What Lifters Can Learn From Theodore Roosevelt

It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat. -Theodore Roosevelt

Obviously if you’re following this website, you probably have an interest in getting smarter and also getting fit.

One of the greatest American Presidents throughout history is Theodore Roosevelt.

His list of accomplishments is one that would make even the most successful people in our current generation feel unaccomplished.

Not only was he a President, but he also was a police commissioner, owned a ranch, was a governor in New York, fought in wars, wrote 35 books, explored the rain forests, could read several books a day, survived his wife and mother dying on the same day, went to Harvard and graduated magna cum laude, rowed and boxed throughout college, and not to mention, he also took a bullet to the chest during one of his speeches and still delivered his speech before going to the hospital.

Thinking about this on my days when I complain about being sore after working out makes me feel incredibly lazy.

As a child, Theodore was born with severe asthma. He never slept well, he hurt often, and wasn’t determined to have an active life.

While sick, he developed a natural inclination toward studying zoology. Many hours were spent reading and learning. After observing his son for quite some time, Theodore’s father came to him and said, “Theodore, you have the mind but you have not the body, and without the help of the body the mind cannot go as far as it should. You must make your body.”

That is exactly what he set out to do.

He exercised every single day, continuing all through college.

During a physical after college, a doctor told him that his heart was weak and it was best for him to avoid exercise at all costs.

He did exactly the opposite.

Staying fit was the exact reason he was able to accomplish the rest of the big goals he did.

The goal of Writers Lift Too is to help people get in shape so they have the strength to build the life they have always imagined. You can’t build your dream life when you feel weak.

There is a lot to learn from some of our great leaders in history, and I know there are so many people out there with incredible minds that simply do not have the body to create the energy they need. Building resilience isn’t something that happens overnight. Many people would LOVE to write one book, much less 35.

Theodore Roosevelt called it the strenuous life, and I invite you to think about how you can live the strenuous life.

I wish to preach, not the doctrine of ignoble ease, but the doctrine of the strenuous life, the life of toil and effort, of labor and strife; to preach that highest form of success which comes, not to the man who desires mere easy peace, but to the man who does not shrink from danger, from hardship, or from bitter toil, and who out of these wins the splendid ultimate triumph. -Theodore Roosevelt

Here is also a great comic you can share with others summarizing this story for some motivation: Click here.

 

Why You Need to Care About Your Health

You have two options:

1. You can pay attention to your health now
2. Or you can regret not paying attention to it later.

“But I have great genetics. My grandparents lived into their 90s.” Yeah, well your grandparents didn’t have delivery pizza, fast food, or any of the other horrific choices out there people call nutrition.

Most people don’t care about their health until they have their first brush with death.

When I worked as a personal trainer, I’d have to say at least 99% of my clients came in because they were facing horrible health problems. Blown out knees due to weight, heart attacks, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, pre-diabetes, couldn’t get pregnant due to their weight… Most which are preventable.

Why do we wait to do this?

In our 20s, we go through college packing on the pounds and as soon as we graduate, we get a job that keeps us busy (and seated) and then pack the weekends with friends/family instead of finding time to go to the gym. Who cares? We’re young and life is about having fun, right? YOLO.

Studies show time and time again that what you do in your 20s sets up the rest of your life. Your money, your career, your relationships, your children, your health… the blueprint is laid in this defining decade.

You just simply need to start.

Which, I understand, isn’t easy. There is a lot of psychology behind starting a new habit, but if you don’t make the choice now, you will be one of those 40-year-old parents who sit on the sidelines of the playground watching your children play because you are far too out of shape to play with them.

I’d estimate about 99% of fitness blogs out there focus on one thing: Getting in shape so you can have “the bikini body”/”the six-pack” type of idea. It doesn’t focus on your actual health. Do you have a good resting heart rate? Could you run to save your life if you had to? Can you pick your children up without risking throwing out your back?

Most people will not die from their horrible health choices in their 20s, but don’t think it ever just “goes away”. You have to face the consequences eventually.

Vanity is great, and I am aware that is the single reason most people in their 20s do exercise, but the bigger goal is:

Build your dream body so you have the strength to build your dream life.

Anyone who is serious about their health knows that the reason is deeper than what they see in the mirror. It’s having the energy at the end of a workday to work on your side business, it is having the energy to take your family out and be able to keep up with them, it is about feeling confident so you have the mentality to go after that dream job. I put in my time at the gym so I won’t have to be hindered later on in life by my poor health choices.

It took me having an ulcer to finally get me on the path to health, and I wouldn’t wish that on anyone. I see friends now who are in their 30s and want children but their bodies won’t do it because they have too much weight on them. I see women who never lifted who end up in wheelchairs at 60 because they don’t have enough muscle to hold up their own body. I see dads die in their 40s from heart attacks and leave a wife and kids behind. This is the state of health in America.

But, I can’t want health for you. You have to want it for yourself.

My goal, and the goal of this site, is to help you get there.

%d bloggers like this: