Fostering Resilience Through Deadlifts

Jun 19, 2023

As a dad of children with special needs, I've come to understand that the challenges we face can be both physically and emotionally demanding. The weight of responsibility we carry can often feel overwhelming, leaving us needing an outlet that not only helps us cope but also strengthens us from within.

That's when your gym sessions become crucial.. Strength training, though demanding and at times intimidating, has become more than just a physical activity for me. It has become a powerful tool for fostering resilience in my journey as a father.

The Hard and Scary Path:

Let's be honest, strength training is hard. It requires discipline, dedication, and a willingness to push ourselves beyond our comfort zones. Heavy strength training, and for me, deadlifting takes that difficulty to another level. The prospect of lifting heavy weights can be daunting, stirring up feelings of fear and self-doubt. Yet, it is precisely through embracing these challenges that we find opportunities for growth, both in the gym and in our lives as parents.

Delayed Gratification:

Training teaches us an important lesson about delayed gratification. It's not about instant results or quick fixes. Progress comes gradually, often requiring weeks or months of consistent effort before we see tangible changes. As dads of children with special needs, we understand this concept all too well. Our parenting journey is a marathon, not a sprint. We don't always see immediate progress or receive instant rewards for our efforts. Instead, we persevere, knowing that the small victories along the way will eventually lead to significant transformations. Take the long road, and walk it. 

Metaphor for Parenting:

Deadlifts are a metaphor for our parenting journey. Just as we face the challenge of lifting heavy, we encounter obstacles and setbacks in our role as fathers. The weights may differ, but the mental and emotional fortitude required to overcome them remains the same. Each rep we complete, each weight we conquer, represents a triumph over adversity. It reminds us that we are capable of facing any challenge head-on, equipped with the resilience and determination needed to be the best fathers we can be. And, when the milestone is achieved, we move on to the next one. Because it's not for glory...

An Outlet for Emotional Release:

Strength training, particularly deadlifting, provides a powerful outlet for emotional release. The physical exertion allows us to channel our frustrations, stress, and anxieties into something constructive. As we push our bodies to their limits, we discover a sense of catharsis, leaving us feeling refreshed and more mentally resilient. It becomes a sanctuary where we can temporarily set aside our parenting worries and focus solely on ourselves, replenishing our inner strength to better navigate the complexities of our daily lives. Never forget this - in the moment, be it fleeting, you can be free from the stresses of being a carer and parent. You need those moments.

I've found more than just physical strength through training. It has become a transformative practice that enhances my resilience as a dad of twins with ASD. The challenges and rewards of this journey mirror those we encounter in our daily lives, reminding us of our capacity to overcome obstacles and grow stronger through adversity.

So, embrace the grind, both in the gym and in life, as we cultivate resilience and continue to thrive on our life less ordinary.