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Old 12-22-2011, 10:08 AM   #1
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Default Why do you lift weights?

WHY DO YOU LIFT WEIGHTS?


We all do the same things in our day to day life's for totally different reasons. Some people go to work for enjoyment, when in actual fact they've enough money to retire. Whilst other people dread going to work, but they have to in order to pay bills & survive. Some people go on nights out to catch up with friends whilst others are going out on the purpose to “hook up”. In my local cafe you still see individuals reading “The Da Vinci Code” sitting by the window with their tall latte's so that the passers – by can see them being in touch with fashion yet trying to remain intellectual. Then pop into the local pub & you'll see some old Mister sitting in the corner minding his own not disturbing anyone, not drawing any attention to himself with his head dived within a 1000 page historical book of some sort.
The point I'm trying to get at is this, we all do the same things in our life but for very different reasons. So the question here is this;

Why do you lift weights?

I lift weights for two reasons & two reasons only, to keep adding weight to the bar, & secondly & most importantly to me is that it makes me see life in a clearer light. By adding weight, I'm continually challenging my body & continually moving forward physically, releasing that I am truly in charge of this machine called the human body. & then it makes me want to push my mind, so I'm always learning something, always striving to push my mind to keep up with my body & vice versa. I like my body & mind to be in total balance with one another, to be harmonius within one's self. Lifting weights enables me to accomplish things out of the weight room & it has given me discipline too. I enjoy life & laugh more when I'm hitting the weights. I feel happy within myself & it's noticeable to all around me that I'm high on life. I don't lift for attention from the opposite sex as I've a beautiful woman beside me & an incredible daughter.

So, for me, lifting weights is for;

1. Discipline
2. Self Improvement
3. Happiness
4. To realise one's full potential
5. To be in harmony with yourself & others

So, why do you lift weights?

RZW
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Old 12-22-2011, 10:27 AM   #2
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Lately, I lift weights to fight the aging process. I don't mind getting older, but I can't stand the thought of wasting away.
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Old 12-22-2011, 10:29 AM   #3
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Mostly I lift weights for fun, though initially it was for better body composition...but now, it's more fun based with the added benefits of both body composition and strength.

It's probably one of the reasons that you'll see a variety of lifts, or styles of lifting in my log.

And I love to get new PBs no matter what the actual lift is.
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Old 12-22-2011, 10:46 AM   #4
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My reasons have changed over the years. At first I lifted because of the control factor. Lifting was one of the few things in life that I had control over as a young guy. I could work hard and see results, and these results gave me confidence, a nice body and more attention from the female species.

Along this path I fell in love with bodybuilding. Not just the gym aspects, but the larger than life characters...Platz, Arnold, the Barbarian Brothers, etc.

Over time I focused on one simple method of training...progression on basics. This journey lead to more strength but a decreasing rate of muscle gains.

Around 2007 I began to turn, loving the quest for strength more than the quest for looks. And that is why I lift now. I am old, happy and have new challenges. I want to be inhumanly strong at the age of 50.

Setting all this aside, there is an important core reason why I lift: I love it. It's fun for me. It's like a real life game, where I can level up each day...one more rep, one more rep.

This quest for one more is really why I lift. It's not about strength. It's not about muscle. I just love doing one more.
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Last edited by BendtheBar; 12-22-2011 at 10:54 AM.
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Old 12-22-2011, 11:10 AM   #5
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Keeps me out of trouble
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Old 12-22-2011, 11:20 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RamboZaneWanabe View Post
In my local cafe you still see individuals reading “The Da Vinci Code” sitting by the window with their tall latte's so that the passers – by can see them being in touch with fashion yet trying to remain intellectual.
Interesting & thoughtful perspective. Of course whatever we see is through the lense of our own experience, as such we can't really attribute reason to other people's actions unless we directly interact with them to find out.

This is an interesting parallel to lifting forums, advice is usually given through the lense of our own experience/perspective. This is potentially harmful as our experience and subjectivity could be very different, meaning our needs are very different to the person receiving advice. Btb and myself have harped on about this before, giving advice has to involve some interpretation and empathy of the other person's situation. Just like trying to figure out reasons for someones behaviour relies again on trying empathise, rather then view people through our lense. Just because we don't like Da Vinci Code (and frankly, I do not) doesn't mean we those that do can be generalised, we're all individual and complex.

The only real way to know people's reasons are to ask them. But even then, people's actions are largely unclear to even themselves. It's the rare individual who has worked out the causes and reason for all of their behaviour and actions. If someone say's they have, unless we're looking at a very special individual they would be lying to others and to themselves.

