I love odd object training. I love training others with odd objects too. There is something sad about it though. While many people see odd object training as somewhat of a spectacle, there are those for whom it always comes back to how much the damn thing weighs.
The nature of odd object training means it’s nearly impossible to give an accurate answer. Yes, it is possible to weigh them theoretically, but the scale needed is nearly impossible to find and the trouble in doing so clearly outweighs the need to know the exact number being lifted.
Embrace the Unknown
The funny thing about it all is, personally I love lifting object without ever really knowing there true weight.
The fitness industry today is full of egos and showmanship. There is an abundance of jack-asses that show off circus type tricks and feats to get follows, likes, comments and all that, rather than showing the training that gets results.
More often than not, the posts are solely to stroke their own egos, rather than help their fellow man train hard.
Odd Object Training is Cathartic
It’s a great feeling to grab a log or a stone without the concern of the person next to you lifting more. At the end of the day, resistance is resistance and if it’s truly challenging to you, then it makes no fucking difference how heavy the damn thing is.
Lifting a stone or a log, nature’s fun tools of strength, offers up a challenge that struggles to be matched by the gym. Each piece of “equipment” is totally unique. No one else will have that stone or that log.
It’s solely you versus your odd object of choice. No matter how strong you are, no matter how well conditioned you are, ultimately, the awkward object will win. Each time you train with this given tool, it’s you competing against yourself. You are training to beat your former self.
The object doesn’t care how strong you are and nature certainly doesn’t either. You don’t care how much the object actually weighs. It’s you against the object for another round and you are eventually going to be humbled all over again. But, with that, you’ll come out a stronger, tougher version of yourself.
You won’t need a number to justify your hard work.
This type of training is hard. It’s practical. Its “real world” and best of all, it makes you tougher both physically and mentally. At the end of the day my goal as a coach is to train for real-world strength, combat or human performance and to build an abundance of mental toughness. If that’s through odd object training where you have no conceivable way of knowing the actual weight of, then so be it.
I can't help but the see the parallels between training with a natural stone and life. As humans, we strive for answers, for order and we seek to control everything – our actions, surroundings, each other. Yet despite this, the world is chaotic. It moves on when they zero regard for our thoughts, actions or processes. The stone, much like life is chaotic. It's the essence of instability, uncertainty and couldn't care for one second what I'm thinking as I'm lifting and carrying it. It fights me as I strive to control it and I wouldn't have it any other way.
Embrace the unknown. Fight the grind and as always train hard. Always strive to get stronger and tougher, both physically and mentally.