Lessons From Pumping Iron


Last night we watched the classic Pumping Iron - a documentary-ish movie based around the "golden era" of bodybuilding, in the 1970's.

The case that I presented to my wife Ruby for choosing this on Netflix was that Arnold Schwarzenegger knew how to get things done. He had travelled to a foreign country and absolutely succeeded in many different (and arguably unrelated) fields.

So, I wanted to watch the film for entertainment, but also to see what we noticed in him when he was at the height of his career.

I knew that he would have traits that would apply to anyone today who is chasing a goal, whether it be in the gym or with a new business.

Anyway, here are 5 things I noticed straight away:

1. The champion was genuinely calm. Many of the other guys were often heated up, whether it was during a hard set of weights, or otherwise. It felt like Arnie knew his process and then was relaxed about it, which allowed him to continue without as much stress.

2. The gym was a place to train. There were a few shots of Golds Gym - it was easy to notice there were no phones or TV screens, little, if any music and lots of basic equipment. Instagram and Facebook were not even a blip on the radar yet and not one of the people in there would have imagined that doing a Snap Chat after a workout could be a thing. They were there for gains.

3. They helped each other. Inside the gym, they were spotting each other on sets, encouraging each other. Outside of the gym, they would help each other with strategies or tactics on the stage. 

4. Arnold had a process. When he went on stage, he executed without too much strain and followed his routine. It screamed confidence.

5. Arnie had fun. He seemed generally more relaxed and laughed more. He seemed to enjoy his photoshoots, interviews and training. It seemed although he was a focused champion, he really was there for a good time.

Overall, a great vid that's probably worth watching!

john marsh