This would be for those that don’t really know we or that have not known me for along time.
I was rather non-athletic and very overweight as a child. I tried to play sports, just was never all that successful. I gravitated towards martial arts as the success was solely up to me. It was not a team sport and I could let no one down but myself. It was not until my sophomore year I started playing high school basketball (or rather I ran a lot). I was not good. But in running so much I lost a lot of weight and went the other way – got pretty skinny.
In the early years of my martial arts career I was not very successful there either. Never won a trophy for the first couple of years. For Christmas, one year, my parents gave me a 1st place trophy – “Our #1 Karate Kid”. After years of winning many trophies, the only one I have to this day is the one from my family – my first 1st place trophy.
Back to my early years in martial arts, I found a teacher of Tae Kwon Do, his name was Arnie. I so admired this teacher. He was fast, quiet, strong and patient. Did I mention all those years of losing came at the hands of a certain popular, statewide Tae Kwon Do school ruled many and most tournaments. My time with Arnie at his school was short-lived as the “enemy” Tae Kwon Do school acquired the school that had become close to my heart – this was back in seventh grade. So on to another school with the goal of getting better, getting so good I would start beating the students of the previously mentioned “enemy” school. And beat them I did, many times over. Yay for me, “I win”. Anyone that knows me, knows I often use this small phrase, sometimes for me and sometimes for them. We all need a win once in awhile.
Reflecting back on that time in my life, the early martial arts days, this is what formed my affinity of rooting for the underdog almost always. I felt like an underdog for most of my years and yet I overcame these occurrences, often. To this day I really cheer for the underdog as I still see myself as just that. Not in a negative way, it just seemed like I always learned everything the hard way and struggle to get better. Yet I am not an elite athlete, sports star at any level, a well known trainer or a ripped physique model. Does this stop me from trying? Not a chance!
I have come to realize over all these years that people that reach out for help with their health and fitness are also underdogs. They obviously struggle or they would not be reaching out for help. So I can relate with their struggles and obstacles. Most everyone has some aspiration to something higher or greater (learning a new language, earning a degree, being a rock star parent, better fitness, fundraising for charity, etc.)
Louis Kahn once said “even a brick wants to be something. A brick wants to be something. It aspires. Even a common, ordinary brick… wants to be something more than it is. It wants to be something better than it is. That is what we must be”.
The handful of clients I have are actually my friends – they are underdogs, they make improvements, they are rock stars, they aspire to be something better! Brick by brick, piece by piece they are improving their health, wellness and lives. I will fight for the “underdog” in each of them or anyone reaching out for help.