Biceps, quads, pecs - for many a gay guy, muscles make the man. And is it any wonder?
A muscular body signifies male with a capital "M."|
been that way ever since the days of ancient Rome, when gorgeous
had great glutes, writes Simon Sheppard. Gays and gym-toned bodies weren't always quite so
synonymous, though. In the days before Stonewall, the stereotypical gay
was a willowy "fairy," somewhere between the sexes. It's only in the
decades that large numbers of openly gay guys have embraced
would say with a vengeance, and with manliness came musculature. Add
health-consciousness (due in part to AIDS) and you've got a nation of
OutUK members click here to see an X rated illustration
Non-members click here to join OutUK
"There is just something," says one gay man who's no slouch in the
department himself, "about a really well-muscled body that gets my
and makes me hard." And he's far from alone; a romp through the porn
of recent years will reveal an upsurge in bulk and definition.
"Muscle tone is good for you," says a gay personal trainer. "I know
I started to work out I felt more energetic and self-confident." And
"Well, yeah, of course."
On-line cruising is full of men looking to serve muscular hunks and
define themselves by how often they go to the gym. "Okay," says the
"it may seem a bit obsessive, but at least the muscle guys are
what they actually are, rather than their possessions or jobs."
For some men, though, working out seems like a full-time job, and not
everyone adores that. "Some of these hunks just work on themselves so
that it makes me suspicious," says a skeptic. "It's way beyond getting
It's like they're running away from something, figuring their muscles
make them invulnerable to HIV, homophobia, ageing, whatever." There's
nasty, though unfounded, rumour that the bigger the muscles, the smaller
dick. That's just sour grapes, of course; any cock is bound to look
when nestled between thighs the size of sequoias.
In the gay community at large, the power of six-pack abs has never been
stronger. For some of us, the quest for physical perfection is bound to
great physiques are due to genetics as well as free weights. And the
of the perfect bod can be as damaging to some guys' self-esteem as it
women (and many gay men) with eating disorders.
But let's face it, many of us less-than-ripped guys will gratefully get
on our knees to worship lovely lats, ripped abs, and potent pecs. "When
with a well-built man," says a muscle seeker, "I feel so safe, like I'm
presence of a big, strong animal who'll take good care of me. And so
damn near anything to please him."
Twinks and bears have their fans, of course, and not every gym hunk is
looking for a partner as pumped-up as himself. Some great bods owe
to steroids, proof that some men will harm themselves in order to look
"healthy." And then there are the muscle queens who are so
can't walk down the sidewalk without waddling. And yet there's
something gorgeous about rippling muscles beneath taut skin, a V-shaped
torso, calves as large as most guys' thighs. Want to get pumped?
should pump up.
MORE OUTUK OUTFIT: EXERCISE AND SEX
MORE OUTUK OUTFIT: EXERCISING EFFECTIVELY
MORE OUTUK OUTFIT: DEVELOPING INTUITION