Years ago, when time was not an issue (and I was much younger…) I used to workout regularly. I would hit the gym and be there for 2-2,5 hours. Once you get in shape visits to the gym become a pleasure… not to mention how much you like what you see in full hight mirror.
Fast forward years and gym joined many things that dropped off the radar. I stopped exercising altogether and never looked back (the mirror is still kind to me though…).
So a week ago I finally got a membership and went back to the gym again, planning to make it part of my lifestyle again.
After 5!!! years break you can only imagine how hard everything felt… Even forcing myself just to show up there was already hard, let alone be part of a 45 minute full body blast class…
And while I tried to keep up and not die right there on the floor mat my brain kept thinking.
And I realised something about limits!
The workout felt like an army exercise. The coach was keeping an eye on us to make sure we don’t skip anything. Every time we took few minutes rest he made everyone stop and watch us do what we skipped.
“C’mon, hurry up! You CAN do it…”
On minute 15 I was already half-dead. I was absolutely certain that I had used up all the energy and strength that I had left and I was determined to give up.
“No, I CAN’T do anymore. I’m done” I told and stood up ready to walk away.
I was absolutely sure that I had reached my limit and that doing anything on top of those 15 minutes was impossible.
Long story short – after that moment, I did 3 more full rounds which lasted for 30 minutes.
Half an our and 3 sets of 20 of 5 exercises !!! And all that AFTER my limit was reached and I was giving up!
What does it mean (apart from the fact that I had to crawl back home) and why am I writing this?
Because I don’t want you to almost die on a gym mat and have terrible sore muscle pain the next few days to realise the following:
Often the limitations are only in our minds
I thought I could not continue. I thought it was impossible. My body wanted me to think like that. I was sure I had reached my limit. I was so sure that I was not even willing to try and see if what I thought was true.
And that does not happen to us only in the gym… in life it’s the same. We often don’t even try to push a bit more, because we think that we have reached the limit.
In most of the times if we try to push further we will see that the limit is way further than we thought!
Limits are like muscles
You can have limitation workout too. By working on them regularly they will stretch more, become stronger and with each day you will be able push them further.
You can do what you thought impossible
Once the limit muscle is strong you can try to challenge any limitation in your mind that makes you think your dream/goal is impossible.
Look back and recall everything you’ve achieved. Before that, didn’t you have a moment (at least once) when you thought it was impossible?
And how cool is it to do the impossible?
… After all who decides what’s possible and what is not?
Usually when you share an idea the first reaction you get from people is “it’s impossible… it can’t be done…” and even worse many get personal and say “you will not be able to do it”. That is exactly when and why we often get the well-defined limitation get to our minds.
We believe what they say…
I don’t mean why we believe them (we shouldn’t by the way…). I mean why do you think they say that? Why their natural first reaction is to discourage?
I have my theory about that…
Because they are scared.
They themselves have given up and now they are afraid that if you go ahead with your plan you may succeed. And if you do you will prove that at the time when they gave up, they were wrong. But until then they will be able to comfortably hide behind the excuse that it was impossible and have no regrets.
They tell you it’s impossible because at one point in their lives that is exactly what they thought about their own idea… and now they are where they are and want you to stay in the same place too…
Because if you go ahead and try, if you stretch your limit muscles and if you don’t give up you will end up where many people want to be but are not. So they will envy you when you get there.
So do that please.