#SOL20 Day 5: Failure is…

Today was…a day to remember some lessons.

Today’s lesson was a lesson in…what should I call it? Patience? Self-forgiveness? Understanding? Revised expectations?

I went to the gym today hoping to score a new PR (personal record) on my deadlift.

Yeah, I guess that makes me a meathead. I’ll take it.

I really wanted this one for a friend of mine, who’s been ill and going through a LOT of tough stuff. We started at my gym around the same time, and we would always joke around about how regularly – and badly!- she would kick my behind.

Now, though, she’s not allowed to lift weights. Like, not ever again. How does a 30-year-old carry that news? I can’t imagine.

So now? Now we joke around about how I’m sneaking up on her old PR’s. And the biggest one is the deadlift. As of last spring, I was 5 pounds shy of her best lift.

Today was my day to test it out. Today I wanted catch up, and to send her a video of me celebrating, and to let her celebrate along with me.

I arrived at the gym to work, and the first several sets working up my weight felt great. I built up the barbell, confident that things were going great.

And then, they weren’t.

25 pounds below my target, I stalled. I tried three times at that weight, and NOTHING DOING. In gymspeak they call that failure. My great hope for today clearly wasn’t happening.

Yes, I was discouraged. Yes, I was disheartened.

But I am also grateful to myself. I have now lifted long enough to know that there are some days I’ll have great lifts, and there are some days I’ll fail. And failure simply means it didn’t work this time. I’ve worked to be strong, and no one can take that away.

So I’ll be back at the gym soon enough, plowing ahead with whatever it is that’s next.

And as for my friend? Ohhh, I’ll catch her. One day.

Just…not today.

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11 Responses to “#SOL20 Day 5: Failure is…”

  1. Megan Looney Says:

    I love how you built up your tangible mental enthusiasm as you started your piece today. I could picture your mental state when you entered the gym and how you were ready to meet this goal in honor of your friend.

    And yes, you will catch her. Yes you will. Right now, she probably can understand more than anyone else, that today wasn’t your day.

    • Lainie Levin Says:

      Very well said. In some ways, I’m almost reluctant to catch her for that very reason. Doesn’t stop me from trying, though!

      Thanks for the encouragement.

  2. Anna Maria Says:

    “For this thing we call “failure” is not the falling down, but the staying down.”–Mary Pickford

    You will catch her one day & I think it’s great that you’re to the point where you can recognize that some days are awesome. The Cloud 9 days is what I call them. I’ve had those days at the gym too and they frustrate me. But like you said tomorrow you’ll plow ahead.

    • Lainie Levin Says:

      Yes! Thank you. And I love the Mary Pickford quote. I’ll have to share it with my kiddos. =)

      • Anna Maria Says:

        I’m really big on quotes. I always share that with my kiddos when we hit that point in the year when they’re learning new math content.

  3. livinglife816287820 Says:

    Yes, we all know that feeling, sometimes a little too often. I love the reason why you are aiming for your PB. Difficult for your friend that she can’t do it anymore, but at least she has you as her friend! Like the way you have written this and the conclusion.

  4. Fran Haley Says:

    I find this acceptance one of the greatest forms of courage. Still aiming for that personal goal, still celebrating every step forward to attaining it, is so fulfilling. Nothing is as powerful as overcoming. Your slice was structured so well – smooth – good writing makes for effortless reading 🙂

  5. arjeha Says:

    As whit all types of exercise we nee to listen to our bodies. Yours was telling you “Not today” but on another day it will say, “Yes! Let’s go for it.” You will do it.

  6. Maureen Ingram Says:

    This is bittersweet. Such a tough road for your friend! Such sweet acceptance on your part. Beautiful.

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