No matter what you are training for, if you want to improve there is one thing that’s always required. It’s something we try to avoid. We detest it, we run from it, and we do anything to not experience it. I’m talking about a good old-fashioned struggle.
No one becomes a better musician by playing easy pieces and no one gets stronger by lifting light weight. Strength comes only with a struggle – because that’s when strength is really required.
A good musician will struggle through a difficult piece, over and over, until they’ve mastered it. Physical strength is required. A guitarist’s fingers may get so tender their joints ache, their muscles cramp, and their fingertips bleed. Mental strength is also required. No one likes failure, yet failure is requirement to success. Rarely does anyone master something challenging on the first attempt, so they must resist the temptation to give up no matter how many times they fail.
Easy Develops Weakness
You don’t have to be strong on a good day. Strength is not required to do things that come easy to us. Therefore, those things will not make us stronger. Of matter of fact, we may even become weaker.
Change only happens you are challenged, yet we’ve been taught to avoid challenges – as if challenges and difficulties are bad. So, we avoid discomfort, we avoid inconvenience, we avoid pain and we avoid difficulties. However, those are the things we will need to endure to produce change.
We tease around our house “don’t pray for patience, or God will just give you more opportunities to practice”, but this is so true. If you want to improve an any area of your life, you will need more opportunities to WORK on that area.
If you want to become leaner, stronger, faster or run longer, you will have to challenge your body in those areas. Otherwise, expect to be exactly where you are ten years from now.
If you aren’t struggling, you aren’t changing!
1. Try to lift your one-rep max (the heaviest weight you can push for one rep) on at least one exercise today.
2. Try to sprint your fastest pace for a quarter mile.
3. Forfeit one of your favorite regular foods or drinks today as a reminder you are in control.