The Two Types Of Quitters – Are You One Of Em?

By: August 12, 2011 6 Comments

Here’s a little blast form the past – when people used to ask me why I’m such a Jerk, my standard response was “because I can be.” It’s not that I didn’t have a more elaborate answer, it’s just that I didn’t feel like answering. See I’m a doer, which means I’d rather buckle down and take action then talk. But then I figured it’s time people got a real answer: I’m a Jerk because you are softer than a jelly donut stuffed inside a marshmallow.

The new generation of kids? Soft.

The new generation of workers? Soft.

The new generation of parents? Soft as f*ck.

Can you believe that just 50 years ago your mom could slap the shit outta you if you talked back to her? And there would be no child protection laws to save your ass. In fact, my old woman would still slap the shit outta me. And she did when I was young and acted like a fool. Yes, it was mean. Yes, she could be a tyrant. But she developed a man. She developed a winner… which as you may guess is the opposite of a quitter.

Let’s face facts you squishy sugar treat, if you’ve never accomplished something you’ve set out to do, never executed something to completion or decided to give up before barely starting, then you are a textbook quitter. Here’s the official dictionary definition:

quit*ter – Noun: A person who gives up easily or does not finish a task.

More and more quitters are popping up everyday and recently I decided to spend some time studying these unaccomplished clowns. It seems then when you zoom out and look at the group of quitters as a whole, there are generally two main types: The Premature Quitter and The Idiotic Quitter. It’s the latter type of quitter that really fascinates me, and you will soon find out why. Let’s dive into the first group.

The Premature Quitters

To be honest, I tend not to deal with these people. The reason is because they quit before they’ve even tried anything. They walk out into the water, get their feet wet (or in some cases, barely damp) then run back the other way like the little pussies they are. This results in a problem that is two-fold. feet_wet

First, premature quitters barely have any reference experiences in life. I mean how could they? They’ve never technically tried anything. When it comes to getting results and getting a body that is worthy of being half naked at the beach, these are the people that will complain before starting a program and say “I’ve tried everything, but nothing works”

Bullshit. They haven’t tried jack. They’ve attempted to try – big difference.

The second problem is that premature quitters have done so much quitting in their lives that it’s become a habit. This is the dangerous dark side of continuous repetition. Do anything enough times and you’ll become astonishingly good at it, even if it’s quitting. So not only are they quitters, but they are really good quitters. And as clients, they are f*cking impossible to deal with.

I can deal with whining, bitching and complaining. I can even deal with tantrums and hissy-fits but I cannot deal with Premature Quitters. There are people out there that have the patience to deal with their shenanigans, I’m not one of them.

If you are brutally honest with yourself and have suddenly realized that you’re a Premature Quitter, then only hope for you is to start taking on small projects and seeing them to completion and then moving on to bigger ones. Momentum has a funny way of reprogramming even the most hard-ass quitters.

  • Find a recipe online which requires you to shop for groceries and see it to completion.
  • Sign up for 5 personal training sessions and go to all of them
  • Sign up for classes in an area you know nothing about (such as dance for example) and go for an entire season without missing classes
  • Sign up for certificate programs (anything that gives you a piece of paper at the end, rewarding and acknowledging your completion within months)

The Idiotic Quitters

The reason I call this group idiotic, is because they are the ones that quit 10 feet from the finish line. And what’s more baffling is that from my guesstimate, 2/3 of the quitter population is made up of the Idiotic kind. It still drives me crazy as to why a person who has the finish line in sight would just give up. All that effort it took to start, all that effort it took to continue, immediately washed down the drain.sprint_exhaustion As it turns out, most trainers are well aware of the Idiotic quitters. These are the ones who will sign up for a 3 month plan and decide to quit 2 months into the process, when holding on and persevering one more month will get them to their desired result. I mean think about this logic: They spend 2 months on grind work, laying out the foundation for success, then just when things are primed to work for them, just when results are about to be achieved, they say “fuck it” and give up.


Fortunately, that last bit of push can be provided by the trainer. This is where I usually come in, tell em to STFU and buckle their ass down and lo-and-behold, 95% of the time they achieve success. Then they thank me for pushing them. The other 5% might not see the results they want (yet) since it takes them a little bit longer… but I know that to have a 100% success rate, quitting cannot be part of the equation.

It can take you 3 weeks, 3 months or 3 years to see results, as long as you keep going. But I guarantee you that you won’t achieve the body you want if at some point you stop.

Trust me, the best athletes and trainers on this planet have never achieved constant linear progression when it comes to training. NO ONE on this earth, not even pharmaceutically assisted bodybuilders see progress in a linear fashion. Plateaus are part of the game. But at this point in my ever-so-exciting life, I firmly believe that plateaus exist not to screw your ass over, but to separate the quitters from the winners. The Weak Ass Chumps from the Strong Ass Champs.

