The Tetralogy of Physique Composition

By Aadam | July 7, 2016

I’ve come to note that when it comes to physique composition, there are four tenets that control and dictate everything.

I’ve named this The Tetralogy of Physique Composition. 

[from the Greek word tetra-, “four” and logia, “discourse” ] 

These are: Stimulus, Signal, Supply & Demand
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Let’s take a look at them in detail. 

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The stimulus is what you do. 
 
– Lift weights, run, jump, move.
 
OR, conversely, what you don’t do.
 
– Sitting and lying.
 
The stimulus you provide your body dictates the state of your body. 

 

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The signal is the response from the stimulus. It tells your body what to do. 
 
Lift more than you run, you get bigger and stronger. Run more than you lift, you get better at running but also lose size and strength.

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Your body’s done what you’ve signalled it to do. Now it’s going to demand something back from you. 
 
The demand being nutrients, rest and recovery so that nature can do its thing and you can get bigger and stronger.
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Your body’s done what it’s been told; in turn, it’s asked for something back. You need to supply.
Supply: Calories, rest, and recovery.
 

The four of these work in tandem.

 

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When we lift weights, we’re stimulating the muscles. This stimulation signals the muscles to work and contract, in turn creating demand. When we’ve created demand, we then have a requirement to give the body what it needs: Supply.

If any of these are missing or out of place, then well, you’ve thrown your body for a loop. 
If you’re oversupplying the body with food, in the absence of stimulus you get fat gain.
Undersupplying the body with food, when there’s a demand? You don’t build muscle and strength.
Want to build muscle but not providing the right stimulus [right exercises, rep ranges, programming] you’re not gonna grow, regardless how much protein you eat.

The correct manipulation of these factors will work in your favour.

Want to lose fat?
Increase demand, reduce supply and give your body a stimulus. 
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When you’ve given your body a stimulus [weight training], and in turn reduced the supply [food intake], your body’s forced to use its existing supply [fat stores] for energy and recovery.
Do this for long enough and you lose fat while building or retaining muscle.
Want to build muscle?
Provide a stimulus, and then supply the body with nutrients. 
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Without a stimulus your body doesn’t know what to do with food. When muscle gain is the goal, the training [stimulus] comes first, this creates demand from the body. Once demands been created, the food you eat will be better utilised; meaning less fat and more muscle.
Easy, huh?
This concept is something I’m going to be referencing to in future articles, so I need you to understand the basics first.