Monday, November 28, 2011
"300" Bill said to me as he was standing under the pullup bar.
"What? The movie? Awesomesauce, when are we watching it?"
"No, we're not leaving here until we each do 300 pullups."
"shut up and get to it"
Bill was an amazing lifting partner, and I had the pleasure of working out with him during my stint in the very...industrial Allentown, PA. Yes, there's a Springsteen song about it. No, I didn't know that until I lived there...for a week.
Almost every day, Bill and I met after work and we lifted our hearts out. Our leg day motto was "squat till you puke," which luckily never happened to me. Obviously, I'm a slacker.
Bill was an amazing motivator. I came into the gym having already met my then goal of sub 10% body fat and was honestly aimless. It wasn't until I met him that I realized how clueless I was about lifting. My new goal: learn everything I could from him. He needed someone with a positive attitude and drive to improve, I needed someone to teach me and push me past my limits. It was a match made in weight room heaven.
When you spend so much time with a person, you learn what drives them. Not just for their physical goals, but professionally, personally, and even emotionally. Bill had a pure, internal motivation: to constantly push himself to become stronger, faster, bigger and leaner...to be the best he could possibly be.
Internal motivations are the best kind. They're pure and unwavering. External motivators have their purpose, and there is nothing wrong with them, but they tend to be temporary: Look good for summer, photoshoot coming up (the boys in the DCGFFL Calendar - which is raising money for scholarships for LBGT high school athletes - know what I'm talking about), or that reunion that's around the corner...these are all fine and good. With hard work and dedication, you'll achieve your goal. But what happens after that date? What will you work to achieve?
Bill instilled in me the want to always improve myself. Until then, I was driven by the externals, which is why I was wavering when I met him. I'd go to the gym, do my routine, and do decently, but I never achieved anything. My motivator - which was external - was complete. Now, I see that every lift session makes me stronger, every mile logged makes me faster, every healthy meal - leaner.
I'm on the path towards a better version of me.
So, what drives you?