I’ve been feeling particularly insecure lately. Specifically, about my weak bench press. It’s not that I don’t work hard on it, but no matter what I do, I can’t seem to make any substantial gains. This has led me to question the general importance of the bench press and to put greater emphasis on other lifts, like the almighty deadlift. In my quest for inspiration, I stumbled across the book “In Bad Company and other stories” by Rolf Boldrewood. At first glance, this may seem like an odd choice for a blog post about lifting weights, but bear with me.

“In Bad Company and other stories” is a collection of short stories set in colonial Australia. The overarching theme is the corrupting influence of criminals and outlaws on the otherwise upstanding citizens of the time. At the center of the book is Richard Mahony, who in his younger days is taken in by a group of bushrangers (Australian outlaws) and participates in their crimes. As he grows older, he attempts to distance himself from his past, but finds that the consequences of his actions continue to haunt him.

What does this have to do with lifting weights, you may ask? Well, just as Richard Mahony was pulled down a dangerous path by those around him, we as lifters can be swayed by popular trends or our own insecurities. We may feel like the bench press is the ultimate test of strength, but in reality, it’s just one lift among many. Deadlifts, on the other hand, are a true measure of overall strength. Just as Richard Mahony had to face the consequences of his past actions, we too must face the consequences of our training choices. Neglecting deadlifts could lead to imbalances or weaknesses that hinder progress in other lifts.

The significance of “In Bad Company and other stories” lies in its exploration of the human condition and the choices we make. As lifters, we are constantly presented with choices – what lifts to focus on, whether to push ourselves to the limit, how to handle setbacks. Reading about Richard Mahony’s struggles highlights the importance of making informed and responsible choices, both inside and outside of the gym.

So why should you read “In Bad Company and other stories”? Because it’s an engaging and thought-provoking collection of tales that reminds us of the power of our choices. Because it’s a reminder that we are not alone in our struggles, and that we can learn from the experiences of those who have come before us. And, if you’re like me, because it’s a reminder to never neglect the deadlift.

In conclusion, I invite you to share your thoughts and experiences in the comments below. Have you ever been swayed by popular trends or your own insecurities in your training? How do you approach making informed choices in the gym? And, most importantly, did you deadlift today? Let’s start a conversation and continue to learn from each other.

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