I blame Walt Disney for the obesity epidemic in America.

 When I was a kid, every Disney movie I saw told me that with pluck, determination, animal friends, and Elton John lyrics, all my dreams would come true. There was always an evil villain or wicked step-mother plotting my downfall, and at just the right moment my singing animal friends would clear the way for me to take my rightful place as ruler of the kingdom, complete with beautiful princess and adoring in-laws.

As a teenager, I was convinced that I would be the next Jukebox Hero. I had visions of jamming with Eddie Van Halen, Boxing with Rocky, busting bad guys with Starsky and Hutch, jumping muscle cars with the Dukes of Hazard, and having Maverick as my wing-man. (it’s a generational thing)

And so, I waited. I drifted through High School with mediocre grades and sports while waiting for the heavens to part; waiting for a spotlight to shine down upon me, and for some omniscient narrator with a voice like James Earl Jones to proclaim, “This one...this one has value!”

Someone cue Pink Floyd to start playing “Welcome to the Machine.”

But it was all a load of crap. No-one will ever make a movie of my life. I was raised in a comfortable home where there was enough money for enough food that I could over-eat. I played sports with some budgetary constraints. The heavens never parted. No evil villain oppressed me. The only time I had singing animal friends, the lyrics were more Ozzy Osborne than Elton John, and I was VERY glad for a friend to calm me down. I never learned to play guitar. I got too busted up trying to be Rocky to get into Basic Training, let alone an F-15. The Duke Boys smashed up so many cars that I never got my hands on a 1968 Challenger., and a 1991 Geo metro just isn’t the same There was never any great obstacle to overcome. All of my
childhood dreams died of apathy rather than adversity.

Then one day I woke up. I was fat. I was slow. I hurt; a lot. And someone cued up that other Pink Floyd song in my brain; the one that says; “You missed the starting gun. So you run and you run to catch up with the sun, but it’s sinking.”

Sound familiar?

Look around. How many people do you know that are working jobs they don’t like, coming home tired at the end of day, and unwinding to a TV show or movie showing a life or adventure they will never have? How many people do you know who get their ideas about how life “should be” from reality shows? How often do the people we watch on reality TV actually watch TV? They are too busy doing things to watch.

I need to break it to you; there IS a difference between Hollywood and reality. If you are waiting for a spotlight to fall, and a Disney movie of your life to start, you are going to be waiting for a very long time. There is no montage here. The only “power song” you are ever going to get is the one you load onto your own iPod. There is no fate, but what YOU make. There are no shortcuts. To get the results you want, you have to actually DO the consistent repetitions, the

early morning workouts, the WORK that wouldn’t make any highlight reel; the 10,000 hours that end up on the cutting room floor.

All of my education in exercise, all of my personal experience, all of the research I have ever read points to ONE conclusion. There is ONE way to get the body you want; YOU HAVE TO PUT OUT THE EFFORT.

We are not singing animal friends, (and even if we were, the music would be different), but your friends at Gold’s Gym are here to tell you that with our help, a little determination, a plan, some perseverance, and a LOT of effort, you WILL reach your goal. And who knows, there might even be a great adventure along the way.



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