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When Failure Is The Right Option

50! It was a pretty awesome feeling. It took me some time, it took a lot of effort, it even took some failures along the way but I had achieved my goal of getting 50 reps with the 100 pound Burly in our Clean and Press test. You might think to yourself, “so?”, but this goal was a lot more than a physical one. The lessons that I learned and others are finding seem to be a huge key in really achieving some pretty cool things beyond just a physical test.

In the current age of social media we hear about a lot of successes. Being on the outside looking in it can appear as though so many people have that perfect life. Things ALWAYS seem to go their way, they never have to overcome any real challenges. This is of course far the real world that we actually live in.

Some psychologists have even said that this unrealistic appearance of people’s lives can play havoc on our own self-esteem. Why don’t our lives look as cool, why aren’t we as successful, and so on. The truth is that no one is successful without their fare shares of failures. People like Donald Trump have gone bankrupt. Michael Jordan lost the Detroit Pistons several times before breaking through his first championship. Heck, wars are a result of a collection of battles won and lost by both sides.

My point? Failures are going to occur, they aren’t the bad things in life. Trust me, I have had a TON of failures. Something as simple as not making the starting line-up on a team, going through a divorce, or learning some hard lessons about business along the way.

What is worse than failing? Not even trying!

I can’t tell you how many people tell me of these grand things they have planned. Whether it is for their fitness or life. When I ask them what action steps they have taken towards achieving them, most say, “well, I haven’t started yet!”

The fear of failure is a valid one, but it shouldn’t stop you from trying.

I’ll be honest, when I set forth our Clean and Press test I had my hesitations. What if I can’t pass it and others can? What does that mean about my fitness? What does it mean about my ability to develop fitness programs? What does it mean about that determination I use to pride myself upon?

It may seem silly, but when we put any challenge before ourselves it means we are making ourselves accountable. I find that one of the best way to achieve any goal is to tell others the goal you are setting for yourself. Yea, it puts pressure on you, it makes you re-think if you want to skip out when it is easy or push yourself to be a bit uncomfortable.

When I did the Clean and Press test in October with our DVRT Master Instructors many of them were shocked. They told me how they didn’t think I was going to do it! What type of leader would I be if I wouldn’t go through the fire with them? I had a lot on the line. If I failed miserably I am sure my credibility would have been hurt. I could have taken the easy route and skipped out, but what example would I be setting? The responsibility I had to them was a strong motivator for me to keep on track.

This goal wasn’t easy, in fact, I didn’t even know if it was possible! Every single time I performed the test I would gain butterflies in my stomach. I knew it was going to be rough, it was going to require not only all my focus but every single ounce of determination I possessed and still it was going to be a rough test.

Did I fail? A whole bunch of times! There were times where I thought it was just never going to happen. Fortunately I had given myself a deadline, an end date where I didn’t feel like skipping a training session was an option. Giving less than a great effort each workout would only be a “fake” workout. I had to adjust to the challenges as my needs changed. I found out what worked, what didn’t, I bounced ideas off some pretty incredible people to get insights that maybe I just hadn’t discovered.

However, when I hit that 50 there was something pretty special. I felt I had achieved something pretty awesome. Sure, part if it was not everyone can or even will try to do it, yet, it was a bit deeper. I was really pumped because it would have been easy for me to quit. Realistically it wouldn’t have impacted my business, my friendships, or much at all in my life if I had just said I won’t try, or I give up.

The fact that I didn’t do this though was far more powerful. I didn’t do it to prove anything to anyone but myself. I wanted to know that I had both physical and mental strength. I wanted to know I was a darn good coach. I wanted to know that I was willing to be a leader. You know what, to my surprise more people did respect those things about me.

Recently, my friend and colleague, Robert Dos Remedios, accomplished the same goal. I am damn proud of him. Not because this is a bad ass test, he is a heck of an athlete even long after his playing days. No, I am proud of him because he could have never tried it, he could have said that I was crazy for setting such a standard, he could have quit and really no one would have ever known. Instead he stayed with it, he trained hard, smart, problem solved, and ending up nailing it. I could tell he felt good and I felt good for him! This is the stuff that really matters.

Just this past weekend we ran the Clean and Press test for the first time in our DVRT Certification. Not everyone passed, but everyone tried hard. For a few different reasons people didn’t pass, but I was impressed with how many had made such significant improvements. It was especially amazing to watch Carmela D’Arrigo. He is a woman that isn’t a fitness pro, but obviously likes

sandbag training

Seriously impressive work by Carmela D’Arrigo on the Clean and Press test

to workout out. Her boyfriend, Aaron, had worked with her and set forth a plan. They worked hard and it paid off. Carmela became the FIRST woman to hit 40 repetitions of the Clean and Press test in 5 minutes with a 60 pound Strength Ultimate Sandbag.

I wasn’t impressed just because she accomplished the goal, but it was obvious during the test that she faced some challenges. A missed rep here, falling behind her pace there, she could have easily mailed it in, but she didn’t. She dug deep and pushed herself to some challenging place. In the end she showed me more than just strength or her conditioning, but that she has the ability to dig deep inside herself to do some pretty awesome things.

I tell you these stories because I want you to see what we do as more than just a way to give you another workout. There are a lot of “challenge workouts”, there are all types of “programs” that promise magical things but are just banking on the fact you can’t concentrate for more than five seconds on something. We wanted something better, stronger, and bigger than something is made for those that are lazy. That is why we are giving you this free DVRT coaching e-book to help motivate to try the Clean and Press challenge yourself. Give yourself an honest four weeks and see if you can conquer this beast! I guarantee you that the results will go well beyond some self-gratification! Download for FREE HERE

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