Life-Fitness Lessons: Accept failure

Failure is not the end. To be honest, if you haven’t failed at some point then you probably haven’t been trying hard enough. If you always take the safe path and stay well within your comfort zone then the chances are you always succeed. However, you probably won’t achieve anything particularly great either.

It’s through mistakes that you actually can grow.
You have to get bad
in order to get good.
– Paula Scher

Your goals should be achievable, but not easy. There will always be bike rides where you have nothing in your legs and you plod home with a disappointing distance or a poor time. Or a run where you just grind to a halt and face the shame of being the one in running gear who’s walking home. Maybe you’re trying to lose weight and think you’ve had a good week, but the scales tell a different story and feel like giving up.

Accept the failure and learn any lessons – Did you prepare properly? Should you even done that workout? – and move on. I can pretty much guarantee that the next workout will be great.

And when you do set yourself that seemingly impossible challenge and everything comes together, well, there’s no feeling like it. That buzz from that new distance record or when you seem to grow wings and smash your PB. There really is nothing like that feeling.

I recall years ago when Nigel Mansell was being interviewed and he was discussing his F1 world championship win. Just after the presentation he described how Ayrton Senna approached him. “Feels great doesn’t it?” he asked. “Sure does” replied Nigel. Ayrton slapped him on the back and whispered to him “Now you know why I’m such a bastard”.


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