The day in the life of an average father looked very different in the early 1900’s than he does now. Common occupations for men usually involved hard labor. Most men worked on farms, factories, coal mines, railroads, lumberyards, fishing boats, and textile mills.
If the weren’t lifting heavy objects, they were using their skills to pound nails, shape metal, carve wood, paint walls, lay brick, sew clothing and bake goods. They rarely sat still. Not only did men work hard at work, often times, they worked just as hard at home before they even left the house.
HARD LABOR TO SMART LABOR
For example, my father (Tom Talley) grew up on a dairy farm in Virginia. Every morning my father and grandfather (pictured right, with my grandmother) would get up before the crack of dawn to start milking their 300 plus cows before my dad headed off to school. Maintaining the farm was not just a job, it was a way of life. Because of that, my father learned a lot of different skills and was never scared of hard work.
Today, occupations involve more work at a desk than they do on our feet. Even the same job looks quite different in 2013. For instance, when my dad began delivering mail in the early seventies, he had a walking route. By the end of his career with the U.S. Post Office, he spent less time on his feet and more time driving a mail truck around town. The job was the same, but how he performed his job had changed drastically.
PHYSICAL STRESS TO MENTAL STRESS
Do fathers still have the same responsibilities? Yes, most of them do. They still have to provide for their families and they still work hard – just different. The stresses of a provider grew still there, but men are often more mentally exhausted than they are physically exhausted at the end of the day. As a result, many men are too tired to go to the gym after their hard day at work. Ironically, they need it even more.
Mental stress, without the ability to release stress through exercise, can lead to anxiety, depression, frustration and fatigue. While it seems you would need energy to exercise, exercise actually creates energy. Exercise greatly affects our chemical levels, increasing endorphins and improving our mental state.
The more a man exercises, the stronger he will feel both physically and emotionally. He will be more apt to handle the stresses of life, and the pressures that go with being the man of the house. He will have more confidence, and less chance of injury due to weak and tight muscles.
FATHER’S “OTHER” JOB
If you are a father, you have more than just a job to do. Even, in many ways, if you are fit to be a father, you still need to be physically fit to be the best father you can be. It’s your responsibility to take care of your body so you can take care of your family.
Happy Father’s Day Dad!
I’m so thankful my dad took control of his health a few years back and started working out. Fitness changed his life – for his own good and for his girls. He’s stronger, has more energy and more confidence to do things he never thought possible at his age. I’m super proud of you dad! I LOVE YOU!!