"Dad, I wanna look like Arnold Schwarzenegger."
At 10 years old, I saw Arnold as nothing less than a real life superhero. And that is what I wanted to be. The truth is, I still want to be a superhero. But I think I accomplished this based on the wide-eyed gaze I am getting lately from my 1 year old son.
It is the same feeling I have toward my father, the one that got me out of bed at 5:30am to jog around the block and then meet him in the basement to lift weights. Only a superhero can get a 10 year old out of bed at that hour to run and squat. And that is what my father was to me.
Within 2 minutes of him nudging me awake, I was running down the block half asleep. Did one lap around (about a 1/4 mile), walked into the basement and started with Squats. We did all of the classic lifts - Military Press, Bench Press, Bentover Row, Squats, Heel Raises, Arm Curls, and Tricep Extensions. Everything with the bar.
To this day, that is the way that I train. I have an undergraduate degree in exercise physiology, a masters in business, numerous high-level fitness certifications and elite-level athletic experience in 2 sports. Plenty of coaches along the way.
But where did I learn what I know? From my Dad at 10 years old.
I'm not sure where my Dad picked up what he knew. It was not just the exercises, but the progression system he used. Reps of 8, then 10 and 12. When I could do 3 sets of 12, we increased the weight and started back at 3 sets of 8. Simple and effective.
My Dad was a tough spotter. On Heel Raises for example, I had to stay elevated on my toes with the weight on my back until he tapped my shoulder to go down. I never let him down. I stayed on my toes no matter how much it burned.
Well Dad, I'm still on my toes.
You taught me that. And I love you for it. I love you for delivering newspapers at 4:00am every morning so that you could afford to send me to college. I love you for the times you'd make me dinner while I was studying and then bring that big plate of food into my room.
I know that I am who I am because of who you are and how you raised me. I am very proud of that. You were a very good spotter.
- ► 2008 (10)
- ▼ 2007 (26)
- NY, New York, United States
- I'm 34 years old, the proud father of 2 beautiful children and husband to Jennifer, a beautiful, smart, and very caring woman. I'm an athlete - someone that was blessed with the ability to move fast and fluidly past, around, up and over my opponents. But, my body now reminds me that those days are numbered. I'm the Founder of Agile Fitness, a company dedicated to helping others achieve their fitness goals. Resume: - Certified Strength & Conditioning Specialist ('96). - Bachelor of Arts & Science, University of Delaware, ('95) - Masters in Business Administration, Baruch College Zicklin School of Business ('01)