I Started Treating Each Exercise Equally And Here’s What Happened

I saved time. My breathing improved. I gained more measures for success.

Josh Bunch
2 min readApr 10, 2022


There are specific exercises I consider critically important; Front squats, pull-ups, deadlifts, push-ups, snatches, lunges, and cleans.

There are more, but that list is plenty good enough. It’s also apparent why I like them so much. As far as return on investment, there isn’t much better.

Unfortunately, treating certain exercises like they were more meaningful meant treating others like they weren’t.

It wasn’t that I skipped the so-called lesser exercises. It wasn’t even that I shaved a few reps here and there. I just wasn’t intentional. And while that may not seem like much, consider how cumulative exercise is, multiply that by thousands of lackluster reps, and it might just make you sick to think about all that wasted effort.

It did for me. So I started treating each exercise equally, and here’s what happened.

I Saved Time

Typically, it takes me a few minutes to go from warm-up to workout. From mobility to power and everything in between, it’s a process, and I want it to feel the best it can.

But now that I treat each exercise like it’s just as worthy as the next, that in-between time is all but eliminated.

My Breathing Improved

Train long enough, and you begin to understand just how vital and elegant good breathing is. And while I’m pretty good about employing the proper breathing tactic for each exercise, I was still missing several sets worth of practice.

Now that I go into almost every set with equal intent, my breathwork has improved everywhere else.

I Gained More Measures For Success

It’s hard to PR an exercise you’ve been doing for decades. Really hard.

That doesn’t mean you stop training, but you’d better start searching for exercises to improve. And how better to do that than by treating each exercise equally?

I don’t want to oversell, but it really is exciting to add weight to an exercise you never even thought to improve. Or add time, intensity, or just plain focus. Not only does it take the pressure off other exercises, but it makes you appreciate just how impactful minor changes are.

And who knows, maybe treating each exercise equally has carryover. Maybe each interaction improves. Maybe each experience becomes more real. Perhaps each moment gains meaning.

Or maybe not.



Josh Bunch

Bunch is one of those rare humans who only talks about what he knows; fitness, food, philosophy, and movies. And puppies.