The Five Biggest Contradictions in Fitness
Latest Article

The Five Biggest Contradictions in Fitness

Itís no secret that when people contradict themselves, it has the effect of making the flaws in their actions or statements seem glaringly obvious. But what about when WE ourselves get caught contradicting ourselves by someone else?

By: Nick Tumminello Added: January 6th, 2014
More Recent Articles
Contrast Training for Size
By: Lee Boyce
An Interview with Marianne Kane of Girls Gone Strong
By: Jordan Syatt
What Supplements Should I be Taking? By: Jay Wainwright
Bench Like a Girl By: Julia Ladewski
Some Thoughts on Building a Big Pull By: Christopher Mason

Facebook Join Facebook Group       Twitter Follow on Twitter       rss Subscribe via RSS
Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 25 of 31
  1. #1
    Banned
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Location
    At a slight angle to the universe
    Posts
    1,818

    Beating Depression Through Weight Lifting.

    I occasionally see stuff about depression and exercise come up on this forum so I thought I'd tell people my story. Well, I'm in two minds to post this, because on the one hand, I've always hated self-righteous indulgence and sob-stories, but on the other hand its good to get my thoughts down in one place and move on, and hey, it may even help somebody who reads it. It goes something like this...

    By my final year of high school I was in the best sports teams, I had great friends, a hot and popular girlfriend, and was on track for some top exam results. I was self-assured, confident to the point of arrogance and generally felt I "knew the score".

    It was during my first year of university that things started to change. When I got to uni, for the first time I had no real structure to my life, and was pitched into a situation where I felt like I was surrounded by people below my ability (I was an arrogant ****). Whatever the case, it was a ****ing joke; I'd ended up going to a lesser university than planned and totally breezed freshman year. Instead of university being this amazing intellectual experience which was going to change my life and enhance my mind, it felt like I was wasting my time. I started questioning everything about my life, my ambitions, my hopes, my social skills, everything. I also stopped doing any sport. At the end of first year I went travelling on my own all summer because I was always intensely independent and wanted nothing more than to strike out on my own. I've come to regard this as a bad decision because all it revealed was nothing more than loneliness and self-hatred lurking a couple of inches below the surface.

    When I got back, I felt like a different person. I literally went back to university the day I got off the plane causing a massive dislocation of reality and suddenly, everything I'd been mulling over for the last year hit me hard. Actually, that's a misleading description because it didn't feel like pain, it felt like numbness, it was like everything had been stripped away, drowned, suffocated. It came out of nowhere and terrified me. I went to parties and just sat in a corner staring into space vacantly. The rest of that year I was like a ghost amongst men. Nothing mattered. It felt like I'd seen how utterly pointless and meaningless all of existence was and I just couldn't recover. On top of this nihilism I started for the first time to really perceive all the sorrow in the world, the realisation that at this very moment somewhere in the world someone is getting tortured, someone is getting raped... it was too much. And the fact that I'd had such a comfortable life and there was no reason for me to feel personally upset or depressed only made me feel guilty, which made everything worse. I had no desires, and absolutely no energy. I would sleep up to 14hrs a night and just stare at a blank wall for the rest of the day. I just wanted to go to sleep and never wake up. I lost a lot of weight through under-eating and lack of exercise. Suicide became a daily thought. I don't think I was ever serious, I was just aware it was an option and it became almost like an unwanted daily mantra. Things got weird and I started to worry I was losing my mind. It looked like I was going to fail the year, which considering I'd previously won scholarships to several private schools and universities was a bit of a change.

    People were getting concerned. On the surface I managed to maintain a relatively normal appearance, except being very quiet and moody but inside everything was wrong, and those who knew me could tell. My parents were scared. The only reason I didn't go on medication was because I used to be one of those people who thought depression didn't exist, meds were only for weak people, SSRI's didn't work etc. I was too stubborn to seek help and not quite ready to emerge out of my cavern of darkness anyhow. In retrospect, I think I would have saved a lot of time by just going on a short course of antidepressants. But I didn't, I wanted another way.

