Sporting Heroes: May

Confession time: I seem to be building up a list of who to feature each month, which to be honest it is getting far too long to actually fit into 12 months, so I can see a series of special editions coming up to actually be able to feature all the ones I would like.

Wolverine Rooftop

My decision for this month was confirmed last night though, about 15 minutes into the new X-Men film with the entrance of the legend that is Wolverine.  And just to confirm, although the focus is on Hugh Jackman, it is specifically in his role as Wolverine that he qualifies. Much like my feature on Paul Walker in Feb, this is where I stretch the sporting element of the blog (probably too late to change the title this far through the year), but the key is to have someone who inspires me to get out and train.

Although it is now de rigueur for the leads in superhero films to bulk up: I had a wide choice of candidates  for this column including Chris’s Hemsworth & Evans having a bulk-off as Thor & The Cap in Avengers, as well as DC characters such as Stephen Amell in Arrow (with the insane pull-up ladder) & Henry Cavill as Supes. And that is just the good guys, with Tom Hardy seeming to double in size when he played Bane in TDKR.

But the question is, how much of this would have happened if it was not for Hugh, way back in the late 90’s in the first X-Men (where as with all of the subsequent films, he has all the best moments)? Let’s not forget how controversial it was for him to actually play Logan, given his height, build and relatively unknown status at the time. Looking back it is hard now to imagine anyone else in the role, so much has he made it his own. And the crazy thing is, that 15 years later, he seems to have got even more like Wolvie. He barely seems to have aged, the growl is even more pronounced, and then we come onto the look. Suffice to say, my wife seemed to enjoy the film for some different reasons to me (although Fassbender seemed to add to this too)…

Let’s not beat around the bush here, Hugh has the look nailed, and the amount of training that goes into keeping that is massive. I mean the guy is 45! I read a lot of magazines which feature some of his workouts and he really hits it hard, which obviously shows with the results. Having spent this year focusing on my long distance goals, I can’t actually remember doing any weight sessions, other than a few sets of chin ups and squats, but I reckon if I did then with the sort of commitment this challenge requires I could one day look like this. If I trained solidly for the next few years. Maybe. An idea for next perhaps…

I will freely admit I am a massive fan of Wolverine, to the extent that my cat is called Logan, and although her claws are not quite adamantium, they are extremely sharp, and she also likes to try and stalk other animals far larger than her. Although I have not yet been able to take her for a training run (like Rocky & Butkiss) I am holding out to be able to do it one day.

Another thing about Hugh is he also seems a really genuine guy. There has been a lot of publicity for the new film, and my personal highlight was his X-FM breakfast show takeover, where he was both hilarious and interesting. If you missed it, I highly  recommend trying to find it somewhere online to peruse at your leisure, as it was a real one off. Perhaps in a few years when I become the Wolverine, he will have something to fall back on!

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