Make The Best Of A Bad Situation

So there I was, ready to lift. It was a light day for my squats, so I’m ready to bang out a quick five reps and move on with my day. I get under the bar and lift it up, take my walkout, and squat. I feel myself break parallel and push the weight up.

It was about at that point I thought to myself, “Self, this feels heavy as hell.”

Despite it being a light day for my main lift, I just couldn’t manage to get things going. I had a lot of potential reasons why. One could be a combination of having been sick earlier this week and not fully recovered, coupled with prolonged caloric restriction as well as my recent motivation issues.

Needless to say, it was shaping up as a bad day…so it was time to make the best of a bad situation.

You see, I’d gotten a little lucky today.

This morning, FedEx delivered my latest toy, a new push/pull/drag sled from Titan. Yes, I’ll offer up a review in due course, but for now, let’s talk about why this is relevant on my bad day.

To start with, today was squats. Now, I like squats. I used to hate them, but then I developed Stockholm Syndrome and came to love the stupid things. They’re not my favorite exercise, mind you, but I like them well enough.

Except when a light weight feels like it’s heavy.

Anyway, I did what I could with squats, even though they sucked, and after the workout was done, I needed to do something for the strongman portion of my training. Now, this could be anything, but it should focus on the lower body since it’s a squat day.

And here I am with a brand new sled.

See where I’m going with this one?

I unpacked the damn thing, threw a 45 lbs plate on there, hooked up the harness, then starting running.

In my backyard, I’ve got a 20-yard section marked out. It’s not a lot of space, but I don’t have a whole lot of yard, either. Anyway, I sprinted full-on for 20 yards, then turned and walked back for 20 yards.

I then rested a bit and did it again.

I made five total round trips and got an OK cardio workout in, but something else happened.

I had a little bit of fun.

That’s something I’ve been lacking for far too long. I haven’t really been having all that much fun with my lifting. I never really thought about it, but it’s true. I guess I figured I wasn’t having fun because of all the other stuff, but what if I was having all the other stuff because I wasn’t having fun?

It’s a thought.

In fact, it’s enough of a thought that I think it’s time I spent a little bit of my brainpower looking at how I can make my workouts a little more fun while still getting the work in. Now, some of that may involve the stuff I mentioned earlier this week. For example, having friends to train with could make it a lot more fun to train.

I also need to reexamine my workout routine. Much as I respect the program itself, it hasn’t exactly been a boon to my training. In retrospect, I kind of wonder if this was geared toward more experienced lifters who already have a good base to build from.

It’ll be something for me to delve into this weekend, that’s for sure.

But the key here is to remember that if you’re having a bad day lifting, there’s no reason you have to let it stay bad. Try something, anything. Pull a sled, push a prowler, jump rope, hop on the rowing machine, anything at all.

Basically, don’t be afraid to try something new. Try to own the day despite the bad.

It’s what I did and it worked. It’s not the answer to everything, mind you, but if everything’s going to crap anyway, do your work, then have some fun.

Life’s too short and you’re going to be lifting for too long to actually start to dislike it, so why not?

Author: Tom

Tom is a husband, father, novelist, opinion writer, and former Navy Corpsman currently living in Georgia. He's also someone who has lost almost 60 pounds in a safe, sustainable way, so he knows what he's talking about.

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