Before I start the topic of this entry, I wish to write some editorial words. First, I thank all those who have responded to the initial page and article in this journal. I have answered all messages sent to me and I shall continue to answer any who write in the future at johnPasco@bodybuilders.com. One who wrote me suggested that there be a "guest book" for readers' comments. That has been taken care of by the link at the end of the articles where you may call up on your screen the reviews of others or write your own review. I read all the reviews and, as with email, answer each one when a return address is given.
A note to "CyborgX": An email from you was received, but I was unable to read it since I got a notice that "this page is not available" when I clicked onto it. Please write me again and when I am able to call up your message, I certainly will send you a reply.
Think You Can't Be Muscular?
I am convinced, no, I know it for sure: Out there where you are reading these words there are folks who never have thought they could work out and get a muscular physique. They have allowed this belief to keep them from even trying workouts. They are not content to see the years passing and their weak physiques growing even more frail, but they resign themselves to it, believing "this is what happens when you get old." I am here to tell you to tell you that it does not need to happen.
I know this to be true from my own life experience which you can read in the previous articles on this page. I had the excuse, "I can never become muscular" and I allowed it to keep me from even trying. My military service, however, compelled physical development and the self-esteem which came with it. My civilian pursuits after leaving the military brought back poor physique and lack of self-esteem which persisted for decades until I finally, at age 72, began regularly working out.
My only regret is that I waited so many years in the darkness of physical weakness before setting my mind and body to work at improving. After just a couple of months working out again, I had vigor and will to play strenuously with my grand nephew, then six years old.
I found him looking at me and then at my hands when he said to me, "Why are your hands old?" He could not understand why I had hands wrinkled with age while I had the endurance of a younger man. His words told me I was again on the right path, although with a long way to go.
There is nothing on earth that cannot be improved with the abilities with which we humans have been granted. To resign yourself to having a poor physique at any age is to refuse to use the ability that lies within you to improve that which can be improved. The first step is to desire improvement, and I maintain that every mentally intact person has that desire. You have it already or you would not be reading this article.
Stimulate Your Mind
Stimulate your mind to work on your body, your muscles. Remember the half-time invigorating talk the coach gives his team to motivate them toward victory in the second half? Well, if you have reached the age when your physique is faltering, then you are at your 'half-time.' So, talk to yourself. Remind yourself that you really want a physique you can show in pride. Tell yourself that you can do it. Tell yourself that you will do it.
Let the understanding sink in that it is humiliating to be in poor condition and that you can and will make huge improvements. Think of the pleasure you will have when others stare at you in disbelief when you tell them how old you really are. Know that you can defeat the years for they are the opposition you will conquer in the second half. Know these things and believe them and the victory will be yours. I have not taken as my screen name Mindrulesmuscle for no reason at all. Mind can and does rule muscle when you require it to do so.
No time to go to the gym? Oh yes there is! Surely no one is active 24 hours each day of the week. We all find or make time for what we really need to do. Rejuvenation through bodybuilding is what you have a real need to do. You will have the time. You will make the time.
But I ...
You don't have the strength to lift weights? Unless you are really physically handicapped you can lift light weights. That is all that is required until you develop strength for greater weights. In bodybuilding it is not the amount of weight lifted. It is the use of any weight which can be lifted for as many time as you can lift it that develops muscle. Lifting only five pounds and having to really work to do it will insure that you will move to lifting other heavier weights. Your body will respond to the demands you put upon it and develop, over time, the required muscle strength.
You have an old injury that inhibits exercise? Here I go again using myself as an example. When I began at the gym I had arthritis aching in all my joints. I had continual pain in my lower back as a result of a rodeo injury in my youth. Within four months of working out, the arthritis was completely gone and the old back injury pain was not felt again.
There is ample medical proof that supervised exercise not only eases or erases old aches and pains, but also strengthens the muscular and nervous systems so that they can avoid new deterioration. Note that I say "supervised exercise." I stress that no one, young or old, should undertake starting bodybuilding without the supervision of a competent trainer and should first consult with his physician so that he may advise the trainer of any possible problem areas.
I Can't Afford It
You can't afford the expense of training? If you are really desirous of developing your physique, you will look at your limited income and find ways to cut out some things which you now do to make the funds available. Which is more important, your new car, TV, computer or your development of a good physique? If you are really going to be a good physical specimen, you will quit smoking and/or alcohol if you use them now, and that will provide extra cash.
Then, too, most gyms have less expensive programs if you choose specific days and hours. Check out what you now spend on various things and weigh their importance against your developing a great physique. I have found ways to stretch my limited social security and pension benefits to provide for my gym membership and my trainer.
What it all boils down to is whether or not you want to let yourself be defeated by the onrush of years or if you will choose to rise victorious over the years, living a new life, rejuvenated in body, mind and spirit.
In my next article, I will get you thinking about entering into bodybuilding competition. Someone has wrote me that, even though he works out, he would never "dare" to think of entering competitions. Well, I'm going to challenge you to take the dare!