Let’s Get Strong

My fascination with strength probably grew from my love of cartoons like Dragon Ball Z and Bleach, and roleplaying games like Final Fantasy 7. The main charaters had to grow stronger to overcome the challenges they were facing by constantly training and fighting the battles they knew they could win to prepare themselves for the tougher battles ahead.

In these cartoons and games, the point was never just to grow stronger for strength’s sake. There was always an existential threat to the main characters and the people they cared about. If they wanted to protect their loved ones, they needed to be strong.

The existential threat we face may not be a giant meteor that will destroy the planet, invading alien supersoldiers or evil spirits who want to eat our souls, instead they are more insidious and easily preventable.

It’s heart disease, diabetes, obesity and a host of other preventable diseases.

And, yes, we’ll all die of something but there’s no reason why anyone should die weak.

Even Socrates strongly believed that every human being had a responsibility to live up to their physical potential.

“No citizen has a right to be an amateur in the matter of physical training…what a disgrace it is for a man to grow old without ever seeing the beauty and strength of which his body is capable.”

The beauty and strength that body is capable of is entirely subjective. For some, it may be the ability to lift a barbell loaded with weights that would crush an average human. For others, it might be being able to literally sweep their loved ones off their feet or play with the kids without getting tired.

In that context, strength is about much more than it’s definition of “the ability to lift heavy weights or perform physically demanding tasks”. It’s a lifestyle devoted to developing the physical and mental capacity to have that ability and having reasons to express it. To put it another way, strength is a by product of your devotion to developing the characteristics that a strong person has.

They are resilient.

They are persistant.

They are relentless.

They are self-aware.

They are connected.

They build on strong foundations.

Most of all, they crave growth.

And, I believe all of these qualities can be quantified with a single question, “How much can you lift?”