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YOU Are An Athlete (Even If You Think You Aren’t)

Confession:

I've never been a natural athlete.

I didn't play any sports in college...

...foosball and pool don't count, right?

And my standing vertical jump (the acid test of athletic ability) is a pathetic 14 inches...

Want to know how extreme a natural athlete performs?

Check out Shane Hamman.

His standing vertical was a whopping 36 inches and word has it that he could do a standing backflip.

And here's the craziest part:

Shane Hamman weighed 360lbs (160kg)...

(Shane's the guy to the left, dwarfing 230-lb Mark Rippetoe)

I know, I know - does not compute, right?

But in spite of all that, I'm still an athlete...

...and you are, too.

Unconvinced?

Well, just listen to ER doc, researcher and strength coach, Jonathon Sullivan:

There is no athlete for whom the stakes are higher than the aging athlete, and no “sport” more demanding than aging well

OK, I realize that sounds kind of dramatic.

But we know that bad stuff starts kicking off sometime in our mid-30s:

Testosterone levels begin to slide by around 1% per year...

Muscle mass, bone mass and strength start to head south...

Balance and flexibility (both closely related to strength) begin to decline...

And the worst part?

It happens so gradually that we won't even notice.

But here's the great news:

We can all improve, no matter how old we are.

By how much?

Well, guys that have never even touched a barbell before can squat and deadlift north of 225lbs.

And I'm not talking about guys that were jocks back in the day...

...I'm talking about average Joes in their 50s.

Believe it or not, that happens all the time if you use the right training program.

(Hell, some even manage it in just 24 sessions after orthopedic surgery!)

But this isn't just about strength...

Guys in their late 40s that have never previously been into exercise can go on to become world-class competitors in their 50s.

(Like my friend, Ernesto - dude, good luck at the Master's World Championships next month!)

Middle-aged guys that had considered weight loss impossible since, well, forever can drop 10 lbs in just 3 weeks...

...and commit to being in better shape than they were in their 20s.

(Awesome stuff, Nico - you're crushing it!)

And then there's Fumiko.

This lady (yep, this works just as well for gals as it does for guys) is homing in on her first ever bodyweight chin-up.

And the craziest part?

Fumiko is in her 50s.

And what about the guy that turns 46 in a few days and has always sucked at running?

Well, he just completed his first marathon...

Marathon finish line

And here's the most important thing - all of these folks are completely ordinary.

They live in a different universe to the Shane Hammans of this world.

The only remarkable thing about them is that they:

• Knew what they wanted,

• Made a decision,

• Had a plan,

• Got started, and

• Made consistent small increments of progress

That's it!

And here's a secret that they all discovered for themselves:

Going through that process didn't change only their bodies...

...it changed their perception of who they are and what they're capable of.

Listen, if you take only one thing away from this article, it should be this:

Nothing gets people juiced like measurable improvement towards a desired goal

Whether that's:

• Running a few seconds per mile faster,

• Losing ½lb of body weight, or

• Adding 2½ pounds to the bar

It all works the same way.

And here's the best part:

It's never too late to get started.

Remember, Sister Madonna Buder (aka the Iron Nun) didn't start running until her 40s...

...and, decades later, she's now completed over 300 triathlons.

Triathlon

Including a world-record time for the Hawaii Ironman.

At the age of 82!

But the sooner we get started, the better.

Remember that Chinese proverb, "The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago, the second best time is now"?

Well, it's true!

Why?

Not because aging makes progress harder to come by but because we're athletes, dammit, and athletes need a challenge.

Sure, we won't be gunning for a spot at Tokyo 2020 but we still need a worthy goal to work towards.

After all, that goal sets something really important in motion:

It shapes the choices we make habitually.

The reality is that pretty much every choice we make, no matter how big or small, pulls us either towards our goal...

...or away from it.

And where we are and who we are right now really just boils down to the sum total of all those choices.

Ultimately, if you see yourself as an athlete, you'll make better choices than if you don't.

It doesn't matter if you're a 40-year-old double-bodyweight squatter that can run a 3-hour marathon...

...or you're a guy just getting started, taking a 10-minute walk around the block during his lunch break.

You're an athlete all the same, and you're participating at the highest level in the most demanding sport there is.

Aging well.

– Tim

P.S. Want the first section of the blueprint to my 27-week transformation?

Free PDF download, no sign up required - just click here :)

Transformation

Images: Bigstock

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