posted on February 12, 2020
You’ve been working all year, the long hours in the gym, the tears, putting in the work while going through tough periods in your life, it all adds up at some point. It only takes one second, one thing to go wrong and all that hard work you put in is at a stopping point.
If you follow me on Instagram you probably saw that I hurt my shoulder during my first Qualifier workout for the Mid Atlantic CrossFit Challenge (MACC). I then spent the next week completely off training, seeing a PT every day and trying to manage the pain I was in. It wasn’t until Friday of the same week that I finally had relief of pain and could go through the last 2 workouts with little to minimal pain.
When you’re on a team you always want to perform at your best and when you feel like you aren’t, you don’t only feel like you’re letting your team down but you’re disappointed in yourself for letting this happen. You try to tell yourself, it’s normal, you’re only human but it certainly doesn’t hurt any less. You can also relate this to individual sports or fitness goals; when you work so hard for something only to fall short, it just sucks.
So, here we are, in the thick of it and you ask yourself, where do I go from here?
Fitness is the only thing in life where your success is completely dependent on yourself. It doesn’t care how old you are or how much money you make. It does care about how hard you work. Setbacks are bound to happen, it’s just the nature of being human. The hard part here is reframing our mind so they don’t weigh on us heavily, basically teaching ourselves to view negatives as positives
Now, how do we do that?
First, you have to own the situation. You have to understand that yes said situation happened and know you are in complete control of your reaction. When I look at my shoulder injury I’m thinking, did I know my shoulder was weak? Yes. Could I have done more PT exercises over the past few months to stabilize my scapula? Yes. Owning what you are going through is the first step in taking back your power.
Second, you need to use the situation as fuel to motivate yourself. If we let every single “no” we ever received in our lifetime stop us, none of us would be where we are today. Every single no is a redirection, we are simply being shown a different way to get to where we want to go. It might not be an easy road but it’ll be the one that shows us our strength.
Lastly, remind yourself that setbacks are part of the journey. Find it somewhere within you to be kind to yourself, letting yourself feel the initial reaction but then by choosing to not dwell on it you will find control.
What about situations outside of the gym, does this way of thinking still apply?
So, you didn’t get that job or promotion you applied for. Does that mean you’re any less of a person just because you lost out? Not in the slightest. As I previously mentioned, every no is simply life’s way of redirecting us to the path we are meant to be on. Would you rather have an easy-going, flow through it kind of life or would you rather have a life that was full of growth? The choice is yours but I’m sure I know your answer already.
If we’re talking about something a little deeper, that’s a really tough one and it can be hard to see the light at the end of the tunnel. Sometimes life kicks you in the jaw over and over again, you’ll pick yourself up and find yourself on the ground again. If there’s anything I could ever stress (inside the gym and outside) it’s always going to remain to be, kindness. Having compassion for yourself is one of the hardest things as we are our own toughest critics. But, if you reframe your thinking, every tough situation is an opportunity for growth. You wouldn’t be where you are today if it wasn’t for the tough things you needed to fight through.
The moral of the story here is disappointment is ultimately unavoidable and navigating through it certainly a learned skill. It’ll get under your skin and dip you into a pool of self-pity but If you learn to (here it is, again) be kind to yourself and use the situation to motivate you then in the grand scheme of things you will be a stronger more resilient individual.
We are always working toward personal growth but you cannot possibly become a better version of yourself by having an easy life. You will experience weak moments but it’s in those moments we realize how much we can handle and how far we can push ourselves past that threshold.