The Slight Edge… what is that?
Would you like to have a slight edge in almost everything you do? In your tennis game? In your fitness? In your life?
“I have no time” is the biggest and most common objection that I hear from people who would like to get in better fitness shape, either for tennis or just for health. I say “like to get in shape”, because if you like, you may not really want it.
I mean, REALLY WANT it.
Burning desire want it.
Because if we really want something really badly, we often figure out how to fit it in–in some way–into our already busy schedules.
The Slight Edge Abs Example
(here we come again… my abs).
I weight train already regularly, almost every day. I play tennis regularly. And I walk 70 minutes with Zuzi the chocolate Labrador every day. In addition to running my few business, I feel like I don’t have much extra time. However, 3 months ago I have decided to try an experiment.
I have decided to defy my genetics, which is that I don’t have nice lean abs with a pronounced six-pack, even when I am fairly lean. So for an unlimited time—I just go day by day, and it’s been now 11 weeks—I decided to do 500 abs movements every day. Which I ramped up to 1,000 per day for the past 4 weeks. How am I going to fit this in???
At first, I was not sure how to fit it in. So I started with my gym workouts. Between the sets of other exercises, instead of resting, I do 25 abs. Four sets of a certain exercise and boom, I got 100 abs… So just during that gym training I accumulated my 500. If I didn’t finish my number in the gym, I jumped on the BOSU ball at night (I love my BOSU!!!), turned on the TV which I don’t watch much normally, and squeezed the rest of missing abs movements.
When I started to do 1,000 it was a huge step. Now 500 feels so easy, I can do it in no time, any time… that’s how you get used to a certain load. I got stronger, and my strength endurance has improved dramatically. I don’t need that many breaks in between. So now it takes much less time to do my abs. However one thousand is one thousand. It takes time.
But in my mind, I put it in the “important” department, and I have to fit it in, no matter what. In 11 weeks, I have not skipped a day.
It is doable. I have accumulated 58,500 abs movements by now. How cool is that? ????
What is Your Burning Desire?
What is your burning desire in your fitness? Think about it, and then choose one thing. The most important thing. And decide to do it regularly. Every day. Even if it is just a little bit. You will figure out how to fit it in if you really try. Maybe better “when” instead of “if”:
You will figure out how to fit it in WHEN you really try.
Then it becomes easy. You will feel empowered. Every little workout that you DO (which means, you don’t skip it), will lead you to successful results as time goes on.
Do you need more power in your legs? Start doing squats. Simple. Not even going to the gym. Just plain simple regular squats. Good technique. Depending on your level, maybe do 100 squats a day. Or 300 a day. But every day. Don’t skip. You see how much better you get in just a few weeks. It will take you only 5–15 minutes. As you get stronger, you can bang out 100 squats in 2 minutes.
Are you already fit but still want to get more powerful in your legs? Do squat-jumps. It is so much more tiring. Again, choose 100 a day. Or 500 a day. Depending where you are and where you want to be in your fitness and power. But do it every day.
Do you want stronger arms and shoulders, chest and core? Do push-ups. Again, choose a number that is quite challenging, but achievable. Trust me, 500 in the beginning felt completely out of my comfort zone. But doable if I really try. Choose that number for yourself. It can’t be too easy.
How About Recovery?
People ask me “don’t the muscles need to rest?”
Well, yes, and no. They need to recover. If you get a good quality sleep, you will recover. If you eat healthy foods (and for me, the plant-based nutrition is just like a miracle for recovery), you help your body to recover. Get massages to recover. Do the myofascial release regularly to recover. Stretch… all these little things help.
You will notice that your body will adapt to all the stress you put it through. That is the main idea of fitness training.
My abs were so sore on the day 4 or 5 or 6… I started to do my first 50 and they were already sore. But I just kept going. My body adapted. I am less sore now. I am stronger. I am leaner. I feel firm and tight. The six-pack is coming, I can see it… or is it a wishful thinking “seeing”? 🙂
I will keep going. I do not have an end date. Maybe the day when I see a clear six-pack, then I can rethink my plan. Just like with my legs that are very lean now (they used to be like tee trunks), I do not need to overdo the training. I am thinking that maybe similar will happen with the abs. I will re-evaluate when the day comes.
The Slight Edge by Jeff Olson
I just finished reading and re-reading one of my (to this day) most motivating books: “The Slight Edge: Turning Simple Disciplines into Massive Success and Happiness“. Completely life changing. So motivating. When you read the book, I promise it will be much easier to do all these little things that we should do.
They are so easy to do. But they are the same easy not to do. The choice is yours.
The book will motivate you to choose right.
Now, choose your little fitness goal, and do it daily. Let me know how it goes and how you feel. When looking back in a few weeks (11 now for me) you will feel amazing!!! Let’s start the New Year 2016 Resolutions already today. A head start is always good. Ride the slight edge.