I finally hit 135 pound benchpress in December. Every few weeks after that we would try. Sometimes I’d hit it, and sometimes I’d miss. Eventually it was more hit then miss. And just recently I started trying (and getting) it every time I bench.
What’s empirically and emotionally obvious in powerlifting is that you're only going to get something to be easy... by doing it over and over again while it’s still difficult. Only by trying despite (many) failures do you improve.
Looking back on my 20s, everything seemed so hard. Now at 47, there are certainly difficulties in my life but by and large much of what troubled, or at least tired me out then causes me no trouble today. Perhaps your 20s are years of constantly having to do difficult things. You know, you just turned into an adult after all, a lot of this is new.
So when I run into the inevitable rough patch, I just look forward and imagine how great the 50s are going to be when I have conquered these challenges too.
Someone said today, about powerlifting, that your ability to improve was practically infinite. I’ll get back to you on that when I’m 70. But I do wish that I understood back in my 20s the way I do today how nearly infinite is our ability to grow and adapt and improve. It makes ageing a wonderful adventure instead what I expected would be decline.
Here’s to finding hard things to do, and doing them over and over until they are easy.