This morning at 5:45 am, I was carrying kettlebells on my forearms. My forearms were parallel almost to the ground and my elbows were sticking out to the sides. My fists, each wrapped around the handle of a kettlebell, were almost touching just under my chin. This is called a double kettlebell rack carry. A small part of my workout this morning was to walk 200 meters while carrying kettlebells like this.
Recently, I have been coming in last, or nearly last in the workouts at my gym. I notice that part of me wants to push and be first, or nearly first, but another part of me is taking care of myself. I could push really hard, like it was a competition, and “win,” but I am aware that there is sometimes a kind of violence in this. Sometimes it feels right to go at a slower pace. Today, while pondering this, I realized that my ability to keep going, to thrive, and to succeed in the long-haul requires that I am gentle with myself. Sometimes this looks like me taking really good care of my knee for weeks while it heals, and sometimes this means scaling back on a workout, or not pushing myself too hard.
What gets real results is concerted effort over a long period of time, and we need to do all we can to keep ourselves healthy, energized, and motivated for those long periods. Self-flagellation or blind competition with others have no place in that.
Sending love and support to all those who are out there on their own challenges.