As you slowly climb out of bed on yet another cold and dark morning, you make your way into the bathroom to start your day. And as you get undressed to get in the shower, you glance up hesitantly at the mirror.
You already know what you’ll see staring back at you and you don’t like it.
You haven’t liked it for years.
Your significant other loves you with or without those protruding love handles and copious amounts of belly flab, but you don’t. You fucking hate it.
Why is is that we as middle aged men hate our expanding stomachs and ever growing girths? Is it because we know that it’s detrimental to our health and may one day cause us to stroke out?
Is it because our cholesterol is over 200 and our physician tells us we need to trim some fat and clean up our diets?
Or is it something else? Something more innate and primitive?
In today’s video, I discuss the reason I believe men
want need to get into shape.
Do you agree/disagree? Please share your thoughts in the comments.
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I agree; the main reason guys want to get fit is to look good. And I would argue that “societal pressure” is almost as intense for guys anymore as it is for women. Guys, too, are now expected to have almost-impossible to achieve physiques. We’re supposed to look like movie stars and fashion models.
Guys still have one other option besides looks: money. If you’re rich enough, the looks don’t matter. But “rich enough” is becoming even more unobtainable than having the looks. That bar, too, keeps getting raised.
Interesting point, David. Unfortunately I think you are right with regards to looks becoming irrelevant if they have money and it’s so sad. Too bad 99% of the men in this country have little money! There is definitely pressure for young guys (and girls) to be and stay fit. Not so much for old farts like me but it’s a personal challenge.
I have to disagree with your “not so much for old farts like me” comment… even though I know you meant it in jest. If you keep up with pop culture at all, chicks are digging the older guys. OMG, have you seen the fangirls über-squeeing over the new Doctor Who actor, Peter Capaldi? Women seem to think he’s hot, and they don’t even add “for an old guy” to their comments. And then there’s The Most Interesting Man in the World — sure, it’s a fantasy image, but he sets a new expectation for old guys!
When it comes to rich, there’s Richard Branson; how the heck are we supposed to compete with that –– a freakin’ billionaire who is building his own spaceship, owns his own island, and stays fit! He even has the long, wavy hair thing going on in his sixties, and manages to pull it off without looking like a burned-out biker gang relic. Supposedly Branson once made a comment that one of his keys to success was always setting aside time to work out. Okay, most of us won’t earn a billion dollars this year, but we can work out just as hard and get just as fit as Richard Branson! (Unfortunately, the hair thing is probably genetic….)
Also, as you mention in another post, it’s particularly important for “old farts” to stay fit and looking good if they have children. Or, eventually, grand-children! You don’t want to be the gimped-up fat dad who’s an embarrassment to his kids as he hobbles into the school gym to see the school talent show. You know that hike in the Shenendoah Park you mentioned on the other blog? You’ll want to take your girls on that hike some day. And then you’ll want to take your grandchildren. And you’ll want to be able to out-hike your someday son-in-law who’s thirty years younger than you! (And look better while doing it, too!)
Yes, I like to use the term “old fart” but in all honesty I look and feel better than I have in 15 years. I actually look much younger than 43 and I’m sure some of it has to do with my commitment to fitness for the last 20+ years.
And many men/father’s my age are divorced or single and looking for a possible relationship. Being fit, feeling great, and having the confidence that comes with it is critical when it comes to looking for a possible mate. A vibrant and happy person attracts the same. And yes, I want to be as fit at 60 as I am now. My father has been a lifelong exercise nut and at age 70, still exercises for 2-3 hours every single day. My plan is to do the same.