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People want stuff yesterday. That’s just how human beings are wired. The late pro wrestling champion Eddie Guerrero exclaimed, "If you’re not cheating, you’re not trying!" Regardless of how zany it sounded, he revealed a bit of truth and taboo in the human psyche. If there is a shortcut to be found, there will be plenty of people who will search for and exploit it, even if it requires some duplicitous behavior. It is often said that patience is a virtue, but judging from our tendencies, most of us don’t much believe it.

When I started weight training, months went by before I saw any evidence that all my effort was working. I felt differently for sure, but the reflection in the mirror wasn’t validating me. Luckily, I started out with a personal trainer who explained the muscle-building process to me, so I knew that patience was required. Sure enough, about three months into training, I started to see improvements in my body.

What I learned is that the mind comes before the body, and it takes patience for perseverance to pay off. Persistence, commitment, and discipline are faculties of the mind, not the muscles. And the basis of all those faculties is patience.

Understand that the first thing you stimulate and strengthen when you work out is your mind, and then your muscles react and follow. Sure, there are shortcuts you can take to visibly transform yourself more quickly, such as gorging on protein shakes and supplements, but they won’t do you any good unless you apply yourself and stick with it. Cultivate the faculty of patience, my friends, and don’t give up.

Sayonara until next time.

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