“It’s the rough road that leads to heights of greatness” Seneca
One thing I always tell my athletes and even my friends when they need a boost or are going through struggles in life is, nothing good in life comes easy. I myself need this boost from time to time. At 5:30 in the morning when I am coaching and I know that I will be coaching multiple classes through 6 pm, it’s honestly a struggle to stay motivated. Days are long, nights are short, it’s hard to stay motivated and know that there is always a bigger picture in mind.
Walt Disney Studios, Amazon, Apple incorporated, all these companies started with humble beginnings. Two of these companies started in garages and one started in a small office. All of these companies are now on the Fortune 500 list. All of these companies started small and worked their way through to become giants. In the world of fitness, we all start small. We start as babies who can’t overhead squat to save your life and eventually move up to body weight and beyond. We all get demolished on the assault bike at first but eventually, learn to tolerate it more and more. Even those gifted with incredible talent find themselves humbled by the higher-skilled movements. But it’s in these times that our greatness shows. Part of what attracts me, and others, too CrossFit is the unending challenge of it. I don’t even care for the competition of it anymore as I enjoy the challenge. I can handstand walk but is my technique good? Can I go Unbroken on 21 repetitions of thrusters? Will I be able to complete this workout in under 15 minutes? These challenges I set for my self are never easy. The workouts inside of the gym are always a grind. But if there is one thing I have learned in my 35 years of existence it is, nothing good in this life comes easy. If you truly want to be great you have to experience the rough patches. You are going to fail and fail often. We often look through the lens of social media and see how easy some people have it. Don’t fall for it. Either they are exaggerating their lives as most do, or they are in for a world of hurt right around the corner. I know as a gym owner I see others in the industry who don’t seem to put in the work. They don’t seem to put in the hours that I put in. These are falsehoods that will only lead me to a road of despair. When you focus on others you are neglecting yourself own faults, and trust me I have many. Rather than fixing yourself and getting your house in order you envy what others have. When in reality they either have it just as tough or will experience the disappointment of early success. In your fitness life, it works the same. Social media tends to show highlights but doesn’t show the long road someone got to get there. It doesn’t show the fail after fail after fail. It doesn’t show them kicking the chalk bucket in disappointment. It doesn’t show the rough road. The rough road isn’t glamorous and it isn’t “Instagram worthy”. In order to achieve greatness, you must go through the rough roads. The easy road will lead you nowhere.
Anything worth having in this world will come from struggle. A stronger mind, a stronger body, and a stronger soul. If you stay on the easy road in life you will find yourself down a path of mediocrity and disappointment. That is one reason people stay away from CrossFit, they are scared to struggle. They are scared of the hard road. But it is not only CrossFit people stay away from, but it’s also any type of new experience. Even some of the best CrossFit people I know are scared to show weakness. They are scared to struggle. They stick within their comfort zone and never stray from it. Those are the ones who may be good but will never be great. If you truly want to have anything of value, always search for new challenges. Always look for the rough road. The greatest minds of our world, have sought out those roads. They went through them and paved them. Now it’s our turn to pave new roads and hopefully pass that lesson along to those after us.