T Nation

End Game

I read an interesting article recently,

'For that effort, I ought to have…

…Instead, I have check receipts for $3900.00 in gym membership fees and a net gain of about 2 pounds of lean muscle above what I had in 1997.’

Using principles picked up on this web site, I hope to gain more than 2 pounds…

Is there more to this game than benching 5 more pounds? than adding 2 pounds of lean mass? or shedding that spare tire?

I invite some commentary from veteran lifters.

How about health?

How about looking good?

How about knowing that you’re doing something worthwhile instead of wasting your life away by sitting in front of the TV?

How about setting a good example for those younger than you (or your friends, if you’re young)?

How about aging less quickly?

How about not throwing your back out when you change the sheets on your bed?

How about the fights that you don’t get into because other guys look at you and think, “uh, maybe not”?

How about increased attention from the opposite sex?

How about that oh-so-nice feeling of control that you have when you want to do something a little out of the ordinary with your body?

How about the sense of superiority you feel (and try to supress, but fail) when looking at the “typical” 30-, 40- or 50-something American?

How about all the knowledge that you acquire along the way?

How about the sense of camraderie you get with the other serious lifters in your gym?

That’s about it, off the top of my head…

$3900 for 2lbs? What a loser.

Char-dawg said it!

Excellent points, char-dawg.

I read the same article and the writer finished it off that they would be back in the gym the next day. He compared working out to an addiction.

If he really only gained two pounds then he needs to stop writing for Men’s Health and get on over to T-mag.

Mental toughness. The ability to take yourself to places mentally, that most people would fear to even consider going.
The benifits of lifting spill over into all aspects of life.

yeah theres more. its the feeling of destroying a weight that destroyed you before. The looks you get from people at the gym who think your crazy and know in their heart they dont have what you have. Its demoralizing for them. It it gives you power. Every time i squat or do good mornings i know that nobody in the gym has the nuts to do what im doing right now. that says something about you.
Plus, what else is there to do?

“What else is there to do?”

One of the great quotes of all time.

“what else can you do?”
You can go around hitting people in the head with your skateboard…lol

Nothing beats being strong and in shape! Nothing!

what about because training with heavy weights gives me a boner?

Actually, this reminds me of a conversation I had the other day:

“Man, I love lifting! I never want to stop!”

Me: “Damn rights.”

“Yeah, because I have nothing else better to do in this lame ass town!”

…and lord knows what shape I’d be in if I DIDN’T lift. It’s the fight against aging.

If thats all you’ve gained since '97 you’re clearly doing something wrong…

Looking back at how far you’ve come, how much stronger you are, how much you’ve enjoyed the ride up until now, and looking ahead to adding another plate to the bar.

You need to eat some real food.I don’t care how much you’re lifting and how many sets,if your diet isn’t dialed in, you are only gonna gain 2 lbs.Check out Berardi’s Appetite for Construction.

I recently read a book called “Bench Press” by Sven Lindqvist. Right before I read that article, in fact. (My parents give me a gift subscription to Men’s Health every year. Which has been getting better each year–there’s a tip by John Davies in this month’s issue. Ian King, John Berardi, Pavel Tsatsouline, Louie Simmons, Dave Tate and a lot of other T-mag fan favorites have been getting mentions in it lately.)

Anyway, Lindqvist’s point, as far as I can tell, is that working out is a bit odd, because the labor is done seemingly for the sake of the labor alone. It’s not like you’re building a house or digging a ditch or something. But as he considers it from a bunch of different sides, it becomes clear that he thinks that working out is really about transformation; it’s about being reborn. It’s about steeling yourself for the hard times that may come ahead of you.

I wish that Ron Gerardi had read that book before he wrote the article–I think it would have been more interesting for it.

Note: If you’re interested in this book, I have to warn you that there’s precious little about working-out qua exercise. It’s mostly about the fontanelle (a baby’s soft spot), dreams and the Sahara desert (it makes sense when you read it, but it’s hard to explain). It is interesting, though, and if you’re a literary T-man, give it a whirl.

Dan “Books for Christmas!” McVicker

Some of you would benefit from reading the initial post. Atreides said that he read this “$3900 for 2 lbs of lean mass” article in a magazine and was inviting constructive ideas.

Not that he personally has only gained 2 lbs of lean mass, and wanted to be called a loser.