Getting Comfortable With Getting Uncomfortable

Showing up at the NYC Affiliates League 5th Avenue Ninja Classic was for me a perfect example of embracing my own teaching: time to get comfortable with getting uncomfortable.

The biggest hurdle, ironically, is that it was a CrossFit event. There’s just something about that title, that brand, that strikes fear into the hearts of the uninitiated. My own experience with CrossFit specifically is relatively short, though my experience in movement is long and fits the philosophy of the workouts beautifully. Mentally, I knew I had nothing to fear. But fear isn’t mental. It’s emotional.

I walked into the event like a newbie walking into SISUOh, God. What have I gotten myself into? There were the bars, the weights, the bods and the babes. Men twice my size (and I’m not exactly demure). Women half my size throwing twice my weight.

But I remembered what I tell those newbies as they walk into our gym. This isn’t about anyone else. This is about you. My purpose there was to challenge myself and to learn. Reach deeper – push harder – find more.

Some were there for the prize. Like the guy in my scaled division who would certainly have placed in the Rx division. The guy was a beast, and plainly not scaled. But he wanted his prize and he got it.

But the others – the vast majority – were there for the challenge. And that’s the thing about a challenge: it’s just You Today vs The You You Used To Be.

The You I Used To Be would never have even laced up his shoes Sunday morning. So showing up was already winning.

I challenged myself. I did things I’d never done before and pushed myself harder to achieve more in less time. Others were faster. Some were slower. Didn’t matter. This wasn’t about them, same as the only real competitor in our gym is only ever our perceived limitations.

I’ve seen the people who choose to lead comfortable lives. Some are healthy and some are not. Some sit on sofas and some run six miles a day. Some work at McDonald’s and some work at major accounting firms. I know plenty of doctors, lawyers, and trash collectors who prefer their comfortable lives. They come in all shapes and sizes, but are united by one thing – they rely upon the familiar and live within their fence.

That’s not me. Never was.

I wanted to challenge myself on Sunday and learn something knew. What I took away was something just as important, even if it was only a reminder of something I’ve known all along.

I like being uncomfortable.

(this post was originally written for the Sisu Elite Fitness website. great bunch of people. you should check them out!)