Why do you lift?
A simple question and yet so many answers. Curiosity quickly turns into passion. Sometimes we don't really know why we lift and have to find the right words for something that already feels so natural as the gym becomes our second home. The answer is rarely simple or one-dimensional, which we aren’t either. In the last two years, a pandemic has more or less thrown us all out of our training routines and, much like in training, we had to adapt and find individual solutions to this new situation. Just as we change with time and circumstances, so does our Why, it grows with us. For Strength Shop Europe it was quite a surreal journey the past ten years, and with this anniversary we want to dive back to our and your Why?
The fascination with lifting heavy goes way back. The first lifting competitions already existed among the Greeks. Even earlier, the Egyptians started with some strength training. They lifted whatever was available. DIY, one would say, and even if there were no supplement stores, sophisticated equipment or sports science back then, it was probably the sheer desire to simply pick up something heavy, to compete and to do something for one's own body. This fundamental idea has survived to this day and weight training is still evolving.
MIND & BODY – SOMEWHERE IN AND BETWEEN THESE SPHERES IS OUR WHY
For many, the possibility to actively and healthily change their body shape and composition is a big driving force at the beginning. Sometimes it is a recommendation from the doctor to start weight training. A search for a balance to an ever faster changing world. Releasing pressure, feeling yourself, finding yourself. Admittedly, that might sound a bit cheesy, but it describes quite well how many people feel when they squeeze in their training after a demanding day. Meeting like-minded people. Having a sigh of relief for one moment that day. Gathering strength while exhausting yourself. Learning something new, competing with others, not only testing your limits, but also pushing them. Realizing that there is still more in the tank. To fail sometimes and then pick yourself up again and keep going. As brutal as some training, competitions or attempts may seem, in the end it is also a huge playground that gives us the opportunity to discover ourselves all over again.
Noticing how you can change your body and have decent control over yourself as understanding how our bodies actually work, at least a part of it, gives us a feeling of sovereignty. Apart from that, weight training is also simply good for the mind, or as we say nowadays, the mental. Even from a psychological perspective, weight training can help you get over the winter blues and keep your mood up, so undoubtedly: weight training is simply healthy!
A KILO REMAINS A KILO
The physical and the mental can't be separated from each other, all the Why’s will change, shift and merge over time, but a kilo remains a kilo. Powerlifting, Olympic weightlifting, strongman/strongwoman and the many variations in strength sports remain the constant rock in our surf.
Finding an answer to the question, Why?, is the individual desire in everyone who bends over the barbell. We also recognize something of ourselves in others who cross our path in the gym, something that connects us.