davedraper.com home

First Things First

Before you get distracted by all the great options you're about to find here, please sign up for Dave's free weekly newsletter so he can continue to encourage and motivate you toward your fitness goals.
Chris M writes:
"You blend plain-spoken wisdom, motivational fire and wry humor into a weekly email jolt that leaves me itching to hit the gym. Whether I'm looking for workout routines, diet tips or a friendly kick in the butt, the Bomber comes through every time." ... Read more...

Antique statues

You and your peers looked like some antique statues while modern-day athletes are more like comic book characters. Despite this, they continue their scary progress along with bodybuilding itself. What’s the future of bodybuilding: Will it grow even bigger or will it burst? What has been gained and what’s lost by our sport as a result of this growing?

By ‘antique statues,’ I’m assuming you mean graceful yet rugged works of art chiseled out of granite or carved from mahogany or teak. I, of course, was etched by laser beam from a block of Titanium 90.

How can we not be impressed by the unbelievable hugeness and incredible muscularity displayed by the bodybuilding champions of this era? Some have sought size and symmetry and achieved a certain degree of beauty, or interpretation thereof. But so many have packed, stuffed and piled on as much muscle as they can with the wares at hand and have become odd bundles of ad hoc flesh, veins and bone. Measured by outrageous size, they win; measured by authentic beauty, they don’t.

They are rare creatures, indeed, and I don’t mean that derogatorily. God bless them and their friends; they have achieved such proportions as to set them apart from the rest of mankind. They are a subculture within a subculture to be awed. And we are in awe. Inspired, thrilled? Maybe not so much.

I think the mega-bodies will continue, as long as they have an audience; like NASCARs coming around the turn and into the straightaway. Cars and spectators roar… until they crash, run out of fuel or lose their spark.

Natural bodybuilders should think of themselves as musclebuilders, healthy, strong and fit; down to earth, real and naturally passionate men and women with purpose, sensibility and commonsense. Add courage, perseverance and honor to the list.

Today’s bodybuilders, like 90 percent of mankind, are the products of our excessive times. More is better, now is too late. I don’t subscribe to the philosophy, I suspect you don’t and I hope our friends do not.

It’ll all sift itself out in time. That one-liner sounds like a copout, but it’s my best guess. Life is getting real weird lately. One more rep…