Iron Philosophy: A Lion Does Not Loose Sleep Over the Opinion of Sheep
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As lifters we have all been in this situation. You are loading up the bar with the weight you’ve carefully programmed to hit for the day. Out of the corner of your eye you catch someone looking. They don’t stare for long but in that moment you know they’ve sized you up and made an opinion of you. In your head you are thinking “I know I can do more, they’ve never seen me go heavy”.
So begins the struggle:
Do you load up the bar with more weight and give in to someone else’s opinion of you? Or stick to the plan that you have set for yourself and ignore them?
You’ve chosen to load up the weight fueled by the thought of proving them wrong and showing them up. You just went heavy the other day and you know it’s probably not a good idea but you are going to do it anyway. Bar is loaded; you set up, get ready, struggle, aaand FAIL.
Like a fool you now have to clean up after yourself and leave the gym disappointed. Not only that but you have now messed up your programming and will most likely need to rest accordingly. All for what? To prove a stranger wrong? Did it make you a better lifter? Did it satisfy your ego? What of the next time a stranger sizes you down again? Do you go heavy every single day at the cost of your progress just to impress everyone around you?
You choose to put on the weight you have programmed for the day and you ignore that person. You realize that you are at the gym for your own self-improvement and that the opinions of others don’t matter. You are confident in your own abilities and you know what they are; you don’t need to prove anything to anyone else. By sticking to the plan you know that you are seeing the picture in the long term and that this will help you get much stronger in the future. The bar is loaded; you set up, get ready, destroy it, and SUCCEED.
The difference between the two decisions can make or break you as a lifter. The first option leaves you with the chance to boost your ego but hinder your long term progress. The second option puts your ego to the side but lets you progress beyond those short term results.
Moral of the Story: A true lion knows he can kill anything he wants and he doesn’t need to go around wasting his energy for the sheep to know. Be confident in your abilities and remember this is about you. The day you care more about what others think will be the day you lead yourself to failure. Don’t do that to yourself.