Thursday, October 9, 2014

Pushing your limits

Why do you push your body to the limits, put yourself under such physical stress, and sacrifice your time doing it? I get these general questions all the time from colleagues that aren't into training or anything physical for that matter. They view me as kind of odd I guess and some of the looks I get are priceless.  Some people simply believe if there's no financial value in it why do it?

Training and occasionally competing has become ingrained in my persona, and I am fortunate for it. There isn’t just one reason I do it, there's many. For one it's stimulated my curiosity about the human body to where I've studied it heavily. In a sense I'm studing myself. Recently, I was talking to a friend who does some hard core mountain bike racing.  He was saying after doing these events for a number of years he still gets nervous before a race because he knows he's going to suffer like hell but afterwards he can't wait to do another. That's another part of it.

It all comes down to athletes do something very unique - we seek out discomfort. When we're uncomfortable we learn about ourselves. There's moments the physical stress begins to take you beyond what you imagine to be endurable. There’s a repeated battle against surrender where mental strength accumulates and you develop an absolute conviction that giving up is never an option. You go places the untrained will never reach. Racing and training is very similar to life... hard. The mental positives you develop have a way of entering other facets of your life. That's the big payoff. It's truly unfortunate but the majority of the general population will never experience what that feels like. And lastly, at least for me, it simply makes me feel alive.
A little suffering never hurt anyone

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