Mark Wahlberg denies steroid use and says his muscles are 'all natural'
Perhaps now more than at any other point in our collective history, a premium is placed upon being in the utmost peak of physical condition.
Possibly this is due to the parallel universe through which we live our lives on social media; where the mundanity of reality is not tolerated, eschewed instead for a fiction that bares little semblance to what we might quaintly refer to as 'real life'.
After all, what use is one's social media profile if it isn't splattered with topless selfies that show off improbable figures of Adonis-like proportions - washboard abs and bulging biceps coupled oh-so predictably with that permanent, glowing tan.
Social media, then, has encouraged us to hit the gym (with perhaps better effect than any genuine health warning) instead of lounging around on the couch and passively consuming biscuits might have. The phrase 'pics or it didn't happen' might as well be referring to one's physique as any exciting outward bound journey.
As with previous generations, we are also confronted with paradigms of physical perfection on the glossy covers of our favourite magazines, each promising more than they could possibly deliver in terms of four week diet plans that purport to transform the undertakers into something essentially resembling a collection of rippling muscles with a head on top.
In short, we are essentially drowning in ideals of what our bodies could look like, if only we amble to the gym five times a week and eat 'clean'.
Celebrities know this better than anyone. The rich and famous - especially women - are subjected to near impossible physical ideals, perhaps borne out of the heroic characters they portray on screen. Though some progress has been made on this front, the accepted ideal in Hollywood appears to remain that men must be muscle bound hunks and women slender, petite beauties.
Clearly this is an outmoded concept, yet it persists.
Mark Wahlberg, clearly, falls into the former category. The Boston native is what someone a little more trendy than I might describe as a 'certified hunk', and over the years he has certainly lived up to this billing in a plethora of movie roles.
This had led some to believe - ably abetted by reports from TMZ - that Wahlberg might have had a little help along the way in maintaining his astonishing physique through the use of steroids. The website recently claimed that Wahlberg, along with Josh Duhamel and WWE star Roman Reigns used aliases to obtain performance enhancing substances from the now jailed Richard Rodriguez.
Wahlberg, though, is having absolutely none of it. He has outright denied the reports, stating that his muscle bound torso is "all natural". With a flex of considerable bicep he continues;
"You know what this is?
"That's hard work."
He concludes, quite rightly;
"If you wanna do something right, you've gotta work hard, baby.
"Why put yourself and your health at risk when you can work hard and be a good example?"
If you want to look like Wahlberg, then, get yourself in the gym, and stay off the PEDs, whatever you do.