I trained with a professional Muay Thai instructor for awhile. He was beyond a brutal human being. He was fast, quick, strong and when he kicked the bag, it sounded like a gunshot going off. Really, he was a badass from the get go. A man who could brutalize you from a few inches away. He beat the crap out of me on a daily basis. I would always leave the gym thinking of my shotgun....seriously.
He was insecure, also, so he always thought that he was being challenged by you even though you just wanted to ask a simple question or two. I learned a lot from him. He wouldn't even come out of the office when I jumped rope, would never be kind or sympathetic about injuries or throwing up or cramping up. I didn't care about that stuff, I didn't need to be babied or get him to tell me how I "did good".
I learned that you always have one more rep in you, one more kick, one more punch..He always said, just tell yourself , ONE MORE, ONE MORE, no matter what and pretty soon the round is over. That's something that I learned from him, that if you just focus on the rep that you are on, and then just string those reps together, you will eventually be where you need to be.
But the biggest thing that I learned from him? He used to always say, "Hit pads first, talk later.", meaning that its the doing, not the analysis and the talking and the excuses, Excuses, damn. Everyone has a bunch of them. . I have trained thousands of folks and that is a trait that sets great lifters and athletes from the cowards and wanna bees. ACTION.
My assistant Tracy texted me today because I was travelling and she asked what her workout was, and I told her and she did it .Not one question. Just action...it was 315x as many as possible in the squat and a bunch of leg curls. No problem, she did something nuts like 12 or 14....BY HERSELF. In the gym alone. She will squat 500 real soon, and she could do it without a support group cheering her on or post about it on a website. She would do it outside in the pouring rain if I told her to, that's just how she is.
And I learn a lot from everybody that I am around. I see the way folks think that weight training is all about the program and not about the inner strength and resolve that great people and lifters have IN them. I always come back to that, in my head, the haves, the strong, and the weak as hell people that will never have it and should stick to what they know. Soft stuff. Strength is something that is earned through consistent action and determination. Not wishing and hoping that it will happen. Its the price paid on vacation , when everyone else is at the beach, and you go to the gym and no matter what the equipment is like, or how crappy the bars are, you pull a personal best. And you don't say "PR" because that doesn't matter one bit until you do it in a meet...
I am fortunate to train a few hearty few- they have IT, whether they know it or not. I see it. I recognize the fortitude in them, the winning attitude , the underlying fierceness that I admire so much. I salute those folks, they are true warriors.