Aussie men choose fitness over muscles

WHAT do Vin Diesel, Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, Sylvester Stallone and Hulk Hogan have in common?

No, it's not their age, good looks or even a sense of humour. These celebrities have all nailed the macho man image with over-the-top muscles and bulging veins, a look many Aussie men are shying away from.

In many instances, men tend to prefer servicing the car, building a shed or even cleaning out their sock draw to avoid visiting their doctor for a check-up.

But with June being Men's Health Month, the spotlight has been on the awareness of preventable health problems and early detection and treatment of disease among Aussie males.

According to Jetts Fitness, a growing number of Sunshine Coast men continue to flock to gyms, but vanity is not the main motivation.

A national member representative of Jetts Fitness, Christie Gooden, said looking good had taken a back seat to being healthy.

“It's not just older Sunshine Coast men joining clubs to improve their health.

“Younger guys are also more aware of the health risks facing men and in many cases don't want to follow in the footsteps of a male relative or friend who died prematurely,” Ms Gooden said.

“I don't think we'll ever say goodbye to our macho men, but I think the Arnold Schwarzenegger look is certainly going out of favour.”

Thirty-eight-year-old plasterer Michael Krauss joined Jetts Fitness in January, having felt the Christmas bloat, and has since lost 16cm around his waist.

With a wife of 13 years and two young children at home, Mr Krauss said he started going to the gym more for his health than anything.

“It helped me immensely with my sleep, I was an insomniac,” he said.

“Now I sleep like a normal person. I wish I did this 20 years ago.

“You can deal with everyday things better because your head is clearer. It makes an overall difference in your life.”

According to men's health in Australia:

  • On average, men die six years earlier than women
  • 50% of men in Australia are overweight, compared to one-third of women
  • Men are more likely to have heart disease and cancer
  • Men are three times more likely to commit suicide than women