Embracing Discomfort

We all want to be better, and we all have room for improvement. So why is personal growth so challenging when we have the desire and capacity? To improve, we have to push the boundaries of our comfort level. We have to move away from the familiar and dive into the unknown. To sustain us through the discomfort, we need a supporting structure. This structure can take many shapes. At its core it needs to facilitate our ability to keep pushing even when we feel overwhelmed.

The idea that growth starts where discomfort begins is anathema to our natural state. We are pleasure seekers. At every opportunity our brains are hardwired to maximize our pleasure and minimize our pain. That same hardwiring served us well when it was necessary for our survival. Fortunately, our survival no longer depends on that hardwiring. Therein lies the problem.

We see the motif of embracing discomfort as a prerequisite for growth often in our culture and history. In our literature we see the hero’s journey. The protagonist is charged with a perilous quest filled with exotic beasts or haunted forests to achieve his/her destiny.

In our economic markets to secure a future we have to save money and invest smartly. Saving is the conscious choice of sacrificing our present enjoyment for even more enjoyment at some point in the future.

In order to get stronger we have to push our bodies towards discomfort and in some cases exhaustion. The pain and discomfort is palatable, but we do it because we know it will make us better.

In my own life, I’ve made the decision to embrace discomfort. The outcome has almost always been positive. When I entered college, I decided to join the University of Tampa’s Swim Team. At the time, I had not swam competitively since 7th grade. Despite the inherent challenge, I made the decision to try out for a walk on position. I made the team and ended my career as a 4x All American and school record holder. In order to transition from novice to expert, I had to constantly push the boundaries of my comfort zone.

I was able to sustain that level of intensity because of the team’s supportive nature. I made a commitment. I practiced deliberately and I received constant feedback on my performance. No athlete has achieved great success on their own. There is always group of supporting actors.

At Cigar City CrossFit we’ve intentionally designed the athlete experience to provide a supportive community so that you can maximize your gains. Our programming is methodical and laid out months in advance. Every athlete has access to a Zen Planner account, which allows for easy performance tracking so you can measure your improvement empirically. We regularly invest in building the community by sponsoring happy hours, social outings and a buddy system to help new members acclimate quickly.

Our goal is to provide you with the best possible support structure so you can endure the discomfort and get the results you want. Whether you’re new to working out, or you’re training to be a Games athlete, we’d love for you to check out what we’re building here at Cigar City CrossFit.

In Health!

Coach Verdi

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