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Family Man - Oldest son now hitting the weights
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I have to double my efforts or my oldest son may someday be able to whoop his dear old dad – perish the thought.

Much to my delight, my son Jack joined a gym this past week. He did it on his own, without prompting or teasing from his old man. This comes after I had tried to drag him to the gym with me since he was 16, paying his gym dues despite him only darkening the gym door on rare occasions.

If you know me very well then you know I’m a gym rat and have been since New Year’s Eve 1999. I took an oath with friends to continue working out at least three times a week. Two of us are still holding to that oath, the other fell off the wagon the week after the oath.

In the case of Jack, now 20, I know that he has my genes. And, pardon the pun, they are skinny genes. I was as skinny as they come, even after graduating college. I look at some of my old pictures and am stunned about how bony I was back in the day. Before you ask, I was the butt of many a skinny joke back in school.
“Duane has to run around in the shower just to get wet,” was the favorite joke folks would make about me, not to mention names like “Bionic Bones” and “Stick Man.”

I weighed just 125 pounds when I graduated from Warren County Senior High – standing 6-foot-2 as I do today – and ballooned up to 140 pounds by the end of college. I tipped the scale at a whopping 155 when I started here at the paper in 1990. I weighed in at 200 pounds this past week as reference.

My youngest son Henry is the same way. He is skinny as a rail and won’t put on any weight anytime soon given how hyper he is. I’ll wait a couple of years before I try to indoctrinate him into weight lifting even though, I have to confess, I have him tag along with me to the gym once in a while just to get used to it.
Anyway, I was excited when Jack announced his membership even as he winced in pain from his soreness.

“You can’t do it all in one day,” I warned, shooting him a grin as I flexed. “A body like mine takes decades to achieve.”

Rolling his eyes at his dad’s bragging, Jack started listing off the weight routines he had been doing complete with sets and reps while he stood sipping on a protein shake.

“That’s my boy,” I proudly smiled. “Start it while you’re still young and you’ll be glad you did. Don’t wait so long like I did.”

Will he stick with it? Who knows? But hey, I’m glad that what seemed like futile attempts to get him to work out when he was younger may have planted a seed for later. Maybe he will do one better than dad. Maybe he won’t skip leg day like me.

Standard reporter Duane Sherrill can be reached at 473-2191.