To become incredibly strong, healthy, and capable is an amazing gift...so much so that you feel the need to go out and convert the rest of the world to this lifestyle. The way we workout combined with a Paleo way of eating produces amazing and potent results. It’s not so much just working out and eating right, it takes on a lifestyle. You stop caring so much about what is on TV and your attention turns towards becoming faster, stronger, harder to kill…better.
These are all very good things. However, just be advised of the world you live in. Not everyone is ready to accept the harsh reality and truth that there is no easy way, that to get what you want in life requires nothing less than your absolute best, that life is a meritocracy. Sometimes your sheer desire and enthusiasm to help out people can do more harm than good, driving away the exact people you want to help the most.
Many of you are just like me. For the majority of your life you thought you knew what you were doing. You went to the gym, you ran, you lifted…boring, repetitive, nothing was happening…you weren’t excited…you were just existing, not looking to challenge and conquer. Factor in the “nutrition” you were eating that was approved by weight watchers/Jenny Craig/”experts”… then one day a very good thing happened. You stumbled across kettlebells, Crossfit, Paleo/Primal eating…and life changed for the better and I wanted to share the same thing with my friends, family, and community. PSKC was opened…and the rest is history.
Now that you carry this gift around with you, you want to share it. That is awesome and I encourage that…the success that PSKC has had is exactly for that reason…you all referring people to the gym. But sometimes…people just don’t want to listen and even accuse your/our “way” of being dangerous.
Doctors say deadlifts will hurt you. Dieticians claim eating meat, veggies, nuts, seeds, some fruit, and no sugar is unhealthy and dangerous. Clearly we know this isn’t the case. We experience and see the results backed by the bloodwork, pounds lost, strength gained, and just general good feeling we have...each and every day…so what do we do when our “gift” is attacked? Much like you’ll read in a moment, early on I would have lived to argue, attack, and accuse the other person. But in the end…it really doesn’t do anything of value.
Sometimes you need to learn that “fighting fire with fire” isn’t the best approach…sometimes the best way to fight fire is with cool, calm water. And sometimes you just need to understand you’ll never win a fight with a skunk who is only concerned with pissing their ignorance all over the place.
So what do you do? You pick up the bar and deadlift then go eat some meat and veggies…you smile, be the kind and caring person there to help, you continue to be the example for others to follow. If you come across as the “my way is the only way/your way is stupid” person, you will automatically turn away many of the people who need to be helped the most. No one wants to be preached at and told their “way” is dumb. Your actions will always speak louder than words (spoken and/or written in the forms of posts/comments).
I encourage you all to read the below post from Practice Crossfit. As usual, it is better written than anything I could have crafted and expresses a very good lesson.
"She crossed the rubber floor dusted in chalk with a confidence few her age could dream of. Her generous brown eyes caught mine as if to betray her youth by saying, “I’m too young to be feeling this old.”
Not even out of high school and yet she sat beside me like it was just part of the routine. As if a connection that had existed for centuries somehow was realized in seconds. She had a story…we all have a story.
I could tell by her gaze she required answers. The connection was made because I continue to have the same look of disbelief perpetually fixed upon my demeanor. Now she had it. She rested, unbroken by life, still majestic in her ability to forgo judgment in favor of hope in man-kind. She sat peering at me for advice. Without saying a word she asked, “will it always be this way?”
“Did you hear what happened to me at school”, our CrossFit teen says to me after we all WOD together as family. “Yes”, I said.
“Today my teacher singled me out in class because of my beliefs. She said the Paleo diet isn’t healthy and that in the long term, myself, my Mom and everyone else following diets like it, will eventually die of a heart attack”, our CrossFit teen said.
“My teacher even attacked you and others like you”. She said “trainers aren’t Doctors and we shouldn’t listen to them about matters of health.”
“What did you say”, I asked as I began to notice how tired her eyes were. Clearly she had revisited this story many times. Clearly she wasn’t looking to tell me what she said. She was asking, “what should I have said”?
Years ago I would have been infuriated. Not only was someone I care for being outwardly attacked for her opinion, but so was the life I love, and the truth I hold so dear. Years ago I would have replied to our CrossFit teen, “When is your next class”. That was years ago.
While looking into those youthful eyes yet to be trivialized by boring adult banter and meaningless relationships I said, “This is just the beginning”.
“Your life will always be harder if you chose to be on the side of truth, but living, to you, will always be worth it. Much more so than people like your teacher will ever know”, I said.
This is what our youth have to look forward to. A war between those who practice the truth, and those who are voluntarily inoculated by the lies.
We must do everything we can to properly prepare our young ones for this, we must never shelter them form it. Nor should we defend them against it. It is their willingness to fight that will make them great. Its our lack of belief in their ability that will make them weak.
I could tell our young CrossFitter, and even the elders backing her wanted me to be angry. They wanted a brave-heart Esq-kinda speech preparing the troops for victory. But war never changes anyone, and nor will we if every-time someone disagrees with our way we argue instead of educate.
“Aren’t you angry”, someone asked. “No” I said. “You can’t hate them for believing the lies, you can only teach them the truth by example.”
In fact, not only should we avoid anger, we should employ sympathy. Outsiders to our way are living in state of perpetual darkness. We are the light. Even if we are just passing by.
Make no mistake I am in no way saying we should not vehemently defend our path, as it is right, just, and glorious. I am saying as we walk, some will always try to keep us back. We need never conform to them. Nor do we need to give them audience. We simply show them the truth, then we continue about our way enlisting followers in every town, city and state across the country. If we turn every corner to argue every naysayer we will miss the majority by debating the minority.
The hardest lesson I am learning more and more everyday is that fighting is more walking away to teach others willing to learn, than it is arguing with those unwilling to listen.
Leaders throughout history were able to impact the world by the millions because they did not waste their time on negative haters who want nothing more than partnership in hell.
Those willing to change the world are those willing to speak the truth when it is not fun popular or acceptable. They are those willing to cut their loses and continue no matter how alone they may feel.
I applauded our CrossFit teen for standing her ground, and I urged her to continue no matter the cost. Take pride in your ability to move on everyday looking to find the lost, and take pity in those you leave behind simply because they aren’t ready to be found.
To my CrossFit youth, and all other youths like her; you are surrounded by adults trying to accomplish little more than a comfortable death. The greatest gift I can give you is the knowledge that you don’t have to be anything like them. You are free."