Who thought kicking ass in beer pong was a metaphor to accomplish health, fitness and life goals?
I was recently listening to The Order of Man podcast where they were interviewing the founder of Nerd Fitness, Steve Kamb (side note: I am a huge fan of his). Nerd Fitness is aimed at helping desk jockeys, nerds, and average Joes level up their lives. Thinking of life as a video game and you being the main character of that video game – by improving your life through health, fitness, relationships etc. you “level up” like you would in a video game. Ingenious way to relate to his audience if you ask me.
So I started thinking – knowing myself and my friends, we aren’t big gamers so the Nerd Fitness metaphor might not be the best. The occasional Madden or NBA 2k game will be played on a Friday night but that’s about where it ends.
So I asked myself “How can I relate this to my friends that would hold more water than the video game reference? What do we do a lot of and really understand?”
Then it hit me. The common thread amongst my friends is and probably always will be, beer pong. The games are more infrequent now – everyone has other responsibilities like wives, jobs or kids- but when we do get together, you better believe we get down like it’s 2005.
I’ll admit it seems pretty stupid that a fitness website would talk about drinking, but it’s what Aesthetic Physiques is all about – building your best physique while still enjoying life. And if that entails the occasional game of beer pong or the all night bender then so be it. As long as the rest of the week you are on-point with exercising and nutrition.
This will probably be the most in-depth, off the wall analysis of a drinking game you ever hear of but I promise this will make sense at the end.
TACKLING LIFE LIKE A GAME OF BEER PONG
I’m coming at this using the rules I’ve played with since I started playing. You might have different rules (read: the wrong rules) but I’m going off of the game that I know. Adapt this as you see fit to your game.
The goal of beer pong is to make all the cups. Plain and simple. When you make all the cups you have attained the goal you set out for.
The cups represent the steps in your way between where you start and attaining the goal.
If your goal is to win the game, are you able to win by knocking all the cups off the table at once? Not unless you’re a dick and waste all that beautiful beer.
You have to go one by one (I’ll get into bouncing later) much like reaching any goal from passing a class to getting a six-pack – abs, not beer. This requires a strategy and maybe some luck.
Think about anything you’ve ever accomplished. Did it happen over night or did you have to take multiple small steps?
In essence, the only way to win is to play the long game rather than taking a short cut to success.
SIZE OF THE GAME
The difference between 6 cup and 21 cup is huge. I think of 6 cup like trying to eat healthy for a week where 21 cup is like trying to make enough money through a website so you can quit your day job. The size of your goal equates to how many steps you have to go through to reach that goal.
MAKES AND MISSES
Each positive step towards your goal is another cup off the table –that could be successes or failures. A failure is a make if you learn from it. If you wallow in self-pity, then that not even hitting the table.
My suggestion: try, fail, learn, move on. We tend to learn the best when we fail.
Sometimes we feel like no matter what we try it’s just a miss. This requires creativity like changing angles, switching sides, switching the order or switching the way you shoot.
Sometimes you just need to get out of your own head and think differently about the problem.
Do you just wildly throw the ball and wish it goes in a cup? I think a quote from one of my favorite movies, Bad Santa, can illustrate how I feel about wishing.
Wishing does nothing. It’s for kids wanting toys from Santa. We are functioning adults. Take action.
In beer pong and in life, I go for the low hanging fruit first. That’s the stuff I have control over. In beer pong that’s the center cup and in life it’s my schedule.
I make it extremely easy for stalkers to follow me because I do the same stuff everyday. Wake up, read, gym, 9-5 job, website, TV with the wife and bed. I have the luxury of not having kids so my time is my own.
If you have kids, you just need to find a way to work what you want to do in your schedule.
I keep my schedule this way because I’m doing what I want to do first. I’m prioritizing myself first to ensure everyone gets the best me everyday. The only limiting factor is myself and I can control that.
Not everyday will be the best and sometimes I’ve gone to the gym on 2 hours of sleep. I know Dave that gets up, reads and hits the gym will be better than Dave that got a few hours’ extra sleep.
The excuse “I have no time” only means your goal is not a priority.
Sometimes life and beer pong require you to change your focus. Would you rather shoot at a setup where the cups are all spread out or clustered together? There have been many times I have re-racked my focus based on knowledge I gained through the process. Does that mean I failed? Not anymore than when I re-rack in a game. It just means I saw a better way of going about it.
Any goal has it’s ups and downs. I’ve almost quit this website a few times but I simply re-racked. I started off as an online personal training website then switched to a free information blog and eventually I’ll switch to a free information blog with paid products.
I went from making some money to making nothing but I’m much happier and I’m playing the long game rather than the quick buck game.
KNOWING YOUR LIMIT
It happens to the best of us. You’re a few long games deep and you hit that point. You can keep going only to face plant into a toilet later or you can quit while you’re ahead.
After careful evaluation, you have to recognize when you hit your goal limit. Some of us aren’t going to be Rockefeller rich or have a rippling abs. You have to know whether it’s a low point or to quit the game. There is no shame in quitting if there is no beneficial outcome for you.
WATCH YOUR ELBOW
Some people cheat. You might get away with it once but eventually someone is going to catch you. And if you do get caught, you are under scrutiny forever. Watch your elbow when trying to accomplish your goals so you don’t have to be the next Lance Armstrong. What’s he doing now? Mic dropped.
What’s wrong with a little short cut? With every short cut there is a price to pay. That’s why I prefer the long way.
When you bounce you have to contend with the geometry of the perfect bounce and the swat of the opponent – but you get 2 cups. On the flip side, shooting it regular, you only have to shoot a decent shot. The window of error is a little wider but you only get one cup.
Shortcuts in the beer pong and life offer a quicker way to the goal but what’s the price for it? Do you sacrifice your health so you can quickly drop 20 lbs with no promise that it’s sustainable? Do you sacrifice your body to deadlift 500 lbs only to blow out your knee when you get there?
Bounces are an attractive option because they have the potential to get you to your goal faster but most of the time it’s just a miss and your partner punching you because you wasted a shot.
I want to hear from you in the comment section:
What kind of beer pong player are you?
Wish and shoot or strategy player?
Is this absolutely ridiculous?
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