Take control. In everything you do, move with purpose. Take action in how you feel, how you eat, how you move, everything. There are many many things we cannot control in life, and to leave your own body to the whims of the world is lifeless. Take control of yourself and discover the renewed strength through action. That’s what this movement is all about.
So why “Modern Strength Movement? Why not “The Discipline Movement” or “Modern Endurance Movement”? Well, as awesome as those traits are, we have grown weak as a people. I’ve seen multitudes of people leave the whims of their lives in the hands of the unknown. Crush your bad habits, cut ties with negative people. Take control of your life not by moderation, but by extremism. People often wonder what happened to their lives. Little by little, their lives have changed by small moderate changes. They give up more of their life to the unknown willingly by not controlling anything. Let’s take back that free will, as Dan John aptly calls it. Maybe a more appropriate name would be The Modern Strength Renaissance, because I’m going to start a rebirth of taking people’s lives back.
If running is part of your sport, then it is necessary. If you find strength in having the ability to endure for 13.1 miles, or the ability to endure for 12miles in the mud through crazy obstacles, by all means have at it. Realize however that your form of exercise is just one method among many, and that it is just another outlet with which we can express our innate strength for movement and life. To share the stories of Basic in the Army, and the physicality of it, is a great connector, often leaving people with new brothers in arms afterwards. The Tough Mudder bonds people together. And as long as marathons continue, there are another handful of equally crazy people, getting under the bar, pressing dumbbells, and foam rolling all over the world. Strength in numbers and appreciation of diversity, no matter what the outlet or form.
I had a sweet old lady confront me at work one time. She asked, “Why does he (my co-trainer) have this big sled? And I see him dragging it all over the place. Why? What’s the purpose?” I gave her an answer, something along the lines of, “Because it increases your strength without the normal stress associated with pulling exercises.” But I could tell she didn’t quite understand the WHY…. The WHY of what we do to gain strength. The WHY of going through the hassle to drag heavy weights around. We know all the WHATs… it increases muscle size, muscle CSA, increases certain hormones throughout the body, etc. the list goes on. But that doesn’t explain WHY we do it the things that we do. Here we have strength in knowledge, and the pursuit of continued knowledge. Specific knowledge creating purposeful movements.
A better answer for her question would have been, “We perform this exercise because it defines what it means to be strong, and to have the strength to continually perform this exercise is what it means to be me.”
My personal mission is to be responsible for my own actions. No excuses, no limits. Let’s discover strength (both physically and mentally) in many disciplines, of which movement is one. Following this is the tendencies to create a lasting change within habits. Dig deep, confront your fears and insecurities, create a strategy to squash it, and rediscover your renewed strength. Take control.
I wake up everyday knowing that I have the strength to do some pretty amazing things by “normal” standards. And I know that I can flip if I want to, walk on my hands, and perform a few other things that “normal” people cannot perform. As a tactile and visceral person, I find it even more difficult to explain in words the reason why I move the way I move, why I do the things I do. But at the end of the day, I find strength in having the discipline to create amazing movements in my life, whether it is working on flips, flares, or my squat technique. We need to look beyond the pump, or performing giant sets in the gym, it is time to redefine what it means to be strong. Let’s discover strength (both physically and mentally) through movement.
Discovering an outlet for your strength to be expressed is the goal. It could be finding the strength in changing your habits, from cleaning up your diet, or to removing any negative stressful triggers within your life. These are just a couple of general examples. So go out there in the world, and start moving. Take control and appreciate the strength it takes to perform tasks you thought near impossible before, and appreciate then the discipline it takes to perform those tasks as well.
I’ve found what moves me. It’s my mission to enable others to do the same by taking control and rediscovering their own strength. If you find that this blog post resonates with you on any level, please “like” or “share” this post. All we need to do is take control of our actions and thoughts, and only then will we develop the strength to move as a community.