Pain Is Temporary

Below is a brief video that includes background audio of a speech by Eric Thomas. If you aren’t familiar with his name, you may recall hearing his voice on a popular video that circled the web last year (see here).

The message in this recent clip is similar to the first. He stresses that many in today’s world are soft and spoiled. And while he references a homeless upbringing, he isn’t suggesting that you cannot achieve success without similar circumstances. His words aren’t intended for literal interpretation. The general message is still clear however.

Our generation is soft. Not everyone wants to hear it, but how can you deny it? Take a look around at the masses. People constantly search for easier ways to get in shape. Marketing companies then cater to the demand.

It almost seems like no one wants to hear the truth so no one is willing to tell it.

Pathetic, isn’t it?

Why not tell people that they’ll need to make considerable sacrifices? They’ll need to bust their ass day after day. Results won’t happen overnight. There may be stretches when you don’t make any meaningful gains. There may be days when you are beat down and sore. It may hurt just to squat down on the toilet.

That’s life. It isn’t a picnic. You can either face reality or sit on your ass and search for a magic pill that doesn’t exist.

The only easy choice for me is to wake up and face the music. Overcome some pain, deal with some hardship, and get up when you’ve been knocked down.

You’ll come out a better person.


“We must embrace pain and burn it as fuel for our journey.” – Kenji Miyazawa


  1. That is very encouraging Ross. I’ve been following you for several years now and have yet to make any changes. Not because your program or any program for that matter doesn’t work in my case right now but, because I haven’t dug deep from within. My battle is with myself and nothing else. Thanx for the encouragment.

  2. Ross, when are you going to start posting Nietzsche quotes?

    I’ve spent a lot of time in Bolivia with soccer players there. It is standard for semi-professional players who are young adults or teenagers to play in cleats with holes, or have to take a year off from playing because they go from one team to another but the first owner won’t give up the player pass without the player paying $100, which the player won’t have. I could go on about this topic forever…

    I don’t think Bolivians are necessarily harder workers because of their forced suffering and sacrifice, but I do think they face reality whereas Americans can be bratty and a bit out of touch some of the time.

  3. I definitely agree with you. Too many people want the quick fix.

    However, there are other times that people needlessly put themselves through too much pain for too little results.

    Like too much long distance jogging – which most people hate, when a few short sprints would be far more effective and less painful.

  4. A message that we do not want to hear. Nothing is achieved without effort and persistence. Successes are achieved only with resolution and faith

  5. I feel people are soft in some ways, and hard in others. At the very least, people should be softer with everyone they meet, and more understanding.

    I also believe getting in shape is not a matter of busting your ass, but rather about consistent moderate effort.

    Sure, if you want to be elite, you have to bust ass, but for the average person, dramatic improvements in strength and stamina can come through consistent effort, even if they don’t feel like death.

  6. I’ve found the magic pill, so to speak, about two years ago. I’ve actually known about it ever since I was a kid. The pill’s name was hard work, taken with a little bit of dedication, some spilt sweat and blood and a strong desire to achieve my current goals. This pill has worked for me ever since.

  7. @Chris Pine

    I actually find sprints more painful than long distance jogging, but then again my body is aged half a century. Some people find long distance jogging therapeutic to their pysche and physical well being. There certainly is a “runner’s high,” and I can easily see how someone would overdo distance running. I try to limit myself to one truly long run a week because I feel that too much cardio will defintely limit your explosiveness, and well too many miles pounding the pavement isn’t exactly all that conducive to keeping 50 year old knees, shins, and ankles healthy. But to jog 6-8 miles to me at least is far more pleasant than doing sprints, especially hill sprints.

  8. @ZenBowman

    Good post. People are far too hard on others and we do indeed live in a pathetic insecure society. What these so-called hardasses don’t realize is that it’s the truly strong person who doesn’t need to belittle others for self worth. A lot of weak people take great pleasure in tearing each other down when in fact no one is that big to begin with. Also spot on about consistency being the key in maintaining a long-term fitness lifestyle. The balls to the walls approach will only last so long before a person will injure themselves or just abandon training altogether in favor of the couch and doughnuts. The people who stay fit decade after decade must cycle the intensity of their workouts, do alternative training, and even incorporate short and long term layoffs when the body needs it.

  9. Thanks for yet another great post. If you are serious about sports (or semi-serious in my case), you have to know more about yourself than anyone else. So I know my defects and what I need to get pass them. Life is about overcoming obstacles and growing as a person.

    Even though I am not into body building, MMA, or boxing, I have found your site to be invaluable. Of course I like to get workout ideas from your site but the stories of others you post are uplifting and motivating. I find this site to even be more useful than the “Self Help” sites that just post pictures of eagles with witty phrases strewn across them.

    Keep up the good work!

  10. Yup, it’s a real shame that people are desperate to avoid hard work.

    The problem is that the pain of training is perceived as being a bad thing, and therefore something to be avoided.

    If we were all to find training enjoyable, the hard work and pain involved wouldn’t be a problem. In addition, we would also find it much, much easier to dig deep, because that would mean we’d only get more enjoyment out of it!

    Which is EXACTLY what people who do love their training do! They happily dig deep, so much so that occasionally they push themselves into overtraining….

    Shameless plug alert!
    This is why I put together an ebook called ‘How To Do What You Don’t Want To Do’, so that people can find it easy to motivate themselves for diet and exercise, and they can learn to enjoy exercise. Check it out via the link to my website in my name..

    Keep up the good work

  11. Live is to short to waste? =/ This guy has some hate in him. This works for people but I want something else to drive me. I won’t call people spoiled. It’s a bad expression. Spoiled fruit is eaten by bugs and bacteria and it’s gone and we can’t get it back. It’s there to die and get swallowed by the soil.

    People who are alive are not spoiled. They have potential. They’re frozen and need to be thawed. They’re seeds and need to be sprouted. Our growth may be delayed or retarded, parts may even wither and fall off and we may get set back, but if we live we aren’t rotten, aren’t spoiled. That expression’s gotta die, people ruled by it lose their faith in humanity.

    1. Rather than rambling on about spoiled fruit, you should first consider the multiple meanings of certain words. If you say the fruit spoiled, you are using the word as an intransitive verb with an entirely different meaning (ex. to lose valuable or useful qualities usually as a result of decay).

      To state that a person is spoiled is an entirely different use of the word. It is similar to coddling. As stated within Merriam-Webster:

      To impair the disposition or character of by overindulgence or excessive praise

      To pamper excessively

      There are plenty of spoiled individuals in today’s world.

  12. I haven’t even seen the video yet, but I really needed this post. I’ve been plateaued for awhile on a weight loss goal that was going so well . . . I’m doing what I need to do, but it’s not coming off right now.
    But working extremely hard for awhile has never been my problem . . . I have to be consistent. I can’t be out for the next quick fix. I won’t get there.

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