Tuesday, January 6, 2015


Today, in my indoor cycling classes, I am teaching a profile I developed last winter on the occasion of the winter Olympics in Sochi. It is called Faster, Higher, Stronger and is meant to be an opportunity for inspiration and reflection. All of the songs have the word Victory in their titles and/or lyrics. One of the things we consider as we ride is the meaning of victory.

During the sixteen minute climb that forms the Higher portion of the class I introduce the concept of a hendiatris.

From my script:

The phrase ‘faster, higher, stronger’ is what is known as a hendiatris [pronunciation guide here]. That’s a fancy term for a three word phrase that expresses one idea. Such phrases are often used as descriptors or mottos - like “sex, drugs and rock’n roll’,‘reduce, reuse, recycle’, ‘truth, justice and the American way’. 
During this long climb I want you to develop your own three word phrase that you can use to describe and/or inspire your effort.  
Here are a few examples: ‘prepare, persevere, perform’, ‘educate, endure, achieve’, ‘strong, certain, sexy”. People often use alliteration in their phrases but that’s not necessary.
I am always delighted by the fact that people take this challenge seriously and come up with some great three word phrases. The fact that they say them aloud at the end of class means that it is likely that they will remember their phrase when they most need it in a period of stress. I am going to teach the same profile to the ringette team on Thursday night and will challenge the girls to come up with a hendiatris for their team to use.

To bring things full circle to the last few days, this class profile was published on the ICA website and I heard of a student whose hendiatris was 'Make More Mitochondria'.  
Time = 37 min

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