Last afternoon was my “d-day” at the gym. I’d been preparing for it since January this year. I was pumped. Fueled by passion and desire (let’s not forget caffeine) to smash a new deadlift PR.
I started with ultralight weights. Worked my way up to do singles. And just when I was to attempt my PR weight… my overconfident mind said, “Sunil, you’ve been doing this for the past 8 weeks. You can’t just increase the weight by 5%… go for more! Make it 15%! Come on, man! You can do this! You’re entitled to it!”
And I listened to my voice… slapped on 30 kilos to the bar. Brought the bar over my midfoot. Placed hands on the bar. Brought it towards my shin. Squeezed my chest out/up. And pulled…
And I couldn’t even lift that damn thing!
The deadlift mechanics described above is how I’ve been lifting for the past five years. And for some stupid reason (height of stupidity rather) I thought changing the technique would help me lift. So, I set myself up again. This time wedging under the bar. Power breathed once again…
And I couldn’t lift that damn thing!
I backed off and took a 20-minute break. Lowered the weight by 20 kilos and tried again.
Nothing! The bar didn’t even go off the ground!
I lowered the weight by another 10 kilos… and tried. Same result. And mind you — this was the weight I’d trained as the base since January. I ideally should have lifted this weight with ease. Yet, I couldn’t.
Great lesson right there. I overcomplicated the situation myself by becoming overconfident. By thinking that I’m entitled to go for the “extra” mass when I didn’t even deserve it! The result was a missed rep and shattered self-confidence.
I smashed a PR in my squat, bench and military press but I just wasn’t able to experience the joy! You could say that I am being a little hard on myself, but the fact is that I don’t deserve anything else. Why? Because nobody but I set myself up for failure!
I thought I deserved it. I didn’t have the patience to earn my way through a 5% PR. I got greedy and wanted immediate gratification. That high of accomplishing something special.
See, this relates directly to our mindset when it comes to success in general. We oversee or simply fail to trust the process. We get impatient with the small increments and want to make big leaps to get to our goals. We get greedy. And we fail.
Because irrespective of how hard you’ve worked your life, you’re entitled to nothing. You have to earn it. Success, just like strength, is never rushed… it’s slow to come, but sure to come.
Patience is the key. To life. To lifting. To love. To live.