In gymnastics coaching courses, when talking about the principle of progressive resistance in strength training, we often refer to the legend of Milon of Croton.
Milon of Croton (late 6th century BC) was the most famous of Greek athletes in Antiquity.
He was a six time Olympic victor; once for Boys Wrestling in 540 BC at the 60th Olympics, and five time wrestling champion at the 62nd through 66th Olympiads. Milo kept on competing, even well after what would have been considered a normal Olympic Athlete’s prime: by the 67th Olympiad, he would have been over 40 years of age. …
He was most likely a historical person, as he is mentioned by many classical authors, among them Aristotle, Pausanias, Cicero, Herodotus, Vitruvius, and the author of the Suda, but there are many legendary stories surrounding him. …
Ancient sources report he would show off his strength by holding his arm out, with fingers outstretched, and no man could even bend his little finger. … Another legend has it that he would train in the off years by carrying a newborn calf on his back every day until the Olympics took place. By the time the events were to take place, he was carrying a four year old cow on his back. …
It’s a great visual. The “load” gets heavier every day.
Moscophores, young man carrying sacraficial calf, Acropolis Museum – PBase
Here’s how Australian gymnastics superstar Daria Joura tells it:
To get stronger and fitter, a boy once hauled a bull calf onto his back and proceeded to carry the calf up a steep hill. Everyday, the boy returned to the hill with his calf and repeated the process. After some time, the boy was the most desired bachelor in his village â€“ all the girls were impressed by his magnificent strength. He could carry the largest bull in the vicinity on his back. The bull that started as a wee calf needing no more effort to carry than on day one, due to his persistence.
read the rest of Daria’s blog post – Perth Now
Her version appeals more to the teenage female athlete. I think Dasha’s is already one of my favourite athlete blogs, along with Kyle Shewfelt.
She’s soon to compete in the Friendship Classic in Pennsylvania, the start of a 3wk trip to the USA. Good luck!