what do you care most about? strength? health? aesthetics?
also, have the reasons you lift changed over the years?
Do I lift? No
Did I used to lift? Yes
Why? Because I let myself get sucked into the "bigger is better" thing, wanted to be buff, and let myself get into the whole "I can bench more than you can" thing
Have I changed? Yes, I don't do it anymore. I slowed down over the years and just reached a point where I wasn't getting any enjoyment out of it anymore. It really wasn't providing anything for me from a health perspective, so I quit. Now I just think how damned heavy weights are and I don't want to be bothered I do other stuff (cycling, walking, etc.) now.
The gym has just been part of my life for 20 years and I can't be without it. Physical activity is a requirement for my mental health and lifting is just a part of that. In my late teens and 20's I trained exclusively for a physical edge in anything I was doing and that changed once I hit 30. The physical part is even more important now, but now I train smarter and I need it for clarity, stress relief, and the mental edge knowing that I am going to be a step ahead of the next guy.
I've gone through more phases, trends, diets, and ups and downs than I can count over the years. There is powerful feeling once you are so in tune with your body and health that can't be explained unless you are there.
Habit mostly. I just had a meet this weekend and tanked pretty badly. I realized I'd been training without direction or consistency and it was really obvious once the pressure came on. Now I'm debating my priorities and where I'm going to go. Olympic lifting and even powerlifting to an extent are esoteric sports with relatively little general carryover as you approach limit performance.
Life was easy when I was was just training for carryover in MMA or to be healthy and look good nekkid.
As an aside, I've found that as I've progressed I've become less and less motivated when I'm actually in the gym. Maybe it's a strengthened parasympathetic system or maybe it's the relatively slow rate of progress now. Who's to say?
To be stronger, and look better than my peers. I'm only 25, but I am watching a big majority of my friends "fall" from their peak. Ironically, I'm probably the healthiest I've ever been.
Plus, as arrogant as it is, putting in the work and time at the gym, makes me feel better than all the people who I see daily, who are over weight and complain about themselves. Some people want to change things, other people do change things. I refuse to be anything but the latter.
previously: to get skinnier to get laid
later: get strong
current - got fat when getting strong, leaning out and staying strong
also, since started lifting heavy/properly 6 years ago or so, ive noticed its a great way to keep my stress/aggression in check. comissioned sales is very stressful and it helps me vent. it also helps me sleep better/deeper which has always been a problem and it keeps me from being a bored couch potato/bar fly. i also really enjoy being a bigger dude, people give you less ****. i had some guy at a bar apologize to me for talking to my girlfreind when i was in the bathroom and he said he didnt want any problems and he wasnt hitting on her, and new years some drunk dude kept bumping into her on the dancefloor so i gave him a proper shove and he asked if he could pay my tab to smooth things over.
Last edited by ClockworkChad; 02-15-2012 at 10:20 AM.
i noticed that i'm excited to get older while i feel a lot of people are terrified of it. getting older means i lived to see another day and that's another day i can make some progress, so bring it on.
tldr, people are really starting to look like **** and that's pretty much all the motivation i need.
Because it's tax season, and my career is in corporate tax. If I don't use it as an outlet, bad things may happen.
Plus I've been doing it for 16 some-odd years, and yet I still learn new things every week. My current goals are to look prettier when I walk down the aisle in May... kinda defeats the whole "to get chicks" thing though.
And its still nice to be able to deadlift and squat over twice my weight, when I feel like it.
As someone new to lifting - I started as an alternative to cardio in order to lose fat and gain muscle. I always avoided exercise because I hated cardio and was never educated on the benefits of lifting in order to improve physique.
Now that I've seen the benefits and the changes, I do it mostly now because I truly enjoy it and I'm excited to see physical changes in my body. It's also neat to see and feel myself getting stronger.
I've been lifting for about 15 years and just can't quit. Right now I can eat just about what ever I want without gaining too much weight which is probably the biggest plus. Everyone keeps saying when you get to X years you won't be able to eat like that but it seems like if I keep lifting I can keep eating
I have been asked this and asked myself this many times over the years.
I'm extremely competitive, so I look at the gym like this. for about $20-30 a month ANYONE can be in shape, in fact, ANYONE can lift heavy and be really strong. We all spend about the same amount on food so eating right and dieting isn't something reserved for certain people.
The point is, physical fitness is something that damn near everyone in America has access to, and in many cases, it takes less time and money than peoples' other hobbies.....and yet, most people NEVER go to the gym or eat right. I love it because it's something just about everybody has the opportunity to be great at and yet only the strong willed and strong minded do it.
It makes me feel amazing, it keeps me motivated to constantly be hitting new goals, looking great, and testing my body's limits and most importantly I get to look down on all the sorry saps that let themselves go day after day and complain about it.
What dras and kryptonic said.
What you all said about guys looking old, fat and depressed.... Multiply that by 1000000 for women.
I am 42 and in really great shape because I never really lapsed out of shape. I had ups and downs but am always motivated to be healthy inside and out.
A lot of my peers look like **** now, complain all the time about their weight and their looks. I do NOT want to be like them, ever. Never. They blame it on work, stress, relationships, etc... Well, guess what, I have those stresses too and being strong helps me deal.
Last edited by Katie-S; 02-15-2012 at 06:16 PM.
1. Its Fun.
2. Stay in shape
3. Able to eat what ever I want.
4. Keeps me sane
5. Helps me sleep.
The cocky reasons.
1. People dont bother you at all.
2. You know you can pick anyone up and toss them if needed
3. What others struggle with , I can one arm it
4. My arms are bigger then your legs
Last edited by Chilledman; 02-15-2012 at 09:42 PM.
but for me i would have to say aesthetics and health are tied for first in importance, and strength has become less important over the years. as i've gotten older i have seen some sickness and pulled muscles so i value health wayyyy more than i did when i first started lifting and eating right.
x is right, it's cheap and it doesn't take much time to lift. food costs arent much different, if anything it can be cheaper if you buy in bulk at BJs or sams. i think mentally it does a great deal as well. most people complain about the lack of time, but a bunch of ppl on this forum work full-time, attend multiple classes simultaneously, and are able to maintain relationships and friendships. there really is no legit excuse not to be in shape, outside of a medical condition that prohibits you.