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Pushing- and Knowing- Your Limits
How far should you push yourself?
Here's the latest biweekly Torch newsletter, where we compile our experiences for you to learn from right into your inbox.
Push yourself, but know your limits.
Did you know that Keith Richards insured his hands for roughly 1.5 million dollars? Being lead guitarist of the Rolling Stones, that's no surprise. Money aside, what would he have done if he broke a hand- or worse, lost a finger?
A lot of famous people have said some form of the adage, "push yourself but respect the boundaries of others" (or at least, that's my paraphrasing of a message I've gained from several places). I really like to take this to heart: I try to fight my own tiredness moreso than trying to push others past their exclamations of tiredness. When I'm learning something new and want to give it, I just tell myself, "5 more minutes then you can take a break". When I got back into running, each day I would try for just 10 more steps than the last time. Why? Often times, when we feel we want to rest, that's just our mind; that's just our conscious self saying "ok you're uncomfortable so you can stop now".
Now, to an extent, I believe we should push our limits. For example, when I exercise- whether that be running or martial arts- I want to figure out my limits now versus when it matters. If I end up being in a position in which I need to defend myself or others (god forbid), I'd rather know how far I can go than find out in the moment.
Thing is... I took it too far.
Listen to Your Body
I should have listened to my body, but because I became so obsessed with finding my limits something gave way.
I've been doing this workout program- a link will be in the bonus resources section of the newsletter below- and it involves a lot of pushups and shadowboxing. Long story short, last Thursday I realized that, 8 pushups in, I was practically doing the entire thing with my right arm.
When I stood up to reach for my phone with my left hand, my arm wouldn't raise about chest level. I had a doctor's appointment today and I was told I likely have a rotator cuff injury. "No pushups, no karate, no boxing".
Like Keith Richards, my hands are important to me- typing, piano, writing, etc.- but my shoulder is as well. And yes, singular: karate, boxing, and more importantly archery. If I do serious damage to my left shoulder, I have to learn how to shoot righty.
So... my story aside, listen to your body. During the workout program I was on I really pushed myself; to muscle failure on many occasions. I should have listened to my body, but because I became so obsessed with finding my limits something gave way.
It Applies Everywhere
If something is challenging, fight it. If you're struggling to get up early or go to bed on time, push yourself; put restrictions in place (e.g. alarms that require pictures to stop, your computer force closes at a certain time). If something persists, listen to it. Think through your actions: "ok I've done a LOT of upper body exercises... perhaps I should rest myself".
As someone who feels as though I make excuses too often, I now need to learn when those excuses aren't actually excuses, but reasons, and I wanted to share that with all of you tonight.
Thanks for reading, have a fantastic week ahead, and stay awesome!
🔎 Some Bonus Resources
Go ahead and include any music suggestions or articles you've read in the last couple of days/weeks that you want to share with your reader here.
🏃♂️ Darebee — Darebee is a website with a TON of self-paced (free!) fitness programs. It's pretty fantastic. I was working through Boxer Prime. If you want something to push yourself or just get you off the couch for half an hour a day., definitely look over Darebee's programs.
🎵 Japan Sinks Soundtrack — Japan Sinks: 2020 on Netflix is an incredibly movie series. The book it is based off of- Japan Sinks- was also an amazing read. The music on this track gets me and the ending credits theme is something that gives me chills every time I listen to it.
👨💻 Machine Learning Tips (Soon™) — So I recently hit 1k subscribers on YouTube (woohoo!) and I had someone comment about what my advice might be for anyone looking to get into Machine Learning. It's a bit late this week, but sometime on Wednesday the video should be out, so check out the channel if that sounds up your alley!
📄 Latest on Torch Blogs
You can find out blogs HERE! Below is a list of the latest and greatest on The Torch
Thanks for reading! If you learned something, took away a lesson, or just overall enjoyed, we'd appreciate it if you shared this newsletter with a friend or family member!