Beauty is not the goal of competitive sports, but high-level sports are a prime venue for the expression of human beauty. The relation is roughly that of courage to war.
The human beauty we’re talking about here is beauty of a particular type; it might be called kinetic beauty. Its power and appeal are universal. It has nothing to do with sex or cultural norms. What it seems to have to do with, really, is human beings’ reconciliation with the fact of having a body.
For those few who do aspire to the highest level of sport, you need to understand that greatness comes at a high price. The price is the time and energy that you can’t devote to the other aspects of your life.
We all have the same 24 hours and the choice of where to focus our attention. There’s no way you can focus on your work, family, personal development, friends, and on your training.
Yes, you can achieve balance, and as I said, this isn’t a bad goal. All I’m saying is that you can either be balanced or you can be great.
“When Dungy’s defensive players line up, it is obvious to everyone exactly which play they are going to use. Dungy has opted for this approach because, in theory, he doesn’t need misdirection. He simply needs his team to be faster than everyone else. In football, milliseconds matter. So instead of teaching his players hundreds of formations, he has taught them only a handful, but they have practiced over and over until the behaviors are automatic. When his strategy works, his players can move with a speed that is impossible to overcome.”—The Power of Habit by Charles Duhigg
The only time I ever program chest flys is for rehab purposes, and the only useful variation I’ve ever found for actual hypertrophy is the incline bench cable fly, which is a bitch to set up in the first place. I laugh every day at the number of guys that strain on these fucking things, yet they can’t even do more than 10 fucking dips in a single set. And then they complain that their chest doesn’t grow.
Bench your bodyweight for 10 reps (and thats a LOW standard), hit 20 dips in a set, and rep out 50 pushups.
Then MAYBE I will say do some chest flys on an incline, MAYBE.
I’ll probably just say do some overhead pressing and get your bodyweight over your head, but whatever.
Point being, stop taking up two cable stacks to do these fucking things. And stop straining like they are hard. ITS A FUCKING CABLE EXERCISE.
“Thinking means concentrating on one thing long enough to develop an idea about it. Not learning other people’s ideas, or memorizing a body of information, however much those may sometimes be useful. Developing your own ideas. In short, thinking for yourself. You simply cannot do that in bursts of 20 seconds at a time, constantly interrupted by Facebook messages or Twitter tweets, or fiddling with your iPod, or watching something on YouTube.”—William Deresiewicz
“The challenge was to take the curse off all those weak points. It’s human nature to work on the things that we are good at. If you have big biceps, you want to do an endless number of curls because it’s so satisfying to see this major bicep flex. To be successful, however, you must be brutal with yourself and focus on the flaws.”—Arnold Schwarzenegger
“The ideal of bodybuilding is visual perfection, like an ancient Greek statue come to life. You sculpt your body the way an artist chisels stone. Say you need to add bulk and definition to your rear deltoid. You have to choose from an inventory of exercises for that muscle. The weight, the bench, or the machine becomes your chisel, and the sculpting could take a year.”—Arnold Schwarzenegger
“Reg would wake me up at five o’clock each morning; by five thirty we’d be at his gym at 42 Kirk Street working out. I never even got up at that hour, but now I learned the advantage of training early, before the day starts, when there are no other responsibilities and nobody else is asking anything of you. Reg also taught me a key lesson about psychological limits. I’d worked my way up to three hundred pounds of weight in calf raises, beyond any other bodybuilder I knew. I thought I must be near the limit of human achievement. So I was amazed to see Reg doing calf raises with one thousand pounds. “The limit is in your mind,” he said. “Think about it: three hundred pounds is less than walking. You weigh two hundred fifty, so you are lifting two hundred fifty pounds with each calf every time you take a step. To really train, you have to go beyond that.” And he was right. The limit I thought existed was purely psychological. Now that I’d seen someone doing a thousand pounds, I started making leaps in my training.”—Arnold Schwarzenegger
“The giddiness lasted only until I had time to think. Then it hit me: Chet Yorton had ended up on that pedestal, not me. He’d earned the victory, but I thought I’d made a big mistake. What if I had gone to London intending to win? Would I have prepared better? Would I have performed better? Would I have won and now be Mr. Universe? Instead, I’d underestimated my chances. I didn’t like the way this made me feel and worked myself into quite a state. It really taught me a lesson. After that, I never went to a competition to compete. I went to win. Even though I didn’t win every time, that was my mind-set. I became a total animal. If you tuned into my thoughts before a competition, you would hear something like: “I deserve that pedestal, I own it, and the sea ought to part for me. Just get out of the fucking way, I’m on a mission. So just step aside and gimme the trophy.””—Arnold Schwarzenegger
“The older guys helped the younger ones. They’d come over if you did something wrong or to correct your form. Karl Gerstl became one of my training partners, and we learned the joy of inspiring each other, pumping each other up, competing in a positive way. “I’m going to do ten reps of this weight, I guarantee you,” Karl would say. Then he’d do eleven, just to stick it to me, and declare, “That was really great!” I’d just look at him and say, “Let me go for twelve now.””— Arnold Schwarzenegger from his book Total Recall
This is exactly the type of gym culture that needs to be created through Spitfire Athlete. Incredible.
“Look me in the eye, its ok if you’re scared. So am I. But we’re scared for different reasons. I’m scared of what I won’t become and you’re scared of what I could become. Look at me. I won’t let myself end where I started. I wont let myself finish where I began. I know what is within me even if you can’t see it yet. Look me in the eyes. I have something more important than courage. I have patience. I will become what I know I am.”—Michael Jordan
what does it feel like to be the CEO of a start-up?
