Friday, June 10, 2011

Beginner, Striver, or Warrior?

Yesterday I watched a morning show clip with Tony Horton, talking about his book BRING IT. For those of you who don't know, Tony's the man behind the P90X Program. I read the reviews of Bring It when it first came out, and I didn't buy it because overwhelmingly the opinion seemed to be that if you were familiar with Tony, his philosophies and his programs, this didn't offer a lot of new material. But if you are not, there's lots of good info there to get you started.

On the show yesterday, Tony talked about the three levels (which I hadn't heard of before). The levels are Beginner, Striver, and Warrior.

Beginner is what it says on the label. You're beginning. You want to make a change, you're probably out of shape, carrying around substantial extra weight, and need a place to start. Beginners make small dietary changes at a time, get active and modify moves to a beginner level.

A Striver is perhaps someone who has less to lose, who is doing a lot of things right but maybe has plateaued. A striver eats clean, works out regularly, and is striving for that healthy lifestyle (and is on the way).

A Warrior is top of the chain - bringing it every workout, a peak performer, in fact I'd say performance is a key component to the Warrior. Warriors don't just do the full move, they add an advanced component.

So the question is - which are you?

I was thinking about this today. By the numbers, I'm a Striver. I have less than 20 lbs left to get to where I'd like to be. I'm watching my diet, making sure I get lean protein and veggies and water and eating every few hours. I'm working out 6-7 days a week, not including dog walks or yard work. In most P90X moves I am doing the full move to failure rather than a modified move (we will not talk about Dreya Rolls or Tabletop Dips). In some moves I am adding an advanced component (some bits are easier than others).

I'm not in Warrior shape. I know that.

But in some ways I think if you took the numbers away, I am a warrior. I feel like a warrior. I work my reps to failure and try for one more. I love the way I feel when I'm done a workout and I'll admit it, I'm seduced by the idea of strength and muscle tone. My favourite workouts, next to Kenpo, are the resistance training ones. I think I've always liked the idea of athleticism rather than the idea of skinny.

If you were to see me today, you would probably see an overweight 30-something who looks nothing like the P90X success stories. You'd see a Striver.

But attitude counts. Attitude is huge. And the same holds true for those of you who are aiming for any goal. By the numbers my chances of becoming published were pretty slim. I went through the Beginner stage of writing. I went through the Striver. But the Warrior attitude was there all along, pushing me to the next level. It was attainable because I believed it was attainable - numbers schmumbers.

I'm telling you, that attitude is what's going to take you places. Take no prisoners. Bring it.  


  1. You're so right, Donna. To get published by a major publisher is probably one of the toughest goals anyone can strive for. And it takes a warrior to deal with the frustrations, take on the advice, learn something new every step of the way. No question. You are a warrior.

  2. Attitude is a great incentive to work to your next level of workouts. I would say at this point body awareness is a big challenge for me as when I workout hard at 360 Fit or TurboFire I injure myself but only feel it later. My Physiotherapist Sarah F. is just a block away but she's getting sick of seeing me. LOL.