Challenging yourself to learn that your body can do more than what your mind believes.
The Fitnesses Challenge is a staple of the old school Parkour training.
From one perspective, Parkour is all about challenging yourself.
For some it’s training every day for a year. It could be doing something that scares them in life, in general. For most Parkour athletes, challenging yourself centers on breaking a jump (face and complete a jump that scares you).
There are other ways to challenge yourself too.
Doing 100(!) pull-ups per day sounds very difficult to most of us.
I’m willing to bet most believe it’s not something they can do.
What do we base that belief on?
Truthfully… Nothing real.
It’s a belief.
One that, for most of us, is based on an assumption.
I mean, it’s not as if you have tried it already, right?
You’re deciding that it’s impossible, without trying.
Your decision is probably based on both perceived experience and the perceived parameters of the challenge.
The decision is unlikely to be based on fact.
I’m not sayin you’re wrong!
The truth is that neither of us can know.
After all, you probably haven’t actually tried…
Trying and failing
There’s nothing wrong with starting a fitness challenge and failing at it.
You can learn a lot from trying and failing. Far more than you’d learn by trying and succeeding.
And infinitely more that what you can learn from not trying at all.
So what’s the worst that can happen if you start what seems like an insurmountable fitness challenge?
Then ask yourself; What’s the worst that can happen if you don’t start this challenge?
The most important thing
Only start a challenge because it speaks to you.
Doing a one because somebody else suggested it may well be a valid starting point.
But sticking to it, even when your body is telling you it’s a truly bad idea, that’s not good.
Challenges are personal.
They speak to you. Call out to you, if you will.
As a matter of fact, I suspect you can probably think of a time when a specific fitness trial came into your consciousness for the first time?
How did you feel when you noticed it?
For most of us, challenges show themselves, leaving us to wonder why we didn’t see them before?
One theory in Parkour is that challenges only present themselves when your body and mind are ready to “take it on”.
It’s actually a comforting thought.
So if you see it, should you go do it?
Maybe, maybe not.
It’s possible that you look at it/evaluate it, you realize that for you, this is a truly scary one.
That this is one that’s at the outer limits of both your comfort, skills and abilities.
So is the day when you discover the challenge the right time and place to take it on?
Maybe you had a shoddy nights sleep.
Or, you trained hard right before you uncovered it.
If you go look at it, does it seem more or less scary?
Can you commit to this challenge today?
If you can, what are the steps you need to take to conquer it?
If you can’t, how can you start training to get through it, once your mind and body feel 100% ready and primed.