Group Discussion: Why we do what we do.
- 10-26-2007, 09:18 AM
Group Discussion: Why we do what we do.
So I've been thinking, especially since I've been frequenting the board much more lately, why do I lift weights? Why did I begin in the first place? What keeps me going? What are my goals and what do I get out of doing it? Let's all be honest here. Everyone has specific reasons. Some do it to feel good about how they look. A few do it to impress the opposite sex. Others may do it to compete, whether it is in bodybuilding shows or power lifting competitions. Maybe it’s a combination of things.
Let me start. I started training with weights in high school because I had a negative self image of myself. I had low self esteem and felt kind of goofy. I was tall, had big feet, but was pretty skinny. Think sideshow Bob. Not only that, but I planned on joining the Marines so I wanted to be “in shape.” After a while it just sort of grew on me. It got to the point where I HAD to go to the gym. In fact, that’s how it is now. It’s like an addiction for me. Honestly, I don’t lift to push around a ton of weight. Don’t get me wrong, I’m a strong guy, but that isn’t my primary focus. I like to feel good about me. I like the confidence it gives me. Women like men who are in shape as opposed to men who aren’t. Women are more attracted to physically superior men. It says a lot about who you are and it definitely gets you noticed. And it’s just plain healthy. I can never see myself not working out in some way or another. I have some decent size, but I would like to add some more mass to my frame while staying as lean as I am now. Not to the point where it effects my ability to run or participate in athletics’ (I notice as my weight increases, pain in my joints increase as well), but just enough to satisfy me.
What about everyone else? What are your experiences? Goals? Reasons? Comments? I'm curious so let’s get this ball rolling.
- 10-26-2007, 09:58 AM
as of lately its to be more intimidating. I started lifting for the same reasons you did, I was a skinny kid. I also like the attention from the ladies, that is a big reason. Goal is to be the biggest guy whereever I go in town. I want to be the biggest man of whatever place I'm in. Stupid probably, but its a goal.
- 10-26-2007, 10:19 AM
I was a runner in HS and had been the skinny kid all of my life. After a while, I developed some bad body image issues. Also, lifting gave me an outlet that I had never had before because it was a time when I had to deal with nothing else except for my next set. Even now as I have started training MMA, I still enjoy lifting the most and I wish that I could lift as much as I once did.M.Ed. Ex Phys
10-26-2007, 10:40 AM
10-26-2007, 10:41 AM
10-26-2007, 10:42 AM
10-26-2007, 10:43 AM
Great thread. Well lets see....
I was 40 years old and was tryin to kill myself with booze. I quit drinking, (with a little help from my friends ) Dropped from a bloated 225 pounds down to 175. I had always wanted to be in good shape, and I needed a complete change of lifestyle, so I bought some free weights and a bench for the house and was working out every day. My fiancee bought me a trial membership to a gym. I loved it! The change has been fairly dramatic. One of these days I'll have the balls to post some pics.
10-26-2007, 10:52 AM
Close to redwolf, I got on the scale in mid january at 245lbs and probably close to 50% bodyfat and said wtf am I doing, i'm successful everywhere else in my life, except keeping my body together. So I stopped drink (miss it sometimes still) and started working out, then more heavily as time has gone on. Its something I really enjoy. I'm still too fat (somewhere around 202#, and low to mid 20s bf%) but i've easily added 15-25lbs of lean mass while dropping 40+ scale pounds. I plan to be a ripped 180s by summer
10-26-2007, 11:05 AM
Awesome. I love hearing stories like that. Not only do we work out to look and feel great, but we also do it to perhaps save our own life. Whether it be from obesity, alcoholism, or whatever. Now that you are where you're at, could you EVER imagine resorting back to your old lifestyle?
10-26-2007, 11:13 AM
This is a pretty good thread.
Mine started back when I was in college my freshman year. I did not do it correctly or seriously for that matter. The thing that intitially got me to start lifting weights was I was going on a vacation with this girl I liked in Mexico in the summer and wanted to be in shape by then (2 months). Of course this was just the beginning and I did not make much progress.
This was the beginning and I did my own research for quite a while. I hit a lot of deadends, credited to bb.com primarly and have learned from them. I went through a phase similar to tattoedpierced did where I wanted the attention/wanted to be the biggest guy whereever I went....hands down. Around this time I started becoming overly obsessed with bodybuilding to the extreme.
Then around Feb '07 I started thinking to myself about my current lifestyle. I was bodybuilding not to be healthy, but as some type of cover-up for an esteem issue with 'having to be the biggest guy'. This sorta revolved itself around why I kept lifting.
