..of mental weightlifting and physical fitness.

1. Being a grad student, I do a lot of the former. Be it solving differential equations or doing statistical thermodynamics, I’m always doing mental acrobatics. How do I fit in the latter is the tricky part. So, I found a new trick to train for my upcoming triathlon. I swim for a kilometer and then I head over to the gym across the street and run on the treadmill for about five kilometers. Some stretching, a quick shower and I’m back in the library. I think thats a good balance. Plus the gym is open till 1 am. And its way faster and more convenient than running outside.

2. I think I’m in that phase – the one where I’m in a good routine. I know pretty much what I have to do daily. Its feels good. These are the days I look forward to. When all the planning is done. All the running around is done. I have clear specific goals. All i need to do is put my head and heart into my work everyday. As simple as that. Plug and chug babe. Plug and chug.

3. Chance. It happened to me again. I believe that there are very few individuals like me. Who think like me. Who plan like me. Who dream like me. And then once in a while, I run into them. Its happened a couple of times in the past. It happened today evening. In front of the main quad, on my way back from the gym. I had just stopped for barely a second to put on my headphones. And I met this person. Got to talking for more over an hour. And it was freezing cold outside. I came back to the library wondering, what the hell just happened. Its the frequency. Sometimes you meet someone with a matching frequency and time just flies by. Well, besides the joy of engaging in a heart to heart conversation with an interesting person, I got a Tiramisu too. Thank you fate. Mmm, that hit the spot. Both in my stomach and heart.

Mental toughness is many things and rather difficult to explain. Its qualities are sacrifice and self-denial. Also, most importantly, it is combined with a perfectly disciplined will that refuses to give in. It’s a state of mind – you could call it character in action.

~Vince Lombardi

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