Should You Join The Dark Side When Lifting?
Rage: for years it’s been one of the greatest tools to ever be harnessed by bodybuilders the world over. Ever wonder how C.T Fletcher ever got so jacked? I mean, when he was in his prime? Just feel insignificant in the universe and watch CT rep 500 like it’s nobody’s business.
Wait what? Is this CT? He sounds more like a big black swole Mr. Rodgers mother f*cker don’t he? Well, this video isn’t the whole truth. Actually, for anyone that follows CT knows, he’s a complete beast in the gym. Here’s a video explaining why he’s so damn tame in the above video:
So rage can be useful. Focused anger can easily be mixed with equal amounts of determination, stubbornness and persistence to create the ultimate intra-workout cocktail of mental focus.
It does sometimes seem that some of the best advice on the web comes from some of the seemingly most calm people on earth. Maybe externally calm may not equate to internally calm? Maybe the reason some people appear so calm is simply because they’ve already unleashed their pent up aggression and anger?
For example, on the utter zen end of the spectrum is Victor Costas of Vic’s Natural at http://peaceloveandmuscles.com. The man, in all of his awesomely practical and useful videos sounds like a jacked buddha reincarnate.
Still, we can’t help but speculate that behind that Yoda like smooth exterior lies a fearsome determination that burns hotter than Anakin Skywalker’s thirst for revenge. I mean look at this physique.. this isn’t the result of flowers and well wishes.. There surely must have been some serious anger that chiseled out those massive delts.
Here’s an example of one of our favorite Victor Costa videos, where he talks through his bicep workout with a calm focused intensity that is almost clinical. Vic, are you always like this, or do unleash an animal once and a while off camera?
You can obviously get big without getting furious, but don’t tell Furious Pete that. Still, Vic, if you’re reading this, can you film yourself furious sometime? We’re dying to know if you use rage as a driver in the gym.
Another gentleman of iron and future Mr. Olympia (yes we’re calling it), Kai Greene also exhibits a school-teacher like calm when not just working out by himself but also when teaching junior bodybuilders his craft in his video series “Train with Kai”.
Both of these men in front of the camera, and perhaps when alone as well, show nothing but intense focus and deep controlled breathing while working out, but deep down, there is a violent maniac in inside each and every bodybuilder.
We all have a little maniac inside of us with the sole goal of building muscle.. shredding what we have in a blood pumped rage only to have it grow back bigger and stronger until the process is repeated.
Kai confesses how on the surface he may appear (and assumedly most serious lifters) perfectly calm but deep down there is so much hot passion it takes masterful self control to contain it.
Watch the below video starting at 7:30 to hear Kai talk about rage and lifting.
To quote Kai, speaking on anger, rage and violence in bodybuilding when asked by the interviewer “It comes from rage?” to which Kai replies emotionally:
“You know this dude is putting 800 pounds on his back. He squatted to the floor as many times as he could until he threw up. YOU TELL ME where this guy had to go. I said, there’s violence and rage in there. You ask me, is it violence? is there rage? I’m telling you there has to be. Until you try to put 805 pounds on your back and squat down to the floor you realize then you’ll realize, you know, there has to be something else motivating me to do that cause there’s no way I can do that and say I’m a nice guy.
I might be a nasty mother f*cker behind the scenes and I might be ready to really be able to call on that when I need to and that’s what really makes me proficient at my job, whether it be a linebacker, should it be a serviceman, should it make me a good cop, or would it make me a good athelete right now.
I thinkt here is a phsycological profile, that I think, if you really explore it, it would probably alarm people to think about it, you know, who this guy must really be, because you cannot be just a simple person to understand with that kind of ability (referring to 805 on your back).”
This inner fury, this unrelenting drive to exert yourself completely and utterly in a physical endeavor beyond what you might think is possible is what drives serious muscle growth, what drives anyone serious growing and getting seriously yoked. Is it any coincidence guys like “Furious Pete” are absolute animals?
Channelling life’s negative frustrations into positive growth
The gym is an wonderful outlet to put anger, rage, stress, fear, or any other type of powerful, self-destructive emotion into. That’s the beauty of the iron, it willingly excepts everything you can throw at it and it redirects all that negativity, all that emotion, into something positive: muscle growth.
The gym is unique in it’s ability to turn horrible things (rage and violence) into wonderful things (gains).
Turning bad into good occurs all over the world on all different biological levels. There’s this plastic eating algae and microorganisms that feed off of plastic waste which is pretty awesome.
There’s also this old man from Kinmen (between Taiwan and China) who takes old artillery shells and hammers them into high quality knives (Kinmen is one of the most heavily shelled places on earth, China shot nearly half a million rounds onto the small island). These are great examples of turning negatives into positives.
Unfortunately this doesn’t happen enough.
Most people unleash rage uncontrollably in in very destructive ways, in the form of physical violence or substance abuse. These are coping mechanisms sure, but they take an already bad thing and blow it up to make it a horrible thing.
The gym however absorbs all your bad and gives you only good in return. The gym is honest and the gym is merciful. Bring all you have to the gym and the gym will accept it and leave you better off for it.
So don’t hold back. Put on your headphones, or crank up the stereo in your small gym to the most intense hip/hop, metal, whatever and just go thrash some weights. Throw 100% of what you have into them. Give it everything you’ve built up and bottled down over the day, week or year. Unleash hell upon the gym.
The gym will help you.
Plus, afterwards, the mix of energy depletion and dopamine release will be a wonderful release and over time doing this again and again you’ll become a more balanced, yoked beast machine.