Last year I helped to run an event at Virgin Active Solihull that has been a tradition for a few years. The event is called the Spartan Challenge… This year I was asked if I’d like to run the event with one of the members who helps each year. The video below is the result of the hard work that all the competitors put in to achieve the fitness levels necessary to compete.
It was really great to see people joining together, pushing each other and making the event truly inspiring to watch. Some people might sit an question why people would push their bodies and minds to such a point of destruction.
I think it is because once you’ve learned how to push your own limits, mentally and physically you start to realise that there is a certain flow state that you reach. I’ve written about this before (click here to read it) it’s a state of mind where nothing else matters, you are not thinking about anything other than the task at hand. The sense of achievement in pushing yourself beyond limits, whether it is in a tough workout, a new task at work, a challenging hobby or losing some weight makes the suffering worth while.
Fitness is such an interesting thing to measure because the fitter you become the smaller the leaps of progression become, it is why I am a firm believer in chipping away at your goals, everyone in that room on Saturday had to start somewhere and had their own challenges within the challenge.
I feel a lot can be learned from watching them compete; sure there something very primal about the nature of competition, but Saturday meant many different things to many different people. For me it was about bringing people together to be fitter, stronger and better than they were the day before. I think there might be those who will look at this video and say, ‘I’d never be able to do that.’ If you want to say that to yourself then note this down and repeat it each day until it sticks…
“Never say that you can't do something, or that something seems impossible, or that something can't be done, no matter how discouraging or harrowing it may be; human beings are limited only by what we allow ourselves to be limited by: our own minds. We are each the masters of our own reality; when we become self-aware to this: absolutely anything in the world is possible.
Master yourself, and become king of the world around you. Let no odds, chastisement, exile, doubt, fear, or ANY mental virii prevent you from accomplishing your dreams. Never be a victim of life; be it's conqueror.”
― Mike Norton
With that said, go out there and have an epic week and an awesome build up towards Christmas!
Stay Strong and Keep Moving!
It seems unreal that 16 years ago I left the country of my birth, the thought only dawned on me the other day that I have been out of Zimbabwe for over half my life. It is also insane to think that I have spent about 14 years avoiding the country as a topic of conversation for the simple reason that the discussion always ends with the same question. "How much suffering do people need to go through before change happens?"
Each person that has fled the country will have endured what they could for as long as they could. Those that stayed have endured more… One word springs to mind when I think about the nature of Zimbabweans, the word is resilient.
There is a saying that I grew up with, it is one that I think is sums up the Zimbabwean nature and attitude towards life.
The saying is ‘make a plan.’ It is used for a lot of situations…
George, “lets meet up next week.”
Fred, “yah, lets make a plan.”
George, “ah man, there is no petrol at any of the fuel stations in Harare.”
Fred, “we’ll make a plan.”
George, “I need to go overseas but can’t buy and foreign currency in Zimbabwe.”
Fred, “no stress man, I know someone who can make a plan.”
With social media and online media companies erupting in celebrations over the last 12 hours it is safe to say that the people of Zimbabwe ‘made a great plan’ for what seems to be a peaceful transition of power.
I wanted to write about this on Monday as the blog post for the day, however I wasn’t sure that things would turn out the way that they have. Is Zimbabwe safe? In my view, not yet, but there is certainly hope, there is a way forward for the country. The people of Zimbabwe should remain resilient.
Is there something to learn from the last 37 years of Mugabe’s reign? Of course, there is tonnes to learn, the most important of which is no matter how dark times get stay resilient, make a plan that gets you the life you want and remain as stoic as possible in the process.
I wish the people in Zimbabwe a peaceful transition into new leadership, one that sees them prosper as a very deserving nation. I wish everyone else who reads this the ability to see past any cynicism over power and politics, (I am guilty of that in a big way), and see the positive - there is always a peaceful way to achieve what you want.
Have a great end to the week!
Stay Strong and Keep Moving!
It's amazing how much things can change in 30 days. I've been seeing a lot more clients at Virgin Active Solihull and my workload has determined a slightly later blog post this week.
In the last 30 days I have witnessed some clients reach some amazing personal bests. From a client mastering a front squat after years with troublesome knees, to seeing people smash some Ankorr challenges and beat their timings week on week.
It has been wonderful to see, and the best part is the fact that people have put the effort in to become better versions of themselves, they've enjoyed their training more and understood the results are because of their strong efforts.
It has reminded me to remind all of you out there to trust the process.
Tough times do still happen when things are going well, especially on a fitness journey. It's about taking the rough with the smooth and pushing towards the goals you've set for yourself.
None of my clients got there because of my drills or my shouting, they got there through sheer will to be better than they were the day before.
Heading towards Christmas it is easy to forget about things and 'let things slide'. I'm saying that you should use this time to be laser focused and remember that you've got what it takes!
This midweek motivation is all about forgetting that I didn't post on Monday... haha, but also to remind you to be the best you can each day... You never know where you'll be in 30 days time.
Have a great push to the end of the week!
Stay strong and keep moving!
This post will be a shorter one this Monday for a number of reasons. The first and most important is that I wrote a completely different blog post for today; however, I felt it necessary to follow up two previous blog posts from a couple of years ago now.
If you haven't heard or read about Marc Cayeux, I'll give you a brief rundown but take some time to check out the two previous posts by clicking on the images below.
The reason I bring this up is because Marc made his first cut on the Sunshine Tour since being injured in a car accident in 2010. It has been 7 years of recovery and trials and tribulations with surgeries and having both legs shortened. One was not by choice, the other was by choice.
To say that he has been through the wars is an understatement but he has fought back strong and is in a position where his confidence can only keep growing. If you can watch the video where he is interviewed on the Sunshine Tour's Facebook page you'll understand that Marc has a strong mind; "What ever you want to do in life, you've got to stay focused on it, believe you can do it, stay committed to it."
Watch his video below:
In my mind, no better words have been said when talking about a come back from a serious set back. I can vouch that the attitude Marc carries with him will serve him late into his career because he has the fight not to give up.
Last week I spoke about turning a negative emotion into a positive outcome, well Marc exemplifies this. 27+ surgeries and procedures and endless support from his loved ones has got him, literally and figuratively, back on his feet.
I hope that you can take this into your Monday as a bit of motivation and inspiration that you can make positive change happen in your life. Just believe you can and chip away at it each day and be proud of your work!
Have a great week ahead!
Stay Strong and Keep Moving!
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Brendan is the owner and head trainer at Raw Motion Fitness.