“So Coach,” they challenged, “what do you expect a student to learn when they participate in Operation Pull Your Own Weight?” That’s a question I’ve heard repeatedly over the years, and as you might imagine, there are several answers to it.
1. The first lesson students will learn is that it’s actually kind of fun and motivating to set a goal and tackle a difficult challenge like pull ups, in fro nt of your friends, as long as you succeed. Of course nobody wants to fail and embarrass themselves in front of others. But if you succeed time after time, and your friends congratulate you on each new success, you begin to expect to succeed, and to feel confident in your ability to successfully tackle a tough problem.
2. Lesson # 2 is that it’s a privilege to be able to work with people who know how to help you become a little bit stronger (more independent) every week, every month, and every year. You see it’s the nature of all kids to want to be strong (and independent) at everything, and weak (dependent) at nothing. But not all kids get the chance to work with adults (parents or teachers) who know how to feed and cultivate that natural desire to grow stronger. If you’re one of the lucky ones, understand it’s a privilege (you get to) not an obligation (you have to).
3. Lesson # 3 is that making just a little slice of progress every time you workout, over a long period of time, is the way you get good at anything, including pull ups. Not only that, but making small but regular increments of progress represents a tangible return on your investment of time and effort which helps feed your motivational flame, and keeps it burning brightly over the long haul.
4. Lesson # 4 is that winning is being just a little stronger this week than last, a little stronger this month than last, and a lot stronger this year than last. In other words, winning is self-mastery and it has almost nothing to do with others. Compete with yourself day after day, week after week, month after month, year after year, and you’ll have nothing to fear from others.
5. Lesson # 5 is that there are seven habits that make you strong on the pull up bar (and everything else) including regular practice, eating right, getting sufficient rest, avoiding tobacco, alcohol, and drugs, and taking responsibility for doing these things yourself because nobody else can do them for you.
6. Lesson # 6 is that if you learn to do pull ups and maintain the ability, you will always be relatively strong and physically efficient (trim). And if you apply these principals to all other aspects of your life you’ll not only become physically efficient, but mentally and spiritually efficient as well. In doing so you will successfully climb your own personal Mt. Potential and you’ll live your life on the level at which it was meant to be lived.
7. Lesson # 7 is that once you’ve learned to master the activity yourself, one of the most fulfilling and gratifying experiences you can have is to help someone else learn and master these same strength building habits. In other words, helping someone else discover their own strength and confidence multiplies your own strength and confidence exponentially.
Imbedded Into Your DNA
Practiced regularly, week after week, month after month, year after year, these hands-on, eyeball to eyeball, ultimately practical lessons become habitual, second nature, imbedded into your subconscious, your DNA. They become the eyes through which you view the world. And that’s strong.
Rick Osbourne is a Chicago based writer who currently serves as Executive Director of Operation Pull Your Own Weight, an informational web site that’s dedicated to naturally immunizing kids against obesity for a lifetime without pills, shots, or special diets. If you’re interested in childhood obesity prevention, then check out either http://www.pullyourownweight.net, or http://www.pullyourownweight.com, any time. Osbourne is also a public speaker, and he’s recently published a book entitled “Operation Pull Your Own Weight: A Radically Simple Solution to Childhood Obesity,” (on the web site) that provides practical minded parents and educators with a simple, functional, affordable, and infinitely measurable antidote to childhood obesity. Osbourne can be reached by email at Osbourne.firstname.lastname@example.org.