From then until now I do it to be healthy first, looks second. It is nice to be 'bigger', but I really don't care if there are guys who are bigger than me. Its not that big of a deal. I used to have a very unhealthy eating style and looking back I'm pretty astounded what I used to eat and what quantities I used to eat, however I do still eat a bit from time to time, for example:
2x Bacon Egg cheese bagels
2x Sausage McMuffins
1x breakfast burrito
I can actually eat all that in one sitting, and every now and then I like to do that. It costs me over $10.00 though just for that meal.
10-26-2007, 11:16 AM
not trying to cover up self esteem... i am very confidant in myself..i just like being the "big guy"... i get a laugh out of it and find it amusing.
10-26-2007, 11:20 AM
10-26-2007, 11:23 AM
10-26-2007, 11:25 AM
10-26-2007, 11:29 AM
I was 5'11 and 135 lbs dripping wet leaving HS, all the way into my Junior year of college. I was a swimmer all through high school and a partier my first two years of college. I hated being the scrawny kid...always was and figured I always would be. Constantly a point of jest for my larger peers, I wanted to get big enough to kick their ass basically.
At the end of my sophomore year of college I joined a fraternity (lambda chi alpha) and met a couple of dudes, later became my roommates who were into lifting weights. To me they were huge, and tossed around huuuuge weight. I started lifting junior year, because they were my roommates and shamed me into it. Showed me how to eat right, how to lift right, and continually motivated me. Its now three years later and Im about 45lbs heavier and I love lifting with a passion. And Im working towards a lean 190.
10-26-2007, 11:30 AM
10-26-2007, 12:32 PM
I started out lifting because at the time I was doing pushups, sit ups, dips and the like at my house and loved the feeling I'd get when I was done. I'd dropped about 10lbs doing it, and I figured lifting actual weight would be even better.
I was about 180 at the time, then after lifting for a few years I was about 180, but alot bigger.
Then I started getting more attention from the ladies.
For the most part its just a personal journey, me against myself. It gives me great self confidence knowing I can perform some physical feat, even though it doesn't really mean much in the grand scheme of things.
Its brought me both better health, and poorer health, so I figure I'll take the injuries over just sitting on a couch eating garbage all day and watching tv.
When Im in the gym I'm there for me. If someone wants to watch me work out great. I don't care if they do or not. The weights are going up regardless.
10-26-2007, 12:58 PM
10-26-2007, 01:01 PM
10-26-2007, 02:27 PM
I was a big stoner in highschool. I quit base bass right before freshman year and never really got involved with highschool sports. I basically partied and rode dirt bikes. I finaly got sick of being baked all the tim, got my sh*t togather and started to go to the gym. It has become almost an adiction, I think about it 24/7.
I went from a 165lbs scrawny stoner to about 2 years later a 190-195 lbs well built man. Its great when you see people you havnt seen in along time. cracks me up to see them trip out. I dont think i will ever stop lifting..
10-26-2007, 03:00 PM
10-26-2007, 04:11 PM
10-27-2007, 10:23 PM
I started lifting when I was fifteen, so six years ago. Before that, my diet basically consisted of swedish fish, Mountain Dew and whatever Mom made for dinner. I think I mainly started because I just wanted to add some size and be noticed a little more. Ever since then, I've grow extremely addicted to gym, and the healthy feeling that comes with it. I've never been an overly social person, so the bodybuilding lifestyle fits me pretty well.
My family really doesn't understand me or what I do. It really bothers me that it's so hard for some people to comprehend that being this dedicated to something is not a bad thing. Most people don't understand bodybuilders. It's so foreign to them that what you eat is what affects your progress the most. All they see you doing is eating, and they think you have some kind of disorder.
One thing that DOES bother me about bodybuilding though is its mental affect on me when I want to do things such as travel. I start to worry about things like, "What if I can't get my six meals a day?" or "What if I can't get to the gym?"...Sometimes I feel like when I get older I'll regret carring so much. I just hate slacking for a week, and losing 5 lbs that I worked so hard for. Maybe I just have to find a new system.
10-27-2007, 11:36 PM
bodybuilding needs to have a healthy equilibrium like everything else in life. If it starts dictating you in a negative way or taking away from other important aspects in life then I can understand. I briefly went into the extremely hardcore stage of bodybuilding, then after awhile starting thinking to myself 'wtf am I doing' ?
If all my friends go out to the bars to drink alcohol, I wouldn't hesitate to go get trashed with them.
I know everyone is different about how serious they are about bodybuilding. Out of 100%, I'd say bodybuilding encompasses about 40% at best. Before it used to be around 90%.
my friends, family, and girlfriend will always come before bodybuilding.
10-28-2007, 01:43 AM
Does anyone else here obsess or worry over stuff like that? Any funny stories?
10-28-2007, 02:16 AM
10-28-2007, 01:19 PM
I was in my late 30s; I'd been doing yoga for 10-12 years & had gotten pretty advanced with the stretches, but when I started doing massage professionally, I realised I wasn't strong enough - what I mean is, I was all stretched out & limber, but my body wasn't holding itself together very well under the strain of a physical occupation (I'd had an IT desk job for ~10 years before that).
