Cry, scream or complain, but the bullet doesn’t lie. It is either a hit or a miss, there is no in between.
Nothing to see here
The other day I was at my gym working on some strength components. I don’t care how good you think you are, you can always get better, you can always be better. The day before we did a pretty serious workout and it takes it’s toll. No big deal, we have all been there before, but do you have the tenacity to go back for more. That day we worked strength, but used the same muscle group from the day before; which meant all that soreness was only going to get worse. Once I loaded up the bar, the other fella asked me how could I do that much weight. I kind of smiled and went about my business.
The loaded bar
Lifting weights is a great metaphor for shooting, there so many similarities. The weight is not going to lie, just like the bullet. You either lift it or you don’t. You either have good form and are successful or you have crappy form and get hurt. Same theories apply with shooting, you either got the hit or you didn’t, you have good technique to generate a hit or you don’t and get hurt or worse. There are no shortcuts to lifting, very few people can walk up to a loaded bar and make it happen. It takes years of effort, but more importantly; it takes years of pain. Pain in the form of soreness, stiffness and sometimes injury.
The mental demands
There really isn’t much pain associated with shooting. In high round count classes you might get a little sore or wear out your thumbs from loading magazines, but overall it pales in comparison. You have to get up to the line and perform each and every time you pull the trigger. A big lesson to learn about lifting that transcends into shooting is focus. You can’t “wing it” when the weight is so heavy it literally can crush you when locked overhead. When you get behind the sights you have to focus, focus on the details if you want to be successful. The mental flexing of your brain muscle can wear you out more than you can imagine. In fact, sleep is not something that eludes people in our classes, but not because of the physical demands. It is because of the mental demands.
Learn the why of the miss
The mistake people make is getting behind the sights and failing to recognize the minutia. You thrust the sight in front of your face and slap the trigger. If you attempt to do the same with a loaded bar you are going to miss the lift or get hurt. If you are shooting, it will just be a miss. You need to pay attention to the miss, every miss and ask yourself why did I miss. When I ask a student what happened, why did they miss during a drill often times I get some off base responses. Rarely do I get genuine responses, the kind you know will lead to improvement. If you miss a lift there is a reason, pinpointing the why is the challenge. Pinpointing the why when you miss a shot is equally important. Don’t blow off the miss, make it out to be no big deal or diminish it’s importance. Instead, study the why, learn the why, be stronger than your excuses.
As we finished the workout and were leaving the gym I asked the fella if he wanted to know how I did could lift the weight. Put the weight on the bar and move it.