At a certain point during a workout, a conversation begins to take place, whether we realise it or not.
This conversation, while it may only last a few seconds, usually occurs at a time when we want to ease off the intensity; shorten the reps; put an end to the discomfort…
Perhaps this conversation is had multiple times over the course of a workout. Sometimes, we make one decision, and at another, the total opposite.
Consciously or subconsciously, we make choices during this conversation that ultimately determine what we do next: Sustain the effort…? Pick up the barbell…? Take the rest…? Shave a few reps and move on…?
Whether this is the right decision or the wrong decision is predicated on the context and a range of other factors. For example, if context dictates a practice day, keeping the reps clean and tidy is in your best interest. If context dictates otherwise, choosing to endure may be what is required.
Analyse intensely the implications of each decision. Become acquainted with how this influences the rest of your workout. This conversation then opens to a far bigger question than what the final score is; it reflects on your character. This conversation poses: “Who do I want to be?”.
How you respond in this conversation moulds the answer to the above question – someone who consistently chooses to quit versus someone who consistently endures, have vastly different downstream outcomes.
Many of us train to sculpt the body – be it to look a certain way, or to have certain physical capabilities. But what we may not realise is that we’re actually conditioning the brain; the mind; who we are; who we want to be.
We throw around words like grit, mental toughness, tenacity and character, but really it starts with this intimate conversation that happens within the private confines of your own skull. No one will know your answers but you.