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Thread: Lawn Mowers and Lifting

  1. #1

    Lawn Mowers and Lifting

    A brief "my story" type of post.

    A couple of years ago I was at a hardware store to buy a lawn mower and a strapping young man that looked about the age of a college freshman or sophmore, and skinny as a rail, was assisting me. I wanted to see a specific model that was sitting on a rack higher than his shoulders. I watched in utter amazement as he reached up and grabbed it and lowered it to the ground without any visible signs of exertion.

    It was an epiphany moment. I couldn't stop thinking to myself, "If he did it, I can do it." I went home and searched for books on weight lifting on and came across New Rules of Lifting for Women and ordered it. Bought my first bench and a set of PowerBlocks. Added a rack and a barbell set not much later. I prefer working out at home but I took out a short-term membership at a local gym to take advantage of the sessions with their trainer that came with it so that I could get live instruction about lifting form.

    I remember I was using 10 lb. dumbells for my very first deadlifts. Slowly but surely I worked my up to over 60 lbs with the barbell. The heavier the weights I could manage, the more I enjoyed lifting. It amazes me when I read about people who avoid heavy weights because me, I realized right away that lifting something heavy felt good so it was a self-propelling drive.

    In short, I've loved this series. It's been so accessible for someone without weight lifting experience. Reading the book, Lou had no trouble persauding me to follow the whole-body approach of the workouts. My training was detrailed for over a year while I struggled with gastrointestinal problems and losing weight rapidly without trying. But now that's straightened out and normal energy levels are back, I'm excited about trying the new release New Rules of Lifting for Life. (I turned 44 this year and am interested in seeing how the approach differed from the other books in the series.)

    Thanks Lou and Alwyn!

  2. #2
    Senior Member Lou Schuler's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Allentown, PA

    Lawn Mowers and Lifting

    Thanks Laura! I think that will be one of my all-time favorite stories!

    One of most important lessons I've learned: strength is an aspiration, rather than a destination. It's a process.

    I remember trying to teach myself how to do squats with just the 45-pound bar on my shoulders. I worked at Weider at the time, and the company gave us memberships at a local World Gym, so I did this in full view of my coworkers as well as some very, very big mofos, including some pro bodybuilders.

    To make it worse, I was fitness editor of Men's Fitness, which already was sneered at by the guys at Muscle & Fitness and Flex.

    But then I showed them what I was made of: I got another job and moved across the country! That showed 'em! (I also squatted 305 eventually, but by then I'd left the second job and was writing for Men's Journal!)

  3. #3
    Senior Member LisaS's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Orange Cty, CA

    Lawn Mowers and Lifting

    So how are you doing at the lawn mower clean and press?

  4. #4

    Lawn Mowers and Lifting

    When I first moved into my house 8 years ago, I decided I wanted a birdbath. It came in two pieces -- the base and the bowl. They were made of plaster/cement....something white and heavy! So, I had to have the guy at Lowes help get them in my trunk. Then, I had to have a neighbor get them moved to my back yard, where I spray painted it bronze and there it sat.

    Fast forward to present day and after a bad storm this winter I found the bowl was now on the ground. So, this spring I decided that since it had fallen, I wanted to move it to another place in my garden. I waited and waited for a neighbor to be available and could never catch one of the guys. Then, one day I was at the gym deadlifting 180 lbs or so and thought....'well, this is stupid -- surely I can move this birdbath myself!'. When I got home, I did just that and I clearly remembered what it felt like 8 years ago when there was NO WAY that birdbath was moving. And, now, I was able to just deadlift that sucker and move it clear across the yard!

  5. #5

    Lawn Mowers and Lifting

    What a great story! Both the lawn mower and the birdbath.

    I had to salvage my last bike, so I'm currently between motorcycles, but now I'm looking forward to being able to pick that sucker up without a second thought next time I lay one down. I love adding another goal to my list!

  6. #6

    Lawn Mowers and Lifting

    Great story, and congratulations!

    I used to work with a guy named Bob. He had that casual strength that you talk about. He would lift heavy computer equipment off the shelf like it was an empty box.

    I asked him about it. He said that his father ran a rug cleaning business and from an early age he would be required to help, lifting rugs up onto poles.

    He said when he got to college he was like Himey the robot from Get Smart. There would be guys straining on a barbell and then he would need to move by them, so he would pick it up one handed and move it out of the way.

    But none of us can go back in time and be the sons of rug cleaners; so you've done the next best thing.


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