The major benefits of body building should be obvious to just about anyone, with the fact that physical power is always highly coveted. Strong men have always been respected and held in awe, as far back at least as Samson in Biblical times. But often someone who takes up body building is not thinking about being held in awe. In fact many are thinking just the opposite, wanting people simply to stop thinking of them as a twelve-stone weakling. Showing that you can do what it takes to become physically strong and powerful takes work but it is work that carries its own reward.
There are many practical situations in which the ability to lift something heavy, or simply to move something large, is of major importance. But shifting a mental block is at least as valuable. Many of us underestimate just how physically strong we are, and how much potential we have, and as far as proving it goes there is no better way than training to a point where we are capable of physical achievements that would be beyond many.
Most of us would love to be capable of things that we watch happening on television week in and week out. Many of the most popular sports feature individuals who have trained to the point where they are capable of pushing another (pretty large) human being backwards at a high speed. Gridiron and rugby two of the major sports in their countries of origin, would be impossible without the muscle bound guys who dont always get the credit but are invariably favorites with the fans.
When people look at body builders, there is often a suggestion that the word vanity is never far from their minds. After all, it is pretty much impossible to be a body builder without it being fairly obvious. Even in a suit that covers up all the muscles, a long term body builder can often be hard to distinguish from a moving wall. But to assume that vanity is behind most people taking up body building would be unfair, and simply massively inaccurate. There are many practical reasons why you would consider taking it up.
Quite apart from any competitive considerations, there is the fact that for most of us, situations will occur that necessitate a bit (or a lot) of heavy lifting. As well built as some of us may be naturally, heavy lifting still takes it out of you. But if you have been working on the exact muscle groups that are required for the job, then you will be in a good position to get through such a task with a minimum of sweat. In fact, people will often pay you to do it for them. If you have been working those muscles for years, thats pretty close to money for nothing.
Being able to lift and move heavy items is something that comes up again and again, if you are moving house for example. The simple thought of doing such a thing is enough to bring many individuals out in a cold sweat. Those muscles may provoke envy in many, but they can also win you a bunch of respect.
You can do more or less anything competitively these days. There are competitions for things that maybe half a century ago would have been unimaginable in a competitive context, and as time goes on the field increases in size. But it should come as no surprise that among the things you can do competitively in body building. It is something that has clearly definable and measurable results. And it fits in well with a competitive spirit, as it is something towards which you can train and put in a whole lot of effort.
If you are a relative novice to body building, there are competitions for the newcomer which are probably the best choice if you are feeling competitive. The guys who have been competing for years are liable to make anyone feel somewhat daunted and even a little bit discouraged. The one thing that must sit as a caveat for any potential competitor is that it is not a pursuit for a shrinking violet. In order to demonstrate the success of your body building regime it is necessary to pull some poses that would make the average person blush. But if you have been working on your physique and got it to a level that youre happy with, why would you not show it off?
Most areas have regional competitions, and if you do well enough there there are many levels above that to which you can graduate. Perhaps someone reading this might go on to be another Mr Universe!
The benefits of body building for a physical boost are clear and proven. No-one can deny that there is a lot to be gained from a physical aspect from training well and putting in the effort required to build your muscles. But less attention is paid to the beneficial effects that training can have on a more personal level. Treating a body building regime as a personal project will see to it that you gain a sense of accomplishment at each step along the way something which cannot be underestimated in terms of importance. The benefits of having a sense of personal accomplishment are well recognised, and there are many of them.
A good body building regime will contain a number of goals that you need to attain to keep the process on schedule and effective. In reaching these goals you will give yourself a well-deserved sense of accomplishment that will in turn drive you on to achieve more and hit higher goals. This sense of accomplishment transfers into everything you do, and when life presents you with challenges it gives you something to call upon that shows you do not fall back when life gives you something to take on.
There are so many reasons why body builders take up training. Some will do it competitively, some just for their own personal intentions. Whatever the reason it cannot be denied that a successful body building regime has many other effects beyond the building of muscles. It is up to you what your motivating factors will be, but personal achievement cannot be underestimated among the possibles.
If you were digging a hole, and the spade you were using had a shaky handle and a broken blade, you would take a lot longer to dig that hole than a guy with a well-made, new spade. If you were trying to play a guitar and it only had five strings, then you would not get such a great sound out of it as a guy with a new Fender. So when it comes to body building, there is something to be said for using new, efficient equipment. It may cost more than second-hand, and you could buy some cheaper weights, but would the saving justify the use of the poorer equipment?
Badly designed weights can work muscles in the wrong way. The advantage that you gain with better equipment is that, for the same amount of work, they give you far more than basic or poor equipment. There is little point in cutting corners when it comes to training all that will happen is that you will struggle at some point down the line and you will regret it. At that point you may decide to upgrade your equipment and all you will have done is delay the spending, incurred some extra and held yourself back.
Instead of this, ask someone who knows you, and who knows training what kind of equipment you should go for. Working with the right equipment is worth the effort and the cost, and will save you money in the long run. There is no point at all in half-measures where training is concerned.
