The Shift To The Suck…

Polar Vortex is what the call it and I suppose it has something to do with Eskimos, Santa and serious cold.  The Tuesday night before it crept into Kansas City I was in a tank top and out for a run at 70 degrees.  I was out that night walking the dog and the cold northern wind was pushing in.  The next morning it was 30 degrees.  Two days ago we set the all time record low for any day ever in November.

I know this much about the so called Polar Vortex it sucks for being a fire fighter, gym rat and all around active and outdoor kind of person.  Throwing water when it’s freezing is miserable.  I’ve found that doing it a few months after breaking your hand and having a bunch of metal in that hand is even worse.

There has to be a period of acclimation that goes along with this type of transition.  You know, the one where you go from tail end of summer to the depths of winter and skip fall all together.  The transition is painful and sudden, like most of my breakups.  Problem is, this time it really is me and not you.

The Polar Vortex took with it my soul and motivation with it down south, it probably is floating in the Gulf of Mexico somewhere today.

Somehow I’ve managed to wrangle and build it back up though since the initial push.

The key to being a strong athlete and getting the very best out of your body?  Consistency.  Consistency is KING.  My first rule in the equation and pretty much the only one I’ve ever adhered to… consistently.  Irony defined?

How does consistency happen?  You keep showing up and when you fall off that wagon you do something about it.  As soon as you fall, you bounce once or twice, dust yourself right up and then race to catch it, jump up and get back on.

Basically you take the hit, surge, force yourself into submission and get back to work.  I’ve done it in the past two days and to make it hurt.  I’ve submit to the suck.  What happens when you don’t?  You become that person that January 1st are quilted into thinking you should do something about it and by next Spring you’re a mess.  A year from now you are a shell of your current self and the mountain in front of you to climb is seen as too steep.

Know anyone like this?

The change in the seasons is coming, it always will.  It is simply another obstacle and barrier that it self imposed.  And as they say where I live, if you don’t like the weather wait around a few hours.  It’ll change and something new will come up.

I’m not talking about just the current Polar Vortex and if you think I am either you are missing the point or I’m not doing a good job of explaining it.  I’m talking about obstacles, barriers, excuses and how they keep you from being consistent and keeping you from your goals.

Great athletes are not just consistent, they are also great at overcoming these these things.

People come to me all the time and want to know what to eat, what to lift, how to run, bike or swim.  They ask me what they should wear, where they should work out and anything else.  When I fire back with boring stuff like consistency and pacing oneself they scoff and go back to some place on the internet with a guy who has shredded abs and huge biceps (you know like mine) and is selling something, anything that they want to buy.

You don’t actually “buy” consistency.  You earn it when you work through the suck and embrace it.  Great goals and distances only happen when you take the first step and then keep on stepping it out.

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