Shoulder Blasting – Advices from Chris Cormier

Weights in an Attempt to Catch Up’

Because Chris started school too early, he was always smaller and lighter than his peers. This situation is bound to give anyone a complex (trust me, I know firsthand) and by the age of 12, Cormier decided that beefing up with weights could be his ticket to closing the yawning gap in physical development that was an endless source of insecurity. A friend of his had a simple weight set in an austere spare room they called the Dungeon where he first started his physical transformation. Soon after that, he moved on to the local weight room at the Desert Highland Community Park where his older brother Rob and a couple of his friends worked out in a space not much bigger than a prison cell. Ironically, there were a few neighborhood guys with decent physiques who trained there, who had, in fact, been in and out of jail. Thanks to Chris, I now know Palm Springs has something of a hood. And here I thought it was only elderly, rich white folks wearing pastel colors and playing golf.

By the time Chris got to high school (at what, 12 years old?) and had access to better training facilities at the local Boy’s Club, his physique was starting to blossom. Though he was only 5-foot-5 and 120 pounds with a mighty 120-pound bench press to his credit, the unique muscle shapes and clear delineations between the muscles we call separation were already evident. I wondered if his shoulders, so wide, round and melon-like now, were one of the first muscle groups to blow up. “Naw, the only thing on me that grew fast back then was my arms. My arms were bigger than my shoulders until about halfway through high school.”

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