There’s a concept athletes are familiar with called the “second wind”.
You may be familiar with this through experience, or have heard some athletic friends discuss it.
Mostly, it’s a feeling.
But, a powerful one.
What is the “second wind”?
If you’re swimming a long-distance event – like the mile, which is 1,650 yards and 66 laps – you will start the event feeling fresh and rested. Then, as the event wears on, you will get progressively tired. This makes sense.
When you get tired, you have two options:
- Let the tired feeling consume you and win.
- Push through and overcome that feeling.
If you’re able to push hard enough when you begin to get tired, you can unlock your second wind. It only happens after you overcome being tired.
If you can overcome, you will feel better than when you started the race. It’s like a weight being lifted. Like you’re dropping shackles. It’s as if you could go at top speed forever.
The reality is, with this feeling you can continue at top performance for a period. This period allows you to effectively get in the zone. You want to use the second wind to your advantage.
In the mile, you hope this happens around the 500-yard mark. That gives you plenty of time to be in the zone and meet your goal.
The second wind isn’t exclusively available to athletes. It’s an idea. Anyone can get them and use them to their advantage.
You can get a second wind during a single day. A week, month, year, or sometime over your career.
The goal is to recognize it and lean into it.
Once you can recognize them, you want to be able to manufacture them. Time them such you can regularly leverage them.
Let it be your hidden overdrive button used for a burst of productivity or creativity.
Just like getting in the zone while swimming the mile.
When you’re tired, it may mean it’s time to stop or move on.
It could also be right before your second win.
P.S. This is not an endorsement for hustle porn. A second wind can only happen when you’re well trained and well rested.