    And now, the good bit!
    Last year, some improvements were made in general and it seemed like I was through the worst of it but my confidence was shot, and I was in all truthfulness a different person. I found it very hard to relate to other people (and to some extent still do), had no idea what the **** I was doing in life, and hadnít had sex for almost three years (yeah, I know, no wonder I wanted to kill myself!) I finally decided a permanent change was needed so I stopped being a ****ing pussy and remembered the kind of guy I used to be. I wanted my muscle back, and I wanted a purpose. I went to the gym!

    At first, it was like looking through the other side of the mirror Ė Iíd gone from being one of the bigger guys in my school gym to being one of the weaker, smaller guys in this gym. I was intimidated and finally understood what girls and weak guys meant when they said they didnít like the weights room. But I put my ego aside and started lifting. At first just machines, then I got up the nerve to brave free weights and then eventually started squatting and deadlifting. It was starting to come back to me and it was starting to be fun. I started checking WBB again for the first time in two years and got more inspired. Cheers guys! I started to eat big and lift heavier; at this point nothing was very regimented, no real routine, but just intelligent lifting with reasonable weight and no overtraining, which led to some noticeable size and strength increases almost immediately. I was also noticeably more assured and talkative than usual.

    I was starting to get into this and around the end of May I got properly serious and adopted a 5x5 program, squatting three times a week, coupled with a determination to bulk. I simply exploded and my strength went through the roof. I wasnít a complete beginner because I already knew how to lift and I suppose I had some muscle memory, but the results were amazing! Beginners take note: I didnít care about precision or cleanliness, or calorie counting or even protein quantities, and I used NO supplements or powders of any kind: I JUST ATE A LOT OF FOOD. Rereading Chris Masonís articles and remembering his old posts helped me a lot here. I drank four or five pints of milk a day, had bacon for breakfast most mornings. Added loads of olive oil to everything. Added cheese to most things. Had a couple of pieces of bread with each meal. Ate peanuts or spoonfuls of peanut butter whenever I was bored. I checked the end-of-day discounts at a nearby supermarket every night and ate loads of cheap steak, beef and pork this way. Whenever I went out, Iíd buy a few less drinks than usual to ensure I'd have money to buy some junk food on the way home. My flatmate was somewhere between amazed and disgusted; he didnít know who this guy Iíd turned into was, even though I felt like I WAS ME for the first time in ages. In response to some comment about an enormous meal I was eating I said ďwell Iím a growing boy!Ē in a rather off-hand manner. He looked at me and said ďno, really, you are by the way, youíre a lot bigger.Ē And I realised I was. I remember his disbelief one lunchtime to find Iíd eaten the whole loaf of bread heíd bought a few hours earlier! Whoops! Iíd gained over 30lbs and had developed some mean stretch marks. The stretch marks between my pecs and shoulders were so bad they actually started bleeding at one point and made me consider scaling back the lifting and eating for a while. By the end of the summer, for the first time ever I had a bit of a belly. But I didnít care, I was big and strong, and I was ****ing ready to take on anything. I also completely lost the fat in just a couple of weeks before the start of this uni year.

    My point to all this:
    I feel so much more confident, and happier, and more like myself, now I'm fit and strong, and itís a bonus people are noticing. From looking like I was going to drop out, itís now looking as though I may do a PhD next year. From being a slacker Iím now a determined young man with a variety of aims in life and a number of new hobbies. From constantly struggling with my mind I now feel on top of everything. From being almost asexual, Iíve had more female attention in the last four months than the last three years. I think this was only partly due to my good body and a lot more to do with confidence, how I held myself, how I talked and a wealth of subconscious signs weíre not aware of that indicate you have high testosterone levels. Whatever, it was pretty cool! For a while it seemed like I couldnít go out without women approaching me Ė often to the annoyance of people I was with. Iíd been told I was attractive by female friends before but my body-image was so bad I'd never believed them. When I started back this year I got so many compliments and surprised reactions from people I hadn't seen for a while. It made me feel really proud of what I'd achieved in just one summer. I got lots of "your looking really good" from quite a few girls, saw old mates who said I was looking "ripped", one said I looked "bloody huge! but in a very positive way", and one girl I bumped into on the way back from the gym said I looked "amazing" and then tried to lift my t-shirt up in the street to look at my chest! I stopped her and ran off. I also got a "you're pumped as ****" from someone.

