(Here’s a repost blog that I wrote last year. I wanted to repost this article because I know many of you cuddle yourself when you start this training. If you have been pampering your life, you need to read on.)
I would like to thank you all for the wonderful emails to me. I really appreciate your support. It just motivates me to write more articles. Overall, the responses have been extremely positive. However, I did get a negative email that I would like to share with you.
The reader said, “I am bothered by your site. I really don’t see the need for anybody to constantly push themselves past their limits. This sort of aggressive training is very unhealthy. Instead of becoming tougher on ourselves, we need to be kinder and learn to accept who we are.”
I appreciate all comments, even the ones that I disagree with as they provoke me to think. First of all, this training is not for everyone. It is definitely, not for this reader. Some of my readers are athletes who are looking for an edge with their competition. Training the mind is often neglected with athletes so this site can clearly help athletes dominate their sport with a more aggressive mind-set. Pushing themselves to the limit is needed to give themselves that added advantage when they compete. I presume there is no argument here.
On the other hand, some of my other readers are just your regular Joe and Jane that don’t play sports, but are players in the game of life. Unfortunately, for this group of readers, their life has been a constant struggle, particularly in the way they have handled adversity. Many in this group they are in such a low point in their life, they needed to change because they couldn’t go much lower.
Now I am a competitive CrossFitter, but I started off in this group.
Without an over generalization, I would say the majority of these people had parents that didn’t teach them how to overcome adversities.
You can’t redo the past, but you can make up for the shitty job you parents did by doing some sort of training designed to strengthen your perseverance skills. In order to learn how to fight back, you must constantly put yourself in a hostile environment where you have the choice to stand up for yourself or to run and hide.
Understand that this complete transformation isn’t going to happen overnight. It’s going to take a lot of work. You are trying to rectify years of parental mistakes during the pivotal stages of your childhood which shaped your personality. This will not be an easy task and there are no fix quick solutions either. According to Dr. Freud, he would say this is near impossible. You can’t reverse the damage that was done to you at a young age. But, fuck Freud. I’m tired of listing to these so called experts that sit on their ass all day.
If Dr. Freud would have done push-ups, sprinted, lifted some heavy shit every once in a while, he would have gotten a different perspective on how to improve one’s self-worth. He would have discovered how the physical would effect the psychological. Seriously, if he would have applied intense exercise as a component to psychotherapy, he probably would have cure more of his patients. Instead, like with most talk oriented-therapy, patients get even more neurotic and screwed up. So people, if you want to fix your head, get out of your head, and learn to express and find yourself through your body.
I truly believe that Freud was wrong and that one can change through motivation and hard work. But, in order to rid yourself of your weak past, you must constantly push yourself past some sort of physical challenges into order to finally find the mental strength that your parents failed to instill in you.
So back to the original comment by the reader that claimed that one “doesn’t need to be push themselves past their limits,” is utterly wrong for this subset of people. When you have parents that babied you, they tended protected you from the pain and did everything for you so you never learn to find the inner strength to push through obstacles. So instead of ignoring you when you were crying over the spilled milk and telling you to mop it up, they cleaned up your mess and pour you a new glass while holding your hand. By pampering you over the simplest tasks that you struggled at, the message you unconsciously and repeatedly learned is that you can’t take care of yourself. Now as an adult, when things fall apart for you, you respond the same way by displaying difficulties in overcoming adversity. However, the main difference is that the problems you faced as a child were pretty meaningless while the obstacles you face now can have huge negative implications in your life.
In other words, your ass in now on the line and your mommy isn’t there to save you.
(End of part 1).
Complex barbell movement WOD –
6 sets of 5 reps each
Bent over row
Barbell jump squats
I would like all of you to take the challenge of what the reader said about “not pushing yourself past the limit” with this training. The reason why the common person is mentally weak is that they can’t handle intense training. The reason why the typical coach potato is so out of shape is that they can’t handle hard work. The reason why so many common folks are depressed is that they don’t go all in pursing their dreams. In other word, average people don’t push themselves past the red line in the gym and in life. If you want to remain mediocre and ordinary with the mainstream then I recommend you not to do this mental toughness program. Instead of pushing yourself past your comfort zone, go back to your local commercial gym and take it easy on yourself. You can do the do the same causal shit that everybody else is doing while getting the same results which is nothing.
If you want to do something extraordinary then you must do what others aren’t doing. If you are tired of being average, you must break the cycle of the masses. You must push yourself past your limitations. If you want to take up this challenge, the following barbell complex WOD will push you way beyond you normally can endure and take you to a level of guts and determination that you never knew existed.
The knowledge that you will gain of yourself from this WOD if you finish it will be invaluable. It will define who you are becoming. When I first did this WOD, I thought I was going to literally die during it. After the five squat jumps, I just wanted to keel over, so following it with a 400 meter run after the jump squats was just plain sadistic. My tolerance for pain and fatigue was at an all-time high while I got to the fifth set, But, I dug deep in my mental arsenal and pushed myself through the 6 sets.
Words can’t describe how elated I was when I crossed that final 400 meter run. But, more than anything I still remember sitting in the corner of gym for the next 20 minutes with a huge smile on my face. Not because I was so wiped out, but because I finally felt like I belong. All my life, I always felt like I didn’t fit in or wasn’t good enough to be associated with anything remarkable. But, with the training I feel such an intimate connection to all those that had to overcome great adversities. I feel a distinct spiritual bond for my brothers and sisters who have found strength and peace through a physical training protocol that emphasis overcoming intense suffering.
My dedication to becoming mentally tougher became my passion and it gave me a new identify of what I was becoming. I was so fucken done with my past weak life that I began to let the training define who I was now.
When you begin to push yourself past your limits and make gains with your inner strength, you will too.
Let it begin today.
Scaled down version of this WOD –
1. Omit the jump squats.
2. Drop the bar and do bodyweight jump squats instead
3. Do only 3 reps per movement.
4. Speed walk for about 400 meter.
5. Do only 5 sets.
6. Omit the thrusters and do strict presses instead.