If you’re an idiotic quitter, the solution is obviously simple – practice going to absolute failure on every exercise on every set for the next 3 months. Period.

Now physiologically, training to failure shouldn’t ALWAYS be prescribed since you might overtrain, injure yourself, not see results as fast etc.

But I say fuck all that technical nonsense, because the habit of not quitting will be so ingrained into your soul that the pros will out-weight the cons. You’re not going to die because you over-trained. You’re not going to die because of a small sprain. You’re not going to die because it took you 6 months instead of 3 to get to where you want to be. But the sleepless nights and the self-guilt of knowing that you gave up might make you want 50 cent to bust a cap in yo ass, son!

Every time I feel like quitting in life, I say the exact same shit to myself as I do in the gym “C’mon you pussy, one more. One more rep to success”

Now that is a real world carry-over effect I can deal with.

The Strategic Quitter – A Rare Breed

Of course, exceptions exist to every rule and there are times when quitting is beneficial to your long-term success… as any good Poker player will tell you. Ex-smokers & strippers too. But there is a very fine line between a strategic quitter and an idiotic quitter. Sometimes, they might even look like the same to a bystander. But look carefully and you’ll spot the differences.

Strategic quitters don’t quit and GIVE UP. They quit, then re-allocate resources. If something didn’t work, and they have imperial data that what they are doing is a waste of time, they will drop that shit like a bad coke habit and then expend the exact same amount of energy travelling down a different path.

Strategic quitters are looking for success, idiotic quitters aren’t. Big difference.

The next time you feel like quitting, chuck your ego out the window. Plop yourself into one of the 3 categories and take the plan of action. They say big shots are little shots that just kept on shooting. I tend to highly agree with that statement.

Discuss: Ever felt like quitting in the past but managed to turn that around? Post a comment below and let’s hear how ya did it.

About the Author:

Turns fat asses into good looking bad asses. Also a National deadlift record holder and the undisputed flip-cup champion. If you want to train under him, Click Here to fill out an application, and he just may consider working with you.

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  1. A Practical Guide To Mental Toughness | February 1, 2013
  1. Mr Natural says:

    I\’m commited to swimming an open water mile for WWF\’s Blue Mile fundraisrer in September.

    I believe in the cause, I know I can do it, and I have already started collecting sponsorship.

    The reason I\’m thinking about quitting is that all these fucking jellyfish have started appearing in that stretch of water. They are not dangerous to a healthy adult but they do make swimming there hurt.

    The main problem is, I resent the fact that they have turned this into such an ordeal – it is unusual to find them in these waters and I wasn\’t counting on it. So on the one hand, I didn\’t sign up for this shit, but on the other hand I can\’t honestly say that I absolutely have to quit.

    I dunno. What do you guys think?

    BTW, I check out my event blog here : I included a thing about the jellyfish I\’m facing.

  2. Daydreamer says:

    I felt like quitting because I was completely overtrained, with many mental symptoms that were very similar to depression.
    I’m actually taking a whole week off which I never did in the past and I’m starting to feel better, I hope I’ll be able to go back to my training without too many difficulties.

    The last 9 months, I used to push all my workouts to failure, adding additional sets to every exercises I did until I couldn’t do any more consistent set, ending up doing around 20 sets or more per muscle groups, two times per week…
    Is it even useful to train that intensely ?
    Should I stick to a program even if I know I can do more if I decrease the weights and stuff ?

    Thanks !

    • Fit Jerk says:

      Seems to me that you suffered from major over-training… which tells me your workout program is NOT suited to your recovery ability. In your case it’s not about quitting or not quitting, it’s about training SMART.

      Training to failure is fine when you’re only hitting the gym 2-3x a week. Which is all most people really need unless they want to experience extreme fat loss at a rapid pace.

  3. EricMcBride says:

    Interesting view point. In my twenties I was an idiotic quitter…lack of confidence, I suppose. However, I was “rehabilitated”…life has a funny way a making you tough or breaking you…fortunately I got f’ing tough.

  4. g3nevi3ve says:

    LOL do you make the anti-spam words, FJ?

    just wanted to put on record, i’m pretty sure i’m a strategic quitter. i don’t give up on shit easily (if ever) and when i do, it’s for good reason (typically to re-assess and then move forward when a new strategy has been mapped out). i tried thinking if i was ever an idiotic quitter and… nope. it’s been a good (or bad) thing that i’m a pretty persistent mf. :P i’ve gotten better at my strategically quitting over the years, but am still honing the skill of recognizing how much too much is before i drop it like a stripper on a naval aircraft carrier. :D

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