Five Lessons in Entrepreneurship and Branding that I've Learned from Powerlifting
I’m back from a little hiatus. My pup had surgery (she’s ok now!) and I had a few major projects wrapping up, so it felt like a good time to hit pause. Now, back to it.
It’s been a little over a year since I started powerlifting. I spoke about it in my interview on the Cultures w/n Capitalism podcast. I thought I’d dive a little deeper on lessons I’ve learned that also connect to branding and entrepreneurship.
Nothing is linear.
Growth is easy to see when I compare where I was 12 months ago to where I am now. But the path here wasn’t a constant, steady incline. It was bumpy with major dips and plateaus. You have to focus on the destination and ignore the turbulence along the way.
Show up. Do the work. Consistently.
Your brain will try and convince you to take a break, to skip a day, to avoid the tedious or difficult. But, to achieve growth, you need to show up and do the work. It’s that simple—but simple is hard.
Do the boring work.
The fun part of powerlifting, for me, is seeing how heavy I can lift for deadlifts, squats, and bench. But that only makes up like 10% of your program. The other 90% is eating right, proper warmups, and accessory lifts. I’ve learned what happens when you ignore or skip some of these. I’ve messed up my shoulder because I rushed through warmups. I didn’t have energy because I wasn’t tracking macros. Most recently, I’ve had a bad knee because I’m not taking care of my hamstrings. These minor “boring” things connect to the big “fun” things.
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Work smart AND work hard.
There’s a popular phrase, “work smart, not hard.” I understand it and think there’s a place for it, but you have to earn it. And to earn it, you have to do the hard work first. I equate "working smart" to leverage—create the most output with the least input. Getting there is only possible by showing up and doing the boring work (full circle!). In lifting, for example, I’ve learned how to lift efficiently through form, grip, stance, and breathwork. Those lessons were a result of coaching, trial and error, focus, and practice—aka hard work. If you’re not willing to do the hard work, you’ll never work smart.
Bonus lesson: deload.
One final lesson I’ve taken with me from lifting, which relates to my brief hiatus, is the concept of deload. It’s a reminder that rest is essential. Every 4th week, my lifting coach programs in a deload week. It’s a week where you still run through your program, but at lower weights. Its purpose is to keep you from overtraining and to give your body and mind a rest. It's boring. It feels like a speed bump. And it is completely necessary. You come back the following week recharged and ready to push harder.
I’ve carried these lessons over from lifting to running Blank Studio and life in general. Am I perfect at living these lessons? No—growth isn’t linear 😄. But the more I practice these lessons, the more I improve the way I run the studio and how I communicate branding to clients.