Updated: May 1, 2022
It is a long-held notion in the fitness industry that we should "only do the things we enjoy", as everything else is "not enjoyable" and should therefore "not be done". Why this is, still remains a mystery to me. But I hope this blog will clarify a few things.
Do you enjoy going to the dentist?
Or do you go because you want a certain outcome?
Sticking with teeth: Do you enjoy brushing them? Or do you brush them to keep them healthy?
Switching to the fitness side of things:
Why do we train?
Is it fair to say: TO ACHIEVE A CERTAIN OUTCOME?
Is the process of getting from A to B – of investing time, energy, and money – meant to be enjoyable?
IS it actually enjoyable?
If not, what is the purpose of training then?
The joys of training always come with its RESULTS:
Witnessing our daily progress creates a strong sense of satisfaction and joy
Breaking barriers and reaching new levels of strength and physicality we thought weren’t possible
Integrating and appreciating training as a core part of our life
Learning something new every day
Growing, evolving, and emotionally investing in a process that gives meaning to our life
Do you believe bodybuilders have a wonderful time when they prepare for a meet? Ask any of them. I’m sure you know what to expect as an answer.
Why should we operate under the assumption that our OWN training is meant to be enjoyable?
Take a strength athlete. Is it meant to be his goal to enjoy getting out of a deep squat with 200kg on his back?
Very likely not.
And if he doesn’t “enjoy” it, does it mean he is doing something wrong?
Is pulling five reps of a 280kg deadlift off the floor meant to make us happy and bounce with joy?
Is pressing 120kg overhead meant to be filled with smiles, cheers, and dancing on the platform?
I deem things like going to the cinema, having a meal with a friend, taking the dog for a walk, or meeting our grandparents as enjoyable. All are indeed a form of therapy, which is MEANT to be enjoyable and make us feel better.
The bottom line is:
Training – in our case: strength training – allows us to do all the above with greater joy as our health improves, our mood is lifted, our body feels better, and we like what we see in the mirror more.
These results all play a massive part in making those events which are MEANT to give us pleasure more enjoyable.
Consistency, step-wise progress, and persistence when things don’t go the way we want are the key to better results.