Why Greek Athletes Been in So Great Shape Without Any Supplements

People always were fascinated with Greek Gods and their perfect bodies. According to the Greeks mythology, they were charming, strong, six-packed and were a symbol of the masculinity. What else can you ask for?
Even back then, every guy wanted to look like a Greek God. This situation hasn’t changed today. Greek Gods are idols for a lot of people, and even for the professional athletes.
Keeping the body in such a perfect form was an extremely hard job, but they did have something that other nations don’t – amazing genetics from their ancient ancestors. But anyway, how did they stay in such amazing shape without any supplements?

“War is training for sport and sport is training for war.” (Philistratos AD 200)


The Perfect Formula

If we dig under the surface we will find the answer – they had a perfect formula. They combined amazing genetics with good food and constant exercising.
Who says that we need to take whey protein through the drinks, oatmeal, etc? They didn’t do that. They ate food rich in protein and they have the famous Breakfast of Champions, as it is the most important meal of the day.
Some ordinary breakfast of Greek athlete’s looked like this – instead of drinking the glass of water on the empty stomach, they usually drunk apple cider vinegar mixed with a pure lemon juice. They also couldn’t leave without a bowl of oatmeal with fruits.
Greek culture tells us how important to exercise everyday. But remember, Greeks were sculpting the ideal human body, not the normal one.


Excercising routine:

  • Greeks were lathering or massaging the body in natural oils before exercising because it gives the body a distinctive glisten.
  • For the ancient athletes running was a must. They run a lot as running gives the highest cardiovascular payoff with the littlest effort.
  • There were no slick gym machines and Greeks relied purely on body-weight exercises using whatever they could find. Lifting stones and animals for strength.
  • Ancient Greeks believed that workout and music should be blended together. So when you want to listen to a motivational song while going for a morning run or start cross fit routine with a jump rope this is absolutely right thing to do.
  • They were structuring the routine to optimise performance for a specific skill or goal. Do you think Arnold was just lucky to become Mr. Olympia? No, he had the perfect plan.
  • While the workout place where they inflicted stress on muscles, it’s during the post-workout recovery period that they actually grew. They made the most of the recovery phase with massages and spa sessions.


A legendary ancient Greek athlete Milo of Croton dreamed of being the strongest man in all of Greece. To gain strength, he started carrying a bull calf on his shoulders. He was doing that every single day, and as the bull grew in size, Milo’s strength grew too.

Formula = genetics + healthy food + fitness

This formula looks simple, but it takes time to build a Greek God’s body.
For Greeks, the strength was vitally important. They usually were raised on the Spartans way, they learnt to fight from the childhood, watch the 300 movie with Gerard Butler and you will get the point how tough it was to become a real Greek warrior.

It was in their culture and blood, they had to become strong, fearless and unstoppable. This lays in motivation and traditions, and supplements was never a part of this routine. They were born this way, and all they needed to do is to make sure they will achieve this goal.

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James Macferson

James Macferson is a sports and health enthusiast. He mostly writes for Budomate Magazine and JabCross Blog, but always glad to share his fitness knowledge with community anywhere anytime.

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