhealthy Side Effects:

Reality 3: Health Consequences of Being Shredded Even for natural athletes, reaching shredded status comes with physiological consequences. A case study of a male bodybuilder undergoing a six-month diet showcases the toll it takes on hormone levels, including a drastic drop in testosterone. Elevated ghrelin, reduced leptin, and skyrocketing cortisol contribute to increased hunger, mood disturbances, and severe sleep interruption. Women, in particular, may experience menstrual disruptions, infertility, and bone mineral loss.

A Practical Approach:

While these realities paint a daunting picture, the article doesn’t end on a discouraging note. Instead, it provides a practical approach to achieving and maintaining a lean physique without succumbing to the extremes:

1. Body Fat Set Point:

  • Introducing the concept of the dual intervention point model, the article emphasizes finding the bottom end of your body fat set range. Each individual has a unique set point range, and sustainable leanness lies within this boundary. Going below this boundary may trigger adverse effects, while staying above it hinders progress.

2. Progress and Sustainability:

  • Acknowledging the challenges of fat loss, the article encourages individuals to recognize normal hurdles like hunger, cravings, and temporary strength loss. However, when the journey becomes all-consuming, it’s time for introspection and a possible reassessment of goals.

3. Realistic Expectations:

  • The article advocates for a more realistic approach to maintaining a lean physique. It highlights that the desire to stay shredded year-round can impede progress in size and strength. Balancing the low end of one’s set range while allowing room for progress and recovery becomes crucial for long-term success.

In conclusion, the pursuit of a shredded physique demands a nuanced understanding of the trade-offs involved. While the journey may offer temporary visual rewards, the long-term consequences can be profound.

The key lies in finding a sustainable balance that aligns with your body’s natural set point, allowing you to enjoy the benefits of a lean physique without compromising your overall health and well-being.

Watch the video below for more information regarding the ugly truth about getting shredded shared by Jeff Nippard.

There is one important note that you should be aware of before discovering how to get shredded. Getting shredded will not be the same as being healthy. In fact, maintaining a shredding physique for a long period of time (a year or longer) will possibly be detrimental to your health.

This is similar to a previous take we wrote about how to eat for performance, for aesthetics or for health.

How to Eat for Performance Vs Health Vs Looks?

There is no one size fits all and to get shredded will definitely mean you are not going to be as strong as you possibly can be as you will need to cut your body fat percentage to very low numbers.

Ultimate Guide On How to Get Shredded – Steps to Lower Your Body Fat Percentage Every Time

Ensuring a healthy body fat percentage contributes significantly to overall health and well-being, offering a range of potential advantages. Here are some notable benefits associated with maintaining a low body fat percentage:

  1. Reduced Risk of Chronic Diseases:
    • Research indicates that a low body fat percentage may lower the risk of chronic diseases, including heart disease, diabetes, and certain types of cancer.
  2. Improved Cardiovascular Health:
    • Lower body fat is linked to enhanced cardiovascular health, manifesting in lower blood pressure and cholesterol levels.
  3. Enhanced Physical Performance:
    • A lower body fat percentage can positively impact athletic performance by boosting strength, speed, and endurance.
  4. Less Strain on Joints:
    • Excess body fat can strain joints, resulting in pain and a higher injury risk. Maintaining a lower body fat percentage reduces this strain, promoting joint health.
  5. Enhanced Self-Esteem and Body Image:
    • Some individuals experience improved self-esteem and body image when maintaining a low body fat percentage, contributing to better mental health and overall well-being.

It’s crucial to acknowledge that an excessively low body fat percentage can lead to adverse effects, such as hormonal imbalances, compromised immune function, and decreased bone density. Striving for a healthy body fat percentage is key, and extreme lows should be avoided. Consulting with a healthcare professional can help determine the optimal body fat percentage for individual health and well-being.

How to Increase Your Metabolism

Metabolism refers to the chemical processes that occur within an organism to maintain life. It is an essential process that is responsible for converting food into energy, building and repairing tissues, and removing waste products from the body.

Metabolism is important for several reasons:

  1. Energy production: Metabolism is responsible for converting the food we eat into energy that our cells can use. This energy is necessary for all bodily functions, from breathing to walking.
  2. Tissue maintenance: Metabolism is also responsible for building and repairing tissues in the body. This includes the growth and repair of muscles, bones, and organs.
  3. Waste removal: Metabolism helps to eliminate waste products from the body, such as carbon dioxide, urea, and other toxins.
  4. Regulation of body weight: Metabolism plays a key role in regulating body weight. A slow metabolism can make it more difficult to lose weight, while a fast metabolism can help to burn more calories.
  5. Hormone production: Metabolism is responsible for the production of hormones, which are chemical messengers that regulate various bodily functions.

Overall, metabolism is a critical process for maintaining optimal health and wellness. A healthy metabolism helps to ensure that the body is functioning properly, which can help to prevent a variety of health problems.

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