As I sip on my coffee waiting for the ferry to take me home I reflect on my recent adventure. Looking at my hands, the fake tan is still coming off little by little (mainly on my clothes) and the realization that I have followed through on my goal to attain the status of a professional bodybuilder and the summation of that goal left me with a 2nd place and 3rd place standing in our national competition, of which I am proud of. Here is the interesting thing though, it’s not “being a bodybuilder” that I was after, it was the accrual of discipline(s) required to make that goal transpire. I had also wanted to attain my black belt in martial arts, but time became an issue and with children and career (I previously owned a private training facility) so I had to be practical and choose the activity that I could do without demanding more of the little time that I had available.
So what do I mean about the “disciplines” required to become a bodybuilder? Surely that stereotypical ‘meathead” based sport didn’t require discipline? Interestingly enough, it was bodybuilding that gave me an out from the world of drugs and alcohol, and it gave me a focus and a confidence that has truly enhanced my life in numerous ways. Leaving many people and a lifestyle I had long been a part of, the world of fitness became my new reality, and I invested every waking moment trying to understand this complex new world. What I soon began to realize was that I wasn’t just building a body, I was building an entirely new reality for myself. The more I explored the miracle of who I was, a human being, bodybuilding became less about the end result (building big muscles) and more about the exploration of the inner space, and the endless roads I could travel when it came to understanding who I was, how I functioned, and how I could direct and nurture this amazing biological marvel of nature. There were many moments along the way where I was forced to learn patience, having to understand the “law of the farm” in that all good things come in time, in their own time and there are laws that must be followed to achieve a fruitful outcome. I had to understand “specificity” over “ambiguity” as the body and mind will only follow what we repeatedly do, and being specific in my intentions allowed for measurable results, whereas vague, non-specific concepts simply make me drift aimlessly.
Often I would come face to face with my insecurities and ego mind, and often when I was so focused on shaping my own DNA, it was easy to become critical and judgmental of others who didn’t share my views. The judgements I had cast was a glaring sign that I still lacked maturity and needed to spend more time from the neck up, exploring where the judgements came from. This lead me into the world of philosophers, personal development, Chi Gong and yoga, and hundreds and hundreds of books on anything to do with the human mind. From there was of course our biochemistry, controlled by our thoughts, our diet, our sleep patterns and everyday activity. That of course lead me to partnering with one of the leading companies in nutritional formulations and into genetic research (my own) and following and befriending some of the top researchers in the biomedical and nutritional fields.
I can honestly say that I had no expectation that life would have directed me to this point, or that my insatiable curiosity would have taken me down so many roads, but I am glad I came this way nonetheless. Yes, I still an on the road with my bodybuilding as it gives me a focal point that I can build my life around, but it has been so much more than the pursuit of muscle, it has been a two-decade exploration into my own humanity and everything attached to it. I am eager to see what the next 20 years will bring.