This post was inspired by a discussion I had with a couple of colleagues about workout attire and what it communicates. If you thought there would be more “interesting” pictures of the staff of Brownstone Fitness, you’ll have to join the contest on our membership site to see those!
There are a few ways to train naked
I’m not going to discuss the most obvious method of training this way and for safety reasons, I’m not advocating it.
Do What You Can With What You’ve Got
This kind of training has to do with simplicity and a minimalist ethic. Pavel Tsatsouline has popularized it in his Naked Warrior book. The concept is that you should be able to get stronger using nothing more than your own body.
It’s interesting how addicted some people have become to exercise machines. This affliction seems to run deeper in men. It is one of the reasons we only have a couple of guys training in our “machine-less” facility. You can fake and cheat on machines. Working with your body tells you the truth. My theory is that a lot of men can’t handle this kind of truth.
True naked training involves mainly bodyweight and things you can pull up to and jump on. It has many benefits. It saves time and money. You’re less likely to get injured. You don’t have an excuse for getting out of shape when you travel. It has a lot of meditative qualities. You’ll move with more grace. You’ll become more creative and improvisational.
Then, there’s a third meaning. Hard training can tell you a lot about yourself. We often don’t like what we find when we push the limits and do the hard thing. Exposing ourselves to ourselves is very uncomfortable and most of us avoid it. For most guys, a hard workout is a couple of extra sets of (light) bench presses and curls. For women, it’s doing an extra half hour on the elliptical machine. Where are the pull-ups, the sprinting, the deadlifts, the handstands and cartwheels?
When you actually work to reach real fitness goals, you will find out about your courage and mental toughness. You will learn about your self-discipline. You will be able to examine and display your values. Make a public commitment to do the hard thing with your diet and exercise and people will discover whether you are capable of doing what you say you will do – Oh no! That integrity thing!
Our desk-bound lives don’t provide us with a lot of opportunities for introspection and challenge. We allow ourselves to be forced into autopilot. This has inevitable consequences for all our relationships.
Figure out a way to train naked. Stand out. Do it often enough and you’ll end up liking the reflection.
P.S. At Brownstone Fitness, we don’t always train naked. We also include kettlebells, barbells, clubbells, ropes, and accountability. Give us a call to find out what this looks like in a firm but caring environment.