|Posted by Strength & Speed on August 1, 2016 at 8:45 AM|
“Live a little”, I despise the phrase. It is uttered by people with no ability to plan to put in hard work for a long term goal. It is thrown at me on a monthly basis, sometimes even more. “Here have some .” It varies each time I am offered an unhealthy drink/food, sometimes being as simple as a slice of pizza, other times some dessert, all the way to alcohol or cigars. Sometimes it is an invitation to stay out an extra couple of hours at a social event. After a polite decline to their offer, their inevitable response is “Come on live a little.”
But my response is the same, “I agree…you live a little.” Instead of wasting your time getting drunk every night and slamming down XL pies from Dominos, you live a little. Set a goal that takes more than 10 minutes to achieve and cannot just be purchased. Work hard for something that requires months or years of successive effort. After a half decade of drinking, partying and eating crappy foods what will they have to show for all their living? An extra 10 lbs? Health problems? A bunch of memories that are blurred by the haze of alcohol? Store purchased items that hold little or no intrinsic value?
What they fail to understand is that I am living a little, actually that is not right, I am living a lot. The only difference is the ability to delay gratification. By suffering during training I get my prize when I cross that finish line on race day. Sometimes the finish line comes in the form of a high placing but other times it is just performing at a level above what I thought was physically capable. Pleasurable experiences that require no work and can be repeated easily, will quickly lose their level of excitement. Compare that to something that you work hard for that takes months and is very difficult. The contrast and level of enjoyment with the end results can be extreme.
My living also comes in the form of my projects including Strength & Speed, my articles for Mud Run Guide and my book (soon to be books) on OCR. My living comes in the form of spending time with my family and going on family trips. My living comes in the form of being successful at my job. My living comes in the form of being able to balance all of those things and still be an athlete. So I say again, “You live a little.”
I understand why people do all those things (drink, smoke, party, eat unhealthy), they are just not for me at this point in my life. Just as I understand why they may not want to train for four months to set a new marathon PR or finish an ultra-Obstacle Course Race. However, every time I see them drinking I do not tell them to live a little and give them a speech on how they are wasting their life not enjoying things. Let’s try to show some respect in the other direction.