Grow or decay

As I have aged, my physical condition continued to deteriorate, so I did what most people do, lived in denial. I failed to embrace my accomplishments, instead, I obsessed on my failures and missed opportunities. I slowly, over time, worked harder, consumed too much alcohol and neglected my family to compensate for my own insecurities. I had to face the fact that I was unhealthy, workaholic, alcoholic, and rapidly aging beyond my years. In my early fifties, my body, due to inactivity, was decaying muscle tissue. Never being an athlete or even athletic, what little musculature I had was wasting away. I came to realize my body was consuming all unnecessary muscle to survive. I was suffering the classic “use it or lose it” phenomenon. I then knew what was happening, now what to do about it.

That which is used - develops. That which is not used wastes away. Hippocrates

I started to analyze men my age who looked years younger, and though some were genetically gifted, most were physically active. I bought books on resistance training and began to lift weights. My weight was 195 pounds and my biceps measured 12 inches. I could only bench press 80 pounds for 6 reps. I felt inadequate in a public gym, so I pieced together enough equipment to build a gym at home. Without any real knowledge, the first few months were extremely difficult, everything hurt, my ego and my minimal muscle tissue.

In my twisted mind, pain was perfect punishment for low esteem, however, I kept consistent with the sessions, and over time, I began to gain strength and size. The feeling of punishing myself, slowly transitioned to feelings of accomplishment and pride. I found it amazing my body reverted to growing my lost muscle and over time I put on new muscle. My body responded to consistent training by reversing what I thought, were inevitable changes attributed to aging. I did not find the fountain of youth, instead, was able to slow the aging. Because the aging process never ends, I will continue to set and reach new fitness goals, ensuring a long and healthy life.

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Fri, September 13, 2019 at 9:31: pm