Farm life is good for keeping a body in shape. A few equines, ovines, canines, and felines, with a side of gallus domesticus, will keep you moving enough to maintain a basic level of fitness (though not necessarily leanness, which is more heavily influenced by diet than by exercise).
When I took up bodybuilding last March, however, it was with something more than the daily work in mind. Something like this:
That is 16.83 tons of hay. It can't stay on that trailer all winter. Somebody has to move it. Welcome to In the Night Gym.
I spent about five hours yesterday in a state of intense gratitude for every squat, lunge, push-up, pull-up, Roman chair, plank, and renegade row I've pounded out in the past few months. This is what it's always been about: Functional strength -- having what it takes to do what needs to be done, efficiently and without fear of injury.
I took care to eat a few extra carbs (in the form of sweet potatoes, dried fruit, and a banana, which brought me up to about 200g, vs. my usual 150-175g...and the fattening, American standard of 300-400g), and was amazed by my consistent energy level. This is exactly what the primal people said would happen as I adjusted to eating low-carb. They weren't kidding!
Sure, stacking the 100-pound bales was still hard work. But it wasn't nearly as hard as last year. This year, I worked longer and harder, with less fatigue and -- to my surprise -- very little next-day soreness with which to contend.
Good thing...because 7 tons remain on the trailer. Looks like I'll be hitting the gym again today! Would you believe I'm actually looking forward to it?
...after a generous breakfast of Sweet Potato & Zucchini Frittercakes, that is.