‘It’s all in the mind’, ‘The athlete showed incredible determination’, ‘she/he has incredible inner strength’.
These are all comments we hear regularly about top sports performers. Recent examples spring instantly to mind. Think of England footballer Chloe Kelly’s determination to get fit for the Euros after a career-threatening anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) injury had made her doubtful about playing the game again, let alone scoring the winning goal for England.
McColgan makes it fourth time lucky
Or look to the Commonwealth Games. There was Eilish McColgan striding home to victory in the 10,000 metres. Pain was etched all over her face as she virtually threw herself at the line but that was a win that had come after four attempts at a Commonwealth Games medal in four different distance races.
England swimming sensation Adam Peaty was a beaten man after he finished fourth in the 100 metres breaststroke. Peaty had been battling back from a foot injury and just didn’t have the stamina to challenge for the medal places. He gave an angry press interview and looked to have given up on any Commonwealth Games glory. The next evening Peaty returned to the pool and won the 50 metres breast stroke in emphatic style.
Strength of mind developed in gym
In all these examples, the athletes have shown remarkable levels of resilience and fortitude. We often read or hear that these are the attitudes of champions, which implies they are characteristics possessed by champions. While there is undoubtedly an element of genetic make-up in our levels of resilience, we would argue that much of the ability to draw on every ounce of energy or strength from our bodies is a characteristic that is developed, shaped and honed in the gym.
At Kelsey Kerridge it is something we see every day and yet we are always surprised, amazed and delighted when it happens.
Whether it is someone lifting a weight they have never managed before, achieving a personal best on the running machine, completing a circuit for the first time or managing a handstand. The delight on our guests’ faces when they have completed an exercise or challenge that has been out of their reach until now – well that is true dedication and resilience.
Nothing is impossible
One thing we think our guests learn when they come to the gym is that nothing is impossible. Sometimes things take a little while to click but if you set a goal and you are prepared to give it your all, then you too can have your Eilish McColgan moment.
Speaking after her 10,000 metres win, the 31-year-old said she had not been sure that either her legs or lungs would stand up to the final kick as she fought towards the finishing line. The crowds played their part as they roared her home, but that moment of glory can be traced all the way back to the hours of effort that the athlete had spent training in the gym.
The message our gym team would like to share with you is a simple one: While not everyone is looking for a 10,000 metre gold medal, by regularly pushing yourself to go faster, to lift more or to train harder, you too can reach levels you hadn’t thought possible.