Get Strong. Live Life. Be Great
Three simple phrases, but it’s the philosophy that guides the way I look at this idea of fitness.
Strength shows itself in many different ways. The most obvious display of strength is physical, and it’s typically the form that gets the most attention in my profession...understandably so. Lift more weights, do more reps, add more sets, etc. In this way, strength is easy to quantify. After all strong IS strong.
What’s not as easy to identify is the strength of character and mind that is cultivated through the act of maintaining a physical discipline.
This strength is probably more apparent in a physical practice that has a history such as martial arts, where the development of character and spirit is also of paramount importance. In fact, it is often the case that your skill as a martial artist is the physical manifestation of your character development. Meaning you become a better martial artist in step with becoming a better person.
Now strength training, while not rooted with the same ideals, it CAN serve you in the same way. And it has for me.
Strength training, eating well, resting soundly, etc. all take practice.
It is a daily practice in taking care of yourself so that you have the fortitude withstand the ups and downs of life.
It’s a practice in patience, discipline, planning, problem-solving, self-assessment, being open, skill development, etc. Because anyone that has tried to sustain an active lifestyle, and learn about nutrition and eating well, and what really feeds your person, your soul, knows these things do not happen overnight. They happen over faults, mishaps, and missteps. Learning from those mistakes, and having the resolve to apply what you have learned moving forward.
Getting “strong” is much more than a physical display, it’s a display of the person you want to be, and having the courage to live in that space.
All is for nothing if we do not take time to do the things we enjoy. Time is the one resource we cannot get back.
“Live life” is a reminder to recall your values.
I do not think it is a stretch to say, you take care of yourself so that you may take care of the people, and things you care about. And on a side note, taking care of yourself, so the people that care ABOUT YOU have to worry less is also YOU taking care of the people you love.
If you like to travel, eat, spend time with your kids, hike, explore, etc. Everything you do to take care of yourself serves this purpose.
Exercise, as far as we know, is the closest thing we have found to the fountain of youth.
The benefits attained from the act of moving your body extend beyond the body itself.
Exercise has been a proven remedy for depression, anxiety, mood disorder, and dementia. Not to mention the slew of preventable diseases it fends of such as heart disease, diabetes, and arthritis.
Exercise, being the strongest version of yourself, allows you to live into your potential.
It allows you to live life to the fullest.
Contentment without complacency is a thin line to toe.
Yet, it remains a mantra of mine until this day.
Every day we must strive to live into our virtue. The part of us that makes us stand with pride. The part of us strives to be better, but from a place of knowing how fortunate, we truly are.
Being great is not about being famous, popular, or rich. It’s about learning and crafting your life into something you can take pride in, and find joy in doing.
Because life is something you do, not something that happens.