Sweat dripping. Veins popping. Obnoxious grunts and a smelly gym. For many, weightlifting brings to mind men and women rippling with muscles who pump iron a few too many hours a day.
Those who frequently lift say that it is indeed a lifestyle but say many of the stereotypes are far from true.
Weightlifters use weights as resistance to stress muscles causing them to strengthen.
Aaron Gillingham, a senior accounting major said he uses weight lifting to manage his stress.
“It’s relaxing honestly,” Gillingham said.
He works a different muscle group every day of the week and says that weightlifting has improved his life both physically and mentally.
According to Time Magazine, weightlifting has been evidenced to combat depression as well as improve focus and thinking skills.
Similarly, Katherine Ring, a sophomore exercise science major, said exercise, particularly lifting, helps her work through her depression.
“I was depressed and struggled a lot in high school. Fitness and weightlifting became a coping method for me,” Ring said.
A volleyball player, Ring benefits from weightlifting in her athletic performance.
“A lot of my position is jumping and I’m a hitter so a hard arm swing is good,” Ring said. “I think it makes me a better player mostly because it’s created an endurance.”
Mengei Termeteet, a sophomore majoring in communication and biblical studies said abstaining from junk food, fighting laziness and being consistent with training requires discipline, self-control and consistency.
Termeteet says weightlifting helps him maintain a humility and better himself, comparing it to a Christian’s walk with the Lord.
Women students at BJU who haven’t considered weightlifting may be tempted to think weightlifting is for only men, fearing that lifting could ruin their feminine appearance.
However, according to the International Sports Sciences Association (ISSA), women are biologically unable to build muscles as big as men’s.
This is because men have much higher levels of testosterone, a hormone key to muscle growth.
Ashlyn Hunt a sophomore biblical counseling major said lifting weights helps women get more toned.
Hunt said women you see who do look masculine aren’t just lifting; they probably also use steroids or other enhancement supplements.
Peem Bhumipol, a junior nursing student said even though he is busy, he makes time to go the gym.
“Sometimes it’s really hard for me to go into the gym,” Bhumipol said. “But as a nurse, I need to be healthy and take care of myself.”
BJU student weightlifters agreed that form is the most important aspect of all weightlifting.
“Once you get the form down then you can build up the weight,” Bhumipol said.
For those who are looking into weight lifting, BJU lifters suggest students examine their schedule, their goals and their diet and lastly, that they do their research.