By Ken "Skip" Hill
It should be apparent to anyone who reads my rants, whether you know me or not, that I rub a lot of people the wrong way. I don’t necessarily think it’s me, though. I tend to think that there are just a lot of insecure babies in the sport of bodybuilding. I understand that’s a bold statement, but I don’t mean it to be a blanket statement, either. Not everyone is a whiny brat. Awareness is the first step to recovery, isn’t it? Then here you go: If you can’t make yourself aware that you are a whiny brat, I will make you aware of it. Am I talking to you? Let’s see …
I have only written three rants and at least two of them have people talking on bodybuilding message boards about how much of an asshole I am. Personally, I appreciate the publicity. I hear bad publicity is better than no publicity, so I guess I’ll take what I can get. I’m not an asshole but rather someone who shoots straight and who’s been in this sport longer than a lot of you reading this have been alive. My old ass has been around for a while, so instead of complaining about my perspective on some of the people in this sport, maybe you should give a bit more credit than some of you have been giving.
I have been through the narcissistic phase where you put everyone and everything in your life second to bodybuilding. I have bathed in the attention from the “normal people,” and I have wondered how in the hell I was going to raise kids and have them not get in the way of my turning pro. I’m from the era of Zubaz, string tank tops and Gold’s Gym shoes. All of the ridiculous things that I write about, I have done at some point in my life, so please do yourself a favor and quit acting like I’m some skinny bastard who hasn’t ever lifted a weight and is picking on you. No one is kicking sand in your face. I just write about the things that drive me nuts and do little to help the image of our sport in the eyes of the mainstream.
One thing I have come to understand is that a lot of people in this sport are insecure, and laughing at themselves is not something they tend to be too comfortable with. For people who are in great shape most of the time, a lot of bodybuilders aren’t terribly comfortable in their skin. It isn’t what I say that they don’t like; it’s the way that they FEEL when they read what I’m saying. Whose problem is this? It damn sure isn’t mine. I sleep well at night.
Whether I’m writing about how bodybuilders act on the Internet or how they act at shows when they lose or how they carry themselves in public, I’m giving you an honest perspective from someone who’s been there. I have given too much to this sport for almost 30 years to have some people make a mockery of it. What part of that is difficult to understand? Yeah, probably the part that pertains to you. My advice? Grow up.
Here is some more advice if you’re one of the babies in this sport, and advice is cool because you can take it or leave it (and most of you will, without question, leave it):
Quit crying and complaining when someone who’s been around this sport for 30 years calls you on your bullshit. Pay more attention to the way you act and how you carry yourself because a lot of the time it can be pretty unflattering. Learn to laugh at yourself because, trust me, someone somewhere is laughing at you anyway. If you laugh along with them, you may not look like such an idiot.
My point is that a lot of people in this sport are fragile (pronounced “fraJILLy” if you are A Christmas Story fan). If the truth pains you and any criticism thrown your way is met with a strong defense, ask yourself whether that is my problem because of what I am writing, or if the real problem is that you see yourself in what I am writing. If you’re being honest with yourself, you’ll see that it’s almost always the latter. Plus, I am not purposely trying to belittle anyone. I am simply trying to make the blind see, so that they just might get it and “Make That Change.” And if you aren’t impressed with how I could work a Michael Jackson song and A Christmas Story reference into my rant then there is just no hope for you at all. I’m Just Sayin’.
Ken "Skip" Hill has spent 30 years in the trenches of bodybuilding. He owns TEAM SKIP Nutritional Consulting, where he specializes in conditioning for bodybuilders and high-level athletes. You can reach Skip through his website, TEAMSKIP.net and follow him on Twitter (@IntenseMuscle).