Training to gain the shape that you have always wanted makes for an intensive regime of hard work and effort. You can never be in too good of a shape, so it is important to maintain a quality training regime, and its the word quality that is important. Quality wins out over quantity, every time. The key here is that if you get injured, you do not dwell on how it is keeping you from training. You have to accept that training must wait for a time when you can do it effectively, and in the mean time find something else to do.
If you are sitting about getting wound up about how you want to get back in the gym, then you will not be effective when you get back in there. All that will happen is you will take the first sign of recovery as a green light to get back in the gym and the training you will do once there will be a great deal less effective than it would be under normal circumstances. Efficiency and quality are the watchwords, remember. As much as you may want to get back in the game, realise that there is little point in training at half of your potential.
Find another way to fill your time it doesnt really matter what that is. It could be something slow paced like gardening, or anything else. Something that keeps your mind occupied is the key. If you are left idle, your mind will wander right back to the gym and you will follow it there, which will not help.
Enthusiasm is a valuable part of the body builders make up. There are times for all of us when going to the gym may feel like a hassle that we can do without, but in sticking to a regime that has been designed for a purpose, we get a lot closer to the purpose in question and benefit as a result. A stop-start regime will mean that you are always going back over old ground, and the first part of any training regime even post-warm up will be devoted to regaining muscle tone rather than adding it. So if you can motivate yourself to get in there and go for it, half the battle is won.
Equally it is important to bear in mind that enthusiasm can have its costs if it is unbridled. Spending time in the gym is vital for getting into shape, but it is equally true to say that you can spend too much time in the gym, or try to fit too much work into the time that you spend there. The effect of this is that they will cause themselves an injury, or at least make a continued regime a lot more difficult than it should have been. Having some mobility is important, and by building up too much muscle you can compromise your own mobility.
The answer is to design a routine with some space to relax written into it. On doing this, you will give yourself something realistic to stick to, with results you can monitor and learn from.
Although illegal in athletic competition, the use of steroids is not illegal per se. Amateur body builders and in some jurisdictions, the professionals too are free to use whatever aids they need to use. That being the case, many people will have no qualms about reaching for the medicine cabinet to make things easier and even more efficient. There is no question, however, that steroids can only give so much because they borrow from what you already have. The damage that can result from this is a very good reason to think long and hard before deciding to use steroids.
One has only to look at the highly publicised cases of some high-profile individuals to see what damage steroids can do. More than one professional athlete has died as a result of the long-term effects of steroids, as the extra boost that they give can put an undue strain on the heart and other internal organs. Even upon retirement, the effects that the use of steroids can cause will mean that a user needs to be very careful with the effects of artificial help. And this is before we get to the famed effects of roid rage, which can turn an otherwise placid individual into a person given to bouts of unprovoked anger.
In the end, it is up to the individual if they want to use steroids to get the boost that takes their training to the next level. But ask any doctor and they will tell you that there are huge downsides to relying on the effects of steroids, against a short-term, superficial upside.
There is an attitude among some part-time body builders that someone who hits the gym and goes straight for the heaviest weights is a hero, a real above and beyonbd the call of duty guy. This is a fairly dumb attitude to take because, without warming up and down, a body building routine will do very little for you. In actual fact, going for the big weights before you are ready to lift them will destroy any of the good work that you do. A little bit of thought is required before you really go for it.
Warming up is a big part of a body building routine. Generally taking the form of some stretches before you get into the meat of the routine, it means the muscles will be in shape to handle the harder work you are about to put them through. Picking up weights puts a strain on the muscles, and through this work they will become stronger. But going straight from resting mode to hard work will only result in damage being caused. The preparation involved in a body building routine is as important as the exercise itself.
As much as some people may smirk at the idea of going about things by the book, you have to think about what you want to achieve through a body building routine. If it is about getting into the best shape possible, there is no way of achieving this without observing the rules. You will simply do more harm than good.
There is a lot of talk devoted to feeling the burn when training. This is when you feel a substantial amount of pain and carry on exercising, as in some peoples estimation it wont work if it doesnt hurt. While there is some element of truth in this if something is not physically demanding it is worthless as an exercise it should not be confused with exercising on through the pain. If you pick up a weight and instantly feel pain, just carrying on is the worst thing you can do. In all likelihood, you have torn a muscle and need to stop.
When you have a demanding training regime the chances are you will pick up small muscle tears quite regularly. Muscles are made of quite flexible material which allows them the room to move without which they would be useless. As a result, major exertion will cause some tearing in the muscle, but there is a difference between types of tearing. Some repair themselves overnight if rested, but a larger one will take time and treatment. Exercising while carrying one of those will only aggravate it and eventually, it will stop you training or doing much at all.
While some people may view exercising on through an injury as a sign of commitment and strength, it will end up being just the opposite. Taking a rest every once in a while is a clear necessity, and taking one when you are too sore to continue is an absolute non-negotiable. Work smart it is just as important as working hard in the long run.