Quitters. We’ve all known some, maybe even been one yourself at some point in your life. That person who is always able to find the reason not to do something because it is too difficult, takes too much effort, is painful, or is something that they’re not good at.
The problem with quitting is it becomes a lifestyle. You quit a friendship because it was a challenge, in the process lose a connection to someone who could have become a good friend. You quit a diet since you didn’t buy the right food then starting eating the wrong food simply because that was what was in the fridge. You quit an exercise program because the class times were inconvenient. Quitting brings on more quitting.
Not quitting is another thing entirely. When I don’t quit I reach goals I’ve set. I gain knowledge, strength and a better outlook. Never quitting means never having to face myself in the mirror with disappointment. Not quitting is no guarantee of success though, because success comes from effort. But there are still successes even when you don’t reach goals you’ve set. Eventually you realize that it is the effort, the trying to reach the goal, the struggle that is truly the success. A faster time up the Grouse Grind is great but what matters is the commitment and effort it took to improve that time.
Crossfit embraces the effort. Every class is an opportunity to face a new challenge or improve upon an old one. We all walk into the gym with burden of our own physical limitations. You may feel at a disadvantage because you’re too short to excel at rowing, or you’re too heavy to be good at pullups, or you are just too slow at running. It doesn’t matter. What does matter is that you do show up, you give everything you have to the workout in front of you, you don’t quit.
When you watch Kristin still doing amazing work at 7 months pregnant it takes away all thought of giving up on a Wod. See Juice steadily improving through dogged determination because he consistently shows up and works as hard as he can and realize age is not a factor. See Sassy come through the door with a big smile on her face and accept the challenge of each workout, proud that she is making a change in her life as the pounds drop away and she gets better and better. Every member of our community faces some fitness challenge and no matter how well or how poorly they might do at a given workout, the rest of the class celebrates their effort.
Last week we thought my 91-year-old father was not going to survive the pneumonia he’d contracted. He surprised us. He didn’t quit. He fought back and got stronger. If he can find the inner strength at 91 to face down his own frailties, then so can I. When faced with an obstacle I have a reminder tattooed onto my arm. It says Keep Going. Simple. To the Point. No matter what is in the way, don’t quit, don’t give up, just keep going. You will be amazed at what you can achieve.