It has been over three years since I mentioned Fred Peterson on this blog. At the time, I posted a video of him deadlifting over 600 pounds. Amazingly at age 75, he’s still going strong and certainly worthy of another entry. The following video was taken last month. The strength that he displays at 75 is beyond incredible.
Perhaps my favorite video of Fred Peterson comes from 2008 however. In the video below, you will not only see him in action, you’ll hear him share some words of wisdom. He begins speaking at approximately 4:35 within the video.
Fred Peterson has been lifting for over 50 years. He’s also had his share of injuries, but they’ve never held him back. He keeps on grinding. In his words…
“It’s a lot of hard work, and it doesn’t come free.”
Such a simple statement is truly invaluable particularly when uttered by a man with his accomplishments. At age 75, Fred Peterson is stronger than vast majority of strength and conditioning professionals today. The difference is that he’s not trying to sell you a short term miracle plan. Instead, he reminds us that the road to the top is a long and challenging journey. It isn’t easy, and that’s exactly why it is so unusual to witness his level of strength.
Unlike many from Fred’s generation, today’s world often seeks shortcuts to challenging obstacles. An impressive work ethic stands out more today than it did many years ago. If everyone worked hard, hard work wouldn’t be mentioned. It would just be part of the daily process.
Unfortunately, hard and consistent work have become a rarity. A week does not pass without someone asking me what is the fastest way to gain strength. These people want shortcuts. They don’t to hear that it is going to take time. They don’t wish to embark on what promises to be a challenging and often painful journey.
They can’t handle the truth. As a result, it is no surprise that so many quick-fix workouts and routines are hyped to the masses. Promises of instant gratification will always be more marketable than the truth. Fortunately, there are still some like Fred Peterson who remind us that the road to the top is an arduous journey, but also one that is truly rewarding.
Real strength requires a significant investment in time. There are no shortcuts. If something sounds too good to be true, it probably is. If you wish to develop impressive strength, prepare for a journey that will last a lifetime. It won’t be easy, but there’s no other journey I’d rather take. Like Fred Peterson, I am a lifetime traveler.Â I’ll keep grinding until my last day.