Yesterday I worked out at The Attitude Nation Gym owned by my friend Jon North. Most of you know that Jon along with Ryan Grady are my co-hosts on Weightlifting Talk a podcast that I do every week on Tuesday and Thursday at 1p. Sometimes I get to work out with them, and for those couple of hours I am transformed into a 20 year old. All I am thinking about is the moment, and I am just a young kid having fun. It is my golf! It is my guitar lesson! I love lifting weights with my friends possibly competing with each other and talking a little mess. Jon talks mess every time, and I love it. I feed right into his madness, and we just spend two hours slamming bars and forgetting the problems of the world.
I’m not saying that people should try and escape the problems of the world totally, but as you head them straight on find an outlet just to rewind. I have loved weightlifting and weight training since I was 12 years old. I started working out at the local gym in my hometown of Jefferson, NC, and I was hooked from the squat. People often ask me, “Why do you still train so hard?” The answer is complicated because unless you’ve experienced the “results” of hard training, you’ll never understand. What I mean is the ability to alter your body is freeing. It is something that you can control to a degree. If I want to get strong, I lift heavy. If I want to get big, I use lots of rep. If I want to get ripped, I do more of a metabolic workout and watch my diet. If you put the time in, the results will come. For me the first time I watched my maxes go up I was hooked! Now at 40 years old nothing has changed! If I put the time in, the results will come. There are other challenges now like avoiding injury and proper recovery, but those challenges just add to the fun.
A key that I have found is that I am not competing in the Master’s Division(40+ years old) yet. I am competing in weightlifting and powerlifting this year at the highest of levels against all the youngsters, and I love it. I get to train with one of the best powerlifters and one of the best weightlifters in the country. Greg Nuckols just broke the all-time 242lb drug free raw Powerlifting record, and Jon North is one of the best 94k weightlifters in the country. These two are my training partners, so I can’t slack off. It’s awesome because trying to hang with both of them makes me feel their same age. I am doing their weights, and moving like they do. Listen if you are 35+, quit throwing in the towel and compete against younger people. Don’t surrender in life! Quit giving yourself some lame excuses as to why you can’t do the same things that you used to do. I am telling you that if you want to look and feel like you did when you were 18 years old, then do the same things that you were doing when you were 18.
I’ve given my fountain of youth secrets away this morning, but my job alone keeps me young. I have a distinct advantage because I train young people, so being around that environment keeps me motivated to workout. I am not giving an excuse for anyone. I still believe that people need to get out from behind their desk and sprint, jump, and lift weights. Don’t ever stop these three things, and the aging process will slow. A big key is to pick a goal and go after it. There are several competitions that people can enter now like: Crossfit, weightlifting, powerlifting, strongman, or Highland games. You don’t have to win just compete against yourself, and each time try to better your performance. My friend Coach Joe Kenn, Head Strength Coach for the Carolina Panthers, lives this code that I am talking about. He is always competing. Now he is doing Highland games, and he is having a blast. He is improving all the time at the events, and he is staying young in the process. Anyone who knows him realizes that he is just an overgrown kid that loves finding new ways to get yoked in the weight room. My point to all of this is compete in life, have fun, and stay yoked!
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