Ask The Trainer #25 – NEVER Give Up


Hi, Chad,

I really loved your article. I’m going through the same type of problem.  At 72, I finally completed in my first bodybuilding competition last May, then a week later I ended up with a hernia that had to be repaired. I had several complications during and after the surgery, due to my diabetes. And like you, I’m not allowed to train anymore. I saw that all of my training was just wasting away. Like you, major depression had set in.

Your testimony was such an inspiration to me, that I now know that I will be back, despite my doctor telling me it’s time to stop training and act my age. To that, I say no way. I love the lifestyle and the competing gives me a tangible goal to train for.

I’m looking forward to your next article.



Dr. C. Thomas S.
Associate Professor
School of Medical Laboratory and Radiation Sciences
Old Dominion University


Hi, Tom,

I sincerely appreciate your thoughtful words regarding my article. A lot of times when people go through difficult challenges, they want to hide their situation. It’s as if they’d be ashamed for anyone to discover the fact they have vulnerabilities… that they are human. This ideology never made sense to me.

When you’re open about your weakness, in general, most people will be able to relate to you on some level. After all, almost everyone has encountered humbling situations in their lives that left them feeling helpless at one time or another. When people can relate to you, it gives them comfort in knowing they aren’t the only one plagued by unfortunate inflictions.

It’s About Inspiring Others

Furthermore, when you’re finally able to persevere, despite your seemingly insurmountable obstacles, you inspire other people by showing them there’s hope they can conquer their personal obstacles as well.

On the other hand, when people hide their challenges and imperfections, their struggles are pretty much in vain. There’s no glory or inspiration. Just some tough experiences that come and go with the wind, carrying no meaning.

Ask The Trainer #25 - NEVER Give UpCongratulations on competing in your first bodybuilding show at the age of 72! THAT inspires me! You clearly demonstrate that you’re never too old to tackle new challenges or to obtain higher levels of achievement!

I’m very sorry to hear about the hernia surgery and complications with diabetes. I know several people battling that disease right now.

Fighting Diabetes

It’s very important to understand the mechanisms by which glucose damages the body and then take steps to hinder those processes.

You may have heard the term ‘glycation’. This is when sugar molecules react with proteins to produce nonfunctional structures in the body. This process is among the most significant as it relates to symptoms of diabetes.

Glycation damages proteins throughout the body leading to the complications that diabetes is notorious for nerve damage, heart attacks, kidney failure, blindness, etc.

Some studies suggest the amino acid carnosine is an effective glycation inhibitor. Therefore, this amino acid may be advantageous to diabetics. Additionally, diabetics tend to have high levels of free radicals in their bodies which causes damage to the cardiovascular system.

For this reason, it’s important for diabetics to focus on obtaining high amounts of antioxidants from quality food and supplement sources to help combat the effects of oxidative stress.

Research indicates high levels of blood glucose and glycation result in reduced nitric oxide levels in the body. Since nitric oxide is a potent vasodilator that helps keep arteries relaxed and wide open, it reduces stress on the cardiovascular system.

That being said, nitric oxide supplements may be beneficial to diabetics as well.

You Are Unique

Finally, remember that the prognosis your doctor gave you is based on the status quo of a collective whole. That is, other 72-year-old men, in similar circumstances, who likely haven’t taken as good of care of themselves as you.

I’ve experienced and witnessed very compelling evidence that demonstrates you’re never too old, sick, or injured to bounce back and do what you love if you maintain a determined mindset and focus on the passion in your heart.

I have no doubt you WILL return to bodybuilding because you’re very passionate about doing so! Keep striving to improve. Always continue to search for new and better ways to break through to your best potential.

No matter how slow or frustrating the process is, be relentless like a bulldog and NEVER give up!

By the way, check out this fantastic video. (If it doesn’t fire you up, nothing can!)

Prove ‘Em Wrong,
Chad Shaw

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