Among all the causes that trigger a strong desire in you to stop running for some more meters, is pain. You must have often noticed that you were about to achieve your goal, and just one more kilometre before that, you suddenly felt pain in your legs and wanted to stop.

Research Says It All

According to two researches that took place in the past by different groups of volunteers, here are the outcomes:

  1. Some subjects were induced to heightened pain by injecting hypertonic saline in their legs. Within few minutes they were all in unbearable pain and couldn’t take it anymore.

Whereas, the pain that we feel while working out is limited, but we often stop when our efforts max out.

  1. In another research the subjects were asked to drown their hand in iced water and keep it until it was unbearable. After a while they all took their hands out as pain turned out to be their limiting factor. Their average pain rating was 5.0 out of 10 when they gave up.

Whereas, when the same subjects were asked to keep cycling until they are completely exhausted, the average effort rating when they maxed out was 19.6 out of 20.

Make Efforts, Don’t Be Afraid of Pain

The above researches and many others like them clearly proves that your perception about the efforts is always more important than actual pain. I never said that pain is not relevant, but I mean to say that pain is just one of the limiting factors and not the whole of it.

People who were induced to saline maxed out while exercising more quickly than those who were not injected anything. This shows that the people having muscle pain due to any other factor than the endurance pain are prone to give up easily. On the other hand the people who wished to achieve one more target, wanted to run for one more kilometre or wished to do 5 more push-ups maxed out much later, as the pain of a little extra effort is always accompanied by a strong will to achieve more.

Of course pain sometimes is unbearable and leads us to stop our workout with immediate effect, but it depends on how you perceive your pain. If it is the pain that is due to constant efforts, you would always wish to achieve a little more and bear with it.

Stretch It a Little More and Be the Winner

Let me give you a real life example that almost all of us must have noticed. We often see that people visiting the gym always tend to increase their repetition of a particular body part exercise. Despite feeling a little pain while they stretch their muscles a little more than the previous day, they keep going on and add few more repetitions to their daily workout. Wondering why?

This is because they have already made up their mind and set their fitness goal. If a person starts with 30 push-ups a day and had set a target of reaching 100 push-ups by next week, he will eventually plan to increase 10 push-ups per day. He will be motivated enough to put a little more effort every day, bear through the pain and achieve his target.

On the other hand, you must have also seen someone who broke his wrist by mistake while pushing up a heavy barbell and couldn’t continue his workout due to unbearable pain.

Moral of the whole article is to understand the difference between the pain that occurs because of the efforts which is bearable and the pain that is due to other factors which is unbearable. Hope it helps!