Is TruStrength about getting as strong as you can? Fast as you can? Is it about being better at biking, skiing, running? Is it about competing? Is it about walking away from another hour of your life covered in sweat, having tried your absolute hardest?
The immediate answer is yes, it is about all of these things if you want it to be. However, if that is ALL that it is then its not much different than any other class, group or program you can subscribe to. So what makes it different?
In physics we study a formula regarding the application of stress to a material and the effects the stress has on that material. The formula is K=FΔL, where F= Force applied, ΔL= the change in length and K = the elastic constant of the material. K measures the “stiffness” of the material. It is the material’s ability to withstand deformation according to Hooke’s Law. Hooke’s Law is based on the principle that force applied and change in length are proportional for a material (giving us the constant of K) UNTIL we hit the elastic limit of the material and enter the plastic region. In the plastic region the material is permanently altered, in other words, you’ve sprung the spring. When the force is withdrawn the material will not return to its original form. If the plastic region is then exceeded the material fractures and we reach it’s ultimate strength.
What the hell does this have to do with working out?! Everything.
Im not so interested in the physical application, which is another aspect of this principle, but what TruStrength really aims to achieve is to increase each member’s K value. The vision of the TS program is that K is the measure of a person’s ability to withstand stress applied, and remain elastic. My hope is that each member’s ability to endure stress is increased at each workout by breaking not only physical limits but even more so in the removal of mental barriers. This individual effort to push past previous barriers largely contributes to an expanded elastic region. There is something very connected about endurance, whether it is suffering on a bike for 100 miles, blasting through a long metcon workout, or maintaining your ability to function at your job. When we learn endurance we function higher longer despite increased loads of stress without breaking.
Let’s face it: Life is good…but its not easy. Finishing “Get Your Own Bucket” without hurling is good…but its not easy either. However when you DO finish it, you carry with you a new ability to expand your limits because you were willing to believe that you could hang in there for just one more round.
While none of our workouts or Life are easy, there is one thing that makes them easier…your team. When Im in the room yelling, “fresh 30 sec!” during a wallbata and you have 5 more rounds to go and every fiber is screaming, “No WAY!” Then you look to your left and see one of your comrades plowing along just like you it fills you with strength that wasn’t there seconds before. It muffles the resistant cries of your psyche and you find within yourself the ability to expand to a new level.
The carryover I believe is greater in the area of personal life. TruStrength is about team. Its about having friends that not only love you, are not only fun to be with, but also have tempered the ability to bear a heavy load and are familiar with enduring hardship. Making it through workouts together is wonderful, but making it thru cancer, divorces, pregnancies, illness, unemployment, raising children, job overloads, addictions and any of life’s other tough spots together is not only wonderful, it forges an institution of love that is the full realized purpose of man. That’s what separates what we do at TruStrength from other fitness programs; most people are doing it for themselves, while we do it for ourselves AND for one another.