I’ve discovered, while on my fitness journey to become a great figure competitor, that the best workouts are the ones that challenge you- mind, body, and spirit. Whether it be that workout penciled in your fitness journal, as dictated by your trainer or that workout you have printed out that is customized for your body and your goals, it all means nothing if it does not challenge you.
By challenge I mean, each and every time you step into the gym or your exercise room, you have to take a mental breath because you know the movements, reps, and/or machines you are about to encounter will be ones that will test your will to keep going.
Last night was a great example of that very workout for me. Though all of my workouts challenge the heck out of me every day, literally leaving pieces of me on the floor- by way of puddles of sweat- last night kicked by butt! Most competitors, athletes, workout enthusiasts will tell you that the best/worst workout day for them is leg day. Leg day is one of those workouts that you love to hate. You know that if done right, you will get the results you desire, but it requires such will and determination to push through it, rendering your legs noodle-like.
You would think I was talking about a feat a bit more important, but to us athletes who actually work legs, it is. Last night, while on my last superset, which included two sets of 30 leg lunge jumps on the Smith machine and two sets of 30 pop squats, I hit that point in my mind where I thought I couldn’t go any further. The variety of supersets that preceded this last set had rendered me exhausted. My legs were shaking, my mind could no longer count above five, and my body had stopped. I was ready to throw in the towel and call it a night. But then, I heard a familiar voice come through my earphones. This voice whispered to me:
‘Cause sometimes you just feel tired,
Feel weak, and when you feel weak, you feel like you wanna just give up.
But you gotta search within you, you gotta find that inner strength
And just pull that shit out of you and get that motivation to not give up
And not be a quitter, no matter how bad you wanna just fall flat on your face and collapse.
And then the beat dropped, my body all of sudden regained the strength and energy to continue, and I finished hard and I finished strong. But what was it about those words that reenergized every fiber of my being? I can you tell that it brought out the beast within me- the competitive beast that I am. I don’t want to lose, even if that means not losing to me. I don’t want to be that quitter that can’t even keep going for the betterment of me.
Those words that Eminem whispered in my ear served as the motivation I needed to help me get through what had absolutely challenged me. Challenges are the things needed to propel you to the next level, whether it’s in your career, personal life, fitness journey, etc.
In the most appropriate words of Dr. Martin Luther King, “The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.”
Where do you want to stand?