The Myth of Hump Day

I love hump day. I long to see that downhill slope coming after Wednesday like I long to grab that gulp of desperately needed air at the midpoint of a race. I even recently contemplated buying a shirt that says, “pump day” on it, emblazoned with a camel and weights, perfect for a Wednesday workout.

But recently I started thinking about the whole concept of hump day, and I’d like to propose that perhaps viewing weeks with a midpoint is not the most conducive mindset to cultivating a life of joy and success.

My coach in college used to make our hardest practices on Mondays and Fridays. I think he did this because he knew that those were the two times we would want to be at practice the least: at the beginning of the week when we had so far to go and at the end of the week when we were so close to the weekend. But we showed up and we gave it our best anyway because it was the bar our coach set for us.


There was a mental toughness that these inopportune workouts gave us when it came to competitions because when we had to race at 8pm or when our body didn’t feel just right for the finals, it didn’t matter. We were used to pushing ourselves when we didn’t feel like it.

I think my coach had unknowingly subverted the myth of hump day. See, the reminder of Wednesday can be a nice shot in the arm in the middle of the week. But what it does to us subconsciously isn’t worth the tradeoff.

When we buy into the myth of hump day, it turns our workweek into a hill, with two days climbing the hill, one day at the summit, and two days coasting down it. What’s worse, when the weeks are lined up back to back, all of those hills turn into a roller coaster of emotions, energy, and mental capacity.

There are weeks for a reason, there are days for a reason, and there are seasons for a reason. We need to start over. Sometimes we need a new day or a new beginning. But the problem with isolating each week and creating a hump in the middle is that we inevitably make some days worse than others.

Saying we must get to the hump to go downhill for the rest of the week implies that Mondays and Tuesdays are the worst days of the week. We trudge into our workouts those days feeling the full weight of the week on our shoulders. It even ruins our Sunday, too, because we’re dreading starting the new hill on Monday.

Making a “hump day” creates a mentality of obstacles, rather than an attitude of adventure.

Every day counts. Every day is an adventure. If you spend Sunday dreading Monday, Monday being miserable, and Tuesday just trying to get to Wednesday, then that means you are not living 43 percent of your life to its greatest potential.


Victims of the hump day myth spend nearly HALF their lives trying to get to the other half. I don’t know about you, but I want to live my life with a pop in my step and joy in my heart every day, not just half of the days.

The myth of hump day goes much deeper than our workouts as athletes. It surpasses habits to the very core of humanity: we see life as a struggle, rather than a gift. We see what we lack, rather than all we’ve already been given. We await the next best thing, never realizing that being grateful for the last best thing in our lives is what propels us to something better.

How different would you approach life if instead of seeing the trajectory as a rollercoaster, you saw it as a line moving forward? To be sure, life will end up being a rollercoaster regardless, for to think otherwise means you believe you control far more than you actually do. But let life throw it’s challenges at you, rather than choosing to make the hills and valleys a self-fulfilling prophecy.

To make every moment count, it’s going to take a dramatic paradigm shift. Instead of dreading Monday on Sunday, get excited for the opportunity to start a workout the next morning refreshed and rested. Monday could be your best opportunity to gain ground on your competitors! Instead of awaiting Friday, imagine what gifts a mundane Tuesday or Thursday could behold!

Dispelling the myth of hump day enables you to face every day with renewed vigor, fresh perspective, and a focused mind.

You can reach your goals, change a life, or gain momentum on any day. You will live life in anticipation of great surprises, rather than in dread of planned disappointments. When you disprove the myth of hump day, you will live the life you were born to live.

** All pictures are presented by Cap Tex (Life Time Triathlon) presented by Verizon


Tera Bradham

Tera Bradham is an author and motivational speaker. She swam for the University of Arkansas and Texas A&M University before living in South America for a year. Returning to Texas, she taught Spanish and was the head swim coach at Meridian World School. She now dabbles in triathlons and enjoys exploring the mountains of her new home, Bozeman, Montana. Her heart's deepest desire is to empower others to fight for the destiny they were made to live.