On Commitment

Mardi Gras was just a couple days ago. Every year, Christians will spend a day in celebration, right before spending 40 days refocusing and rededicating themselves. Many make Lenten Resolutions (giving up candy, television, swearing) to help spend time improving themselves. After the 40 days are over, there is another celebration, Easter, and then it's back to life and routines as usual.

Mainstream Media often leads people to criticizing those who indulge in seasonal fitness events such as the New Years Resolutions crowd, yo-yo dieters, the beach season crowd, and on and on. However, they also miss the power of the opportunities for people. Sometimes we need an event to jar us out of our everyday routine, we need a goal to reach for, something to help us dedicate ourselves for 6 to 8 weeks. And when we reach that goal, we feel better about ourselves.

It is a very difficult feat to be constantly pushing and improving all of the time. All the way through college, we have breaks throughout the year (fall break, winter break, spring break, summer break). Seasons change, we take vacations or long weekends to re-charge our lives.

Physically most athletes go through the same cycles. Professional athletes train differently in-season and out. They often have fatigue from an intense season, that sometimes takes weeks or months to recover from. These rest and recovery periods are just as important to well-being as the periods of hard work.

It is important not to go over the edge during these rest periods either. They also need to be done with a goal of "recovery" rather than a goal of "doing absolutely nothing". For much of the year, you can focus your workout on having fun, learning something new, and recharging your life.

However, once or twice a year, it is a good thing to set a goal and go after it intensely. You can return your training back to a more leisurely pace at the end. But for 6 to 8 weeks, it's good to dedicate towards your self improvement, and go after it.