THE TRUE LESSON IN BUILDING STRENGTH
Visualize: You’re at the base of a mountain, getting ready to climb. It’s a cold winter day, mid-February. Howling winds. Jagged cliffs. A massive hawk with an arm tattoo, perched on top of a pine tree at the trailhead, stares you down as a cigarette hangs from his mouth and his dog tags clink together in the breeze. This is tough country.
Visibility is bad but from the looks of it, a path traces its way from your feet to the summit. You start the ascent, boots crunching snow. The terrain is challenging, gets tougher by the mile and yet you proceed. Step-by-step.
It’s been a few weeks since you first started climbing here and it's gotten less intense. Or maybe it just doesn’t seem as intense? Matter of fact, after a couple months of this, you’re in great freaking shape.
And that’s why you got into it. For the physicality, to have a goal, to feel good, to look good, to check off the box, to stand up for something inside yourself.
But after all this training, there's been a more powerful take away than your workout routine and it's a simple, pure realization:
Hard is no longer hard.
End of visualization.
Everyone has their metaphorical mountain but for us at Allegiate, it is our training sessions. That mountain is an open set, 10 kgs above your previous week. That mountain is a brutal accumulation block with assault bike finishers at the end – when you’d rather lay down and cry instead. It’s week 4 of an intensification block where that weight – that PR – is either going to smash you into the upside down or you’re going to take the triumphant last breath.
Training is about the physical results, yes. Feeling good, yes. Looking good, yes. But, as any athlete knows, the true lessons are on the other side of the development of physical strength. The true lessons are in what that accumulation of grit, grind, challenge, and constant raising-of-the-bar does to your mind.
The true lesson is that in building stronger backs –
We build stronger minds.