If someone gave me the option…Matrix style…of either taking the blue pill which would make and keep me thin regardless of my diet or the red pill which would make me strong, I would have knocked over elderly people and small children to get that blue pill….WOULD have…two years ago (AKA pre-CrossFit).
I mean really?!?! Who wouldn’t want to be able to eat whatever they desire and never gain weight?!?!?! And besides which..what is “strong” anyway?
I used to think of strong as powerlifters and of course Wonder Woman so when I started CrossFit I felt EXTREMELY un-strong. My barometer for strong was being able to do a pull-up and I could barely pull myself up more than one inch. And then as the months went by and I continued to struggle…not just with the weightlifting but also the conditioning…I gradually evolved from dreading and avoiding certain workouts to going in with a resolve to just try and be a little better than the last time. My focus on building my physical strength made me finally realize that “strong” is way more complex than I thought it was. Yes, powerlifters and Wonder Woman are definitely strong but strong is also failing 100 times but still believing that 101 will be the breakthrough and is worth working for…strong is also knowing when your fear is lying…strong is also not letting the superficial noise determine your capability or worth…and strong is also a long, winding road not a destination. As I worked to become physically stronger I was also developing my mental strength and my confidence in my abilities…abilities that until recently I didn’t even believe that I possessed.
I eventually got my pull-up and as exciting as that was for me I now see that those goals are just little refueling truck stops in the big journey of building and maintaining overall strength that will support me during the dark times. That blue pill would satisfy a desire to LOOK a certain way (and also to be a raging glutton) but working for the results of that red pill will give me so much more to fall back on throughout my life and isn’t that what quality of life is really about?