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The Cozy Comfort Zone

May 20, 2012 | Comments: 0 | Views: 161

Years ago, just after finishing high school, my goal was to play university basketball. At that point in my life, everything came pretty easy in regards to sports. I was better than mostly everyone I had played against up to that point, so naturally, I didn't think twice about the way I was going about things was actually detrimental to my progress.

I knew I had to train in the offseason, so that I wasn't out of shape by the time tryouts rolled around, but what "training" meant to me at that time is a lot different than how I look at it today. At that time, I would go for a light jog for about 15 minutes and figure I had just put in a good workout. The next day I might do some bicep curls and some leg extensions and in my mind I was a workhorse.

I mean, this is way more than I ever did in my life, and to that point I had done pretty well for myself. So what result could I expect to achieve by stepping out of my comfort zone?

That question would be answered much later than I needed it. I ended up getting cut the first tryout and was sent into a state of shock.

It wasn't that I thought I should have moved on because that wasn't the case. I was shocked at how much I didn't know. So instead of learning from that moment, I decided to chalk it up as the other guys just being in better shape at the time and that soon enough someone would notice how good I was and the next year I'd be a shoe-in. Again, not the case.

It wasn't until I took a course where we were shown how to do all the different types of lifts in the gym that things started to come together for me. Just seeing all the types of exercises that I wasn't doing set a light bulb off. Then seeing what type of work these other guys were putting in the gym made it official. I had no clue how to push myself.

So, the question returns. What results could I expect to achieve by stepping out of my comfort zone?

That next summer, I started training almost every day in the gym. The best thing was, at my summer job, a group of us would all go to the gym after work and workout together. We wouldn't necessarily do the same workouts, but just having guys to train with and learn together with was perfect for me. It's true that you push yourself much harder when you see other guys getting as strong or stronger than you. You don't want to be the weakling of the group. It was during this time that I had to push myself out of my comfort zone if I didn't want to be the guy trailing everyone else.

I actually started to see gains that I never thought I was capable of.

How would I have known though? I had never witnessed, let alone experienced, this type of training before. And I was just learning how to weight train, let alone how to do it properly. But it was a start. That's all I needed to get myself into a mindset that would rarely leave me from that point on. If I wanted to achieve something that I had never done before, I would have to leave my comfort zone.

I would never tryout for the basketball team again, but I managed to play university soccer instead. It took me one tryout to put an impression on the coach in my mind. I was stronger and more confident in my athletic abilities than I had ever been. Pushing myself out of my comfort zone during training had reaped benefits I never thought could happen. I was stronger, faster, quicker, and more confident in myself as an athlete. So why step out of your comfort zone?

Because you too can always achieve more than you imagined.

You too can turn yourself from the bench warmer to the starter. You too can experience feelings of confidence that you never thought you'd ever feel. Believe me, life is much more enjoyable when you feel good about yourself. Sometimes you don't always get what you want but learning from experiences, digging down, and working hard to make yourself better is all you need to do.

So ask yourself, "What is it that I want to achieve by exercising?"

Are you just looking for a way to live a healthier lifestyle?

Are you trying to improve your abilities in order to achieve higher success in a sport?

If you answered the latter, then you NEED to be training out of your comfort zone. When you're lifting the iron, you NEED to be struggling to get your last couple reps up. You can't breeze through each set, knowing in the back of your mind that you could have just cranked out 5 or 10 more reps with that weight. That's not challenging yourself. You need to be moving forward, not sideways.

Join us here.

To your success,


Star Factory Fitness

Source: EzineArticles
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