Tuesday, January 18, 2011

FE Ladies

If you don't know what FE stands for, it is the chemical symbol for iron. Yesterday at the gym I went back to work out with free weights. For quite a few years I lifted weights and was into bodybuilding. Please note, due to genetics I would never bulk up, but kept fit and most of all strong. I'm back at it after a break that probably went too long.  Not at the same intensity but back at it none the less.  

Usually that section of the gym is reserved for the big sweaty guys that grunt too much and drop their weights on the floor. My rule is that if you can't lift them to put them away, leave them in the rack. However, this early morning I was surprised to see all women working out - with one or two guys warily keeping a wide berth. The best part was that these women were my age-ish. And they were fit, focused and getting it done. Their form was perfect, side laterals lifted with a respectable weight. I was pretty impressed with what I saw.

My serious lifting days came at a time when women were sneered at in the free weight section. Told they didn't know what they were doing, laughed at, and yes, made fun of. You had to really prove yourself and I squatted 200lbs at the time without a grunt or roar. I got lucky - I worked out with the local policemen and partnered with a woman chiropractor who was a competitive power lifter. Yes, I was serious.

And here these women were on Sunday morning. Strong, accomplished, with their babies now grown. Each in their own space, working it. Not to reach an ideal standard from a magazine - but from an internal drive to push their own limits. Ladies I salute you. Personal satisfaction is far more rewarding than waiting to hear it from someone else. Kudos to you. You lift us up with your confidence and sense of self. How great to see just how far we've come.

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