Life Lessons From The Iron – Jeromy Bryk

Jeromy Bryk – @Bryk_Squuaadd

Its not uncommon to hear seasoned lifters say that you can learn a lot about life from spending time with the iron. I agree, the gym has taught me many life lessons and has molded me into the person I am today. I say it all the time that I highly doubt I would have had built the relationships or have had the opportunities that I have been granted without the dedication that I have had from lifting weights. I most definitely would not have found a career I love as a personal trainer or had the opportunity to share my experiences on Ironvalleybarbell.net without the lessons I have learned from the gym. Here are just five of the life lessons I have learned from the iron..

  1. Delayed Gratification: Success in the gym doesn’t happen overnight, anyone who has put in the hours can attest to this. Oftentimes the true rewards of working out in the gym are seen months, if not years after taking the first step and committing to your journey. I like to think I am using this lesson wisely in my life right now with beginning my career as a personal trainer. I am challenged daily to do more, to learn more and help more people. But I know I will not become a world class trainer overnight, but rather over the course of years, by taking the small steps daily and enjoying the process. Without first learning delayed gratification in the gym I may have lost faith in this journey a long time ago, but instead I am confident with where I am headed, celebrating progress along the way.  
  2. Persistence: After graduating college last May, I didn’t exactly expect to just waltz into a job and live happily ever after. However, what I didn’t expect was not only struggling to find a job but the self doubt and fear that comes along with it. Although I had made my mind up long ago that I wanted to be a full time personal trainer and make my money through helping others, not being able to find a job in the field and hearing those close to me tell me I should find a job outside the Fitness industry because I “didn’t have what it takes” made me question my ability at the time. It would have been very easy for me to give in, but every time Ive had to grind through a last rep in the gym prepared me for moments like these. I dug my heels in and stayed the course and ended up getting a full time job at a local gym. I believe that the persistence that I used in the gym was practice for a moment like this in the real world.
  3. How to Work Smarter: Certainly I’ve learned how to sweat and how to work harder in the gym, but working out in general has helped me to work smarter. Writing workout programs for both myself and for my personal training clients requires me to break a mental sweat every day as building the right program properly aligned with a desired goal requires extreme attention to detail, and a consistent desire to expand my knowledge base. This level of critical thinking is certainly useful in anything that we do. 
  4. How to Deal With Fear: In my opinion , there’s not much in life exciting or scarier than walking out a squat with a weight that could crush you with one wrong step. Call me crazy but I live for that feeling. I love the pit I have in my stomach knowing I am risking it all to chase after a goal that may or may not make sense to anyone else out there. To me, this is the equivalent of risk taking in “real” life. Sure there is a chance we fail and everything goes wrong, but with the right amount of preparation this fear is non existent and the ultimate confidence is exuded leading to success. The gym has taught me there is a thrill in the fear we have when taking a risk, and living for this feeling breeds life changing results.
  5. Effort Determines Results: In the gym It’s very easy to see who all in on their goals vs. those who have one foot in and one foot out. Those who are all in and routinely giving their best effort daily are going to get better results than those who are not aggressive in their pursuit. You cannot hide from lack of effort in the gym, or at work, or in a relationship. Whatever you do or don’t do will show up at the end of the day. If nothing else, spending time in the gym has taught me that my outcomes are a direct result of my actions. 

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