Skip to main content
The Works

One smart way to reset

By July 26, 2022September 21st, 2022No Comments

A workout from Dave, my gym guy. EMOM.

How to Reset

That gloomy genius Sam Beckett made it sound easy. In “Worstward Ho!” he wrote,

“Ever tried. Ever failed. No matter. Try again. Fail again. Fail better.”

It’s those two middle exhortations that are the tricky bits.

How do you shake off failure so it’s “no matter?” (The truth of it is many of us give up after a single failure.)

How do you gather yourself to “try again?” (The first step is so often the hardest one.)

I work out in an increasingly futile attempt to ward off the infirmities of middle aged-ness. I go to one of those “kill yourself for 38 minutes” gyms. Dave, the owner, sets our workout of the day, and I then heft a kettlebell or barbell around, sweating and moaning gently. (TMI? Probably.)

One of my “favourite” aka “least favourite” workouts is the EMOM: Every Minute on the Minute.

You’ve got a set number of reps of an exercise to do – for instance the I’m-pretty-sure-this-name-isn’t-gender-progressive-approved “man makers” you can see in the image.

The clock starts and you do your reps. Then you rest until the clock ticks around to the top of the minute, and you do your reps again. And you repeat this again. And again. And again. And again. And … you get the point.

[The genius in it is this. No matter how the last series went, you start again at the 0:00 mark of the minute. It’s about committing to the beginning.]

If the buzzer goes, it’s time to start. It’s not negotiable. It’s not optional. It’s just time to start.

Ready or not, here. You. Go.

Want The Works in your inbox?
Sign up (free) here
Michael Bungay Stanier

Michael Bungay Stanier

I'm the author of five books that have collectively sold more than a million copies. I'm the founder of Box of Crayons, a learning and development company that helps organizations move from advice-driven to curiosity-led. I'm the host of the *2 Pages with MBS* podcast.