Mental Toughness Christmas (Part 2)

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I got emails all week asking me what my Christmas WOD was.It seems that I hyped it up so much that many of you expected it would be the craziest and roughest WOD of the year. I hate to disappoint you all, but my Xmas WOD wasn’t the gut busting and lung tearing epic workout that some of you were salivating for. I chose a basic outdoor bodyweight WOD of ring muscle ups, dips, handstand and pushups.

Why did I choose this simplistic WOD over a workout that could potentially give me a heart attack? Have mentaltoughnessguy gone soft? Have I lost my edge? Wasn’t my whole idea of training on Christmas Day a message to the mainstream to go shove it? Yes, it was. Although, this WOD doesn’t have the over-the-top craziness that some of you were expecting, it was still a huge challenge. Let me explain.

I haven’t done ring muscle-ups in awhile because it had been so freaking cold in this part of Massachusetts. Looking back on my workout journal, it’s been over a month since I last trained outside. Christmas morning wasn’t actually a summer feast, but it was only in the mid 40’s and that is pretty warm for this time of the year. Trust me, it was still pretty damn cold as my hands were feeling it. Grabbing the ice cold rings really stung my hands. It was pretty miserable to be outside training without any gloves on.

At one point of the WOD, I was thinking of moving inside to finish the WOD when I heard one of my deadbeat neighbors hacking and coughing. From the corner of my eye, I could see him in the distance smoking and watching me. He was my typical lazy neighbor – out of shape and inactive. Seeing him chomp away on his cancer stick disgusted me and at the same time, motivated me. Instead of packing it up and moving to a more comfortable environment of being in a room with a heater, I continued to do my workout in the cold.

Looking at him just reminded me of why I was training outside and not in a warmer place. I wanted to distance myself from how the mainstream trains and make a gigantic statement to myself that could do better than them. This guy was symbolic of not only the average man, but how I used to be. I know it’s hard to believe for even myself, but I use to be a chronic smoker and junk food addict. Back then, the thought of being outside in the freezing weather and doing ring work was out of the question. When I was living a life of the weak, my workouts were chest and arms and more chest and arms. Not only was I chubby, but a major pushover who ran away from my problems by taking my constant cigarette breaks. Seeing this guy just reminded me of what I used to be and gave me a choice of how I could live my life from now on.

I could go back to living a life of being weak and unproductive or choose a path that will be full of challenges and lead me to mental toughness. I chose the latter and cranked out even more ring dips. Suddenly, the coldness of my hands wasn’t bothering me anymore. They felt warm and powerful as my grip on the rings become more solid as I did more dips on my last set than my first one. I went from wishing I was near a heater to actually like being outside in the cold. Again, more evidence that your thoughts really dictate your behaviors and mood.

As I continue to train, my mind was rushing with thoughts with how I could distance myself even farther from the mediocre mainstream. In the simplest terms, my mantra for the rest of the WOD was “Be the opposite of everybody else.” From this mantra, I couldn’t stop the over flow of ideas that would dominate my thoughts during this cold training session.

Most people are cowards. Be courageous when facing adversity.

The average person is a whiner and quitter. Be a person that makes no excuses and never give up.

The majority of the people I know are unfocused and inconsistent with their training. I take pride in being self-disciplined.

Average people wish they can do things and don’t make any attempts to try difficult things. I, on the other hand, is constantly striving to do things that I couldn’t do in the past.

Be the opposite of everybody else, but more importantly, do things that you could  never have done when you were mentally weak.

I reaffirmed my vows and purpose this Christmas Day. Refusing to be mediocre is how I choose to live my life.

I highly suggest you all do the same. Looking forward to hearing your success stories in 2015.

Today’s WOD:

Go to the gym, track, beach or park and do something that you won’t have done before you started with your mental toughness training. For many of you, that means no machine work or treadmills. Go out and just do some bodyweight stuff like what I did on Xmas. That could mean running sprints, pull-ups on a tree branch, burpees in the park or my one my favorite WODs – the dreaded hill sprints.

Whatever you choose, just make sure you pick a WOD that you only wish you could have done when you were living your meager and weak lifestyle. Be creative and have fun.

If you see some fat ass, smoking and coughing, think of me.

That’s what I used to be.

And that’s what you can become if you don’t train and take risk.

None of us are ever safe from mediocrity.

We must make the effort to be the opposite of the weak. Now go train your ass off.

Looking forward to hearing about your WOD.