Friday, April 4, 2008

Why No Weights?

The fitness world tends to fractionalize into groups dedicated to a particular style of exercising, and bodyweight is no exception. Actually, it practically gets the same treatment of a religious cult (yes, I’ve heard comparisons to Jonesville in reference us). As far as most of the fitness industry is concerned, weight-based strength training is the best and only way to get strong. We violate that code. Still, there are many who don’t like to fit into any group and will accept that both weight training and bodyweight both build muscular strength. Some of them question us about our dedication to bodyweight training. Apparently, they see a double standard. Why exclude weights?

I can’t answer for the rest of the crowd but I can explain my position on the matter. My answer is twofold: I travel a lot and I’m a tad resentful. Weight-based training for me is impractical because of how much I travel. How am I supposed to exercise if I depend on weights and I travel? I’m a bit resentful because I’ve been bombarded, like many of you have, that if you want to get strong, you have to lift weights. There is no alternative. Keep in mind, this is uttered by people who have financial incentives for doing saying such things.

That is an outright lie. The fact is that you can and part of my point in being a BW guy is to prove that you can do it too. So, if I used weights, wouldn’t that be potent evidence to shoot down my whole point? After all, why use them if you don’t need them? Have I used weights before? Yeah, I did when I was a teenager. I’ve received weights from good intentioned people as gifts because they found out my love for fitness and exercise. I have used stones, tires and logs for conditioning from time to time. Honestly, if that got me my strength, then you really shouldn’t be reading what I have to say right now. I’ve used them so rarely and if I got these results from the few times that I weight trained then BW training would truly be a crock of shit (BTW, has anyone figured out how I can get a 300 lbs tire on an airplane yet?) .

I hate to bring up the subject matter that causes so much bickering. Frankly, I wish that it didn’t. If you like to lift and you want to lift, then you don’t need my permission to do so. I hope that you do it with care and caution. Just as long as you don’t go around mindlessly spreading a lie then do what you want. I’d rather you lift than not exercise at all, in spite of some of my concerns about it. In the end, I want to provoke thought and good choices.

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