#ManlyMonday | Hitting the give up button

[GUEST POST] Written by Spencer Cope.

Spencer on Twitter. Spencer’s blog: Jackets and Plaques.

Photo Credit: Epic-Treadmill.com

Raise your hand if you have ever run on a treadmill.

83% of Americans run on a treadmill. (made up statistic).

Now raise your hand if you have ever run on a broken treadmill.

Probably not as many of you raised your hand. Running on a broken treadmill is no bueno (that means not good. I am very cultured so I would know).

Last winter I drove to the gym so I could run since the streets had been covered with snow. When I arrived, I really didn’t feel like running. It was one of those forced days were I felt guilty if I missed it. My legs were tired and my body was dragging but I forced myself up on the machine and hit start. I went conservative. If someone saw me they probably thought I had never run before. 10 minutes roll by and I think to myself “It is winter. Who needs to run?”

At that moment the idea of quitting is firmly rooted in my mind.

I went to hit the stop button. (aka the give up button)

This is when it got crazy.

Normally when you hit the stop button on a treadmill, it stops. On this occasion, the treadmill had a mind of its own and just keep spinning.

A normal person would put their feet on both sides and step off. However, I accepted the challenge. I was about to go John Henry on the machine. For the next 45 minutes, I went to war with the treadmill.

Blood. Sweat. Tears.

Okay no blood and no tears, but there was some sweat.

When it finally gave up and turned off I stepped off, gave the treadmill a nod as if to say “Well played sir,” and went on with my day with my head held high.

Let’s find some meaning to this story…

  • How many of us hop on the treadmill of life: forced to persevere?
  • How many of us end up with the broken treadmill while the person next to us has the good one?
  • Why does theirs let them hop off while yours makes you keep going?
  • Why are we being pushed when all we want to do is quit?
  • Do we even have the endurance or strength to keep going?

Maybe in these moments we learn about ourself.

When we meet our end…

When we want to just fall over…

When life just wont stop…

When we want to press the give up button…

We are left with a choice: Give up or press on.

When we overcome the willingness to just give up we are given the chance to realize how much endurance we actually have.

Accept the challenge. Press on. Show that treadmill (I mean…life?) who’s boss.


One thought on “#ManlyMonday | Hitting the give up button

  1. Good post. I don’t always have the discipline to press on myself. So, I try to surround myself with people who encourage me to refrain from pressing the give up button.

    I also think we’re meant to be aggressively challenged in life, but we spend our time and money to insulate ourselves with a life of comfort. There is absolutely no way to grow without pain.

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