Routinely, I’m reminded by my clients that lifting weights has more to do with what happens outside the gym than what happens inside of it.
I will forever be inspired by clients who get closer to their fat loss goals.
Or, clients who gain the muscle they hope to.
Or, clients who break their previous records on heavier lifts.
In the midst of that inspiration, it can be easy for me to forget that other areas of life improve when we get stronger:
-Going up and down stairs with a load of laundry gets easier
-Carrying bags of groceries from the car to the house isn’t tiring
-Getting up and down off the floor takes less time (or isn’t painful)
-Being able to push yourself up and out of the bathtub is possible
-Playing with your children/grandchildren doesn’t wreck your body
Part of this is because the confidence you gain from lifting weights transfers to confidence in other areas of life.
And, one of my favorite fitness industry quotes, normally attributed to Mark Rippetoe: Stronger people are harder to kill.
I have a client who has been with me for several years and this client has always been, pound for pound, one of the strongest in our gym.
Recently, we were discussing that strength and the journey we’ve been on together and I know that there’s something far more important to that client than what we do in these four walls.
Their spouse struggles with an illness that will continue to affect their physical and mental health.
And my client realizes that the strength they gain in here will have a direct benefit in helping to take care of their spouse as the illness progresses.
At my personal strongest (based on the heaviest weight my body has ever lifted), it wasn’t that particular weight that mattered.
It was the fact that I could lift my father’s dying body after he was diagnosed with cancer.
Mind you, by that point, his body was a fraction of the weight I lifted in the gym.
But one area of strength had a direct correlation to strength elsewhere.
Look around you…
There is no area of your life: personal, professional, emotional, spiritual, and social where you have the luxury of being weak. Every area of your life which matters most to you requires strength.
How much strength you gain is up to you, your preferences and your genetics.
I recognize, after 20+ years of lifting weights, that for all of the benefit that being strong gives me, it’s a gift to be able to hold my sons, it’s a gift to be able to hold my wife, it’s a gift to be able to perform a physically demanding job.
And somehow, my clients give me a daily gift, in not only seeing them increase their personal strength but to hear their testimony of how that strength carries them through life.
You’ve got one body.
Use the gift.
(Pictured below, our Richard B., 83 years young, making easy work of 245 pounds)