Ross Edgley explains how strength and stamina can co-exist in modern day training. It is true, or is it just gym folklore?
Lee Liston’s outlook on life is simple; you can do anything. Lee consistently challenges himself physically, and removes himself from his comfort zone. He believes nothing is impossible - you just have to make it work for you.
The gym can be an intimidating place, what would you say to people who are avoiding it simply because they feel as though they may not belong there?
The gym can feel like a group of elitists; a culture, and an exclusive group of already fit people. The gym is a place for anyone, in any circumstance, and very much a place for personal growth. When you go, you have to kind of put blinkers on. You have to know the reason WHY you are there. Health is important and exercise is a very crucial part of that. Also, remember that a gym is a place full of physiques that look like Greek Gods! Looking like a God doesn't necessarily mean that they are healthy. Remember, your health is just as important as anyone else's.
In Weight Of The World you speak about the fact that there are no excuses, you can do anything, but has there ever moments in your life in which you stopped yourself from doing something because you thought you couldn’t? And how did you overcome that?
I didn't even have to think about that. Dating. I always saw myself as inadequate to be a man that women needed and/or wanted. I always looked at peers, friends, and family seeing that dating came easily to them. I remember the pain I felt when I would see couples hold hands in public, when a guy would carry his girl, and just do the amazing things that boyfriends do for their special ones. I remember asking girls on dates and when they said no, I always blamed it on my height. But I had to understand that love is a universal thing. Everyone is worthy of it. We just have to find the right person. The more I practised self-love and stopped looking for love, it seems that is the moment when I have "found" love the easiest. The overcoming didn't come with the courting of women but in finding self-worth in myself. My girlfriend and I just broke up today. But in the three months, we dated, I learned that there is no excuse not to be happy.
As it’s Gymshark 66 and we’re all about those resolutions, are there any barriers you would like to break through in 2019?
Yes! I want to continue to make myself ready for my first bodybuilding competition in April! I want to challenge myself to more functional training as well. In 2019, I auditioned for Dwayne Johnson's The Titan Games. Unfortunately, I didn't make it. Watching the show now, I see how much work I need to do. This year I will train with every fibre of my being to be a Titan. I want to be able to do any feat that the show has to offer. Being little makes it hard, but not impossible.
What was your favourite part of filming the Gymshark New Year’s campaign, Weight Of The World?
I loved talking about my perspective! I loved talking about how I have made the gym work for me; like doing pull-ups on the smith machine, benching on the squat rack, and just figuring out how to make every movement in the gym work for me. I remember off camera talking to Steve about some of these and he said: "Whoa, I would have never thought of that!" I would love to inspire more little people like me to hit the gym, be their best, and have the opportunity for self-improvement just like anyone else! It made me cry seeing myself in the video because it reminded me how far I have come. What an opportunity!
What was it that made you want to take part when asked? And was there a specific message you wanted to get across?
Well, you know, who doesn't love Gymshark?! Just kidding. I wanted to take part because I wanted to be an inspiration to others. I love lifting, inspiring, and helping others to see their full potential. So, with the message of "Weight of the World", I hoped that I could add fuel to the fire of people's souls. I wanted people to walk away feeling like that they could not reach their goals but completely obliterate them! Of course, I want to inspire little people like me, but more than that I want to inspire all people. You can do it! Now stop watching and go do!
"Life is so hard. But remember that you have been blessed to have a body that is meant for great things. You can achieve whatever it is your heart desires. You can lose the weight, gain the muscle, and do great things. But in this journey remember that you aren't chasing perfection. You are chasing personal growth, self-improvement, and a desire to be better than we were yesterday. My ex-girlfriend told me something that stuck with me. She said "Lee, you are perfect as you are now. I love you now. Not some future perfected version of yourself" So enjoy the journey but don't become self-obsessed. Make room for friends, family, and balance." Lee Liston
Did you miss out on Ruqsana's interview? Check it out here!
Want to watch the whole Weight Of The World | Gymshark 66 video? Find it here!
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