Don’t Be Afraid of Your Inner Hulk
Believe it or not we all have a Hulk in us. I learned years ago that who I become when I am at the gym is completely different from who I naturally am in my out of gym life. I like to think of myself as a laid back type of guy. I don’t walk around as if I’m wearing the brightest colors in the room but I can be social when the mood strikes. It wasn’t until last year that I realized there is a whole different side of me that was hiding. For a while I was away from my natural environment. I’m a gym person. I am at home when I am surrounded by weight plates and barbells. It’s my second home. I am complete when I get to escape the everyday grind for a couple of hours. When the gym doors close behind me, something magical is about to happen.
One day I found myself a little worried by what was staring back at me in the mirror. When you’re training there comes a moment when a workout just feels incredible. It hits every muscle you were looking to blitz. Your motivation is at an all-time high. What you may not realize is what you look like to the outside world. Midway through a tough leg workout I noticed that my facial muscles resembled that of an angry person who was just told to go f*ck off. My hands were clenched into tight fists and my feet could not be still. My legs began to shake and the music playing in my ears began to feel like a natural soundtrack of my life. No one said a word to me. People were looking at me as if my skin was slowly starting to turn green (Ha! see what I did there). I stared at the weights sitting beside me as if I had just punished them. Then I realized I had transformed into my other persona. I was the “gym me”.
I’m sure you’ve experienced this before at some point. When you find yourself in a situation that you know is difficult but gather up the fortitude and courage to overcome it. When you lift something that you know is too heavy but you’re determined to get it above your head. You have lived this moment before. It’s as if your whole being morphed into a different version of the person you know yourself to normally be. But you know what? You should never be afraid to let that person out. It’s a part of you.
Take Jennifer Walters for instance. One day she was a successful attorney until she was faced with death. With a little help from her cousin Bruce Banner, she overcame death and grew into a dual personality that would carry her into one of the greatest heroes the world has ever known. Jennifer Walters knew that, although there was a second version of herself, she could use it to do things that the typical Jennifer Walters couldn’t. She didn’t run away and hide in a cave at the edge of the planet. The She-Hulk became a part of her life. That is what your fitness persona is. It is your Hulk.
You have a goal you want to achieve. You have a vision of yourself you hope will become a reflection in the mirror. You have things in life you want to accomplish and sometimes it may require a little more out of you than you are used to. But fear not, you have that strength; that courage; that will inside you just waiting to be released. Whether you are aware of it or not it’s in there. How do you release it? You have to let go and lose control a little. You have to face situations head on and not always take the safest route. You have to be willing to sacrifice a little pain for your greater good. It can be uncomfortable at times, both emotionally and physically, but when that your inner Hulk comes out there are no limits to what you can achieve.
I am going to be your Bruce Banner. Here is what I want you to do. The next time you are faced with a situation that seems difficult or is outside of your comfort zone (gym or not) I want you to take a second and close your eyes. I want you to remove thoughts pertaining to obstacles you must overcome or quick escapes. I just want you to think about the result. What will you feel as a result of having gone toe to toe with your current situation? Does it inch you closer towards your end goal? Will it build courage? Will you feel stronger? Will it matter to you?
If your answer is yes then I want you to open your eyes and act. Forget your fear of failure. Failure is a result of having tried. Trying opens the door for success. By the time you’re done fighting you will feel different. You may not recognize who you are for a moment. You will always be you but you have successfully unleashed your Hulk. Don’t be afraid of your Hulk. You need it and most importantly it will always protect you. It fights alongside you. With it, you’re unstoppable. No gym is safe. No workout is too difficult. No obstacle is impossible. No goal is unattainable.