Some days I walk into the gym and its easy.
I may or may not have a workout planned, I may or may not feel tired, I may or may not have a lot going on. There is no secret to it, it is really just a case of today I may or may not feel like exercising. It is those days that I feel like really getting stuck into it that are easy. Sweating is easy. The burn is easy. The benefit of ‘easy’ is that it really requires very little effort. I love that feeling. The problem however, is that it is very seldom that I feel that way.
For those of you who know me, you know that the morning and I are not friends. In fact, the morning often comes at me like the Grimm Reaper and as it approaches I grow more and more annoyed at the fact that the sun will begin to shine today. I like to sleep and I hate waking up! After a sixteen-year relationship, my husband even knows… put the coffee next to the bed and retreat as silently as possible. Don’t talk to me. If you can avoid eye contact, that is preferred too. With that in mind, surely you have some idea of how difficult it is for me to look alive when arriving at gym.
But, I get up, I dress up and I show up… and then the real test begins. On those days when things aren’t ‘easy’ I have to dig deep. I have to will my body to move from its statuesque like position. My legs feel like lead on that warm up run and every fiber of my being is screaming at me to stop. It’s in that moment when I have to push forward, knowing that my warm up is just that – a warm up – and very soon my warmer muscles will begin to respond better to the messages that my braining is sending to them.
Don’t get me wrong, its not like I am magically transformed into an athletic machine after my quick warm up. Oh no! Its more a case of willing my body to keep moving while I break my workout down into bite size pieces. Sometimes it is so bad, that I am literally breaking the workout down into sets, “Ok, three more sets. Two more sets. Last one!”
This is really where having a gym buddy comes in handy. It is very seldom that you will find your tanks are empty on the same day. Often, when I feel weak and my body says no, my buddy is shouting yes. Being competitive by nature, it is almost impossible for me to allow myself to quit when my buddy is still going at it. Oh hell no, failure is never an option and so I push on. When that buddy isn’t there, shouting at me, pushing me, driving me then I need to find my own driving force and I need to figure out why I should keep going – that is when my mental toughness is measured. Right there, when I want to quit, when I can think of a million reasons to quit, when I can think of a gazillion things I would rather be doing. I put my head down, I remember why I started and I remind myself that if I had the will power to drag my butt out of bed, get dressed and show up then surely I can have the will power to push on for only 60 minutes.