Tuesday, January 24, 2012

The Refusal to Accept Defeat.

I know this is a little outside of the blog's normal format here, but I wanted to talk about something that's very important in fitness community. Working out is hard. Lifting weights is never easy, if you do it right.
Which brings us to our topic of this post. The Will to Win, and the Refusal to Accept Defeat. While you might think of this as more of a team oriented concept, but the will to win exists inside every person. Who wants to be second best at anything? Are you satisfied with just good enough? Are you willing to lay everything on the line to accomplish your goals and dreams? You should be.. and I'll tell you why.

The Samurai have a term for the indomitable spirit, or the refusal to accept defeat. It's Kokoro. There's no truer measure of a person than their heart, and the refusal to accept defeat in the weight room transfers over into other aspects of your life as well. Most people are familiar with the concept of meditation, clearing the mind and allowing the thoughts to flow freely and unobstructed into the mind. This should be done twice daily, once upon waking, and once before sleep each night. You should focus on the end result you want to accomplish and strive to incorporate qualities from your visions into your real life. If you see yourself as being stronger, then consecrate your body daily with a fervor that would put a monk to shame. If you see yourself as being faster, go out and run sprints until your body can't take it anymore, and then keep going. You'll never know your true limits if you never push yourself.

Personally, I strive everyday to be a little better than yesterday. I believe this is a good way to live. Training for Pararescue I've found my Kokoro. I know that everyday I train so that I can not only improve my life, but my training could potentially save another person's life. When I'm struggling with those last few reps, or that last 1/4 mile I try to visualize someone at the other end of the run, or imagine lifting a person onto a lift to try to force myself to put out. Meditation allows you to find something that you can grab onto when you're at your lowest, that pulls you through. If you have something inside of you that will drive you on through anything you'll become a unstoppable force to be reckoned with. True strength is gained in those last few reps, where the muscle is on fire, and you couldn't possibly force another rep out...but you do. Something in your mind clicks, and you realize that pain is temporary but the refusal to quit, and the mindset that comes with that are not going anywhere. Atleast not in me.. and hopefully not in you. This is my Kokoro.. my refusal to accept defeat when most people would have quit long ago. This drives me everyday. Find your Kokoro.

(Side Note, I'd like to thank SEALFit's founder Mark Divine for introducing me to the term Kokoro, it's changed my understanding of the mental game a bunch.. thank you for everything you do.)