What’s Your Purpose?

Your problem?

You don’t know what the hell you want. You don’t know what the hell you’re doing. And you don’t know if whatever the hell you’re doing is going to deliver whatever the hell you want.

The vast majority of people swimming in this world of athletic physical culture aren’t chasing their true desires. It always leads to dissatisfaction. I know because I lived it.

I stopped curling even though I wanted bigger arms. I put I put 98.6% of my effort into back squatting because I thought it was going to give all of the performance and physique benefits I wanted. I fattened up like a cow during “bulks” to gain muscle even though I wanted to be lean.

I was “frightened” into these things.

Sound familiar?

Are you being frightened too?

Most people would rather look and perform like a well oiled athletic machine as opposed to today’s professional bodybuilders or competitive powerlifters.

It’s really the most basic and foundational question you could ever ask yourself.

“What is your purpose?”

Everything the body does is an adaptation in an attempt to survive. Training “nudges” the body to do things. If you aren’t following your purpose, you’re nudging in the wrong direction.

So what’s your purpose?



Trying to lose fat, build muscle, and build a body you’re proud of?

Maybe you’re a little lost right now.

Maybe you don’t have much motivation.

Maybe you don’t what program or diet to use.

I don’t know…

But what I do know is this:

Everything you need is inside of you.

You’re capable of more than know.

You just have to open your eyes.

My weekly column can help.

Just a small little honest note from me sent every Sunday.

Unless I’m hungover.

And then it comes Monday.

What I’m trying to say is that it’ll come Monday.

(These weekly columns don’t get posted to the site.)

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • Bennett January 3, 2013, 3:00 am

    I’m not sure that my truest purpose in life, for which I was created, has much to do with whether I back-squat or do preacher curls, if anything at all. That level of thought aside, however, my athletic purpose is to hit (or choke, or joint-lock) other grown men until they either fall down and can’t get back up, or cry uncle. It truly does lend a certain singularity of focus to one’s daily workouts, given the consequences for failure, fluff, and self-deception.

    • Anthony January 3, 2013, 4:28 pm

      Making others cry uncle is a great purpose.

  • Ian January 3, 2013, 2:13 pm

    Very solid/difficult question Anthony. People constantly ask me what I train so hard for or why I train so much? The best is: “Why do you WASTE all your time working-out?” My go-to-response: “How do you expect me to hit SSJ2 by fall/summer”

    My ‘catch-all’ / abstract purpose is “to progress.” To never remain static with my growth or gains. I’m always fearful when I hear someone say how much they ‘used’ lift, or how fast they ‘used’ to run. It’s honestly frightening to me, as I sit back and look at how far I have come in the past 7 years. I’d never want to be me and meet the person I ‘could have’ become.

    My definitive goal resonates with your sentiment of survival. Ex-military guy, I know what it means to be functionally fit. To be needed to manipulate not just your own bodyweight, but the weight of your gear and potentially another person. To not have designated distances of travel, which means todays ruck with 80lbs+ gear could be a 5k or a full marathon. War is unpredictable, and so is life.

    So when the zombies finally attack, all of our hours training will pay off….


    • Anthony January 3, 2013, 4:30 pm

      I’ll look for your hair to turn blonde at the right moment.

  • Rick January 3, 2013, 3:55 pm

    Great site!
    Have realized I’m an ectomorph and am now focusing on things that will work for me.
    I believe that our physical aspect lies very deeply in line with our soul purpose, so balance between them is important, whatever the physical aspect is.
    For those of us on sites like these the physical aspect is on the more active plane which is what got me here 🙂
    Unfortunately though I’ve never been very athletic nor in muscular shape. I have been working out for a couple of years now and have made some gains but not near what I want.
    One of my goals is for people to not even have to second guess that I work out. In that way all my efforts are somewhat rewarded (this is second to the health aspect of working out).
    What I have to work with; 53 yrs, 153 lbs, 17% bf, shift work (which isn’t great for good sleep).
    I look forward to see what this next year brings now that I can focus more on my body style.
    Many thanks for the effort put forth for this site.

    • Anthony January 3, 2013, 4:31 pm

      Thanks for the reply, Rick. Glad to have you.

  • johnny January 3, 2013, 5:22 pm

    today i realised my purpose after i had to deadlift couches, a fridge and other random pieces of furniture. its to be usefull when your friends and family need heavy ligthing done. guys who streng train are the mules of modern times.

    • Anthony January 7, 2013, 1:20 am

      Rule of thumb: be a sucky moving helper unless you want called all the time. Just saying.

  • Helder January 3, 2013, 7:16 pm

    Awesome post, the begining of everything or at least it should be, what do you want? what do you really want? That’s where all starts, unfortunatelly it’s very easy to be caught by what others think it should be your goals, it has happened to me too, we read so much, we read so many experts telling us what we should want that we end up believing that’s the best for us, the one size fits all, but it’s just wrong, i’ve learned that and it’s a wonderful reminder this post of yours, and a very important warning to those who just started.

    • Anthony January 7, 2013, 1:20 am

      Thanks for the reply my man.

  • Brandon Green January 3, 2013, 8:36 pm


    Great post! For years i admired and wanted to be a David Rigert. Muscle(over 500 C&J),speed(9.9 hand timed 100 meter) and a wide back. Wanted to be an Oly lifter.Found out later in life that i naturally predisposed to bodybuilding (just did not want to admit it although most people think that i am lucky). In any case bodybuilding much more socially acceptable.

    • Anthony January 4, 2013, 12:33 am

      Ha! I STILL want to be Rigert man.

      Barefoot snatch max with no warm-up?

      Sadly, a nerve problem in my foot means no Oly lifting.

  • Yannick Noah January 4, 2013, 12:58 am

    Word man. But i guess my problem is having different goals at different times (I cant belive i just admitted that in public!) . For example, there are times i want bigger arms, there are times i wish i could do awesome gymnastic exercises although i do know all of them require time, effort and consistency. Also, another problem of mine is that I have this great urge to try alot of things at one time and become the jack of all trades.

    But however my purpose that has never changed is wanting to look like an athletic machine. Its just that when it comes to the means of achieving it i become super ADD haha

    • Anthony January 7, 2013, 1:22 am

      Well start here: what does “looking like an athletic machine” mean to you? What does this look entail?

      And is it only looks or do you also want some go with your show?

  • Alvaro Chena January 6, 2013, 9:40 am

    I know exactly what I want, but I don´t know how to get it. My purpose? To weigh 75 kg with 10% fat. Now I weigh 70 Kg with 15-20% fat.

    I love this site!

    • Anthony January 7, 2013, 1:26 am

      Well right now you’re conflicted. I see two things here. Losing fat and gaining muscle.

      What’s it gonna be?

  • Brandon January 16, 2013, 1:24 pm

    Cool article, certainly got me thinking. After reading Pete Caroll’s book Win Forever I guess I’d like to say my purpose and goal is to “compete” to be the best me at every opportunity. That’s the basis from which I’m choosing make my decisions and actions lately.

    I’m still in the process of finding out what I want I guess. I’d like to just look athletic, not huge or bodybuilder size, just toned (something I’ve never been). I’m hard on myself and get discouraged easily by lack of progress, and although the answer is probably obvious from an outside perspective, I’m trying to work out how to improve.

    Glad this site is here though.

    • Anthony January 17, 2013, 2:42 am

      Thanks for the kind words, Brandon. Means a lot to me.

      You’ll get there. Just never quit.