FYI: "It's Cool To Be Strong."

I read a story on CBSnews.com where some dude was talking about how it’s cool for women to lift heavy weights. At first I was like, “Um, yeah, duh!” When wasn’t it cool?” Then I realized the answer isn’t so cut and dry. It’s hard to remember that not too long ago — in the 1950s — society felt a woman’s place was in the kitchen taking care of the kids. Lifting weights? What for? That didn’t make dinner.

As we’ve evolved so has the notion that women can’t compete with men in any and all arenas. No longer is powerlifting considering “mannish” by anyone who isn’t a total goon — which is something that any women who played sports always knew. As Suzanne Hartwig-Gary, co-founder of Supreme Sports Performance and Training (SSPT) told CBSnews:

Just looking at the last ten years, women now think it’s cool to be strong, fit and have some muscle instead of just being skinny,” Hartwig-Gary, said. “Today, being fit is seen as a lot better than just being skinny.”

Later, the point was driven home that more women are looking to get strong and avoid being pencils:

For the first time ever, more women than men competed in the 2105 raw powerlifting portion of the Arnold Classic, the competitive bodybuilding event that drew 18,000 athletes last spring. Competing “raw” means no use of specified gear such as squat suits or bench shirts.

I’ve been to a few of these types of events — the Arnold, the Mr. Olympia, and it really is a display of incredible strength. I don’t get behind the people who jack themselves up with steroids (whether they be men or women), but the strongmen and strongwomen competitors are insanely impressive. See for yourself:

Image via Flickr