So many times I watch athletes build up towards max effort attempts in training, only to see them miss over and over again. The athlete gets frustrated, panics, changes their technique, and even occasionally breaks down in tears. This can even happen on a day where they may only be building up to 85%. None of these outcomes are good for that training session, or future ones.
When a dedicated athlete has a bad session they often let it take hold of their whole day, both in and out of training. I have been guilty of this myself on occasion. We build up these days where we get to attempt at, or near, max efforts so much in our head that when we don’t smash PR’s we somehow feel like we had a bad training session. Even if you did miss every single attempt you took during a training session, it doesn’t mean you need to have a bad day or are a bad lifter. Grow up. This is possibly the best advice I’ve ever received. If this happens to you often, or even rarely, remind yourself that you need to grow up.
What makes this simple advice so valuable? Why should you remember it? Why should you incorporate it into your training? Maybe you don’t care about how that much emotional energy puts a huge strain on your endocrine system. Maybe you don’t care that you are affecting other people’s training by making a scene. Maybe you just want to wallow in self pity and eat Ben and Jerry’s when you get home. Grow up. You still got to get up this morning, lace up your lifters, and hit the gym. Meanwhile, someone is sitting at home trying to rehab from a traumatic brain injury. Someone else woke up this morning and had to slowly navigate out of their bedroom because they can’t see. Best case scenario someone woke up and had to lug their kids around, work 10+ hours, then get home and cook, clean, and get the kids ready for bed and just couldn’t make it to the gym today. Yet these people don’t mope around feeling bad for themselves or snapping at everyone as they walk by. So grow up. You missed a few lifts, you’re not going to die because of it. And if you really want, you can come back tomorrow and try again. That is how you truly get good at weightlifting, showing up no matter how bad or good training has been going.
I hit the gym today with max effort attempts on the schedule, beat up and run down. Yet I still had my mind on smashing PR’’s like I always do. As if somehow all the scientific fact and experience I have gotten over the years does not apply to me if I “try” hard enough. I didn’t successfully complete a lift in either the snatch or clean & jerk over 91%. As a headstrong athlete I was super pissed and even snapped at a friend trying to cheer me on.
And then I remembered my buddy telling me to “grow up” and I had to laugh to myself, cause I knew I was acting like a child. I moved on to my accessory work, apologized to the people I snapped at, and moved on. I didn’t hit PR’s this week, but I did get to wake up with my girlfriend and puppy on the bed with me, spend time with friends at the gym, and got to write this. It was actually a great day. Don’t ever forget that.