Why It’s Good to Be Uncomfortable

Yogi Berra, in his infinite wisdom, once said: ‘You can observe a lot just by watching’ and like most Yogi-isms, this one becomes even more profound the more you think about it.

The truth is, the ‘Secret’ to success for a lot of people is to simply pay more attention to things that most people don’t. In doing so, you’ll be rewarded with a greater understanding of how things ‘work’ which is a tremendous advantage indeed. As time goes by, I have learned to do just that, take a step back and pay more attention to things – especially the things that I though I already knew – and a whole new world has opened up for me.

Now, according to the Rational Choice Theory, one would instinctively make choices that lead to the greatest ‘benefit’ with the least amount of hassle. In short, the road if least resistance toward getting the things we want.

This makes perfect sense when you think about it, I mean, we live in relative comfort, with food, heat, and shelter all readily available, something that our ancestors hundreds of years ago had to struggle mightily for.

Modern comfort is certainly nice but the thing of it is, there is such a thing as becoming too comfortable. You see, struggle is necessary to teache us, make us stronger and causes us to grow physically, mentally, and morally.

Think of the processes by which your muscles grow – you subject them to exercise above and beyond what they are comfortable with and used to. They respond by growing stronger. Getting in shape is the same way – physical exercise causes the heart and lungs to get out of their comfort zone and begin to use the available oxygen more efficiently.

But if you do nothing and simply exist as you are – in relative comfort – your body will fall to the level of comfort to which it exists in which ironically, isn’t what most people want. The bottom line here is that its good to be uncomfortable, to be ‘Hungry’ for change because you wont be motivated to do the things which can actually bring about change otherwise.

As far as working out, I’m not talking about having to wrap your barbell in barbed wire or doing squats barefoot on broken glass, that would understandably be taking things too far. What I am talking about is pushing things just a little bit beyond what you feel is even possible. If you know in your heart you can get 10 reps with a certain weight, go for at least 11. If you don’t feel like getting up early to go for a jog, that may be a sign that that is exactly what you should be doing.

You’ll surprise yourself when you begin to look at things this way.

The key here is to challenge yourself – take that next step, even if and especially if you are a little bit scared. Many people reach that threshold, only a few will cross it.

Will you be one of them?

Train hard,
John Wood signature
John Wood
Yogi Berra, in his infinite wisdom, once said: ‘You can observe a lot just by watching’ and like most Yogi-isms, this one becomes even more profound the more you think about it.

The truth is, the ‘Secret’ to success for a lot of people is to simply pay more attention to things that most people don’t. In doing so, you’ll be rewarded with a greater understanding of how things ‘work’ which is a tremendous advantage indeed. As time goes by, I have learned to do just that, take a step back and pay more attention to things – especially the things that I though I already knew – and a whole new world has opened up for me.

Now, according to the Rational Choice Theory, one would instinctively make choices that lead to the greatest ‘benefit’ with the least amount of hassle. In short, the road if least resistance toward getting the things we want.

This makes perfect sense when you think about it, I mean, we live in relative comfort, with food, heat, and shelter all readily available, something that our ancestors hundreds of years ago had to struggle mightily for.

Modern comfort is certainly nice but the thing of it is, there is such a thing as becoming too comfortable. You see, struggle is necessary to teache us, make us stronger and causes us to grow physically, mentally, and morally.

Think of the processes by which your muscles grow – you subject them to exercise above and beyond what they are comfortable with and used to. They respond by growing stronger. Getting in shape is the same way – physical exercise causes the heart and lungs to get out of their comfort zone and begin to use the available oxygen more efficiently.

But if you do nothing and simply exist as you are – in relative comfort – your body will fall to the level of comfort to which it exists in which ironically, isn’t what most people want. The bottom line here is that its good to be uncomfortable, to be ‘Hungry’ for change because you wont be motivated to do the things which can actually bring about change otherwise.

As far as working out, I’m not talking about having to wrap your barbell in barbed wire or doing squats barefoot on broken glass, that would understandably be taking things too far. What I am talking about is pushing things just a little bit beyond what you feel is even possible. If you know in your heart you can get 10 reps with a certain weight, go for at least 11. If you don’t feel like getting up early to go for a jog, that may be a sign that that is exactly what you should be doing.