It really is quite a complex issue, knowing just enough to keep you out of trouble during interactions with other complex individuals in complex settings is often the best you can hope for. Which is the reason for my first response.
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Old 12-22-2011, 11:58 AM   #7
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I lift because I enjoy it. A lot. I enjoy the feeling of my eyes about to pop out in a squat. Or the heat of the blood rushing to my face in a deadlift. It gives me something to do and it gives me something to be proud of. While I wouldn't brag to an 800 lb deadlifter that I have a 400+ lb deadlift(and I don't brag to my friends unless they want to hear about it), I get a sense of accomplishment.

Other than that, I've always wanted to be stronger. I used to tell my parents and my brother that my brother would be taller than I, but I'd be stronger. He's 2 inches taller than I am and I am stronger than he is. Then of course, to be bigger. It took a long time for me to really WANT to be bigger. Try over a year. I read about those abs I used to not have when I played video games all day, ate pizza rolls and drank countless cans of pop each day. I went low carb, low calorie, low this and low that... I finally realized the difference between now and then. I lift. Fat? Not worried about it.(well, yes, but not so severely. It's easy to lose weight. Hard to gain) I just want to be bigger now. (Sorry about the story telling)
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Old 12-22-2011, 04:51 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fazc View Post
This is an interesting parallel to lifting forums, advice is usually given through the lense of our own experience/perspective. This is potentially harmful as our experience and subjectivity could be very different, meaning our needs are very different to the person receiving advice. Btb and myself have harped on about this before, giving advice has to involve some interpretation and empathy of the other person's situation. Just like trying to figure out reasons for someones behaviour relies again on trying empathise, rather then view people through our lense.
Hi Fazc,

I should've stated that I live in a small town with a population of around 3000 people. Everybody really does know everybody. The people (I can't say too much as they're real people) in the cafe have been reading this book for the last four years. People who live in remote areas do one of two things, they get on with it, (being themselves/individual) or they try so hard to be part of a "city" lifestyle (being something they aren't/complex). People who live in a remote region will understand what I'm saying. I never judge a book by it's cover & I certainly do not view anyone/anything through a lense! Do you see where I'm coming from?

Back onto the topic in hand, it's great that people exercise for personal reasons. Enjoyment, self improvement & to be the best we can are basically the top three answers. Trying to fight the aging process by taking care of ourselves means that we're independent to ourselves. By being in control of ourselves, by being independent to ourselves, we really can keep doing "one more". Truly lovely stuff to hear...

& by being in the weight room we're certainly keeping ourselves out of trouble.
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Old 12-22-2011, 07:20 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RamboZaneWanabe View Post
...I certainly do not view anyone/anything through a lense!
We all do RZW. Each and every one of us view the world and it's events through the lense of our own experience, and we interpret those experiences into something that gives meaning to us. This is the reason why two people can react completely differently to the same event, different experiences and thoughts lead to different values and personalities. To deny this is to deny the very basis of individuality.

Quote:
I never judge a book by it's cover
Yet you have generalised people who live in remote areas as either a) those who get on with it or 2) those who attempt to imitate city folk. By the tone of your writing it's clear that your bias favours the former, using the word 'imitate' denotes a negative feeling towards those people like they are trying to fake something. You are betraying your own bias which favours 'those who get on with it' in a very obvious way.

So if you can betray your own bias in such an obvious way on something like this, then if you open your mind a little you can begin to understand what I'm saying. Your view of the world will be different from these folks who 'pretend to be like city folk'. Now of course humans being humans we generally default to thinking 'our view' is the correct view and these people are merely being fake by feigning intellect, reading Da Vinci Code and trying to imitate city folk.

Now consider for one moment how silly all this sounds. You have passed judgement on an entire group of people, however these people could be just as genuine as you. You just don't see it that way, because you view it from the lense of your own experience. You see them as fake, pseudo-intellectual. How do you think they view you? As the genuine, real person that they all secretly wish they had the confidence to be? I highly doubt that.

Don't worry though, we all do this to a certain extent. The key is to recognise when we do these things so obviously that we're clearly fooling ourselves. The more we fool ourselves, the easier it is for others to fool us.

Last edited by Fazc; 12-22-2011 at 07:24 PM.
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Old 12-22-2011, 07:34 PM   #10
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I lift because it's become tied into my sense of self. I've been lifting for 33 years and I don't know how to stop. I also feel happier when I'm stronger and/or more muscular than when I'm weaker and smaller.

I only enjoy it, however, when I feel I'm progressing in some way. It's just too harda hobby to stand there spinning my wheels.
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