OMG the day after tomorrow is Christmas!! And if you follow me on Instagram (alexrinaldo), you can see that Santa and I have been hanging out a lot lately! Can’t wait for him to pay me another visit tomorrow night! I’ve been working super hard this past year, and I know that I am most definitely on the nice list 😉 I couldn’t be more thankful for the gifts that I have already received so far. For instance, my mind and body are gifts that I have been given to pursue the things that I love. However, this post is to debunk the myth that somehow my body has come “natural” to me. Meaning that I have been blessed with this body, fitness comes “natural” to me, so I didn’t really have to work that hard for it.
I get asked all the time, “how do you look so good? How can I get a body like yours?” This is a bit of an awkward question, but I honestly have people telling me all the time that they want to look like me. It is flattering, but I also know that most people don’t want to hear the answer to these questions. Or they already know the answer to their questions, but they refuse to believe it. There must be an easier way, right?!
In addition, some people like to assume that it is because I’m still young that I look the way I do. I hear people saying all the time, “I wish I was that young, then I would look as good as you..” Let me tell you how my youth only plays a part in how I look. It is not my youth that has given me biceps, or strong legs. In fact, when I was younger, I was not as fit as I am now. If anything, my fitness, and my confidence has only improved with age. My youth makes it a little easier for me to build muscle, and stay lean, but it is not the sole reason as to why I look the way I do.
Reading week in my 4th year of University, this will be 5 years ago in February! Time Flies!! also, ignore the terrible tan lines! But as you can see, I’m just thin. There is not a lot of muscle on me.
Flash forward to a more recent photo of me at my show this past October. My weight in both these photos is about the same, 140 lbs. The difference is, is that in the photo on the top I was 21 years old, turning 22 within a couple weeks. And the photo below, I am 26 years old. I am also leaner, and more muscular now than I have ever been before.
Me backstage this past October 10th 2015 (I placed 2nd that day in Figure Tall)
As you can see it is not my youth that has given me tighter abs, rounder shoulders, and more shape. It is diet and exercise that has given me the body that I have today. I work hard every single day to take care of it, and to maintain my shape. The only gift that I have been given here is an able body, and an able mind. Yes, I love fitness, and yes I know that this is rare. It is very rare for someone to truly enjoy hitting the gym like I did today at 7:30 am. I am well aware of this, but to answer your question on “how do I get a body like yours?” Well the answer is, a well balanced and consistent diet, with regular exercise. Meaning, you are doing some sort of workout every single day, and you are doing both cardio and weight training. You cannot do one without the other if you want to maintain muscle definition and shape. Actually, if you scroll back up to the photo of me at 21, I was doing a lot of cardio (I taught a lot of cardio based group fitness classes) and not a lot of weight training. Whereas, over this past year of bodybuilding, I’ve done the most weight training I ever have in my whole life! Go figure!
There is no magical pill, or device that will give you the body you want. If there was, I wouldn’t have a blog, I wouldn’t have a job, and I most certainly wouldn’t be working so hard on own physique. The key to the fountain of youth, and looking good as you age, is to take care of yourself. A huge part of aging is losing muscle mass. As you age, your body starts to get rid of muscle tissue that you are no longer using. As the saying goes, “if you don’t use it, you lose it.” This couldn’t be more true! So, if you’re not exercising regularly, your body will become weaker, and more frail. Your posture will worsen, and you will be more prone to falling. And because you are now weaker, you will be more susceptible to injury.
Consistent, regular exercise that includes weight training will slow this process down. Weight training will keep your body strong, and it will help you hold on to more muscle mass as you age. Basically, regular exercise will not only help you look good in the short term, but in the long term as well. Actually, exercise does more than help you look good, it will keep you healthy!! Which is the most important thing! But you don’t need me to tell you that 😛 Exercise, weight training, and eating well is hard work, but the payoff is huge! The benefits are endless! And because of this I will have constant material for my blog 😉 I know some New Years Resolutions are coming up, make fitness a priority, you won’t regret it!