“I used to be able to … “

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Dear Reader,

Something that annoys me no end is when I hear something along the lines of “I used to be able to do this … ” (when the person saying it clearly CANNOT do it now) …

Fitness wise, this generally translates into one, or a derivative of the following –

“I used to be able to do more than 25 pull-ups in one workout …”

“I used to be in great shape when I was young, but now … ”

“I used to have a hard abdomen and a six pack …”

And so forth. Funny thing is, I get these comments a lot of time from folks that ask me about my training – – because they’d clearly like to accomplish (or do) what I have – – and are clearly NOT in the physical shape to do it right now — and you’d think they’d take action to remedy this, right?

Well – – if you’re talking the majority of folks out there – – you’d be WRONG.

Most folks just sit back and make an “I used to be able to do … ” comment, and then do precisely squat all to improve their current situation. Apparently the “I used to … ” is balm enough to “cover” the injury of “not being able to do … ”

But remember that bandaid solutions rarely work, my friend.

You can cover up a problem – but you can only solve it by attacking it at it’s CORE.

When I hear something like this from people (especially if it’s fitness related), my answer is always the same.

“OK, but can you do it now?”

Or, … “OK, that’s great – but what can you do NOW?”

Look, my friend, what you “could do” is great – but thats over. Thats FINISHED – and if you’re making statements like this when it comes to fitness, chances are that you aren’t happy with what you see in the mirror daily – and that’s an understatement as well.

Chances are you’ve got an extra layer of fat around your midsection you’d love to lose, but you aren’t being able to do it.

Chances are you’d love to sprint all out, but are in nowhere near the condition to do it.

And so forth.

What separates the “has beens” from the “greats” is this – their willingness to “do NOW”.

A couple of years ago I saw a middle aged man training in China, trying to do pull-ups.

He was doing all the right things — and yet couldn’t get a single pull-up in – – but guess what, and I blogged about this on the other site, I’d rather train a person like HIM than some of the other “whippersnappers” that show up there to preen, pose, prance and generally waste their time and everyone else’s as well.

At least the guy was TRYING.

He didn’t make comments along the lines of “I used to be able to … “, although going by that pair of shoulders he sported, he likely COULD do plenty of pull-ups at one stage in his life.

The same goes for the nearing-70 year old retired Brigadier I wrote about before.

You can tell by looking at him he’s been into serious physical activity all his life (well, I could, at any rate) —  and though he can’t do pull-ups all the way down and up at this point, he doesn’t “talk” about “how” he could do them in his prime.


He does it.

He hits it hard – every morning – and keeps trying – and THAT is the sort of man – and person I’d like to both train and be associated with if you get my drift.

True – there ARE some cases in which you currently may not be able to do what you used to be able to for legit reasons – but such cases are few and far in between. Most of the times it’s just people being lazy – or making excuses – and that’s all it really boils down to.

So that’s today’s tip. When someone comes at ya out of left base with the “I used to be able to do it” B.S. , parry it with this – – “Great, but what can you do NOW?”

You might be amazed at the reactions you get – or then again, you might not be. Hehe.

In the meantime, don’t forget that the good news is this – there IS something very powerful you can do for your health and fitness – and you can do it right NOW. You can do it right in your living room – and you’ve got NO room for any excuses.

There IS a way to get AS good – if not BETTER – at pull-ups than you were in your prime.

There IS a way to build those humongous shoulders you’ve always wanted.

And the key to all this starts right here – – stop living in the past.

Cherish past memories all you like – – and DO relive past glories in your mind – – but always remind yourself that it’s the “here and now” that really counts, my friend.

Keep this axiom in mind while you train – and while you go through life – and you’ll be nigh amazed at the benefits you reap.


Rahul Mookerjee

P.S. – I  spoke about pull-ups above, and with good reason. Most people would love to  bang out dead hang pull-ups by the dozen, but are unfortunately unable to do or attempt even ONE. If that’s you, well, delay no longer, my friend. Click on over right here to rectify what you should have already – – http://0excusesfitness.com/pull-ups-from-dud-to-stud-within-a-matter-of-weeks/

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