Are you working out on your own day in and day out? If so, I applaud you. We are both lone wolves, I admit that sometimes it can be boring. On rare occasions, I find myself going through the motions. That's when I remind myself that it's okay to get on first base. I don't need to hit a homerun every time I walk into the gym. There is nothing like a good training partner to lift you up when you are down.
The YMCA was the place to be after school. It was packed with teenage boys playing basketball and lifting weights. Each week someone was measuring their vertical jump to see how close they were to dunking. This environment was ultra competitive and pushed everyone to get better.
Anyone that spent time in the gym desired two things: a freaky bench press, a set of big ripped arms, and to impress the ladies. Notice how there is no reference of training the legs. If you could squat 400 lbs good for you. The next question was, what do you bench? The bench press 1 rep max was the “gold standard of strength".
Another popular spot to train at was the High school. This was an important time for the boys to reflect on the day. Yeah right.., this was time to bust each other's chops, talk about girls, and to push around some heavy iron. Thinking about all the goofing off makes me shake my head but laugh at the same time.
Some of my best workouts took place at this facility. The combination of heavy metal music and testosterone boosted everyone's performance.I can still hear the melody of Chop Suey by System of Down blasting in my head. Nothing like some early 2000's rock and someone yelling in your face to pump you up.
When I wasn’t hitting the weights, I was sleeping. I'm kidding, I was playing pickup basketball. This was my only form of cardio.
On a busy day you waited up to 30 minutes to play.The games were intense, people would travel from out of town to challenge us. There was nothing fun about losing on these days. You'd have to wait forever for the next game. Luckily, goofing off on the sideline helped the time to pass. Your job on the sideline was to heckle the guys on the court, especially if someone got their ankles broken. Thanks to Allen Iverson the crossover was all the rage on the court. Everyone was trying to emulate his signature move.
After the games, we would often gather at McDonald's to refuel.Those burgers hit the spot. The Dollar Menu was never disappointed.
Lifelong relationships are often formed in the gym. I speak from experience. I met one of my best friends through playing basketball. To make a long story short he was the best man at my wedding.