I don’t know why it took me so long, but I finally truly acknowledged the benefits of not doing my own programming.
Yeah, this coming from a personal trainer. For some reason I would recommend everyone else get someone else do their training for them. Except me.
Ultimately it ground me down, culminating in 2013 being one of my worst years of training as I was simply burned out.
You see, I was holding on to something I didn’t need: proving to myself that my coaching worked by doing it for myself. I didn’t need to prove it because my coaching has worked for hundreds of other people. I didn’t need it because it’s a foolish, ego-driven thing to want.
It’s funny how such disparate things as meditation and fitness can be linked. But finding nirvana, just like finding success in physical training, is linked to a certain letting go. The “flow” state that elite athletes and musicians experience is often described in similar ways – they almost feel like they are simply experiencing, rather than dictating the events. If you have ever experienced it, you know that it is one of the peak moments of your life, never to be forgotten.
Anyway, my insistence on clinging to certain things, born of pride and stubbornness, lead to a great deal more misery than was necessary. This much is obvious, looking back. But in the mire everything clouds.
The trick is to acknowledge your over-keen grip in the moment.
The trick is to just let go and see what happens right when you least want to.
Letting go is a freeing process. Just like the process of minimising your life – removing clutter, clothes, possessions. With this freedom comes clarity. Letting go of things which don’t matter allows you to see and to move. You are weighing your own personal anchors.
With training, it is freeing because it allows you to focus on what matters. Training. When you are programming for yourself then doubts and second guessing become normal. When you commit to follow a programme written by someone else you can dedicate yourself to the simple task of executing the programme to the best of your ability. (The programme I have been following with great enjoyment and results for 8 weeks now is Competitors Wod by Ben Bergeron).
With a more tightly focused energy you can accomplish far more. If you are putting some energy in to planning your training which might have otherwise been used for that training, then your training simply will not be as effective as possible. No amount of number crunching, paper-reading, or periodisation can change that.
This applies for more than just fitness. I have this problem, so I know that at least some others do: there are too many things I want to do. I cling, partially, to many of them. The result is that all my endeavors suffer since none receives enough focus to make significant strides.
Letting go of some of them – even temporarily – allows me to make greater progress in the long run. Playing guitar less allows me to write more, writing less allows me to work on my business projects more. Cutting out sundry business projects allows me to focus on the one with the most potential reward.
People can be anchors too – letting go of people who do not benefit your life can be one of the best things you ever do. It is a significant boon (to say the least!) to have only positive, productive people in your life, who have your best interests at heart.
Strive to be the best version of yourself in order to earn the company of the best people you know – and let everyone who holds you back go.
What are you holding on to which weighs you down? What have you let go of recently, and how has it benefited your life?