There has been some discussion about body fat in relation to my post on fake male 10s on Tinder. Of course, in general, lower body fat will lead to better results with the ladies. That being said, I see three problems with guys discussing body fat percentages online:
1) Mental masturbation
What do I mean by that? Put simply, if you don’t fit on a single seat in a bus and go online to argue about optimum body fat percentage for men, you need to get your priorities straight. This is not unrelated to virgins discussing how to pick up women.
Just as there are guys out there who are fat and love to speculate how great their life would be if their belly fat turned into a nice six-pack over night, there are guys who are in great shape and don’t seem to know when to stop. The best analogy may be anorectic girls. They start out wanting to be slim, but end up with serious health issues. If you work out, you probably have met guys with serious vanity issues. The problem is not that it’s bad to look great. Quite the contrary. However, diminishing returns are real. If you spend two hours in the gym six days a week — I met such a guy just recently — then maybe you’re not using your time in the smartest way possible.
Of course, if you are a professional body builder or a fitness model, then just keep doing what you are doing. But if you are Joe Regular with a workout fetish, then keep in mind that you can get largely identical results with less effort.
3) Ignoring the bigger issue: muscles
Frankly, low body fat itself doesn’t say much. It’s about how muscular you are, and how visible your muscles are. If you are slender, with 8% body fat and atrophied muscles, and arms like a girl, you’ll most certainly do a lot worse than someone else with a decent physique and 15% body fat.
In general, I don’t think low body fat percentages are such a big deal anyway. Cashing in on 8% vs 15% of body fat is only possible if you are in an environment where you can actually show off your body, for instance if you go to clubs or raves where plenty of guys dance half-naked and you are able to quickly establish that your physique is in the top 2%. This can get you attention fast. On the other hand, if this is not the case, then I am tempted to say that you’ll be just as well off with 20%, in most cases. The reason is that once your shirt goes off, in the bedroom, it’s a done deal anyway. For one-night stands, a great physique is a big plus. For relationships, it is an advantage, but a few percent more body fat than you’d like to have are not a deal breaker. In fact, in an environment in which you have to be fully clothed, you may have a much more commanding presence with 20% body fat than with 8%.