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Transformation, Part 2

Last month in this space I discussed Dynamic Longevity™, and I want to expand on some of those thoughts—as well as the idea of training for a lifetime. Let’s start with the given that you are different from the average person in that you read IRON MAN and know what’s involved. You may be 14 or 80, male or female, but the common thread is that you understand that physical transformation is possible only through a combination of anaerobic work —that is, weight training—plus nutrition, discipline and other relevant factors.

Now, transformation means something different to my teenage children from what it means to me. My son wants to be as big and strong as possible and to be a better athlete because of it. My daughter wants to be stronger and leaner to be a better dancer and actress. As they both get physically stronger, I see an awareness and growing appreciation for the feeling of accomplishment they get from the workout. The rewards have begun to expand beyond their original goals.

So, regardless of a trainee’s age, the workout builds character, confidence and a feeling of accomplishment. That cascade of rewards may have a bigger impact on your life than the purely physical aspect of training. The process is especially evident in teenagers, who rapidly evolve on many planes from child to adult right before your eyes. Performing a regular, structured workout has made my children much more aware of the relationship between what they eat and how they feel and the progress they make. I no longer have to preach (as much) about following a good diet; they feel the difference in their own bodies. Being aware of foods and their relationship to your physical well-being further distances you from the average.

The workout is the basis for growth on a multitude of levels, starting with accepting the rule that there really is no such thing as a free lunch. The workout is a great lesson in reality therapy—you are in control, success or failure. It’s up to you. Arnold has commented many times on how the crucible of the workout formed his work ethic and mental toughness, but it doesn’t work just for Arnold. It works for anyone who does the work. Obviously, Arnold’s accomplishments reside on the extreme right-hand side of the curve, but the lessons gained from the workout are available to anyone who wants to learn and grow.

The power of the workout is in its ability to transform your life in many different ways. Keep working out. IM

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