Stick with something long enough and your goal really does become your warm-up.
When I first started training handstands back in 2014, my dream was to hold a five-second handstand in the middle of the room. I didn’t even *know* about other handstand goals at the time. I just knew I wouldn’t let myself give up until I met that five-second goal.
At the time, I had enough strength to hold a handstand against the wall for about a minute but had no idea how to progress past wall holds. I was scared out of my mind, but took a risk and signed up for an adult gymnastics class. There, I flailed my way through basic tumbling and handstands but still didn’t make as much progress toward that initial goal as I wanted.
So I found a hand-balancing coach to get me on the right track. I worked diligently day after day on the drills and exercises he gave me. I trained nearly every day for months before I started to see any progress. I tried to speed up the process, looking for hacks and shortcuts, but none of that made much of a difference.
It was only when I learned to trust the process, to stop rushing, to quiet my ego, and let the learning take place in its own time that I was finally able to make any progress.
I’m not a fast learner, but when I learn things, I learn them deeply. It took me over six months of diligent training to get that initial five-second goal. Of course, once I met that, I wasn’t willing to stop there. I had caught the bug — of handstands, but also of mastery.
Handstands were really my first lesson in grit, in sticking with something I initially showed no promise for long enough to see any progress.
But in the end, despite the tears and constant frustrations, despite it feeling pointless at times, I stuck with it and didn’t give up. I’m proud of how far I’ve come, proud of how hard I’ve worked. I’m proud of the grit I’ve developed along the way.
And now, years later, it really is my warm-up.
What can you do today that you used to think was impossible? Share with me in the comments.