Zig Ziglar Goes Negative


Yesterday Dad began working out with a personal trainer.  Getting started is always the toughest part, and he hasn’t really worked out at all since his surgery in April.  I had no idea Dad was so out of balance.


Angie Katz is his trainer, and the first session was really pretty much a strength and balance assessment.  Angie is a great trainer who comes highly recommended.  At the end of the hour-long evaluation she gave Dad and me her findings.  It was shocking but not at all surprising.


First she explained that Dad is very strong and that he may want to consider wearing a t-shirt that says “All Natural” when he is working out so that others won’t think he is “on the juice.” (“On the juice” is a gym term for steroids.)


Then she explained that his positive strength moves (when you are pushing with your arms or pressing with your legs) are very strong, but the negative move (returning the weight back to its position) is fairly weak.   When lifting weight you must control the weight throughout the exercise, and Dad needs some help on the negative movement.


In short, Angie said, “Zig is out of balance.”


Just to make sure I heard what Angie said I asked, “So what you are saying is that Dad is out of balance.  His strength is much too positive, and his negative strength is not negative enough.  In other words, Dad needs to focus on the negative?”


“You got it!” she said.


It’s official.  Dad is physically out of balance, much too positive and not negative enough.  I will keep you posted on how well his negative workouts go!


(In case you are trying to figure out what this really means, here is a pure and simple explanation:  Stepping up stairs Dad does great.  He is very strong on the “positive” push going up.  Stepping down the stairs Dad needs to build some strength.  The “negative” move coming down is not as strong as it should be and this creates a lack of stability and not as good balance as he should have.)


I never dreamed that Embracing the Struggle would mean focusing on the negative!

Zig and Angie - the bike

Zig and Angie - the bike

Zig focuses on the Negative - let it down slow!

Zig focuses on the Negative - let it down slow!

Angie says – the “positive” side of muscle contraction is known in biomechanical terms as concentric, and the “negative” is eccentric.

I always new Dad was not eccentric enough! 

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15 Comments on “Zig Ziglar Goes Negative”

  1. edenchanges Says:

    I have to say it’s really funny to learn that Zig Ziglar is being recommended to focus on the negative! 🙂

    Seriously it’s great to read about him being so active!

  2. Archie Winningham Says:

    Just keep reminding dad to always remain “positive” while dealing with the “negative”. Then he will be very successful at the “negative”, or something like that. I believe I would need his advice on that one! 🙂

  3. Cindy Says:

    Negative. Zig Ziglar? Negative. Zig Ziglar? Huh?

  4. will Says:

    Zig Ziglar is the best! I can’t wait to see how this negative stuff turns out.

  5. J. D. Wysong Says:

    So Tomas,
    What you are telling us is that nothing has changed – – Zig is same as always strong on the positive – – short on the negative. I think I’ve heard that in everything he’s ever said. Emphasizing the negative is going to be a tough one for Zig!
    I’ve got a positive feeling he will handle it just fine

  6. Marc Krevo Says:

    Just seeing pictures of Zig inspires me! Keep them coming. I am praying for Zig and your family.
    God Bless!

  7. Ann Musico Says:

    Isn’t it amazing how God’s principles apply to EVERYTHING! Balanace is key. He created us to live lives of balance – no extremes in any area. Your post about your dad is such an excellent expression of this in a way we can see and understand. And isn’t it just like our Heavenly Father’s wonderful sense of humor to have it said that your dad is too strong and positive!! Just delicious! Praying for his total recovery.

  8. I must admit, like everyone else, I got a chuckle that Zig was weak at the negative!! I am keeping Zig in my prayers. I know, if just this once, he will concentrate on the negative and keep embracing the struggle, we’ll see him at the top!!

  9. Letitia Schuman Says:

    Zig is experiencing the Ying and Yang of life. I’ve taken Tai Chi Chuan, studied some philosophy and have done free weights. Everything has its purpose, so he should embrace the negative for it’s positive gains! 🙂

  10. I think this story relates so well to a lot of Zig teaches. The ‘negative’ is taking over because his body is ‘reacting’ to the downward force. If he concetrates, and ‘responds’ to the force, he will have control over the weight and force.

    In all situations in life, you have to maintain control. When you lose control, the negatives in life take over. Focusing on control, responding, will keep you going lively and strong.

    Glad to see Zig is doing well, though. He has been an inspiration to me, and because of him, my life has changed by changing the lives of others! What a great feeling to give back to others!

  11. 74WIXYgrad Says:

    I am also glad that Zig is doing better. I have followed him long enough to know that he will be able to make many positives out of the negative. Keep up the good work.

  12. Doug Allitt Says:

    Zig is a total inspiration. Great to see him working out. It will definitely be over the top.

  13. Hey Tom, How are you? Let your Dad & family know I’m continually praying for you all. Tell him I see him balanced & strengthened. Thanks for the inspiration & Spiritual testimony even in the midst of the challenge.

    Wendy M. Reynolds

  14. Karie K Says:

    What a great story! I’m glad to see he is doing well. Your dad doesn’t know me, but give him a hug from me anyway! God bless.

  15. Dale Suslick Says:

    This is a great entry …super enjoyed someone telling Mr. ZZ that he needs to be work on being negative?!

    The photos are cool as well …good to see were all just people doing the best we can. Nothing shows that better than video or photos of everyday action.

    Thanks for making me smile Tom.

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