Push harder…do one more rep…one more set. “Don’t be a bitch!”
This is what we’re told if we want to get stronger, huge, and get the results we want (whatever they may be, especially in the gym). I say it’s true the majority of the time, but not always.
Well, imagine this.
Imagine that you’re cutting down an incredibly huge sequoia tree that is over 100 feet tall (can’t imagine why you would, but for the sake of the example go with it!) and all you’ve got is you and one bad ass ax. That’s it. No advanced machinery and no one else to help.
What do you do?
Get to work that’s what.
But what eventually happens?
Eventually you get tired and the ax gets dull.
As a result, the smart thing to do would be to rest for a bit, hydrate, eat, and, of course, sharpen the ax. However, what we usually end up doing is forcing ourselves to go harder, harder, and harder until we burn ourselves out and ruin the tool we are given–ourselves and the ax–because we fail to recognize the importance of balance in what we’re doing.
This example is very similar to one used by Stephen Covey in his book, The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People, in which he explains in his 7th and final habit, Sharpen the Saw, how we need to sharpen ourselves–mind, body, and spirit–with proper rest, nutrition, meditation, and balance in our lives to function at optimal levels.
The same thing goes for training in the gym, on the field, and any type of work at that. If we aren’t balanced in our approach, respect and sharpen ourselves, and the task, mission, or goal, we will never accomplish it in our ideal time frame and what we hope to get out of it.
I think one of the most manly things to do is to know when to stop, rest, and reflect. Ironic, but I think it’s so true.
If you’ve been hitting the weights hard non-stop for a month, for example, and you feel like shit it’s probably for a good reason. This is your body’s way of telling you “STOP” because “I” need some attention to get better. And if you do give it that then your body will reward you by being able to train and work harder, and be sharper and more focused.
(Click here for why rest is so important to grow stronger).
Hard work is 100% essential to anything you want to achieve, there’s no arguing that, but that doesn’t mean you neglect and sacrifice the most important tool: You. Work hard when you need to and when you don’t relax, rest, and recover. It’s okay to do have a rest day or a light day at the gym once in a while. Not every session needs to have you breaking PR’s (personal record) to be a success. Be a man and “bitch out” and maybe the next time you do train, you’ll actually break a PR or have one of the best workouts you’ve had in a while.
Don’t believe me? Try it yourself and see what happens. I guarantee you’ll be satisfied.
What do you think? Tell me by leaving a comment down below.
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Until next time, be strong and be you!