Article written by Alanna Casey
Lifting is violent. Competing is violent. Hitting a new PR is violent. You are asking your body to exert maximal effort over a specific time period. You are attempting to get your “fight or flight” reflexes working in a setting where you are not in imminent danger. You must demonstrate 100% authority over your body’s breathing, its muscle movements, and adrenaline release. You are using your body as a vessel, to achieve what your mind desires. And your ability to control that vessel, dictates the outcome of your lift, your event, your WOD, or your competition. You are demonstrating controlled aggression.
I see a commonality as I watch various lifting video, especially from women. They tend to not be aggressive enough. I watched my friends yoke video the other day, and while others were commenting “good job,” and “great work,” I commented, “It looks like you’re going for a stroll. If I were there, I’d be yelling in your ear to hurry on up!” You see, I watched her video and thought, “she can be more aggressive.”
My message is this: be brave when you lift. Be brave when you’re going for a PR. Tap into your inner aggression and do MORE than the minimum required effort to move that weight. When you are performing an event for strongman, or going for a PR in powerlifting or crossfit, lift like your life depends on that movement! Sprint like your soul is on the line. Move weight like someone is yelling in your ear, even if no one is. Be your own training partner when one isn’t there. Demand more of yourself.
Some days it just won’t be your day in the gym, and that is okay. Some days you will just not feel “strong,” you just won’t feel “fast.” But, generally speaking, your body is capable of so much more than you have imagined. The reason your body hasn’t “achieved,” is because you have not imagined it; perhaps because you are satisfied with how you preformed. So don’t be so easily satisfied. All of the champions I know have one thing in common; they are not easily satisfied with themselves. They are their biggest critic. They are their harshest judge. They expect more from their selves than anyone else could.