T Nation

When/How Did It 'Click' for You


#1

Before we were all as incredibly ripped and muscular as we are now, I'm sure we all had a starting point in which we just weren't happy with how we looked/how we performed. Many people (of course not on this board) are currently in that situation but can't seem to get it to "click" to throw away the excuses and get into better shape.

What was the turning point that got you on the path towards the incredibly ripped and muscular physique you currently have or are on your way towards obtaining?

For me, I was always self conscience of how skinny/lanky I was and always told myself I'd start working out "some day." One time, at a bar, a girl I hardly knew, and to this day I don't even know her name, asked why my shirt was so loose fitting. I made a promise to myself, right there in that shit hole bar, that I was going to work out and start filling out my shirts.

For some reason, THAT was the straw that broke the camel's back for me. I can't tell you why, but it clicked for me right then. I was in my last semester in college and was working full time and the only time I had to lift was 5:30 in the morning, so for the next 4 months that's what I did and I've been hooked ever since.


#2

I am not all the way to the point that alot of guys here are yet, but I realized that alot of things in my life were falling apart and I systematically started to reduce all the bad things in my life. My health improved and my marriage improved. That was 140 lbs ago.


#3

That's a metric shit ton of weight, congrats on that!

Was there a specific turning point in your mind?


#4

I would have to say that my first click moment was at the end of highschool when some girl compared my lanky physique to that or a pterodactyl. (about 10 years ago)

My second click moment was a couple of weeks ago when I looked at myself in the mirror and realized that all my flip flopping between bulk/cut and aggressive alcoholism has left me a skinny-fat bastard. I decided to do away with the black-out alcohol binges and just lift to have fun and be active. My only goal is to be stronger and faster than my last training session.


#5

Was in my final year of High School sitting in Maths and we were all chatting about what our sport was and shit.

Said mine was tennis, and a girl literally laughed at me saying I "was too weedy to be a tennis player".

Was just like wtf? Tennis players aint exactly jacked so I must look horrendous, went down town bought weight gainer that day and never looked back.


#6

Different things clicked at different time. The last click was that I was fat and unhappy with myself just a couple years ago. But even that wasn't really a single click. It was a reality that ratcheted in as lost weight.


#7

interesting idea for a thread.

I was MEGA skinny back before I started lifting, but I honestly wasn't bothered about it at all. I was never self-conscious about it, and I never really felt it was holding me back in any way.

Really, I just thought having muscles would be cool so I started doing tons of crunches and push ups. To be honest, it was mostly just a way of procrastinating instead of studying. I'd say I was going to my room to study but instead I'd just do crunches and push ups.

Then once I had built a tiny bit of muscle (you don't need much to be impressive when you're in your teens and competing against the average Scottish kid), chicks started to notice so it just sort of progressed from there.

So yeah, I didn't really have an epiphany, just kind of stumbled into it.


#8

When I hit college I was 190. By my junior year I was 155. Chasing that ripped abs took sme pics one day and went wtf. That was 2+ years ago. Started getting things worked out (pun intended) after that.


#9

For me there was no "click"... just a series of events.

I'm in the military. A number of years back I returned from overseas in a bit of a shit state. After living in a constant state of high stress for an extended period of time a sudden lack of stress tends to make one feel... off. In my case it was apathy. I just found it hard to care or put effort into anything. I used to play a lot of sports but never got back into any of them after returning home, and as a consequence my physical fitness tanked.

After awhile I started suffering from minor injuries while doing minor physical training. I think it was due to muscle imbalances, or maybe it was because I thought I could push my body harder than I actually could and I'd push it past it's (now much lower) limits.

I tried several times to get back into shape by running, but each time I'd injure myself and each injury would set me back even further.

Then one day I was researching conditioning methods when I looked down at my thighs. I used to have a massive set of wheels and over the years they've atrophied to the point where they looked like skinny old man thighs. I decided to get back into sports and use athletic training methods to get me there, and in the process I discovered the world of strength training.

8 weeks of Starting Strength re-inflated muscle I thought that I'd lost and I then switched to 5/3/1 to lower the intensity and make room for athletic conditioning.... which is where I sit today. 3 cycles of 5/3/1 complete and still working on building myself back up. It seems that despite the great gains I've made in gross strength I'm still lacking a lot on both the endurance and stability fronts.

One of the reasons I like Jim Wendler is that he's a former athlete that lost his way, only to regain it later in life. He says that for every year you let your conditioning drop you should expect to spend a year rebuilding. At this rate I have about 4.5 years of rebuilding to do, but I'd rather do that then walk around as some gibbled old man. I'm moving in July which writes off the summer sports season but I plan on joining some sort of sports team this fall. The city I'm moving to will be much bigger, so they'll have much more to offer.


#10

For me it wasn't really a "click" moment but rather a state of being. I've been fat since I can remember and was diagnosed with high blood pressure and cholesterol when I was seven. Because of this my parents used to make me eat "healthy" (high carbs, no fat, low protein) and run every single day for hours. The worst was the summer when I had to wake up early everyday to run laps at a nearby park. I dreaded those days, and honestly think they've given me a phobia of running lol.