    Well this has turned into a far longer post than was planned so anybody who made it this far through my boring life is probably wondering what the end to it all is. There isnít one Ė I go on. Life goes on. I keep lifting. I keep learning. I stay sane. I make something of myself. I interact with others. I enjoy life. I keep my fire burning. All there is to it. Gotta keep moving. At least thatís the plan anywayÖ
    Last edited by J.C.; 11-26-2008 at 04:44 AM.

  2.    Support Wannabebig and use AtLarge Nutrition Supplements!


  3. #2
    Senior Member motor head's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Posts
    444
    Im glad everything worked out for you! Collective sum up, chemical imbalance in the brain and now you just have some corrective medication and your good? I dont mean to downplay anything, it's an inspiring story none the less. thanks for putting it out there.

  4. #3
    Senior Member 11not10's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Illinois
    Posts
    86
    Glad to hear your back on track man
    Pain is weakness leaving the body.

    6'0"
    215 lbs.

  5. #4
    Banned
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Location
    At a slight angle to the universe
    Posts
    1,818
    Quote Originally Posted by motor head View Post
    Im glad everything worked out for you! Collective sum up, chemical imbalance in the brain and now you just have some corrective medication and your good? I dont mean to downplay anything, it's an inspiring story none the less. thanks for putting it out there.
    Exactly. Hard exercise has been shown again and again to have a balancing effect on the mind.

    Of course when your depressed and tired the whole time, working out is the last thing you want to do. I still retain a lot of my old cynicism about psychiatric medication. I think they have their place in some cases but in the majority of instances I think hard exercise will perform much the same function.
    Last edited by J.C.; 11-26-2008 at 04:45 AM.

  6. #5
    Senior Member Invain's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Michigan
    Posts
    3,890
    That's awsome man. Lifting has definitely helped me with some confidence issues as well.
    Best lifts: 615/475/660, Raw w/ Wraps
    http://www.youtube.com/user/invain622002

  7. #6
    Banned
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Location
    At a slight angle to the universe
    Posts
    1,818
    Quote Originally Posted by motor head View Post
    Im glad everything worked out for you! Collective sum up, chemical imbalance in the brain and now you just have some corrective medication and your good? I dont mean to downplay anything, it's an inspiring story none the less. thanks for putting it out there.
    Wait, I just reread your comment. No, I never used medication and don't intend to. I think its like taking painkillers when you have a headache - it just masks the problem without doing anything about the root cause. That said, I concede that some anti-depressants probably have some value in getting you back on track quicker.

  8. #7
    Senior Member motor head's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Posts
    444
    I guess that would be true if you had psychalogical problems but if your problems were simply over-production of the "sad chemical" then medication is the only thing thats going to help you.
    Last edited by motor head; 11-26-2008 at 08:29 PM.

  9. #8
    Senior Member Sensei's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Posts
    7,645
    "A vigorous five-mile walk will do more for an unhappy but otherwise healthy adult than all the medicine and psychology in the world."

    - Paul Dudley White, M.D.
    Sometimes, it really is a matter of taking ONE thing and getting it right or tying up the loose or frayed ends and suddenly the world is bathed in a new light. It really is wonderful when it happens to you or people around you. Glad to hear you're doing well. Keep up the good work.
    A child does not learn to squat from the top down. In other words, he does not suddenly make a conscious decision one day to squat. Actually, he is squatting one day and make the conscious decision to stand. Squatting precedes standing in the developmental sequence. This is the way a child's brain learns to use the body as the child develops movement patterns. Therefore, a child is probably crawling, rocks back into a squatting position with the back completely relaxed and the hips completely flexed, and stands when he has enough hip strength. This approach makes a lot of sense and can be applied to relearning the deep squat movement if it is lost. -Gray Cook
    Lifting Clips: http://www.youtube.com/profile?user=johnnymnemonic2
    Blog: http://squatrx.blogspot.com/

  10. #9
    Banned
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Location
    At a slight angle to the universe
    Posts
    1,818
    "A vigorous five-mile walk will do more for an unhappy but otherwise healthy adult than all the medicine and psychology in the world."

