I am a guy that constantly battles putting on weight because I generally eat too much. Pathetic lack of self-control, I admit. I go up and down. I never get really heavy, but I am usually not at my ideal fighting weight either. So, I get it. There is nothing easy about keeping the weight off. This is an important aspect of staying healthy as being over-weight is a health risk. But being fit is a lifestyle, keeping the excess pounds off is part of it. I am generally fit. I have a desk job and a lot of exercise has to be done in order to off-set that lack of activity throughout the day. Fitness is a must for longevity and health, of course, and this is why most people pursue it. However, being fit is also about being functional. In the world of self-defense part of what we consider functional is the ability to fight. A core element of being able to protect yourself and those you love from bad people or from other unforeseen disasters is being fit.
I am not a fitness guru or a personal fitness trainer of any kind. I have always been into exercise, however, and here is what I can tell you with certainty: the core of being fit, for male or female, is lifting heavy things. You need to lift weights. Cardiovascular aerobics is also important, but if you want functional strength to be good at doing things, including fighting, you need to lift weights. It is that simple. If you argue that weight lifting is not necessary, you are wrong. We are not talking about necessarily doing heavy weightlifting like training to be an Olympic weightlifter, or a bodybuilder, but we need to lift.
Lifting weights makes you stronger so that you can hit harder, of course, but that is just part of it. Can you grab your small children and run for 200 yards with them? Can you throw a table through a plate glass window to escape a bad situation? Can you pick up an adversary and throw him off the balcony? Can you grab a family member and pull them out of a burning vehicle? This is what lifting weights is for in the world of self-defense and preparedness. The surplus benefit of lifting is that you look better, but this is secondary. I know plenty of guys who are not diligent about their eating habits who maintain some fat and have a bit of a gut, but they lift and they have strength. They can pick up and throw heavy things. They can pull their own body weight over a wall. Very few people who don’t lift weights can do these things.
Can you do a pullup? If not, what makes you think you could pull yourself through a window in a time of crises? Sure, the adrenaline may help, but if that is what you are counting on, good luck. Can you do 20 sit-ups and 20 pushups without passing out? I see a lot of shooting enthusiasts that are so out of shape they obviously stand a far greater chance of keeling over from a heart attack in a dynamic situation than they do from catching an enemy’s bullet. Those dollars spent on ammunition are much better directed towards a gym membership.
If you are serious about being able to protect yourself from evil people, or any other form of disaster that can arise, you need to be conditioning your physical fitness. You need to be lifting weights. If you don’t lift, you need to start. Forget buying a new gun, forget reading all those gun magazines, get to a gym or build one at home and start lifting weights. Lose weight, get strong. That should be your first priority and if it is not your ability to take care of yourself and those you love is entirely peripheral with no core.
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