You see and feel about yourself like never before. It's the best feeling in the world. Unfortunately, you don't remember the parts in the process that were hard to live through. Let's talk more about the Hate and Love we experience as we build a body to be proud of.
The meticulous and seemingly endless attention to what and when to eat is exhausting. The "right" nutrition at the "right" time is critical for continuous progression in the sport of bodybuilding. Furthermore, you must discover what works and doesn't work for you. This is an effort that usually separates the "committed" from the "hobbyist." I like to call it nutritional fortitude. This means having the strength of mind to endure the diet required to succeed as a bodybuilder.
As the days go by, the nutritional requirements become harder to endure and you begin to allow hate to enter.
Hate is magnified by the necessity to maintain and increase training intensity during the final stages of contest preparation. Hate is inspired by the fatigue experienced each time you enter the gym. You suppress hate by visualizing on what you hope to obtain. Hate keeps attacking you and tries to weaken your resolve. You feel pain you never felt in the past. Each set performed requires substantial exertion. Hate tries to gain control by reminding you that this is your choice to suffer. You can just quit and have a hamburger with the fries. There's no need to keep putting yourself through all this. Hate wants in and refuses to give up. Hate takes every opportunity to derail you. It makes you notice all the smells around you.
Your mouth begins to water when you sense the sweet smell of fresh donuts in the morning. Hate tells you that the donuts taste even better with a fresh cup of your favorite coffee beverage. Hate knows what you like better than you and tries to exploit your weaknesses. Hate wakes you up in the middle of the night and tells you that a midnight snack will help you sleep better. It prods you to slip downstairs to the fridge for a midnight fiesta. Instead, you ignore hate and fall back to sleep. Hate's not done yet and enters your dream and brings along a giant bowl of your favorite ice cream. Before you can say no, hate has shoveled a full spoon into your mouth and you can almost taste it.
Hate knows that it's getting to you and when you awake you remember the taste of the ice cream that hate fed you. Again, you resist the urge and continue on course. Hate becomes livid. Hate calls your stomach and tells it to send a signifying growl to everyone that it wants some ice cream (ice cream! ice cream!, we all scream for ice cream!). You again suppress the urge and move on. As you do, hate becomes infuriated. Hate continually tries to wake you until hate itself falls into a deep sleep.
The alarm sounds and wakes you and you leap into the next day. Hate wakes as well and begins planning another coup that will takeover your resolve to resist and commit. Each and everyday repeats itself until you finally reach that "golden shore." When you overcome and defeat hate, you become stronger and love takes you to greater heights.
What is it that we love most. Is it "love" itself? Is it "money?" Is it "success?" Is it even "hate?" Love is what makes us live to our fullest. It's the true key of life. Without love, we would never develope the fortitude that enables us to endure the wrath of hate. In so many ways, I "love" bodybuilding. It has taught me so many things. I have learned so much about myself. What I am capable of. What inspires me to be the best I can become. Love has given me this insight and so much more.
When love is in your heart, nothing can stop you. You believe you can do anything. Love is defined in one way as an intense emotional attachment. So, what does love have to do with it? Everything. If you fail to love what you do, why do it? Life is a gift and it is short in duration.
You may love many things. I know I do. My love for bodybuilding revolves around the intense commitment required, the endless and continual knowledge I constantly realize, the fact that it has brought me internal peace, within myself and my home. Bodybuilding taught me to plan, set realistic goals, execute, appreciate the importance of being who you are, understanding how others make you better than you could be alone, and most of all, what is important in life. In the sport of bodybuilding, I love the moments when I see my body begin to change and conform to the image I had in my head. I love the moments when I begin to excel in the gym.
When my strength increases and I reach new levels. I love the times when I see or meet others who have similar goals. I love that moment when I step on the stage and I have done everything as planned. I love those times when I walk out of the gym after finishing an intense training day and hate was there trying (unsuccessfully) to impede my progress. Love will get you through, that is, if you love what you do.
Well another wrap and thanks for reading!
-- Ralph Marston