After leaving high school, weight training became a passion of mine. It was mindless and allowed me to pour stress into metal.
I wanted to compete in bodybuilding at least once, so in September of 1989 I entered a bodybuilding contest in Sarnia, Ontario. This was my first real experience being involved with any type of on-stage promotion. Even though I was one of the competitors, I was mesmerized by how many people came to see the event. I started to look at the types of marketing techniques the event organization was using to gain exposure. Funny, it turned out to be just like my days at the waterbed store…making noise in the community to attract attention.
I didn’t realize until much later that bodybuilding was not just about lifting weights. It was about the WOW factor when you hit the stage.
Looking back, I now realize that it was just like marketing and sales. Each competitor had to have their own routine, a way of presenting their physique through choreographed movements to music (media). The routine was designed to bring the best out of your build. It also had to provide the audience and judges with the greatest amount of positive “exposure” while giving the judges reason to select you as the winner (“closure”).
At the time, I was pretty upset that I didn’t win. But, in retrospect, it was still worth every dry chicken breast and rice cake!