One of the most important journeys you will make in your lifetime is on the path of self discovery.
Finding out who you are as a person, what fuels you, what discourages you, and how to use your strengths and weaknesses to your advantage is crucial if you want to reach your full potential.
Who is (fill in your name here)? Your entire outlook and path in life comes down to this question.
Living in the iron game is no different.
You need a training philosophy. It should fully encompass who you are and what your big picture goals are. No matter what, your philosophy is your guiding light in the gym. It dictates how you train, what you are training for, and how you help your peers.
Primal’s philosophy is simple. We train for real-world strength, performance, and mental toughness. We do not stray from this EVER.
Everything we do revolves around this philosophy. Not one movement in the course of a training session is wasted. Every cycle over the course of years of training is devoted to getting stronger, both mentally and physically. Because we know who we are and what our training values are, we have a clear vision of how to train.
When you don’t have a training philosophy, I can see it from a mile away.
You will start program hopping. You will start changing your goals every couple of weeks. You will be painfully susceptible to the “next big thing”. What happens is you become a jack of all trades but a master of none. This is not a good place to be and will surely halt any measurable long-term progress.
“Therein lies the strength of water: it cannot be touched by a hammer or ripped to shreds by a knife. The strongest sword in the world cannot scar its surface. The river adapts itself to whatever route proves possible, but the river never forgets its one objective: the sea. So fragile at its source, it gradually gathers the strength of other rivers it encounters. And after a certain point, its power is absolute.”
You are the river. Your training philosophy is the sea. You may borrow knowledge from all the other “rivers” out there, but you must learn how to align that knowledge with your philosophy.
Throughout my many years of training I’ve encountered a million different ways to do things. I’ve crossed and swam many “rivers” and picked up a lot of knowledge along the way. You will see many different styles of training in my programs and advice I give to you: bodybuilding, strongman, powerlifting, bodyweight, plyometrics, animal walks, sport specific drills, sprinting, the list goes on and on. But I know exactly how to take from all of those different styles and align them into the Primal philosophy of getting bigger, stronger, faster, and more efficient.
This is why it is so important that you develop your own philosophy. It allows you to see the big picture in your training life. It helps you understand how all of the different styles can play a part in furthering your cause, but it also helps you see how they don’t fit and what not to do.
When you have a philosophy, you have a spiritual connection with your training. Your training will take on a whole new meaning and it will reach much deeper into your psych. It gives you a sense of purpose and allows your goals to define your training, and not your training to define your goals. You will have a much clearer vision of how to do things and why you do them.
So Primal Nation, take a look in the mirror today. Ask yourself, “Who am I? What am I training for?”
Think hard and deep. Be honest with yourself and figure out what you stand for. Maybe you don’t have all of the answers now. After all, it took me years to develop my philosophy. But at least start down the path of self discovery.