Tyler Robbins Fitness

B.Sc. Biochemistry, Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist (CSCS), Certified CrossFit Trainer (CCFT/CF-L3), USA Weightlifting Level 1

Day 71 - Compete with Yourself

One of the brilliant tools we have as children is being able to participate in sports and activities where we are able to compete against others. There are plenty of opportunities that arise where we compete against classmates in school, or others in organized sports. This creates a drive and determination in us all.

Competing allows us to develop life-long skills that we learn through victory or defeat. I know that for myself, I am a very competitive person - ask any of my family members. I hate to lose. That allows any competition to result in 2 different outcomes.

Outcome number one is that you win, or are victorious. That is one of the best feelings in the world. The fact that you have applied your skills, mental awareness, talent, and work ethic in a setting that allowed you to come out on top is an exhilarating feeling.

On the other hand, losing is also a possible outcome, and one that many coaches and mentors prefer. Why would they prefer losing? Sure, it can teach you how to be a 'good loser', or someone who accepts defeat, but on the other hand, losing creates very strong emotions deep down inside of you. I know for myself, whether it I am playing in a championship game or a simple recreational game, I taking defeat very seriously. I want to know the who, what, where, when, and how of my loss.

That is the reason why defeat can be more beneficial to someone. Oftentimes winners sit back and revel in their victory but don't necessarily learn anything. It is during our time(s) of defeat that we truly learn who we are, what we are made of and how we can come back stronger than before.

As we get older, we may not have as many opportunities to compete against others, most folks stop playing competitive sports or games and some people just stop exercising altogether. I say, turn your focus towards yourself. Always try and make yourself better. If it took you 30 minutes to complete a total-body resistance training circuit routine on one day, next time you come back, try and beat your time. You will find that you not only want to compete, but the reward you feel by accomplishing these little goals can be remarkable!

If there are days when you don't improve, evaluate your situation and try and figure out the why. Why did my 5km time increase? Maybe I wasn't feeling well. Maybe it was because of that junk I ate before bed last night. Maybe it was because I am training too hard. Maybe it is because I am not training enough. Either way, there is always something to be learned, especially when we compete!

Quote of the day:
"The first requisite of success is the ability to apply your physical and mental energies to one problem without growing weary."
~ Thomas Edison