Weird title for an article, making yourself harder to kill but bear with me for a few minutes to get a fresh perspective on exercise and strength training.
I often joke with clients, friends, and family that when the grim reaper comes for me, he will drag me, kicking and screaming, to my grave.
I will put up a fight.
You see, I’m a big-picture guy first in all things exercise. Details are important, things like scheduling exercise, the exercises you do, the food you buy and eat, your goals, and the workout clothes you wear. But so is the view from 10,000 feet because sometimes you can get lost in the details and lose sight of why you’re doing something in the first place.
When you lose sight of your why, like why you exercise or why you’re thinking about starting an exercise program, then, IMO, the trouble begins, and quitting is a reality. Let me explain.
Harder To Kill = ?
Fitness is not convenient.
Being uncomfortable is not convenient.
Strength training doesn’t tickle and is definitely not convenient.
Eating right for your goals and body type is challenging in our food environment and is inconvenient.
This goes against the grain of where the world is today, with everything at our fingertips. Change the channel, and pick up the remote. Want your shopping done for you? There is an app for that. This ad, or fitness influencer, says this food is good for me and helps me lose weight. Sure, I’ll try it because they look great and it must work.
Convenience is great, don’t get me wrong, as dull, menial tasks should be easy. But fitness is not one of those things. With the explosion of social media, access to information, and the ability to work out from home with wiz-bang equipment, getting or staying fit is more accessible than ever.
There is no need to join a gym to sweat uncomfortably with the masses. Do you need a fitness program? Jump online and either get one for free or buy one from the many excellent coaches who offer their services online.
The application, the doing, and the putting in the work of being fit and healthy is not convenient because it requires sacrifice, discomfort, and some adversity. Being sweaty and having your lungs burning doesn’t feel great because strength training doesn’t tickle.
Some coaches, fitness influencers, and ‘gurus’ claim to have shortcuts or ‘hacks’ regarding health and fitness; some might work, but the bottom line is that you have to do the work. And that work is definitely not convenient.
We Are Hard To Kill
Think about, but not for long, all the diseases, sicknesses, and traumatic injuries inflicted by accident or on purpose that humans can suffer through and survive. People can suffer multiple gun shoot wounds and survive. People can beat cancer with the proper treatment, and baseball players can be hit in the head with a 100mph fastball and live to tell their grandchildren.
In my humble opinion, the bottom line is that we are hard to kill. This is the way we are all designed as humans. Obviously, catastrophic things are out of our control, and when it is our time, it is our time, but generally, you are hard to kill.
Do you know what makes you even tougher to kill? Being physically strong with good cardiovascular fitness.
Strong muscles, bones, and tendons from strength training or any other resistance training improve your physical capacity and ability to withstand the punishment and better handle disease. Having good cardiovascular fitness makes your heart strong and makes you less likely to die of the world’s biggest killer, heart disease.
Not only does this make you tougher, but it also improves your quality and quantity of life.
Sure, it is easier to live a life of leisure, not exercise and eat what you want, because that makes some people happy. But this will catch up to people, affect the quality or quantity of life, and make them easier prey for the grim reaper.
So, when you’re feeling uncomfortable exercising and wondering why the heck you are doing it, remind yourself of these two things. You are improving your quality of life, and you will be harder to kill.
Being strong, fit, and healthy is inconvenient in a world that tells you there is a pill for that. Taking time to exercise is a sacrifice that benefits take time to be apparent, but the return on investment is enormous. Because when you know who thinks it’s your time, it’s better to fight than surrender.
Think about that next time your muscles are aching, and your lungs are burning. Because now you are harder to kill.