If Deadpool was a real person, he would be a card-carrying member of the Nerd Fitness Rebellion.
In fact, I would go as far to say that Deadpool is the most realistic superhero movie created to date, and the most useful hero to consider when trying to live better lives.
Allow me to explain.
In case you’re one of a handful of people who haven’t seen the recently released Deadpool movie, starring a resurgent Ryan Reynolds (making up for all past superhero cinema sins), get your ass to a movie theater and check it out.
Don’t worry, only minor plot spoilers in this article! Even if you have no clue who Deadpool is, this article will still help you live a better life and move down a healthier path.
You can start with the trailer:
Let’s take a look at how this ninja mercenary with super human healing powers, a crazy amount of pop-culture knowledge, and unusually high self-awareness can help us live better lives.
Life is messy
Wade Wilson, former US Special Forces who has been dishonorably discharged from the military, makes his living taking on contracts as a mercenary.
Like many superhero origin stories, something goes wrong that kickstarts Wade’s journey. He discovers he has aggressive terminal cancer, and under shady circumstances he’s told by a company that he can be cured and turned into a superhero.
So far, we’re still in typical superhero plot land. It’s here that things take a drastic turn: he’s cured of his cancer and develops superpowers, but at the expense of turning his ridiculously good looks into somebody that now resembles Pizza the Hut from Spaceballs. Throw in some mental anguish and torture, and our protagonist becomes a bit… unhinged.
Most superhero pictures paint pretty photos of what happens once the person becomes a superhero. They get bigger, stronger, and better looking, and have to deal with being more awesome.
Wade, on the other hand, has to deal with a complete loss of identity, and the messy reality that comes along with a drastically altered appearance.
Unsurprisingly, things are messy for Deadpool – he’s foul-mouthed, says the wrong thing at the wrong time, and ends up in some pretty shitty situations.
From this perspective, Deadpool is the most realistic Superhero Movie ever created. In fact, Deadpool might just be more instructive for us Rebels. Real life is not always a fantasy hero’s journey; in fact, more often than not it’s messy, awkward, and R-Rated:
- You might have a kid unexpectedly. Oops.
- You might get dumped when you were prepared to propose. #$@%!
- You might get cheated on.
- You get might get injured or sick.
In real life, our workouts aren’t the infomercials and ads you see on TV to sell products. They are boring, disappointing, or we’re just tired.
All of us live lives that are messy. Every success story. It’s how we react to this messiness that matters.
Have you met Anthony?
He’s one of my favorite success stories at Nerd Fitness because he presents a realistic picture for somebody who drastically transformed his life and lost 200+ pounds, and handled it with grace.
As a result of him transforming, he has a lot of excess skin, and he was proud to share these photos with our community to show what happens. Look at that freakin smile on his face! Yup, the loose skin chafes. Yup, he wishes his skin was tighter and hopes it will continue to tighten up over the years.
He knows loose skin is a small price to pay for saving his own life and adding years to his story. It’s a badge of honor.
Embrace the imperfect. Life is messy.
As Deadpool says, “Destiny doesn’t care that I’ve made sacrifices to get here.That I’ve said my prayers and brushed after meals. Destiny wants a garbage man… and I’m always it.”
Things are not always black and white
Wade Wilson is The Merc with the Mouth: he has a conscience, but he also has a checkered past. He tries to do right, but he often gets in his own way by saying the wrong things at the wrong time.
In fact, it seems like his life would have been a whole lot easier in many instances if he just shut up! However, that would have made for a boring movie, and it’s the “foot-in-mouth” comments and actions that make Deadpool who he is.
Welcome to life!
We all make mistakes. I can think of plenty of moments where I’ve woken up the day after a night out or immediately following a decision, and I can’t help but say to myself “What the F*** was I thinking!? How could I be so stupid? I’m so embarrassed.”
Sure, it would be great if we were all like Captain America (he’s my hero, after all), pure through and through, always saying the right thing and doing the right thing.
Unfortunately, we’re human.
We say stupid stuff! We do stupid things sometimes. We make decisions that completely sabotage our efforts to be better people. Whenever these things happen, we have two choices:
- Build a time machine, undo our mistakes, and threaten to destroy the space time continuum.
- Learn from our decision and try to be better next time.
This is something I’ve come to terms with: regretting things I did in the past is a waste of brainpower.
We are who we are today because of EVERY SINGLE THING we’ve done. EVERY decision is part of our path and our current wisdom, good or bad.
Changing the past is impossible. Beating yourself up over what you’ve done is useless. Instead, all we can say is the following: “Okay, I’m here now. What’s the next step?”