An incredible and accurate Quora answer by Paul DeJoe.
"Very tough to sleep most nights of the week. Weekends don’t mean anything to you anymore. Closing a round of financing is not a relief. It means more people are depending on you to turn their investment into 20 times what they gave you.
It’s very difficult to “turn it off”. But at the same time, television, movies and vacations become so boring to you when your company’s future might be sitting in your inbox or in the results of a new A/B test you decide to run.
You feel guilty when you’re doing something you like doing outside of the company. Only through years of wrestling with this internal fight do you recognize how the word “balance” is an art that is just as important as any other skill set you could ever hope to have. You begin to see how valuable creativity is and that you must think differently not only to win, but to see the biggest opportunity. You recognize you get your best ideas when you’re not staring at a screen. You see immediate returns on healthy distractions.
You start to respect the Duck. Paddle like hell under the water and be smooth and calm on top where everyone can see you. You learn the hard way that if you lose your cool you lose.
You always ask yourself if I am changing the World in a good way? Are people’s lives better for having known me?
You are creative and when you have an idea it has no filter before it becomes a reality. This feeling is why you can’t do anything else.
You start to see that the word “entrepreneur” is a personality. It’s difficult to talk to your friends that are not risking the same things you are because they are content with not pushing themselves or putting it all out there in the public with the likelihood of failure staring at you everyday. You start to turn a lot of your conversations with relatives into how they might exploit opportunities for profit. Those close to you will view your focus as something completely different because they don’t understand. You don’t blame them. They can’t understand if they haven’t done it themselves. It’s why you will gravitate towards other entrepreneurs. You will find reward in helping other entrepreneurs. This is my email: email@example.com. Let me know if I can help you with anything.
Your job is to create a vision, a culture, to get the right people on the bus and to inspire. When you look around at a team that believes in the vision as much as you do and trusts you will do the right thing all the time, it’s a feeling that can’t be explained. The exponential productivity from great people will always amaze you. It’s why finding the right team is the most difficult thing you will do but the most important. This learning will affect your life significantly. You will not settle for things anymore because you will see what is possible when you hold out for the best and push to find people that are the best. You don’t have a problem anymore being honest with people about not cutting it.
You start to see that you’re a leader and you have to lead or you can’t be involved with it at all. You turn down acquisition offers because you need to run the show and you feel like your team is the best in the World and you can do anything with hard work. Quitting is not an option.
You have to be willing to sleep in your car and laugh about it. You have to be able to laugh at many things because when you think of the worse things in the World that could happen to your company, they will happen. Imagine working for something for two years and then have to throw it out completely because you see in one day that it’s wrong. You realize that if your team is having fun and can always laugh that you won’t die, and in fact, the opposite will happen: you will learn to love the journey and look forward to what you do everyday even at the lowest times. You’ll hear not to get too low when things are bad and not to get too high when things are good and you’ll even give that advice. But you’ll never take it because being in the middle all the time isn’t exciting and an even keel is never worth missing out on something worth celebrating. You’ll become addicted to finding the hardest challenges because there’s a direct relationship between how difficult something is and the euphoria of a feeling when you do the impossible.
You realize that it’s much more fun when you didn’t have money and that money might be the worse thing you could have as a personal goal. If you’re lucky enough to genuinely feel this way, it is a surreal feeling that is the closest thing to peace because you realize it’s the challenges and the work that you love. Your currencies are freedom, autonomy, responsibility and recognition. Those happen to be the same currencies of the people you want around you.
You feel like a parent to your customers in that they will never realize how much you love them and it is they who validate you are not crazy. You want to hug every one of them. They mean the World to you.
You learn the most about yourself more than any other vocation as an entrepreneur. You learn what you do when you get punched in the face many many times. You learn what you do when no one is looking and when no one would find out. You learn that you are bad at many things, lucky if you’re good at a handful of things and the only thing you can ever be great at is being yourself which is why you can never compromise it. You learn how power and recognition can be addicting and see how it could corrupt so many.
You become incredibly grateful for the times that things were going as bad as they possibly could. Most people won’t get to see this in any other calling. When things are really bad, there are people that come running to help and don’t think twice about it. Tal Raviv, Gary Smith, Joe Reyes, Toan Dang, Vincent Cheung, Eric Elinow, Abe Marciano are some of them. I will forever be in their debt and I could never repay them nor would they want or expect to be repaid.
You begin to realize that in life, the luckiest people in the World only get one shot at being a part of something great. Knowing this helps you make sense of your commitment.
Of all the things said though, it’s exciting. Every day is different and so exciting. Even when it’s bad it’s exciting. Knowing that your decisions will not only affect you but many others is a weight that I would rather have any day than the weight of not controlling my future. That’s why I could not do anything else.”
Interviewer:So tell me about one of your weaknesses.
Erin:*thinks long and hard* Hrm. Oh yes, I am weak at one thing. I don't know what it's called though...it's when you're not sympathetic to mediocrity? And where, you realize you could be more understanding, but you know that other person just isn't working hard enough, so you're not? You know what I mean? Gosh, what's it called?
Interviewer:*stern face* Empathy?
Erin:Yes! That's it. Empathy. I suck at empathy.
Interviewer:*solemnly writes notes* Thanks. We'll call you back.