    - Paul Dudley White, M.D.
    True, but I think a 5k run or row, or an hour's hard weight-training would be MUCH more effective. I know from personal experience that the most benefit is derived from total sensory overload, absolute effort and complete exhaustion. Seems to reset the body and mind.

    Quote Originally Posted by Sensei View Post
    Sometimes, it really is a matter of taking ONE thing and getting it right or tying up the loose or frayed ends and suddenly the world is bathed in a new light. It really is wonderful when it happens to you or people around you. Glad to hear you're doing well. Keep up the good work.
    Thereís a book by French philosopher Albert Camus called the ďMyth of SisyphusĒ which confronts the question Ė why not commit suicide once you realise that life is meaningless or ďAbsurdĒ. In it he positions Sisyphus, the mortal condemned for eternity to roll a rock up a hill only for it to fall back each day, as an existentialist ideal. To massively paraphrase Ė itís the trivial things in life that keep us going, and there is nothing wrong with trivial things. Strength training gave me something to focus on, it gave me goals, and it gave me a structure in addition to all the direct positive effects of hard exercise. Lifting a weight then putting it down again, and repeating this behaviour for the rest of your life also has fairly direct parallels to the myth of Sisyphus.

    You're right that focusing on one thing helps enormously. Seen from a wide enough psychological angle it seems as though OCD is just this coping mechanism gone mad.

  11. #10
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Posts
    128
    Glad to hear it man, weightlifting has also helped me out in a lot of ways.

  12. #11
    Wannabebig Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Posts
    13
    This is a really interesting story - and I hope I'll derive the same benefits from weight training that you have. Thank you so much for sharing your piece with us

  13. #12
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    texas
    Posts
    656
    Yea lifting has helped my confidence in so many ways.

  14. #13
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    texas
    Posts
    656
    Something I forgot to add to this.

    My girl friend was pretty depressed as well about her body in general. She would literally cry almost every time we were going to a family party or almost anywhere you would want to dress nice for (which is practically everytime we go out together).

    I finally got her working out just once a week a full body routine. I noticed her attitude was a lot better after about 3 months. She wasn't very dedicated to it so it took 3 months for noticeable change to take place. People were telling her, her butt looks good (some lesbian friends of hers) and she really liked it and was much better whenever it came to going out.

    Since then unfortunately she hasn't been working out but has lost a lot of weight using a method I wouldn't recommend. I'm concentrating on getting myself dedicated to lifting again (been very very inconsistent as of late) and then I'm going to get her going to. She's already expressed interest in wanting to at least "try" to workout.

    I'm going to try to turn it into some sort of activity/workout routine that we can perform together. I was thinking some sort of gauntlet or something like that.

  15. #14
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Posts
    800
    Great for you, this story literally made my day better.

    And damn, bloody stretchmarks? That's insane!

  16. #15
    Banned
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Location
    At a slight angle to the universe
    Posts
    1,818
    Quote Originally Posted by Notorious View Post
    Great for you, this story literally made my day better.

    And damn, bloody stretchmarks? That's insane!
    Sweet! Glad to hear it. The post was a bit long so thanks for reading it all and I'm glad you felt you got something out of it.

    And as for the stretch marks, unfortunately I don't have any pictures of when they were so stretched the skin occasionally bled. But I might try and upload some photos of them now so you can see the damage! Amazingly, that did actually happen.

  17. #16
    Chubbilicious. VikingWarlord's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Inderminapolis.
    Posts
    3,762
    There are many things that can alleviate depression. As someone who's been battling severe clinical depression for about 18 years now, I can say that medications are more or less useless. Psych meds aren't designed to fix anything. Their entire purpose is to mask symptoms so that they're easier for the patient to control. That sounds like a pretty sad ass way to deal with a problem.

