Last weekend I had the pleasure of training a good friend of mine. She considers herself a “cardio queen” and wanted to officially be introduced to some iron. I jumped at the opportunity because I want to help as many people realize what iron can do to your body, mind, and soul. It empowers you to be the best version of yourself by crushing insecurities while gaining physical and mental strength. After all, that’s what it has done to me.
We started with Squat.
She took well to the squat, but wasn’t overly enthusiastic about it. Then, I showed her the deadlift. Since she hadn’t even heard of a barbell before Saturday morning, I started her off with a very light weight. She took well to it, but still wasn’t super enthusiastic about it either.
But I had something up my sleeve!
I knocked off the light weight business and slapped some 45 pound weights on both sides. I didn’t tell her what the weight was and just told her to pull it when she was ready…
With perfect form, she lifted that 135 pounds off the floor like it was nothing. Before she could even drop the weight back down, a huge smile filled her face.
She was starting to feel it.
I put 10 more pounds on each side of the barbell, but I still didn’t tell her how much she was pulling. She had a little trouble holding onto the bar, but once she got her grip right, the weight flew off the ground. It looked effortless, but yet she beamed with accomplishment. “How much was that?” she asked. “155 pounds” I replied. She was amazed. She had no idea what the session would be like or what lifting weights was even all about. She discovered, that the feeling of triumph after a lift, that light that beams off of you when successful, and the frustration that fills your veins when you’re not, that’s what lifting is all about.
She was hooked!
The thing I appreciated most about this experience was that she was a clean slate. She wasn’t trying to be better than anyone else, or prove anything to anyone. She simply just wanted to learn. She was completely open and willing to try things that weren’t in her comfort zone, and that were foreign to her.
It’s really easy to lose sight of the feeling you had when you first started. No matter how far along you are on your fitness journey, there’s a reason why you started, and there’s a place where you actually started.
I taught my friend the fundamentals of lifting, but she taught me something as well. Stop getting so caught up in everything else, and focus on that feeling that you have when you lock out a heavy deadlift, or explode out of a squat. All that matters is being ahead of where you used to be, not anyone else.