Feeling Weak is Normal
Anne Lamont, author of the writing book “Bird by Bird”, has a really funny essay in it called, “Shitty 1st Drafts”. In it she says that most people think that successful writers wake up and write amazingly polished works of art that come easily and upon command at the very first time. The reality is that most good writers write a “shitty first draft” that is rambling and awful. The goal of the first draft is to just get it down on paper (or the computer). The second draft is where you edit it into something pretty darn good and the final draft is where it gets polished.
The same goes for fitness. So many of us get sucked into to those Instagram photos of the perfect chick happily lifting heavy weights, always looking good, always making it seem easy.
Training for a bodybuilding competition is challenging; so is losing weight. But you have to start somewhere, even if you feel uncoordinated and weak.
On a normal day I can do shoulder presses with 20 lb. dumbbells fairly easily. But when my trainer Robin (a certified sadist) decided to have me do a triple set this morning of chest press, followed by shoulder press followed by T-bar rows, I thought I might die.
My right arm was willing to play ball but the left arm wanted to exit stage left and he eventually had to drop the weights down to 12 lbs. That sucked and made me feel like a wussy-girl. But you know what? Today’s workout was just a sh*tty first draft.
Because I know that as the weeks approach my next competition and I continue to lift heavier, throw in a little muscle confusion, and a lot more concerted effort, I will see progress. I know that the final draft will be standing on stage feeling strong and confident knowing that all that messy hard work was worth it.
Likewise when my clients are frustrated and say things like, “Will I ever get stronger?” the answer is yes. Providing they get through the first draft and continue to diligently work on improving their form, endurance and power during each successive session.
The point I’m making, and there is a point, is that feeling weak is normal. No one, not even Arnold Schwarzenegger, achieves perfection on the first try. It’s takes consistent focus to improve, but improve you will. So don’t give up after the first draft.
If you’re serious about getting healthy, but need help getting started, try my S.L.I. Method on my website ShesLosingIt.com. Only YOU can do the work, but I can give you the tools that I’ve learned over the past five years about nutrition, exercise and overcoming excuses.
Lisa Traugott is a Mom’s Choice Award winning writer, fitness blogger, wife and mom of two….and Original Cast Member of AMERICAN GRIT, starring John Cena, on FOX!!!
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