The Men's Health Australia April Issue Has Arrived Ft. Anthony Mackie | Men's Health Magazine Australia

The Men’s Health Australia April Issue Has Arrived Ft. Anthony Mackie

I first started working out properly at the age of 16. And yes, it was to impress a girl. It took six months of solid training to shed 10 kilos. I felt more confident, my studies improved and I got the girl. While that relationship lasted only a swift three dates, with little more than a cheeky hand-hold at the train station after school, in the process I did manage to find my true life partner: fitness.

Since that time, I’ve trained almost every day of my life. There were the occasional days off, sure – days spent in transit, perhaps a bad case
of the flu or the day following a particularly brutal break-up.

For the most part, however, nothing gets in the way of at least 45 mins of exercise each day. Heck, even after I had a metal plate surgically inserted into my shattered hand after a boxing mishap, I was back in the gym the following day, my cast forming the perfect grip on the Assault Bike handle.

Obsessive? Perhaps. But I never could match the mental high brought on by a good workout.

It’s how I’ve forged many of my greatest friendships, and it’s a passion that has led me to the job of a lifetime.

At the end of last year, though, I did something I never thought I’d do: I took seven days off working out. Hardly earth-shattering by normal standards, but in the context of my own life, my sense of self and my perceived place in the world, it was extreme. And do you know what happened? Absolutely nothing.

The first two days were spent in panic. The second two in curiosity. And the remaining three in total bliss. I hadn’t given my body the space and time it needed to recover in 16 whole years.

It’s no wonder I was so highly strung. The break from doing what I love, much like the break from editing this very magazine last year, served as a great opportunity to reflect on why I love what I do.

For me, in both instances, the benefits were almost entirely mental. And so, I’m back on both the work and workout trains, with a renewed sense of purpose and direction.

2020 served as a prime opportunity to reset for most of us. It was a chance to breathe, to pause and, in many ways, for the world to heal.

The inability to travel and distract ourselves with a false sense of urgency gave us time to reflect, outwardly and inwardly. This reset led us to assess where we are currently, coming off the back of massive resets in the way we regard our health, the way we behave with others, the way we work and, of course, most importantly, global-scale cultural resets such as those encouraged by the Black Lives Matter movement.

While reading this issue, I encourage you to pause and reset yet again, if only for a moment. Picking up a print magazine focused on self-improvement, free from notifications and pop-up ads, allows you the perfect opportunity to reflect on where you come from, where you are mentally and where you’re going.

As the saying goes, the sun will always shine after the storm, so in these uncertain times, be kind to yourself. Pause, breathe and recover. We’ve all been through a lot. And sometimes the first step to a better self is to do nothing. For a moment, at least.

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