They act like it's their domain, and either you're part of their tribe, or you're a loser. You're inferior. You're a wimp.
Don't believe me? Try asking a Bro what he does for cardio.
Now don't get me wrong: I love lifting. I love the feeling I get from having pushed or pulled a bunch of weight a bunch of times. I believe barbell squats are the king of all exercises. No matter what's on my fitness plate, I'll always make time for the gym. And I know plenty of lifters who aren't Bros.
But I have news for the Bros: You're not that tough.
Bros Are Babies About Cardio
Bros try to wrap up their hatred of aerobic exercise into some kind of tough-guy disdain, like, "Cardio sucks. Do you even lift, bro?" But what they're really doing is being wimps about it. Let's go for a run, fellas. Maybe let's go 10 miles at a 9:00/mile pace, and we'll see if you can keep up -- or even get past that first mile without gasping for air. Or let's hit the track for some 800-meter repeats. Uh-huh. Bros say they don't do this stuff because lifting is better, but the bottom line is, they're afraid to try. Because they know it'll expose them as weak.
The Weather Is Always Perfect in the Gym
If you know me at all, you know that I harbor extreme hatred of the treadmill. It's not that I think it's an inferior workout; I'd just rather be out in the world than on a hamster wheel. Even if it's snowing. Even if the wind chill is below zero. Even if it means running a marathon in rain, wind and cold. Likewise, if I have a #FrontPorchWorkout scheduled, I bundle up and do it. And there are plenty of runners who'll brave elements much worse than I will. What about those tough-guy Bros? In the gym - the only place they exercise -- there's no rain, no wind, no snow. It's never too hot, never too cold. Sorry, fellas, but that's wimpy.
"Bulking" Is an Excuse for Bad Nutrition
Scroll down to number-five in this Eric Bach piece on bulking. I see lots of guys like this at the gym. Yeah, they're stronger than me -- well, at least in their upper bodies. But they have bellies. I'm not talking about power lifters -- those guys are amazing and, frankly, in their own world. I'm talking about guys who have big biceps, big guts and big stories about their drinking exploits. Yes, you can get lean without a ton of cardio, but it requires discipline. And that's an aspect of mental toughness that many Bros simply don't have.
You're Plenty Tough
The next time you start to feel intimidated in the gym by the Bros, remember: You're plenty tough. You're not afraid of breathing heavy. You don't need climate control to be able to exercise. You have the discipline to keep a consistent diet going. Toughness is a lot more than building big arms, shoulders and pecs. Just do your thing and stay strong!