Most beginners to the iron game (most men, anyway) take up lifting weights with the goal of getting bigger. “Bigger” is usually interpreted as more muscular. Contrary to this common view, however, the two are not synonymous.
Some are content with simply taking up a lot of space, and that’s okay. You know the type: thick sweatshirts and the heavy weights at the gym, stuffed like a sausage in an XL t-shirt at the bar. Even I chased this ideal after being a scrawny kid for a long time. I didn’t care about what kind of mass I was carrying, just as long as I was viewed as a “big” guy!
However, as an adult you get to the point where you want to step into the shower and see lines on your waist that aren’t wrinkles or stretch marks. You want to appear in photos without being confused for a blowfish.
I’ve met a lot of pro bodybuilders in person over the years, and as insanely muscular as they are, they don’t take up as much space as you would think (at least when they’re in contest shape). In other words, put them next to a Sumo wrestler and the Sumo would blow them away in terms of sheer size. But what’s more impressive to you, a massive piece of clay or a heavily detailed and well-proportioned sculpture? That’s up for you to decide, but I can tell you that the visual impact of a very lean, muscular body can be much more impressive than a bigger, smoother body; regardless of how much space it takes up.