    Exercise is an excellent way to deal with depression. You can get it pretty well under control by doing anything to break the state. If you feel it setting in, force yourself to do something else. It's an extremely destructive cycle and you can create those chemical changes without medications if you know how.

    I've been studying NLP and hypnosis for a while and every day I become more convinced that Psychology is more or less useless. My friend had been on K-pins for serious anxiety problems for years. She couldn't leave the house to go anywhere but work. The only way she could do anything was to have someone go with her. In 15 minutes, I was able to repattern her thoughts and removed her dependence on anxiety medication.

    Every person has the power and the resources to do anything he or she wants to, it's just a matter of finding the best way to tap into it.
    If one person can do something, anyone can learn to do it.
    Do what you've always done and get what you've always gotten.
    There is no failure, only feedback.

    "Journey of 1000 miles starts with a single step".--Lao Tzu

    Pro-Choice...ON EVERYTHING.

  18. #17
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Posts
    391
    Quote Originally Posted by VikingWarlord View Post
    In 15 minutes, I was able to repattern her thoughts and removed her dependence on anxiety medication.

    Every person has the power and the resources to do anything he or she wants to, it's just a matter of finding the best way to tap into it.
    Can you tell me more about how you "repatterned" her? I have no problem repatterning myself simply through logic, but I have no ideas how to reprogram somebody else, especially women.

  19. #18
    Banned
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Posts
    3
    first off happy 26th b-day
    I first hope that you are seeking counseling because if you are feeling like this one of the main things you need is support and it seems like you are not getting that from the one who should be the closest to you. Sorry to hear this but know that you can seek help see a doctor or talk out your feelings more with people you trust who can be supportive of you. Try to also spend some fun time for yourself and get out the house call a friend and just go out and destress.
    Best of luck

  20. #19
    Chubbilicious. VikingWarlord's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Inderminapolis.
    Posts
    3,762
    Quote Originally Posted by Max Thunder View Post
    Can you tell me more about how you "repatterned" her? I have no problem repatterning myself simply through logic, but I have no ideas how to reprogram somebody else, especially women.
    It's an incredibly difficult process to explain, especially quickly. Richard Bandler put out a book on repatterning that's about 400 pages. Mostly it has to do with replacing something negative with something positive. It takes a lot of practice but it's about eliciting the right response at the right time.

    That's about the best I can do for a short, generic answer.
    If one person can do something, anyone can learn to do it.
    Do what you've always done and get what you've always gotten.
    There is no failure, only feedback.

    "Journey of 1000 miles starts with a single step".--Lao Tzu

    Pro-Choice...ON EVERYTHING.

  21. #20
    Wannabebig New Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Posts
    2
    And I thought I was the only one feeling elated after hitting the gym after a gap of 10 years! 3 hours a day of heavy weight lifting burnt me out 10 years ago, probably because I didnt get the desired results. But I still remember people admiring my body and girls being attracted to me because of my physique. After getting burn out, I went through a bad relationship, financial crisis, depression, anxiety and other problems. I had so less energy that I didnt feeling like bending down and picking up 100 dollar bill if I found it lying on the street. I had no focus, didnt know where I was heading and just seemed to drift along. I hit the gym last week and found a purpose. Surprisingly, even 10 years later, I went back to lifting weights easily, like you never forget cycling and swimming. I feel like I have come home...its an unexplainable feeling-all that iron, weight, effort, running short of breath, and sweating just makes me feel elated. I dont have any program right now and I am just working out all the muscles and building up stamina. I am not on any medication and feel energetic throughout the day. I dont get panic attacks anymore, I am so much more confident and have regained that mental edge and sharpness I had earlier. I have this amazing feeling of being fully in control of my mind, body and life. Hell, why didnt I do this before! My only concern is that I am 40 now, but still fit. My lifting capacity hasnt reduced and I am recovering my stamina. I dont have any diseases. But I am still worried whether I will get the desired results or not. Even if lifting weights makes me feel this good about myself, then working out will be worth it for me. But I still want to build a big muscular body and I am worried if I can do it at this age and whether I will be able to get the right program because I am not so confident about my instructor. Plus, I am a veggie and wonder if I can ever put on all that bulk. I dont want to get burnt out a few years later and get back in the same mess again. Suggestions anyone?

