I'm a 24 year old male, living in Pennsylvania. I starting weight training with my father shortly before my 12th birthday, and worked out religiously throughout middle school, high school and my freshmen year of college. Durring this time I adhered to a training philosophy of high intensity, high volume (some would say very high) and low frequency, and made good progress, in spite of the fact that I was almost certainly overtraining, with marathon workouts of 2-3 hours in length.
Unfortunatly, durring my sophomore year of college I came down with mono. Worse, due to a false negative on a lab test, I continued training on and off for some time before learning what was wrong. Following this I was sick on and off for over a year. This ended only after I had my tonsils removed, by which time I had simply gotten out of the habit of working out.
Anyway, I trained sporadically through the remainder of my college years, but never consistantly for more than a few months. After college I started working, moved into my first real appartment with my then fiance and got married shortly thereafter. I was in resonably good shape from a lot of hiking and such, but I still missed lifting. In fact, I was just starting to look into gyms in the area when my appendix ruptured. Ironically, it was about the best thing that could have happened for my motivation. I had to wait two and a half months before I could start lifting, and by that time I was more than ready.
It's been nearly a year since then, and I'm still highly motivated. I've regained all my former size and strength plus some and I feel great. The one thing that has changed however is that I've cut back on volume dramatically. Initially I meant this to be temporary, in order to ease my transition back into regular training, but it worked so well I've never looked back.
Anyway, I thought I'd share some of my background, and experiences with weight training. Meanwhile, I'm currious how you guys (male and female) got started, what influenced you, and how your training philosophy may have changed over the years.