Mastering the Basics

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All I Ready Needed to Know…

I am sure that more than a few of us remember the poem, All I Really Needed to Know I Learned in Kindergarten.  That was it.  These were the foundational lessons for being a decent human being.  There was nothing in there about being able to rattle off Pi to 100 places or using proper grammar.  All we need to know did not mean the intricacies of a 500-pound deadlift or a bodyweight snatch.

As I have stated numerous times in this little blog space of mine, life and lifting, lifting and life.  It is about the basics.  But the basics are boring.  The basics are taken for granted.

We outgrow the basics…

…but we should not.  We need to rest in the basics of life and lifting.  Move well, then move heavy.  Treat people well, then work on the heavy issues surrounding the world.  Treat yourself like you matter, then treat others like you treat yourself.  It is part of the growth process and when we get off track, overwhelmed, beaten up…return to all we really need to know.

Live a balanced life – learn some and think some
and draw and paint and sing and dance and play
and work every day some.

I have two amazing daughters and at some point every day, I have to re-explain one of these basics of life.

Why do I have to take a nap?
Why do I have to hold your hand to cross the street?
I don’t want to say I’m sorry…

The list could go on and on.

And then you enter the gym and the basics draw the moans and groans.  Why are you breaking down the squat again

Why are you breaking down the squat again?
I know where my elbows go for a press.
Can’t I go heavier?
Run…speak English

And yet our growth only comes through mastery of the basics.  We only get better performing the “pretty” lifts when our basics are solid.

Life always returns us to the basics…because life is not meant to be hard.  It is not meant to be something we are constantly fighting against, but something we should all be able to embrace as individuals and as a society.  Let’s all hold hands crossing the street today.  Let’s take a nap…let’s open our eyes and see the simple things that aren’t sexy but are beautiful.

Play, look around, be amazed…squat perfect, move perfect…breathe…exhale…basics!