Fitness and bodybuilding subculture has grown exponentially in the past decade. Thanks to advancements in technology and the onset of social media, it’s not easier than ever to expose yourself to millions of people in just a few clicks on your phone.

Ironically, a lot of people who probably should spend more time focusing on their diet and training are usually the most outspoken on social media and taking “gym selfies.” But, hey, at least they’re taking a shot at something they want to pursue.

Sadly, many people with a lot of knowledge and admirable physiques don’t take chances or risks, or make themselves vulnerable; they don’t put themselves out there. It’s comfortable and easy to just lay low. It doesn’t require much effort at all to be average. You “fit in” with the rest. But by doing so, you become sheltered and have no voice. No greater purpose in life (or the fitness industry).

You tend to find that average people are generally those that spend their free time reading garbage like People Magazine and watching The Bachelorette and Keeping Up With The Kardashians. They’re so inhibited and hindered mentally that stuff like that is all they can comprehend.

I’m not saying that someone is inherently average just because they enjoy those types of entertainment, but I will tell you that those shows flourish because they appeal to the average, risk-averse mind (which defines the majority of people out there). Moreover, average people tend to have little passion for anything, and if they do find a passion for something they’re too afraid to act on it (or make a positive impact that extends beyond their self).

In fitness and bodybuilding, your physique alone will never deviate you from being average; your drive and ability to influence others will though.

Going Your Own Way

Naturally we have to ask why people fear deviating from average? Well, choosing to pursue something ambitious will lead to a dichotomy of supporters; people that encourage/believe in you and haters who want you to fail and stay average like they are. But here’s the thing, this world already has enough average people...we need more people that take risks, that make themselves vulnerable, that are different, that have passion in what they do, and aim for greatness.

And if you’re afraid that you may never be great at what you’re passionate about…think of it like this: Would you rather pour your heart and soul into something and maybe come up short, or would you rather never try and always wonder, “What if?” I promise you, you will live a more fulfilled life if you at least try and take in that experience. You will deviate from the average by simply pursuing that passion.

So what I implore you to do is this…Make yourself vulnerable, take chances, and do it again...and keep doing it. You will make mistakes; you will get hurt; you will receive hateful comments from strangers over the Internet; but you cannot understand pleasure without knowing pain. Nothing worth your absolute best effort will come without failures.

Do not quit; use those shortcomings as lessons on how to improve...or don’t, and just remain lost in the mix with all the other average, mediocre, ordinary, basic, common, indistinguishable, run-of-the-mill gym goers out there. I assure you no one will remember your name, no matter what you look like. Fitness and bodybuilding are lifelong endeavors, so enjoy the process and influence others through education and support along the way (i.e. don’t be just another ‘meathead’ that lifts weights).

Be Yourself

As a way of coping with being average, many people pretend to be someone they are not just to portray an image they feel others can appreciate. The conundrum we all face in this world is remaining true to ourselves while others try to change you. The most successful fitness and bodybuilding icons flourish because they weren’t afraid to show their true colors to the world.

We constantly try to appease the desires of others, even if that means taking on an identity that is fabricated and inorganic; the hardest thing to do in life is be you. So I come to you today with this: This is your one and only life, one and only opportunity, one and only story. Make it count, make it timeless, don’t be average, don’t be just like everybody else; be you.