They say everything you want is on the other side of fear. This picture was that precise moment for me this morning. With yesterday being Father’s Day, I chose to not go to the gym to train legs, and instead decided to go to the gym before work Monday morning, around 6 am. It was leg day and we have just started a new training program that includes heavy leg presses. These are something I have loved and have always been able to really load up the weight on. However a few years back I had a slight pain, maybe more than slight pain, which I eventually learned was due to a very tight TFL and IT band and launched me into the world of self myo-fascial release techniques and self care. I healed but that experience definitely left it’s mark with me mentally. Around the same time as the injury, we had switched gyms, which opened up a great deal of exercise variety and options. Pete and I have used the leg press for several programs after that and I have had no further issues. However, getting back to heavy leg presses, does stick in the back of my mind.
Getting back to this morning….Pete wasn’t there and I was training alone. I had the thoughts and questions of how to handle the leg press today – do I go all out and load up the weight I wanted, or do I back off and switch it up since Pete wasn’t there and I wouldn’t have peace of mind having him there. It took some rational and honest evaluation of the situation. I did this weight last week. When the sled is loaded up, the safeties on the machine are in place for a reason, if something goes wrong. Plus, there really isn’t much Pete or I could do for the other as far as pushing the sled with that much weight on it. So it came down to me. I knew I had eaten well all week, slept well, warmed up and stretched properly. There was no reason not to go for it all. I wanted to do more than last week. I wanted to move forward and be better than before.
And with that it was time to work or move on. Thus the picture. In that moment, the sled is loaded up, but not yet in motion. It sits securely on the pins. It only takes one decision and action to conquer the fears, the unknowns, and to crossover into the world of action, reality, and success. Everything is in place and ready. All I need to do is push the sled and move the sled to start the set. One action. With a confident and focused mind, I put my goals into action and powered through every set of leg presses. I got more reps than I had last week in each set and every rep was full and deep. Each set drove me on to the next set. By the last set, I was focused on “daring to fail.” I wanted to see how far I could go until either the weight no longer would move and I would fail on a rep, or until the form broke. It is a very powerful feeling to conquer a challenge.
The rest of the workout had that same intensity and determination. Overall it was a great workout, and my legs will pay the price for success for the next few days.
I share this story as an example. We all have that moment between fear and action. Do or do not. There is something that we must answer for ourselves each day – whether to take the risk and move closer to accomplishing goals and dreams, or delay them for another day. The challenge is not relegated to the gym. It could be a phone call we need to make, a conversation that must be had, questions to be asked when we fear the answers but need to know. It may be fitness, sport, or nutrition related.
The fear is only in our mind. It is often the fear of the unknown that keeps us frozen and from taking action. But here is the challenge I have for you, and one that I use over and over -just as I did this morning in the gym. If it is our thoughts that create the fearful scenario, why can’t we change the thoughts and create a more positive outcome and scenario? For me, it was switching my mindset from a fear of the unknown to telling and visualizing myself doing exactly what I wanted to accomplish in that workout.
So I challenge you. Instead of creating fear in your mind, change your mindset and create, visualize, and act on creating success and action that brings those thoughts into the realm of reality.