I had to start off working more on tendon and ligament strength than on anything else (injured myself a few times learning that one), settled into a routine of deadlifts & pullups & calisthenics (really, part PT, part floor-ex, part pilates).
First injuries, then surgeries, interrupted my progress numerous times, so I'm not the mass monster of my genetic entitlement, but I have a shape - and it's neither celery nor potato, thankyouverymuch - and I have have plans for the upcoming bulking season.
One thing I was COMPLETELY UNPREPARED FOR when I started lifting is how good it feels. I love being and feeling stronger, I love looking better...but what I really love is how I feel when I'm lifting.
10-28-2007, 02:23 PM
I was lifting through since my freshman year of high school for football. It just stuck with me and it became a part of my life. I started lifting so I could get bigger and stronger than the guy I had to line up against. The hobby turned into obsession and it will remain like that until the day I die.
I started looking at it in a different aspect when I ballooned to 315 at 30% bf since I was told to beef up and switch from end to tackle. I gained 50 pounds but half of it was fat and this made me feel and play like sh!t. I joined AM and asked ignorant questions about glutamine and creatine in the beginning but I think I've come a long way
10-28-2007, 02:44 PM
I had always lifted on and off in high school for sports but was never serious about it. Going into my senior year for football I and the coaching staff wanted me to gain weight so naturally I did I went from about 160lbs and a little chubby to 190some and fat. I looked fine with my shirt on but I hated taking it off.
I dont even know why I was doing it. I wasn't even that good at football, baseball was my thing. After some injuries I quit football and decided to make some changes as I knew I was good enough to make something out of my life from baseball. I got some help from a supp store owner and he got me on my way. That following spring I started baseball @ about 160lbs and maybe 8%bf (7months later). I was in the best shape of my life (to that point) I was bigger, stronger, and faster than I had ever been. I felt great. From then on I have been living this lifestyle and it's paying huge dividends. I came to AM last fall after just searching for some info and it has nothing but a tremendous upside. I've meet some cool people got some free supps and I feel is helping me achieve my full physical potential.
After talking to some scouts and coaches I really think I have a legit shot of getting picked up this next spring. I would have never had that chance unless I decided to make that change.
10-29-2007, 06:27 PM
I was always skinny. I started lifting for the same reason as we all did in high school and college....to get more poontang. Now I lift b/c a) I don't like being a scrawy wimp. b) I feel healthier and just in a better mood when I lift and c) I put all this time in trying to build up muscle if I stop now I'll lose it and it will have been a waste
10-29-2007, 09:06 PM
What is it with skinny being cool, now? Most of these guys in mags are super scrawny, and probably weigh the same if not less than the girls. Could you live with yourself knowing that your girl weighed more than you?
I think women these days have a twisted view of what a man really is. Ya, personality is the most important, but c'mon.
Have you seen the commerical for Calvin Klein MAN cologne? How much fruitier can it get? When I see a commercial for a cologne named, "MAN" I want to see a Lumberjack chopping down a tree.
10-29-2007, 10:48 PM
10-30-2007, 09:19 PM
Perhaps I have come a long way, I was the cubbster in high school, the fat girl, 5'11 but over 200pds easy...Went to college, met a boy, dropped over 100pds only to have him tell me I was at first to fat, than to thin....Met my first personal trainer who told me I had great legs and got me into working out and powerlifting,...powerlifted for 5 yrs and entered into some lifting comps...had a BLAST!!!!
But than wanted to lean out, and get more toned,dropped a load of weight, hence the eating disorder, down to 120 or so..... came here, got great advice, learning that right way to lift, still the diet gives me some issues as far as, eating enough, and always "seeing" the fat girl in the mirror.....but it's a battle and I work throught it every day............
I would never go back..........cliff note version of my story!!!!
RIP Ryan, :(
10-30-2007, 09:21 PM
10-30-2007, 09:38 PM
I was a fat fnck and had high cholesterol as a kid, then at 21 I hit 40 inch waiste and was constantly out of breath. I had lost weight then gained again after meeting my girl. I started working out because I wanted to look good for her. I now do it because I feel great and want to keep feeling great. Best part is that after nine years when we look at pics she gasps and says she never noticed that I was that big. She's a keeper I guess.
10-30-2007, 09:39 PM
10-30-2007, 09:57 PM
10-30-2007, 10:02 PM
i do this because i have an obsessive/compulsive mental disorder that seems to bode well with bodybuilding.
this forum is great...i get to hand out with other crazy people like me - that are obsessed with every bite they eat and how many sets they do.
10-30-2007, 11:56 PM
10-31-2007, 04:43 PM
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