Tuesday, December 5, 2017

Why even try?

This weekend is Deadlifts for Doernbecher, the annual deadlift competition that my gym hosts (here's my post from last year), and as can be expected, I'm excited about it but I'm also a little nervous because I have high hopes for my numbers this year.

This year, there will be a bunch of elite guest lifters attending as well, which adds to the pressure. I am eager to impress, and would love to someday be considered one of them. (I know I have a long way to go.) There are women a good 40 pounds lighter than me who can pull a good 40+ pounds heavier than I can, so knowing they'll be there is definitely a heaping of humble pie, if you know what I mean.

It's funny--no matter how well I do at any given training session, I follow so many stellar lifters on social media that I never feel like I'm good enough or strong enough. Which in turn sounds ridiculous, because... good enough for what? Strong enough for what? For myself? For people who know me? I'm pretty sure NO ONE I know is going to laugh at me for having pathetic numbers. (Well, possibly for my bench.) And yet, here I am, pushing for the approval of... I don't even know. Being surrounded by such excellence really places my own accomplishments in rather harsh perspective. Why should I be proud of myself for this lift when all these people can totally do better? Why even try?

It's not a healthy worldview, to only want to do something if I can be the best at it, and I don't actually live my life like that, but I can't say that I don't have my moments where I'm like, "What is even the point of all this?" The truth is, I didn't start doing this to be The Best (whatever that means), and if I want to not make myself miserable, that should never be my driving reason for doing anything. Because all that really guarantees you is misery. (Unless you're, like, Serena Williams. In which case, being The Best is just a fact of life =P)

So here I am, a few days out from my next competition, trying to talk myself out of feeling intimidated and comparing myself to other people who (honestly!) have trained much harder and longer than I have. In truth, I took two or three weeks off during training for D4D because I was sick, and I still was able to do this for my last heavy workout last week, so I should stop beating myself up so much about not being an ELITE LIFTER, and just enjoy what I'm doing while I am still able to do it. Just like how, right now, I can't run at even my slowest speed from when I used to run marathons, someday, I will not be able to lift this heavy anymore, and I'm going to wish I had taken the time to pat myself on the back and be proud of what I have accomplished already, instead of constantly looking ahead to the next PR.

(Though yes, I am going to still hope for a PR.)

Wish me luck. (And moreover, tell me to stop freaking out because I'll be fine.)

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