Excellent article by Starting Strength impresario Mark Rippetoe. Mark has a bias towards the barbell lifts. But, the tool almost doesn’t matter as long as you are willing to plan a bit and put in consistent work. Kettlebells, body weight, barbell…all good, all useful, all productive, as long as you take the time to learn techniques. None of these is the same as going to your local planet fitness and sitting on a series of machines for 30 minutes.
The biggest lesson I’ve learned over the past nearly four years of kettlebell training is that I wish I’d made the change sooner. Since my shift to kettlebell and sandbag work, I am stronger, bigger, and more durable than I have been in 20 years. It’s not just about the tool. It’s also about the attitude, strategy, and tactics. I want to be bigger, stronger, and more durable. So, I work accordingly. Next week, I turn 60. I have been lifting something at least three times weekly since I was 17. It works.
Go pick up something heavy and heave it around. When it starts to feel light, pick up something heavier and repeat the process. Quit your bitching and act like a responsible adult. Work is all that matters.
Intellectual pursuits are indeed important, but having a strong enough body to host an intellect effectively, and to enjoy the fruits of intellectual accomplishment into old age is part of the equation. Strength is the antithesis of ill health, and ill health is not how an intellect flourishes.
In fact, the muscle mass that comes with the development of physical strength has been proven to prevent the diseases and afflictions that come with careless aging, the irresponsible lack of attention to maintaining the strength that is everyone’s birthright. Everyone can get and stay strong, but this requires work, and excuses are easier than squats and deadlifts.