The Cold Fire

Picture a guy stepping up to a barbell in a crowded gym. He’s doing a 1RM, a one rep maximum effort lift. He wants to deadlift as much weight as he possibly can for one rep. He’s got a weight on the bar that he’s never lifted before. It’s close to, but just beyond, his established 1RM. He walks up to the platform, stamps his foot, pounds his (possibly bare) chest, grunts, grabs the bar, completes the lift. He’s got a new PR, a personal record. He can say without doubt that he’s getting stronger, he’s just recorded data to back it up, his training is justified, his life choices have meaning, his actions have propelled him one increment closer to his goal. This is a big moment and he’s, very correctly, elated. He slams the bar down, shouts, pulls a face, eyes wide, neck bulging, maybe high fives his buddy, maybe picks up the nearest gym chick and carries her off into the sunset to pass on his numerically verified virility.

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