I’m a proud member of the Animal Barbell Club. The ABC is Universal Nutrition’s show of support for grass roots bodybuilding and powerlifting. It’s a way for Average Joes and elite strength athletes to get together to rekindle some of the spirit of the Iron Game that was lost when weight training emerged from YMCA basements, backyard weight shacks and garages. The idea for #AnimalBlackFriday came from my good friend Jimmy Cammarano who is the ABC contact at Universal and an all around good dude.
We all know about Black Friday. It’s the annual attempt by big box retailers to turn a holiday intended to celebrate all we should be thankful for, into a mad dash of pissed off soccer moms and suburbanites elbowing each other; trampling kids in an attempt to save 30% off something they don’t need. That is b.s.
Me, my brother Brian and some other guys from the Chattanooga ABC are getting together on Black Friday, dressed in our all black Animal gear and training. Not to show how hardcore we are, but as a celebration of the fact that we are ABLE to train, as an expression of thanks that we get to use our bodies in an activity we enjoy. It’s a rejection of the idea that I need to abandon my family after eating my face full and go stand in line for hours just to get pissed off that somebody else got the last whatever that does something that will be obsolete in six months.
I’m putting it out there that everybody who wants to rebel, not go shopping that day. Instead spend time with family and then at some point, get a training session in, by yourself if necessary, wear all Black. Doesn’t have to be lifting, can be anything exercise related. Want to max out on pushups and post a pic in your all black Animal gear? Go for it. Don’t have Animal gear? Grab all black anything and hit it. Feel like hill sprints? Do it. Go for an AMRAP on deads? Do it.
If anybody asks you why you’re doing this, the day after Thanksgiving, tell them you’re sending a message to your kids that taking care of yourself is more important than more junk to clutter up your house, that you’re lifting to celebrate your gratitude that you have working arms and legs or simply to be grateful that you’re alive when so many others didn’t survive from last November to this one.
This isn’t limited to the U.S. either, anybody can do it, anywhere in the world because we all need to celebrate the simple joy of being alive and I can’t think of any better way to do that than to use your body in a way that it was intended to be used. Moving.
If you’re on Instagram be sure to take some black and white photos of yourself training with the #AnimalBlackFriday.
Rant over. Welcome to the rebellion.