Max Unger, who went by the strongman name of Lionel Strongfort during the 1800’s, had much wisdom to pass on regarding the human body, its health  and solid training philosophy.  Unger was known to lift a kettlebell or two….

His credo:

I believe in the sanctity of the human body.

I believe in the divine right of every body to possess a body that is strong and beautiful and radiant with energy.

I believe that the care of the body is a sacred responsibility – the first that we accept and the last that we lay down.

I believe Nature is the great physician, and health is the inevitable reward of those who sit at her feet and learn her ways.

I believe that sickness is the offspring of ignorance, and that the greatest teacher of [hu]mankind is [s]he who bears the flaming torch of right living to those who dwell in darkness.

I believe that in the true art of healing there is no mystery and no vagueness, and that [s]he only can help the sufferer who faithfully interprets the methods of nature.

I believe that physical betterment and moral welfare go hand in hand.

I love his words.   I find something new, or a strong reminder, in them every time I read them.  He was famed for his ‘well balanced, symmetrical’  physique.  Balance and symmetry speak loudly to me, in ways they could not have a decade ago.

Hopton Hadley had these words to share about Max Unger:

It is well nigh impossible for the blase young man of today to imagine the awe and admiration that hushed the theatres when Lionel Strongfort made his appearance.   In the eyes of the audience he was the living reincarnation of the Greek athlete as he reproduced the poses of the world’s most famous sculptures of the human form divine, such as the javelin thrower, runner, boxer, discus thrower, wrestler, gladiator, and other admired examples that express the beauty and strength of the ancient Greek athletes.

Beauty and strength.

I see these qualities every day . . . wed, melded, interwoven in girly push ups, jump rope double under attempts, weighted squats, warrior II’s.

Beauty and strength stains the floor of the studio, leaking out of bodies working overtime to maintain 37 degrees celsius.

Beauty and strength which exists in grins of accomplishment, all around high fives, self-congratulatory applause, marching band heart rates, facebook status announcements.

Beauty and strength.