28 February 2014

Motivated To Move -- The Power Of The Tribe

I've been to the mountaintop.
By A.F. James MacArthur Ph.A.L.

Today was supposed to be an off day from the gym. Initially I planned to do absolutely nothing related to exercise. This quickly changed.

The decision was made to to do a cardio session as a sort of active recovery from a week of heavy lifting. This eventually changed as well.

Upon arriving at the gym and seeing my heavy lifting fellow tribesmen, something deep inside stirred. They were doing squats. Lot of squats. Although I'd already done legs for the week, I figured a few more couldn't hurt. I'd just keep the weight low and work on reps, form and technique.

By the time it was over, I'd done 10 full sets of squats and hardly noticed. Why? The brotherhood and camaraderie, smack talking and joking around helped keep our minds off the strenuous task of moving heavy weight.

Although our goals are individualized, there is an intersection of commonality between us. While my current ultimate goal remains classified -- no need to tip off potential competitors -- being strong, much stronger, is one of them. And there are few better ways to achieve this than the oft neglected squat.

Want to be big? Want to get really strong? Want to have a balanced body with symmetrical grace? Oh, you're not squatting? Good luck!

Were it not for my fellow tribesmen, I'd have gotten by having done much less, and felt pretty good about it too. 

But with no pressure at all, just by their mere presence, I was motivated to do more. Far more than initially planned. And for this the rewards eventually reaped will be immensely greater.

How I look when I try to hang with the distance runners.
I cannot stress enough how crucial it is to your fitness goals to choose to be among like minded people.
What happened to me today would not have occurred were I among a group of distance runners for example (no offense to distance runners, I used to be and still occasionally pretend to be one). I'd simply be like an elephant among gazelle. Not fitting in, not fooling anyone, all alone, looking goofy. What fun is that?

In the future expect to see more posts on choosing training partners, gyms and mentors. These seemingly insignificant factors can be secret weapons to your fitness success.

All the best to you on your quest.

Former multisport athlete and physical culturist, James MacArthur, has trained for, competed in, practiced and even failed at more sports and physical endeavours than a crossfitter on crack! And has the x-rays to prove it. Currently no longer involved in competition, a lifelong fan of being fit, MacArthur guides, instructs and motivates select few individuals seeking to make the most of their natural talent and abilities.

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