One thing you have always heard when growing up was the term commonly referred to as “Dad Strength”. You may recall wrestling with your Dad in the yard as a “grownup” high school teenager thinking you had all the strength in the world and only to find out that was not the case and get tossed across the yard like a wet noodle.
Now at 42 years young, I feel like I might be the strongest and fittest I have been in my adult life to which I may now realize that “Dad Strength” might actually be a thing!
"Dad strength" is used to describe the seemingly inexplicable increase in physical strength that some people attribute to becoming a father (or just plain out getting older and stronger with time). While there is no scientific evidence to support the idea that becoming a dad automatically results in an increase in strength, there are a few potential reasons why this perception exists.
One reason is that becoming a father often coincides with other lifestyle changes, such as increased responsibility and reduced free time. These changes may lead to a shift in priorities and a greater focus on physical fitness and health, which could result in improved strength and overall fitness. Additionally, the experience of parenthood can be physically demanding, particularly for fathers who are often called upon to lift and carry young children, strollers, wagons, and entire teams sporting equipment (ha! If you were a coach you know). Over time, these physical demands may have led to improved strength and endurance.
In my life, this is definitely a reason as a few years ago I prioritized fitness and health as a must for my longevity. I came to this realization when I would hit that mid-afternoon “I need a nap” phase and realized that my health was really not tracking in the right direction. This low energy feeling would then spill over into the evening, when I needed the most energy, for the kids after school activities. So I did what any good Dad would do - I did a good bit of research on ways to give myself more energy and here is what I found to be the most helpful:
- Exercising in the morning definitely kicked in my endorphins to get the day going. I have been doing F45 workouts 6 days a week and adding in a long Sunday morning walk
- Actually eating breakfast and mid-morning high protein snack definitely helped dampen the need for a big lunch. I usually have a zero sugar greek yogurt, a piece of low carb buttered toast and then some deli meat with cheese as a mid-morning snack
- A few supplements in micro-doses provided an energy boost in the afternoon. These were Tyrosine, Ashwagandha, Citrulline, Green Tea Extract & Beet Root Extract
- Also when time allowed I would sneak in a 20-30 minute walk at lunch which was probably the biggest help because it gave me a chance to reset my mind over the hour break and relax
- I also would eat a sensible lunch with a balance of protein, carbs, fats, and vegetables.
Overall, while there is no concrete evidence to support the idea of "dad strength," it is possible that the experience of fatherhood and just plain getting older may lead to lifestyle changes that result in improved physical fitness and strength.