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Many men have spent their lives blaming others for their own mistakes, failing to fake responsibility for their own actions.  All of this can change when they begin seriously pumping iron: weight training.

The eventual achievement of getting through the set, building up the strength of the muscles, and learning the discipline necessary to continue making progress has its effect on the mind and spirit of men!

With this progress comes renewed Pride and Self-Confidence, and this is one reason weight training has become so popular in prisons in the USA!

Weight training changes you.  It makes you feel better about yourself, and it changes the way people treat you.  It is an avenue open to anybody, anytime.  Hard training causes the body to release endorphins (naturally occurring morphine-like substances), which lead to mood elevation and a positive outlook!

Weight training can also have a profound effect on personality, lifestyle, and success in dealing with the demands of daily living and the enjoyment of life.


Lift Safely, and Respect the Program!  – the Rec. Department

(Sign hanging in various places at the gymnasium at the Windham Maine Correctional

My tagname is H. Life used to be kind. Never had any trouble with the law, never really had trouble with anyone. Then, six years ago, I fell through a plate glass window & my left arm was near to being completely severed. Luckily, it was able to be repaired, but the nerve damage left me in constant pain. To cope with this (at age 16) I was put on oxycottin and morphine.

I first realized that I was addicted when my physician, afraid that I could become addicted took me off of everything. By three days time the pain & the withdrawal symptoms were so overwhelming that he was forced to put me back on the medications. Of course, over time, with opiates, you need more & more & more & when they won’t prescribe you enough, you cross that line between “use” & “abuse.” (Although if they prescribe it, I guess it’s still “use”.) The next thing you know, you’re a criminal.

I’m in a prison doing 4 years for a burglary (to support my habit) followed by subsequent probation violations. Despite my condition (in addition to addiction & chronic pain, I also suffer from mental illness) I was not offered any alternative to sentencing, no rehab, no hospitalization. Am I done using/abusing substances? Not unless “they” come up with a cure for cravings, and an alternate to pain management. I wish that I could be a surgeon, and heal others. But that’s not happening now.

– Nicholas “H” Hamilton
MDOC# 66835

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Political Prisoners

Welcome to the blog from inmates of Maine's jails and prisons.

In collaboration with the Holistic Recovery Project, the Political Prisoners Blog provides a prisoner's view into what's happening at Maine's correctional facilities.

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