This blog post is for the people out there that constantly compare themselves to others and put themselves down because they don’t look or lift a certain way. I’ve heard people talk negatively about themselves time and time again, and even stop working out all together because they felt as if they were inadequate. They think that other people are just too much better than them and sometimes quit or give up altogether. This one’s for those people.
It’s an all too common thought in the fitness industry that “results” are all that matters. It’s as if all people tend to care about is whether or not they look a certain way or can lift a certain amount of weight… and if they can’t they consider themselves unworthy or not “fit”. I’m going to attempt to put an end to that bullshit right now. Being in this industry as a personal trainer for a few years now I’ve noticed a few things. One of those things is that the people that look the best or lift the heaviest aren’t always the hardest workers. There’s people, guys in particular who only work out a few days a week and due to natural genes or abuse of unnatural substances look better, and can still lift more than the guy who works harder than them. That guy who isn’t as genetically blessed or taking unnatural substances is then looked at as “weaker” or “not as fit”. On the flip side there’s also girls in the gym who look better than others but also have naturally fast metabolisms and don’t eat the proper amount of calories a day. However they are more praised than the girl who’s a little or more than a little over weight and works out 2x as much. (This isn’t to discredit those people who do have results because of course it took some sort of effort to get them, but I am going to make it clear that not everyone in the gym works as hard as they think they do.) Those are just two small examples of how the fitness industry is falsely tilted in one direction and there are so many more I could go into detail about, but you get the point.
Sure hard work is hard work, but what’s hard work if you’re being out worked by someone who doesn’t look as good as you or can’t lift as much as you? I’ve had cleints who were nowhere near as fit as others but the effort they put in during each session was much greater and as a result they became a much better version of themself. That’s what fitness is all about afterall. I don’t care what your goals are, or how far away you are from those goals. The only thing that matters and the only thing that counts at the end of the day is hard work. True “strength” is consistency. It’s persistence. It’s EFFORT. True strength is something inside of you, it’s not the amount of weight you lift. Looking good isn’t comparing yourself to another person, looking good is looking in the mirror with sweat all over knowing you worked your ass off. Forget about the people around you, forget about the Instagram models, and above all forget about what other people look like or what they do in the gym. The only thing that matters is the fact that you showed up and you’re giving it 100%. Nobody can take away the reps you put in and nobody can deny you’re effort. You’re the only you, you were born an original. To compare yourself to other people isn’t only unfair to yourself but it’s unfair to them as well.
Coming from a strength training perspective I understand the urge for comparison because I constantly found myself doing it time and time again. “Fuck why can’t I lift as much as that guy?” or “How come I don’t look like that? I work harder than he does”. I’ve come to realize that the process is much more important than the results. The effort it takes to get to where you want to be is and always will be better than the day you get to where you want to be. The process builds character and without it results wouldn’t be worth it, or even be enjoyable. With all that being said I want to offer you some advice. Stop comparing and start strictly caring about your effort. Life will get better and work outs will be much more enjoyable. Never let the sting of other peoples results influence the motivation or effort you put into chasing your own destination, unless it’s in a positive way of course!