Good morning internet,
I have an 'announcement' that I'm making today, which is really just letting everyone know where I am and what I'm up to. But I've come to tell you that I'm going to be on hiatus in this journal for awhile; I'm taking a break from bodybuilding.
And by that, I mean I'm taking a break from the constant grind that has been the last two and a half years of constantly trying to get bigger.
Why this, and why now? Well, let me briefly take you back to September 2006 one more time. I have said this before - but it really is an important point to me - but when I started out and began with the intention of 'getting big' for the first time, it was an aspiration more than something I thought was going to actually happen. I'd spent my whole life skinny and being made miserable because of that fact, and I didn't imagine that was going to change just because I joined a gym. When I said then that I wanted to compete one day, that for me was as far-away a notion as if I'd said I wanted to one day walk on the moon.
History now has shown that I was wrong in my pessimism; and as I changed my body, boy what a feeling. It was unexpected. And if I had compiled a list of all the things I would have wanted to achieve through bodybuilding, right at the beginning... I have fulfilled them. I've competed; made family and friends in awe of my size; ripped my old clothes asunder; been admired for my success by hundreds of guys across the globe; inspired others to do the same; flexed an arm that was 20" around.
It was about the time I found my arm was that
big in March that a new feeling began to grow within me for the first time; satisfaction. I grew up dealing with body dysmorphia, "bigorexia", suffering from crushingly poor body-image and self-esteem. To start off with, it seemed like the desire to put on muscle was a thirst I could never quench. But indeed - to have grown so much in just over two years should be enough for anyone
. And it is enough - for now.
There has been a price I have paid for this success; spending all my free time training, neglecting my other pursuits, partner, friends. An empty bank account as I pour more and more money into food and supplements. I was happy to pay it. But now I've reached a point where it is time to do something else for awhile; prior to bodybuilding, I recieved more notice for my writing. I've been published before. I've often joked with myself over the last two years that if I'd put as much effort into my writing career as I had into my bodybuilding, I'd already have a book contract by now. It's been a choice; I couldn't have everything. I'm now writing more again - and acting too. It will emerge on my ccroft
I've thought of many metaphors to describe the situation over the last couple of weeks, but the only one that has stayed with me is the vision of spinning plates. My life is a lot like that. I've got this one (a big bod) spinning; there's a stack of others to be picked up. I couldn't spin them all at once, but now I can take the next one on the pile and put it up. Spin. And then, eventually I may see, that I have all of the plates going, and then I shall feel like I have finally fulfilled the potential
I feel I have.
This is not the end of the line for 'ccmuscle' by any means; I still plan to maintain the muscle I have by training 3-4 times a week. I just won't be getting any bigger
for awhile - and that should be fine. But come another year, I will no doubt feel the bug, and will return to spin this plate some more so that it doesn't fall down. I had wanted to be 300lb by 2013; if I should postpone that now until 2014, or 2015, but have made other accomplishments instead, that shall be no bad thing. It's like when a band goes away awhile after releasing one successful album; they're in the studio recording the next one, so you don't see them for awhile. But they come back eventually... to rock your world all over again.
See you down the line, and thanks again for all of your support.
- Charles Croft, April 2009