On my good days, I LOVE pushing my body + mind to the limit.
Because after doing something completely risky and brave (like… sharing the most vulnerable story of my entire life in a room full of strangers… or hosting a life coaching retreat in Thailand, even though I’ve never set foot in the country before…) everything else feels like a cakewalk, by comparison.
But sometimes, just like everybody else, I get a little… lazy.
Usually, the laziness creeps in slowly and subtly. I don’t even realize that I’m hanging out in my fuzzy-sweat-pants-ultra-snuggly-comfort-zone — until somebody calls me out.
This time ‘round? That “somebody” was a 200-pound, muscle-bound Hercules-type — in Hell’s Kitchen, New York City.
I was doing a Crossfit workout while visiting NYC on a family trip.
I felt like I was doing a good job. Doing the moves. Breaking a sweat. Definitely nothing to scoff at.
I finished a round of weights, feeling pretty pleased with myself… until one of the trainers walked over and said:
“I didn’t see you work until failure.”
“What?” I asked, confused.
He continued, sternly:
“You should be lifting those weights until your muscles fail. Don’t stop where you are comfortable. You can do more. You should keep going until you fail, as long as you can maintain proper form. The intensity will make you stronger.”
After a brief flash of annoyance (who-the-heck-do-you-think-you-are-mister???) I realized,
“HOLY SH*T. He’s right.”
The truth is, for many months now, I’ve been stopping well before the point of failure. Because… I’m scared. Scared of looking weak and stupid. Scared of potentially hurting myself. But mostly, scared of feeling the uncomfortable, awkward sensations that come along with… well, failure.
As Mr. Crossfit NYC reminded me:
If you’re not working until the point of failure, you’re cheating yourself out of the good stuff.
You’re just going through the motions.
You’re just… coasting.
I do not intend to coast through my life, my work, my relationships, and certainly not my workouts. Nope. None of that.
Giving 100% is terrifying and uncomfortable and sometimes you (literally) pee your pants — yep, totally did that during Crossfit, once! — but it’s always, always worth it.
“Don’t stop where you are comfortable. You can do more. The intensity will make you stronger.”
Crossfitting in Thailand
If I could send that trainer a telepathic message, I’d tell him:
“Next time I’m back in NYC? You will see me fail. And fail. Annnnd fail.
You’ll be so proud of me.”
But more importantly?
So will I.
PS. What’s one area of your life or business where you could give… MORE?
(Do it. Work until you fail.)