No, I don’t mean that prominent tendon of the Gastrocnemius and Soleus muscles of the calf.
I mean what Wikipedia explains it as in it’s mythical origins:
“A deadly weakness in spite of overall strength, that can actually or potentially lead to downfall. While the mythological origin refers to a physical vulnerability, [it also refers to] metaphorical references to other attributes or qualities that can lead to [one’s] downfall.”
Ya, that Achilles heel.
Maybe it’s running. Maybe it’s the heavy lifts. Maybe it’s those delightfully soft sugar cookies with the sprinkles, ya… the ones that render you helpless at holiday get-togethers.
Think about it. What’s your “deadly weakness” that is ruining, (or at least diluting ) the results you could be seeing.
At one time, mine was the deadly college weekend pastime of going out drinking and late night drive through. Then it was kettle chips. Sometimes it was a lack of sleep. Other times it was anything involving thrusters.
Whatever it was, there always came a time where I had to address it and decide if I was gonna put up with it any longer. I realized that most of the time, having courage to face something head on, these “deadly weaknesses” would be gone fairly quickly.
I saw that all I had to do was set a clear benchmark (or boundary) that I could shoot for that meant the vulnerability was improving, and ideally, transitioning into a strength.
Typically a bad habit needs a clear boundary (i.e. I drink 40 beers a week and it’s not helping my man breasts or the ladies, so I will no longer exceed 30/week for the next 30 days). Then you keep tapering off as needed.
Whereas a physical weakness needs a benchmark.
My current real life Achilles heel is my front squat and overhead squat. They are far behind in proportion to my other capacities. So my benchmark is to be able to do a #225 (1 rep) overhead squat and #300 (5reps) front squat.
I know once I can do this they will no longer be huge vulnerabilities that have me praying they don’t come up in the WOD’s. They are ambitious numbers for me but not unrealistic, so I’ll be motivated to get them.
So, think about doing the same. If you’re not getting what you want, look at your habits, or mis-held beliefs, or physical weaknesses. One of these could be a glass ceiling for you so look at what you could do to change that. Do some damage control.
* Note: All this Achilles talk isn’t a goal setting like “oh, I want to be able to do a muscle up”.
It’s looking at a major weakness that is potentially holding you back that would affect most/everything involved in your training if addressed and improved.
Find the heel.
7 Shoulder Press #115
45 Double Unders
2 Tire Flip