This obsession has become so common that Dr. Pope has come up with a term for it: Adonis Complex. What fuels it, he says, are the ridiculously outsized bodies purveyed by Hollywood, magazine covers, and even action-toy manufacturers (just check out the size of . Joe these days). "One of the biggest lies being handed to American men today is that you can somehow attain by natural means the huge shoulders and pectorals of the biggest men in the magazines," says Dr. Pope. "Generations of young men are working hard in the gym and wondering what on earth they're doing wrong. They don't realize that the 'hypermale' look that's so prevalent these days is essentially unattainable without steroids."
As he sat for a steak-and-shrimp lunch in an Applebee’s near the gym, he was approached by several patrons and the waitress went on and on about his arms every time she came near the table. This is what it is always like, he said, but it has been magnified since he became the Guinnes poster boy. Forty kids from Gordon College recently tracked him down at the gas station to pose for photos. The attention, he admits, is his motivation. For all the ups and down, he says he has never looked down at his muscles and wished they were not there.