25 August 2017
The Day I Entered a Bodybuilding Show
As I look back on the day, I graduated high school I can’t help but laugh. I weighed no more than one hundred and thirty pounds soaking wet. I tried like crazy to gain weight, nothing worked. I grew up idolizing people like Arnold Schwarzenegger, Jean Claude Van-Damn, and Sylvester Stallone. My dad and I would watch Predator on repeat.
I remember wondering what it would take to look like those gentlemen. I quickly dismissed the idea of competing. I said to myself it’s the steroids. So, a few years passed, thank The Lord I found some extra weight. I was in the Army at the time the idea surfaced again.
In the Army, we have a Physical Fitness Test. The test consists of Push-ups, Sit-ups, and a Two-Mile Run. We get tested every six months, and the score is zero to three hundred. I consistently score around Two-Hundred and Eighty. I have always prided myself on being physically fit, but I still felt inadequate. I would pass a mirror and see a skinny bean pole.
Self-doubt has a sneaky way of compounding on a person. At the time, I was talking to a woman I met through a mutual friend. Bodybuilding shows were what she and her family did. We spoke for a few months, and it ended in disaster. Rejection has a way of bringing the insecurities we try to hide to the forefront. I recall sitting at my house, my insecurities running a marathon in my mind. One kept coming to mind, my physique.
As I sat down, I understood I was dwelling in fear. Rejection is not a death sentence. It’s a call to rebirth. The next morning, I hired a trainer. I woke up at 0430 every morning to workout, eating three-hundred grams of protein a day, and running thirty miles a week. I did this for three months. I changed my physique from 0ne-hundred and ninety to two-hundred and Twelve pounds with six percent body fat. I took the stage in an all-natural show.
Darkness cannot stay where the light is. The moment I took the stage, all my insecurities fled. We all want to be like our idols. These mythical creatures who we believe don’t have insecurities or flaws. The truth is we all have self-doubt. Instead of looking at them as crippling fears they offer us a chance. When we look at our insecurities as a list of opportunities, they become triumphs. I don’t see a skinny bean pole anymore when I look in the mirror. When I look now, I see a conqueror who stared down his demons and came out better for it.
I hope to see you on the path…