That was basically my life from ages 7 to 15. Fat, unhealthy, forced to run and only allowed to eat food I wouldn't wish my worst enemies should have to eat. The low point was when I turned 15 and the doctor said I was pre-diabetic. All those years of torture, and I was only getting worse! That's when I decided to try boxing as it seemed cool and I thought it didn't involve that much running (I was so wrong lol). Boxing was fun and all, but what became the best part of it was after the sessions when me and the guys went to nearby gym and worked out. It was just fun and was the only form of exercise that I enjoyed. I quit boxing (one lap is too much running for me lol) and joined a gym. My parents were frankly pissed at my decision, but I didn't care as I knew it would pay off...and it did. Cholesterol went down, blood pressure went down, blood glucose readings were down, I lost 46 pounds and I felt great. But as much as I'd like to credit lifting for my life change nutrition was the biggest part. I thought the way I was eating was healthy but it was only through discovering this site and reading Chris Shugart's rants that I changed my diet. I know he gets alot of hate but for a fat guy like me he was perfect. Ever since then I eat "clean" and the best part is that I actually eat more now than I did when I was younger and actually enjoy my food (rice and chicken is amazing!). The hardest part was getting my parents to go along with my eating habits, which was alot harder than it should've been.


#11

When I read the bible :wink:

Edit: misinterpreted the question, trained for soccer and then liked training better so I just then slowly got into bbing


#12

...

I'm right along these lines.

Junior year of high school (pretty sure that's when it was), three different people called me "lanky" within two weeks time. It clicked for me that it couldn't have been a coincidence since that's a pretty particular word and I didn't want it to apply to me anymore. That's when I started some semblance of training in my garage, reading what I could about bodybuilding, and eventually joined a gym.


#13

My click was going into freshman year of college. I was a preferred walk on and it forced me into a totally different mindset. It's not that I didn't take my training seriously in HS, but the competition shift, and the shift in coaching(like, actually having a dedicated S&C coach), put me on another level(yay cliches). I was now fighting for playing time, as opposed to being among the best players on the field at any given game(or practice), and my training reflected that. Aside from a little lull immediately after I was done playing, it just feels wrong to not be training in some fashion anymore, even if what I'm training for shifts here and there.


#14

My freshman year in High School I was chugging a gallon of water before our wrestling weigh because I didnt want my oponent to know I only weight 106 pounds. In restropect that is pretty funny, considereing how much weight I would cut my senior year to make 145 when I walked around at 160 lol.


#15

I was doing karate and my trainer said I needed to do some strenght work on my own time. Had no inherit athleticism like some lucky bastards did. Started doing 200 situps and 100 pushups every evening before bed. After afew months I noticed alittle chest growth and some resemblance of abs poking out. That was when I was 14-15.

Later a friend of mine said me and him could use the gym in the company building where his father worked for free. Our routine was 15 minutes of ergo bike and then a trillion reps of consentration curls and some bench press lol. Ah those were the days. Later on my friend started slacking, but I kept on going alone until his father refused to give me the key card to the gym. Then I joined a proper gym. Never looked back.


#16

When I was 19 I was cut from my junior A hockey team, the coach said we'd like to keep you around as a trainer, I understand your writing programs for most of the guys, and this is the fittest strongest team i've ever had, lol, everything clicked, and I guess my path was chosen for me, one of these days going to get myself in shape


#17

Senior year of highschool I was 6'2 139. I had been made fun of for being skinny all my life but I didn't really care, I just always thought I'd "fill out" eventually. Then one day one of my teachers pulled me aside and asked me if I was being fed enough at home.... I started lifting seriously that summer and bulking and ended up gaining 83lbs in a year and a half. First thing I ate was her.... Kidding


#18

I started working in a prison.


#19

I have always trained and played sports, so lifting was part of the program. I started lifting seriously freshman year of HS at a chubby 180 lbs. By senior year football I was 210 and then cut to 189 for wrestling. My biggest issue with lack of gains came in college and the binge drinking that comes with it.

Looking back, it would have been good to drink a little less, but I don't regret it. Best time I'll ever have in my life. Consistency at all times was difficult, being an Electrical Engineering student. During exam weeks, and a week prior was pretty much shoving 80 hour school weeks in, which left little time to train. I tried to get in once or twice those weeks to maintain. I was still pretty strong (Rep 100-120 lb DB's for reps, rep 435 DL), but didn't look the part from a loose diet. I still ate as well as I could.

Since I've graduated, I suppose that's when everything clicked. I cut out drinking almost entirely and have made more gains in a year than I did in 5 years of college since I can train and eat consistently much easier. I can pack meals to work (didn't work well with a backpack full of of books) and train around a consistent job schedule. I have also been working with a coach which has helped me get away from a few old bad habits.


#20

There was a lot that contributed to my desire to get stronger and more muscular...

but most likely I just have short + super skinny man syndrome and lifting is how I dealt with it. I am a lot more relaxed now but it took a long time for me to grow comfortable with myself and the things I could not control ( primordial dwarfism, etc, etc).

It sounds funny but when you tall guys say how people used to poke fun at your lanky physiques... I used to feel the same way but I was just super tiny along with it. People used to make fun of my small hands/feet just as much as my arm diameter. That said if it weren't for that I would've never stopped playing Guild Wars for 14 hours a day and would've never put on an ounce of muscle.

Also, once I got a little stronger my confidence sky rocketed and I got way cocky for a couple years. T-Nation is probably what helped crush that... haha. Some people are way better at this than me and for a while that bothered the hell out of me. Now I'm just chill all the way around and I think my best gains have yet to come.