First of all, regardless of your reasons, I’m glad that you all decided to make regular exercise a part of your lives. Many young people your age don’t do this and most adults don’t encourage it. There are a lot of reasons for this:
- It’s not part of our culture. Most adults of my generation grew up being fairly active outdoors and even if we weren’t, we still had gym class. Now, I realize that you all have Health class but from what I can tell, that’s not a very physically demanding class. Today, unless they are in season for a sport, many of your peers spend the bulk of their free time Netflix browsing and looking at Vines on YouTube. Also not a physically demanding activity.
- Adults are uneducated about training. During elementary school, aka the prime ages when you’re learning how a person should be, you’re discouraged from any sort of weight training because of some outdated notions about what it might do to your body. Since you have all been training since you were in single digit ages and most of you are taller than I am, I hope you realize that these fears are bogus and pass on to my grandchildren a love of weight training for health.
That last point is important. I’m not talking about lifting weights to compete in a sport, or even to walk around with muscles hanging out of your sleeves and single digit body fat. I mean, it is nice to look like you lift, but I care more about the benefits to your bones, your heart and longevity. Over and over again, we see that people who follow a physical culture lifestyle, meaning bodybuilding the way they did it in the Fifties, Sixties and Seventies, tend to live longer and enjoy their longer lives more. I want that for you all. I want that for my grandchildren.
I didn’t grow up in a family that respected the value of physical exercise past school age. That started to change with my two youngest uncles, but most of the generation that came before me live sedentary lifestyles. I still get questions periodically about when I’m going to stop all of this and accept that I’m growing older. (side note: the answer to that question is, never. I hope to still get in a weight session the day of my death.)
Ladies and gentlemen, for the sake of my grandchildren, I hope that you all continue with your own children the pattern that I started with you. Introduce them to weight training, mobility work and cardio as early as possible. Keep it fun, keep it safe and within their limits; but introduce them to it all. They will thank you for it and I’m thanking you in advance.