You’ll surprise yourself when you begin to look at things this way.

The key here is to challenge yourself – take that next step, even if and especially if you are a little bit scared. Many people reach that threshold, only a few will cross it.

Will you be one of them?

Train hard,
John Wood signature
John Wood

Rope Climbing in Australia

We’ve shipped our high-quality manila gym climbing ropes all over the world, (including Iraq) and many people are reporting tremendous results after adding a little bit ‘o rope climbing into their routine. About a year ago we received an order for climbing rope from a group of hand-strength fanatics for Australia. They reported that they really dug our site and regularly get together to climb ropes on the beach cliffs of Australia. Sounded like a perfect setup to us, hard training out in the fresh sea air on the beautiful Australian terrain.

They informed us that their old rope had finally worn out after many good years of service and regular workouts and they were in need of a new one so they could still get their “climb-on” three times per week. They wanted an 18 foot manila climbing rope which they could take down when not in use.

They put the order in and we crunched the numbers and then sent everything along accordingly. That was over a year ago and yesterday they sent us a clip of their exploits on the cliffs of Bondi Beach. If you want to see some footage of some crazy rope climbing skill, here’s your chance:



If you want to follow in their footsteps, Click Here.
We’ve shipped our high-quality manila gym climbing ropes all over the world, (including Iraq) and many people are reporting tremendous results after adding a little bit ‘o rope climbing into their routine. About a year ago we received an order for climbing rope from a group of hand-strength fanatics for Australia. They reported that they really dug our site and regularly get together to climb ropes on the beach cliffs of Australia. Sounded like a perfect setup to us, hard training out in the fresh sea air on the beautiful Australian terrain.

They informed us that their old rope had finally worn out after many good years of service and regular workouts and they were in need of a new one so they could still get their “climb-on” three times per week. They wanted an 18 foot manila climbing rope which they could take down when not in use.

They put the order in and we crunched the numbers and then sent everything along accordingly. That was over a year ago and yesterday they sent us a clip of their exploits on the cliffs of Bondi Beach. If you want to see some footage of some crazy rope climbing skill, here’s your chance:



If you want to follow in their footsteps, Click Here.

My Finest Moment in Michigan Stadium

Nine years ago I came to the University of Michigan to play football as a kid with a head full of big dreams. So many great players and great games followed.

It seems like just yesterday when I was suiting up in the Freshman locker room for the first home game against Syracuse.Yes it was quite a thrill running out and touching the banner in front of 100,000+ people although we got our rear ends handed to us that day by a guy named Donovan McNabb (I wonder what became of him?)

Then there was the first time I actually saw the field which was against Northwestern in the closing moments of a one-sided win or when Michigan somehow came back and beat Washington in a nail biter or that great overtime win against Penn State. Just a few of many experiences in ‘The Big House’ and yes along with the many victories there were heartbreaking losses too. Regardless of the outcome, each experience was certainly incredible in its own right.

You may be interested to know that my finest moment in Michigan Stadium didn’t have anything to do with football – and it happened last night.

For some crazy reason I got the urge to run stadium steps. Not sure why, either, I hadn’t done that for over three years. During summer conditioning, we would go run the steps as a team and few guys could make it through. It was as rough an experience as they come. It had been a while and I didn’t exactly have fond memories of running those steps during under the blazing summer heat.

There are 73 steps from field level to ground level and starting at the bottom, they get progressively higher, doubling in height roughly every 15 steps or so.You start out easy as pie but around step 50, you really start to feel it. Anyhow, fast forward to the present.

Again, I have no idea where this urge came from but with the goal of making it around the stadium with nothing but the moon and the wind accompanying me.

I began.

The first flight was easy ‘This will be no problem, I thought.”

Halfway through flight number 2 it was as if I had run into an invisible wall.

My heart was pounding, the sweat was pouring off of me and with the 10 degree weather, each breath felt like a knife in the chest.

“Uh Oh, maybe this wasn’t such a good idea after all.”

At this point I had two choices: I could finish, or I could quit.

I decided to finish, even though I had to walk the last three flights. It took me just over 23 minutes and was a far cry from days gone by when I could do a whole stadium in less than 15. When I was done, I sat there by myself staring at the field for what seemed like an hour through in reality was only a few minutes.