    Thanks and have a nice day

    Ripples

  22. #21
    Chubbilicious. VikingWarlord's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Inderminapolis.
    Posts
    3,762
    Vegetarian? Possible, but a very outside chance. It depends on what your goal is though.

    You have to define what you want as clearly as you can. I recommend the Well Formed Outcomes Model to everyone struggling to figure out what they want. Once you've got a really clear idea, you can start to put together your plan for getting there.
    If one person can do something, anyone can learn to do it.
    Do what you've always done and get what you've always gotten.
    There is no failure, only feedback.

    "Journey of 1000 miles starts with a single step".--Lao Tzu

    Pro-Choice...ON EVERYTHING.

  23. #22
    Wannabebig New Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Posts
    2
    Thanks Viking

    I dont mind taking supplements and stuff and I am researching on what is safe at my age. I am clear that I want to put on reasonable bulk..nothing too huge, I am not going to aim at something thats not possible...I dont have a program right now and I am going to take it easy for a month or so..just going through the works and hitting the gym consistently six days a week - 3 days doing cardio and 3 days weights. After a month or so, I plan to stick to a program and being taking supplements. I plan to give myself a year to show satisfactory results. I am just afraid of not getting the results after putting in all that hard work and getting the blues again...but I guess I am feeling that way just because I have only started out and dont have a program to follow yet.

    By the way, would anyone like to share their program or schedule they follow that has given them quick results..I mean everything down to the detail..like what you eat and what kind of exercises you do, how many times and how much you lift...Thanks in advance for all the help.

    Have a great day

    Ripples

  24. #23
    Chubbilicious. VikingWarlord's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Inderminapolis.
    Posts
    3,762
    There are no "quick results".

    There is a lot of information though. Take a look through the diet forum and learn the stuff in there. There are a lot of routines you can follow but they'll all be pretty much the same for you starting out. The difference will come through proper diet.
    If one person can do something, anyone can learn to do it.
    Do what you've always done and get what you've always gotten.
    There is no failure, only feedback.

    "Journey of 1000 miles starts with a single step".--Lao Tzu

    Pro-Choice...ON EVERYTHING.

  25. #24
    Banned
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Posts
    106
    I didn't read any of the post's but will say that weight training has gotten me through so very ruff depressed relationship times. It distracts you, gives you confidence and you can also make friends there.

  26. #25
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Posts
    657
    I'm beating depression through money, weight training, herbal supplementation, and having lots of pets.

    The things that really matter are little, though. I think people need those little things in their spare time, like going ATV riding, hunting, fishing, watching neighborhood fires, RC cars, mountain biking, camping, gambling, whatever it is that you like. Pretty obvious but most people miss it.

Similar Threads

  1. Amount of protein
    By syntekz in forum Diet and Nutrition
    Replies: 20
    Last Post: 02-03-2010, 03:51 PM
  2. beginner, fat. before weight lifting, need to lose it. best ways how?
    By velcroban in forum Bodybuilding & Weight Training
    Replies: 7
    Last Post: 12-23-2007, 04:05 PM
  3. i need to get strong fast
    By uzair rocks in forum Powerlifting and Strength Training
    Replies: 29
    Last Post: 07-16-2007, 07:21 PM
  4. Brink's Unified Theory of Nutrition
    By Severed Ties in forum Diet and Nutrition
    Replies: 65
    Last Post: 07-29-2006, 06:58 PM
  5. The Real Deal
    By chris mason in forum Bodybuilding & Weight Training
    Replies: 63
    Last Post: 04-17-2001, 02:49 PM

Tags for this Thread

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •