Friday Fire - Voices In The Crowd

Photo credit: Tom Cerecedes
As he came into the final 30 seconds, Chris didn't know that he was closing in on 19 rounds of Cindy (a PR by 4 rounds). All he knew was that his veins were pumping battery acid, his lungs were on fire and his muscles were at failure. For the past 19 minutes and 30 seconds, the little voice inside his head kept telling him to stop. Urging him to quit. Why are you doing this? This hurts too much. But the voices outside of his body, surrounding him, those voices kept yelling for him to keep moving. Don't stop. Keep breathing. And those voices were right. In Chris's case, he had extra incentive to push himself. This workout was a charity fundraiser that he had organized where the pledges were based on the number of rounds he completed.

In any physical endeavor performed at a high intensity, there comes a time when the little voice inside our head tells us to stop, to quit, to throw in the towel.  It's at those times you need to listen to the voices in the crowd. Those voices will never tell you to give up, to sandbag it, to phone it in. Those voices will tell you you're doing great. They'll tell you to take a breath, shake it out and move your ass. Don't listen to your brain. Your brain doesn't want you to PR. Your brain is selfish and wants to keep you in your comfort zone. Shut your brain off. Listen to the crowd.

As those last 30 seconds ticked away, a small crowd had gathered around Chris; yelling, cheering him on, telling him not to stop. And as much as his muscles ached and lungs burned, he switched off his brain and fought through every last rep until the clock went to zero.

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