Giving up before trying. Try then keep going.

I went to the gym with a friend. He was a little out of shape to say the least, but he showed up to our workout session, which was the biggest step to success – showing up. The second step is to actually perform the exercises.

We went to do chin-ups. I did my 15 reps, no problem. It was his turn and before even stepping under the bar he proclaims in defeat, “I don’t think I can do it.”

Me:”How do you know you can’t? Have you tried?”
Friend: “Yeah, I’ve tried a few months ago and can only do maybe 1-2 max.”
Me: “Ok, here’s what we’ll do. You jump in and pretend that you are stronger than you really are, and pull yourself up one rep at a time. Then rest. Then up again. Then rest. Then up again. Try it!”
Friend: “Ok. I’ll give that a try.”

Two weeks later, I saw my friend at the gym again. This time, he proudly steps up to the bar and bangs out 15 chin-ups, no sweat.