With all the grand history and tradition that has gone on in that stadium, I had made my mark, though no one will ever know.

There wasn’t 100,000 screaming fans cheering me on, no strength coach cracking a whip, making me do it either. Nope, I ran that stadium for no other reason than because it was a personal challenge that I set and when it was ‘do or die’ time — the time when its either fight or quit, I chose to fight.

See, I though I was in shape but there’s being in shape and then there’s being in “stadium shape.” I have no doubt that I’ll get back even better that when I was as a player. All its going to take is time and effort and Ive got plenty of both.

Last night will be the first of many, but last night was special. As you travel through life, you’ll come to that point quite often and you’ll have two choices:

1. You can quit, you can run away, you can shy away from your dreams and live a life of regret for the things you ‘shouldda’ done when you had the opportunity.

Or
2. You can move forward, despite the fatigue, despite the obstacles, even if you don’t feel like it, even if it isnt the easiest thing to do, even if you would rather do something else.

I made my choice, what are you going to do when your time comes?

Train hard,

John Wood

Nine years ago I came to the University of Michigan to play football as a kid with a head full of big dreams. So many great players and great games followed.

It seems like just yesterday when I was suiting up in the Freshman locker room for the first home game against Syracuse.Yes it was quite a thrill running out and touching the banner in front of 100,000+ people although we got our rear ends handed to us that day by a guy named Donovan McNabb (I wonder what became of him?)

Then there was the first time I actually saw the field which was against Northwestern in the closing moments of a one-sided win or when Michigan somehow came back and beat Washington in a nail biter or that great overtime win against Penn State. Just a few of many experiences in ‘The Big House’ and yes along with the many victories there were heartbreaking losses too. Regardless of the outcome, each experience was certainly incredible in its own right.

You may be interested to know that my finest moment in Michigan Stadium didn’t have anything to do with football – and it happened last night.

For some crazy reason I got the urge to run stadium steps. Not sure why, either, I hadn’t done that for over three years. During summer conditioning, we would go run the steps as a team and few guys could make it through. It was as rough an experience as they come. It had been a while and I didn’t exactly have fond memories of running those steps during under the blazing summer heat.

There are 73 steps from field level to ground level and starting at the bottom, they get progressively higher, doubling in height roughly every 15 steps or so.You start out easy as pie but around step 50, you really start to feel it. Anyhow, fast forward to the present.

Again, I have no idea where this urge came from but with the goal of making it around the stadium with nothing but the moon and the wind accompanying me.

I began.

The first flight was easy ‘This will be no problem, I thought.”

Halfway through flight number 2 it was as if I had run into an invisible wall.

My heart was pounding, the sweat was pouring off of me and with the 10 degree weather, each breath felt like a knife in the chest.

“Uh Oh, maybe this wasn’t such a good idea after all.”

At this point I had two choices: I could finish, or I could quit.

I decided to finish, even though I had to walk the last three flights. It took me just over 23 minutes and was a far cry from days gone by when I could do a whole stadium in less than 15. When I was done, I sat there by myself staring at the field for what seemed like an hour through in reality was only a few minutes.

With all the grand history and tradition that has gone on in that stadium, I had made my mark, though no one will ever know.

There wasn’t 100,000 screaming fans cheering me on, no strength coach cracking a whip, making me do it either. Nope, I ran that stadium for no other reason than because it was a personal challenge that I set and when it was ‘do or die’ time — the time when its either fight or quit, I chose to fight.

See, I though I was in shape but there’s being in shape and then there’s being in “stadium shape.” I have no doubt that I’ll get back even better that when I was as a player. All its going to take is time and effort and Ive got plenty of both.

Last night will be the first of many, but last night was special. As you travel through life, you’ll come to that point quite often and you’ll have two choices:

1. You can quit, you can run away, you can shy away from your dreams and live a life of regret for the things you ‘shouldda’ done when you had the opportunity.

Or
2. You can move forward, despite the fatigue, despite the obstacles, even if you don’t feel like it, even if it isnt the easiest thing to do, even if you would rather do something else.

I made my choice, what are you going to do when your time comes?

Train hard,

John Wood