In life, we will all face adversity. I don’t care how perfect life seems on Instagram, how many likes you get on facebook, or how much you tell yourself life is great, adversity strikes us all. How you react in those times is what tells me all about your character. It’s easy to put a smile on your face and be positive when times are good, it’s when the times are hard that tells me who you are as a person.
Life has a great way of knocking us on our behinds. A death in the family, loss of a job, a break up with a significant other, each of these situations may force many of us to contemplate where we are or where we are going in life. The stoics would tell us that is is not these externals that get us down but our outlook of them. We control our minds, we control how we view these perceived horrible situations. The stoics would tell us that we should be practicing adversity every chance we get, especially when times are good. Cold showers, wearing the same clothes, walking barefoot, etc. These teach us that the things we fear most are not that bad. In the world of strength and conditioning, we should be doing the same thing. It has often been said that just because a person works out three times a day, that does not mean someone is “fitter” than someone who works out once a day, and this is true. What does working out 3 times a day teach you? It teaches you to be resilient. When you go to an event with 4 workouts you know what it feels like to have that volume in a day. You have your worst-case scenario in training. Such is life, we need to prepare our lives for hardships. Hard workouts and movements we hate doing teach us to push past hardships in life. When you have that hardship, you know you can overcome it. It may not be your best effort, it may not be the results you necessarily want but you can overcome it. It will not be what defines you, it will not defeat you, but it will make you stronger. CrossFit teaches us this. We hate certain movements but we do it because it teaches us not to quit just because you do not like the results.
I’ve said it before and I will keep saying it, workouts teach us so much about ourselves and our character. If we quit on something as simple as a workout, what are you going to do when life throws you something you do not like? Workouts not only make you stronger physically but also mentally. If I can do a workout that pushes me mentally I can’t leave the gym knowing full well that it is my mind that stops me from overcoming obstacles in life. I may not get the full result I want, but I can overcome it. And that is what defines my character, someone who doesn’t let any set backstop them. Someone who keeps moving forward!