Playing With: Charles Atlas Superpower
: A person can become nigh-superhuman (or even actually superhuman) just by training hard.
- Straight: Fighting Fist, a member of the Justice Team, started with fortunate genes and spent years learning the martial arts. As a result, he can keep up with his more flashy-powered teammates in battles, even though he technically doesn't have any superpowers.
- Exaggerated: Thanks to Training from Hell from infancy, Fighting Fist is able to go toe-to-toe with gods. Indeed, thanks to his superior physical prowess, the laws of physics are just suggestions to him.
- Downplayed: Fighting Fist is by no means the strongest member of the Justice Team, but he is the most skilled and steady, making him a strong part of the team because of the focus gained from his training.
- If you happened to have excellent health and train eighteen hours a day, you too could pull off some pretty impressive stunts.
- Or the universe in question has Ki Attacks or Functional Magic.
- Subverted: Fighting Fist claims to have gained his prowess through training, but in reality he's a mutant with Super Strength and a Healing Factor. Whether or not Fighting Fist knew this can vary.
- Double Subverted:
- Which he then parleyed into even more impressive development through more Training from Hell.
- Alternatively: He loses his mutant powers, but can still fight effectively.
- Alternatively: He lied about that and is in fact normal, but because he works with mutants, he often avoids traps that are specifically designed to defeat them launched by people still thinking he's abnormal.
- Bob, a ninety-eight pound weakling, sends away for the Charles Atlas training course. After one day of hard training, he's turned into a hulking mass of muscle who can defeat kaiju with his bare hands.
- Charles Atlas himself is a superhero.
- Zig Zagged: Bob wants to be superhuman, but he's told superpowers only exist in fiction, so takes physical training to become a Badass Normal instead. This awakens his dormant superpowers, because he's really a superhuman placed with a normal family.
- Averted: All superbeings in the story have actual superpowers of some kind, physical training just makes them better in a normal way.
- Enforced: "We want to show that 'normal' humans can contribute too. Have one of the Justice Team be just some guy that trains really hard."
- Lampshaded: "Since when does kung fu allow you to punch time?"
- Invoked: A man who wants to be a superhero in a world where superpowers don't exist plunges himself into Training from Hell in order to become the world's first.
- Exploited: Bob is the only one who can train to such levels, so he sells training sessions with him for exorbitantly high prices.
- Defied: "Train for years in some cold monastery? Forget it. I'll just swallow some Super Serum."
- Discussed: "Fighting Fist? Don't take this the wrong way, but are you absolutely certain you're not a mutant or something? 'Cause I know lots of other martial artists who train hard, and they can't do that stuff."
- Conversed: "After reading about Fighting Fist, I get the urge to actually go out and exercise for a while."
- Deconstructed: The amount of training necessary to achieve such phenomenal physical prowess has left Fighting Fist with no time for other pursuits, such as learning to read, interacting with the opposite sex, developing job skills, etc. In addition, there are in fact upper limits to what the human body can achieve, and when going up against actual superhumans, FF hits those limits hard. Fighting Fist ultimately meets his end in "battle" with the inhumanly strong supervillain Brik, who messily kills him with all the effort most people put into swatting a fly.
- Reconstructed: Fighting Fist can make money fighting, and teaching others his training methods. And among his other physical skills, he's really good in bed.
- Implied: Fighting Fist certainly does things that look superhuman, but whenever asked about his training he only gives out workouts humans can do.
- Played For Laughs: Fighting Fist is very clearly above the rest of the population, but is so incompetent he can never actually use his training effectively.
Are you ready to start training to make a new you? Then click the link Back to Charles Atlas Superpower