Muscle Building Improves Father And Son Relationship
I first started muscle building with solo routines of weight lifting exercises. I did not foresee the series of events that strengthened the bond I now have with my son
On my 49th birthday I came to a unsettling conclusion. I was totally and hopelessly out of shape. My back was sore every day and tendinitis was attacking my hands and arms. My appearance was horrible and my mood worse. Every day was the same. Antidepressants and talks with a therapist didn’t help. Oh yeah, and libido, forget it.
I had been athletic most of my life, running, playing tennis regularly for years and then taking up golf. All of a sudden I was losing the battle right before my eyes. What could I do? I wasn’t sure if there was anything I could do other than give in to the fact that I was getting older. This was serious, not like when I turned 40.
Somehow I managed to drag myself into the local YMCA in Bellingham, Washington. It was a nice comfy place with average Joe’s like myself. Some of the guys seemed like they were intent on building big muscles, but many, like me, were just there to get into good shape.
At first the going was slow and sometimes painful, but still encouraging. I almost always felt better on the days I worked out. My discipline wasn’t perfect. I would get lazy and skip a week or even a month, but I always managed to drag myself back in.
Like most fathers, I wanted my son to do as I did, so I somewhat forcefully dragged my 13 year old son, Jarryd into the gym with me. He was always a good athlete and naturally tough and strong. I figured he would take to it as I had.
After a few weight lifting exercises his words to me were, “I wouldn’t mind being a little stronger, but I really don’t like lifting weights all that much. It’s pretty boring, Dad.He came to the gym a few more times, but then lost interest. I let it go. Hey, I had a life to save.
A few months later I was home and Jarryd came into my room. I was changing my shirt and saw out of the corner of my eye that he was watching me. I could tell that he noticed ol’ Dad was lookin pretty good. I didn’t say anything and had to turn my head away to hide my self satisfied grin.
The next time I went to the gym, Jarryd came along. He seemed to be a little more into it than before and did a complete workout. Then he came again the next time I went. When I mentioned his newfound interest to him, he said that summer was coming and he wanted to look good at the beach. OK, it wasn’t me that motivated him, but girls. That was even better.
Every month Jarryd built a little more muscle. He had obviously decided to build some muscles. He got frustrated a few times because his muscles weren’t getting big enough fast enough. I had to remind him that he had to wait a bit longer for his hormones to really kick into the big muscle growth stage. It wasn’t what he wanted to hear, but he kept working.
A year later, Jarryd started telling me what weight lifting exercises I needed to do. Next he was instructing me on correct form, stretching, cardio and diet. Of course, eventually the hormones kicked in and his muscles started growing. He really began to work, running more, lifting with more focus and eating better.
I then noticed that guys of all ages would approach him and ask about certain lifts or just share information. He was turning into a real man with a good attitude, modest and helpful. And, oh yeah, the girl thing worked out pretty good.
So, here we are today. I’m now 60 and Jarryd is almost 24. We get together to work out a few days a week. We help each other to stay motivated. I’m feeling better than when I was 49 and he is getting even stronger. He easily lifts more than me now, but I am still the handsome one in the family.
Those solo weight lifting workouts are a distant memory. They have been replaced by a growing friendship. Yes, I can truly state that muscle building has strengthened the bond I share with my son.