When I first saw this, I laughed so hard I nearly fell out of my chair. I’ve been lifting for the better part of 25 years, and with skinny arms and legs I definitely don’t look like I lift. If he questioned me, I would have to come clean.
However, here’s a better question. Why do you lift?
Ponder that for a moment.
Around 25 years ago, I was hanging out with my longtime friend Simon, shooting the breeze and talking smack when out of the clear blue sky he had a strange request.
“Lift up your shirt,” he demanded
“Why?” I asked. The look he gave me suggested I do it or else, so I did.
“Mate, you really need to hit the gym,” he said.
He was right. I was 6’1 and weighed 145 pounds (66 kg) soaking wet. I had a concave chest, poor posture and almost no muscle tone. The very next day I joined a gym and started doing bicep curls.
(Curls are the go-to exercise for gym goers who have no idea what they’re doing)
When I first started pumping iron, vanity was my main motivator. Being skinny and lacking a little self-confidence, I wasn’t a real hit with the ladies. I wanted some size, I wanted some action and the iron was going to help me get both.
And I’m sure if you asked most gym goers, vanity would be their number one reason for torturing themselves. However, since I’ve gotten older, balder and any looks I did possess have faded away, I decided that exercising just for vanity’s sake wasn’t cutting the mustard anymore.
Being a married middle-aged man with two young sons, I had to come up with some better reasons to get out of bed and lift. After some self-reflection, here’s what I came up with.
Being role model for my kids and clients
Being a father and personal trainer, I constantly strive set a good example for my kids and clients. Nobody wants to work with a trainer who looks out of shape.
Exercise is not meant to fix you. You’re already wonderfully made, but you were only given one body and you need to take care of it, as I do. Lifting weights plays an integral role in this.
Maintain my movement
When you’re a kid, running, jumping, hopping, skipping and playing is easy. When you get older, not so much. Staying strong and resilient becomes more important as we age. Plus, I still want to play and keep up with my boys.
After losing my hair…
I’ve never wanted to fit the stereotype of the married man who let himself go. I try to stay lean because being both bald and fat is unacceptable in my humble opinion.
I might not look like I lift but I have few good reasons for why I lift. What are yours?