When Deadpool wakes up in a dumpster, sure he might go “I’m so stupid!” but more importantly, he says “okay, what’s next?”
You don’t have to go it alone
Unsurprisingly, Deadpool, once transformed into a superhero (but scarred) version of himself, doesn’t think very highly of his appearance or himself.
Wade is a character who seems to instinctual flee his problems to try to go it alone. In fact, one of the funniest scenes in the whole movie comes from our buddy Deadpool refusing to combine forces with Colossus and Negasonic Teenage Warhead (the two X-Men in this movie).
Unsurprisingly, each of these decisions to try and go “lone wolf” come back to bite him in the ass – only after he finally relents and joins forces with others does he start to make progress.
As we’ve said here on NF in the past, you don’t have to be “the only one.”
We all have flaws, we all have things we’re working through, but you are the average of your allies. Surround yourself with other mutants who are also trying to live better, and you’re going to have people to lean on when things go wrong.
We are ALL mutants. We have flaws, we have things that make us weird to the outside world. And that’s pretty awesome.
Learn from Deadpool – even the mightiest of us need friends and allies.
Your real friends will accept you for who you are.
Deadpool refuses to accept that anybody will like the new version of him. Sure, he’s got super powers, but also his looks have drastically changed. I have to imagine for somebody who has placed a lot of self-worth on his outward appearance, this was a kick in the crotch.
So, he finds a blind roommate to live with. A blind roommate who loves cocaine and building IKEA furniture. But a blind roommate who accepts him for who he is, warts and all.
His best friend is a local bartender. Sure this bartender gives him some guff for his changed appearance, and even comes up with some inappropriate terms for his new ‘look,’ most of which don’t make any sense:
But his friends also help him out when he needs it. The X-Men put up with his nonsense because they know you can’t just take part of somebody; you sign up for the whole thing.
Your true friends (and a healthy partner in a relationship), will accept all of you (even if they sometimes poke fun at you).
You are the average of your allies. Choose wisely.
DON’T TAKE YOURSELF TOO SERIOUSLY.
My favorite part of the Deadpool comic and movie is the character’s ability to break the 4th wall and talk directly to the audience.
The movie never takes itself too seriously, pokes fun at those that do, and is incredibly self-aware of the ridiculousness of the present situation.
Coincidentally, this is my favorite part of Nerd Fitness and the community here… we don’t take ourselves too seriously either:
- When people email us saying “I don’t believe in the Paleo diet because I read this one time on a site about this thing,” we say “Great! Don’t do it!”
- When people tell us “I read about a diet where a guy only ate Twinkies and lost weight,” we say “Great! Let us know how it turns out!”
- When people email me to tell me why I’m wrong for recommending strength training for this reason or that reason, and why they’re right, I say “Congrats! You cracked the code!”
I don’t have all the answers. Our results might not work for everybody. So, we do the best we can to help the greatest number of people possible. And we also know that life can be absurd and we’re all figuring it out TOGETHER.
Instagram is full of beautiful people with perfectly sculpted abs telling you that you can be perfect like them if you just follow their super secret program. They’re selling you on the hopes and dreams of being pouty and serious, always without clothes on. Just subscribe to their monthly program or join their special group and you too can have perfect success and a body you love… and also find real happiness.
Or, if you just take their supplement you can have success like this instagram model:
At Nerd Fitness we try to show you the truth. You’re going to have loose skin, you might be pregnant, or you might think you’re too old to start. Your success won’t happen overnight, and it definitely won’t be easy. You have to make real, permanent changes. You may get derailed a few times and might sabotage yourself before finally breaking through.
Welcome to the Rebellion – home of the misfits and underdogs and loud mouths and stubborn idiots and mercenaries in red spandex who are trying to figure out how to navigate our brief few years on the planet with as much fun, growth, and purpose as possible.
Thanks for being here with us.
In the comments below tell me one messy thing going in on your life right now. Here’s mine:
For the past week, my sleep schedule has been JACKED UP. No matter what time I go to bed, I’ve been waking up 30 minutes earlier every day (6:00AM, 5:30AM, 5:00AM, 4:30AM, 4:00AM). Not because I set an alarm, not because I had gone to bed earlier. But because my body has decided that it wanted to be an ass. My workouts have also been sluggish, my mornings are ruined, and it’s made the rest of my day more useless too.
Let’s own it together.
photo source: Sergio Quesado: Deadpool with Sombrero, Mark Leichiliter: Deadpool head, Tim Deering: Deadpool and Wolverine, Miguel Discart: Deadpool Bracelet, Sergio Quesado: Deadpool Lego