It’ll be great, they said. You’ll feel better, you’ll look better, you’ll sleep better. Your sex life will improve. You’ll look better in clothes, and get to spend less time trying to hide your flaws with fashion trends. Trust us, they said, after you get over that initial phase, it’ll all come naturally. Or so they said.
You’ll feel better, they said. Oh yeah? Waking up every morning feeling like you got hit by a Mack Truck is your definition of feeling good? With jagged joints that feel like they’re rusting? A lower back that doesn’t like to straighten out completely anymore, or perhaps has an interesting S-curve to the side, so you get to walk around like one of those pre-V8 idiots in the commercials? Or perhaps I’ll feel better when I’m so stuffed full of food that I can’t breathe—or, on the other end of the season, when I’m trying to subsist off of the occasional flake of oatmeal or grain of rice on my “high carb day”. Is that when I’ll feel better?
You’ll look better, they said. Of course—because the end-game all along, when I first started, was to slowly morph into the human version of a bear, replete with enough body hair growing out of my traps, navel, and ears to give Smokey a run for his money. I always thought about how it would be so cool, someday, to actually lose my ability to walk in a linear fashion, and instead adopt a penguin-like waddle across the floor.
You’ll sleep better, they said. Yep, just stack up four pillows under your head to ensure the Apnea Fairy doesn’t visit tonight, along with an additional two pillows, one under each arm, to prevent your limbs from going numb and losing all sensation while you sleep. And oh yeah, forget trying to lay on your side. Or your stomach. Straight missionary sleep from here out—like Dracula in his coffin. Hopefully, you’ll only wake up to pee three times per evening during your diet phase; or, other end of the spectrum, hopefully by the time you wake up, last night’s 13th meal will have had ample time to semi-digest, so you can begin the process of shoveling calories all over again fresh.
Your sex life will improve, they said. Well, I sure look cool doing the nasty, that’s true. Of course, it pays to have an inhaler on standby, as well as some Pedialyte to replenish precious electrolytes. They didn’t tell you that by embracing bodybuilding, you would be living on the other end of the spectrum from “endurance athlete”—which is code for, “Anything besides sitting on your ass motionless is a chore”. So debonair.
You’ll look better in clothes, they said. Yes, I have always wanted to drape myself in bed sheets just to be able to move comfortably around my house. The concept “waistband” got thrown out a good seven years ago. Now, we’ve done away with the concept “shopping at a store”. Instead, we get the awesome privilege of the Big Boy store, and shopping online, to try to find shorts and T-shirts that look like a parasail when held into the sky. Oh, you were thinking about buying a suit? Enjoy your custom tailoring. Or jeans? Enjoy holding your breath for the next twelve hours while your squeeze your ass into that prison. Even your flip flops are getting tight? You, sir, have officially arrive—welcome to bodybuilding!
It’ll be awesome, they said. You will marvel at how much easier everyday activities become, they said. Like, perhaps getting into an automobile. Or the simple act of sitting down on a toilet after leg day (without cracking the seat). Or tying your hair back when you can no longer touch your own head with your own hands. You won’t believe how much your life will change, they said.
And you know what? They were right. And I wouldn’t trade it for the world.
-David A. Johnston
David Johnston is the founder and lead trainer of TEAM Warrior Within. You can also listen to him weekely on the GEARD Up podcast. ( GEARDUp.com ) David works with clients ranging from the everyday person just trying to lose weight and get healthy, local and national bodybuilding and physique competitors, to IFBB professional athletes.
David lives and breathes all things related to physique transformation, and has devoted nearly half of his life to passionately studying and educating himself to be the absolute best at what he does. His intensity in the gym is matched only by the passion he gives to his clients.