Pushing through pain.
Do you ever get to a point in your workout where there’s more work to do, but you feel like you can’t crank out another set? You’re tired, your muscles are screaming, you’re bathed in sweat and all you want to do is shower and collapse somewhere so you can nurse a protein shake. I started feeling like that last night mid-way through my deadlifts. Up until that point I was having a great workout, but right after my second set of deads I thought about quitting early. I finished my second set of deads, grabbed some water, noted my reps/weight in my workout log, took a couple of deep breaths and then stood there staring at the barbell when I should have been walking over and picking it up. At first I was a little shocked that I was actually entertaining the idea of not finishing my workout. I love weight training, and I look forward to each workout without fail. So, why was I contemplating quitting? I thought about it for a minute, and I realized that my mind was simply creating a new challenge for me to overcome. Of course part of me wanted to stop: Deadlifts are hard; Deadlifts are painful; I was pushing myself to my limit and I was tired. My brain was saying, “You’re tired. You’re in pain – and you can make it stop.” I thought, “Shut up, brain. I’m not quitting.” So, I cracked a warped little smile, walked over to the bar and did another set, this time with two more reps than the previous set. I rested 30 seconds and did a 4th set. Then I finished my workout with four sets of burnout shrugs.
I think we all feel like quitting sometimes, but there’s nothing more satisfying to me than pushing through the occasional impulse to take the easy way out. The next time you feel like quitting, push on through. Ignore the pain. I guarantee at the end of your workout you’re going to be tired, but you’ll feel GREAT and will be mentally stronger than you were before.