Ego…and leaving Gorilla Suits for Gorillas

So, when it comes to dealing with young people…well, the ones that have ambition actually (many..most? do not), at what point is it good to say “well, that is not your destiny; do something else?”

The reality is that few of us have the talent to be truly elite at anything; most of us have to work reasonably hard to be “good.” I remember seeing a case where a player who mostly rode the bench for a 2-10 Big Ten football team really thought he’d get a shot at the NFL. Seriously..and he was coached by someone who knows NFL talent when he sees it, and he had some playing time the year before. Sigh..

Which lead me to remember this:

I bought this book as an undergraduate when I wanted to get stronger. What I didn’t get is that most of these guys were on steroids (yes, Dr. Todd talked about that in the book) and that these guys were outliers; they had natural ability to work with…then they put in the work to become champions.

Most bodies, mine included, do not respond to training in that way. So about the title of this post: Todd talked about steroid abuse and then became a staunch opponent of it. He explained that he saw the damage its abuse caused in the lives of those who used them. And he once wrote (in a column for the Austin American Statesman, I believe) something to the effect “leave gorilla suits for gorillas.”

Of course both he and Jan actively supported the Texas powerlifting club..and Jan once got me to help spot someone doing a 700 lb. squat. (there were 5 of us). I was benching 310 at the time.
They also supported less formal contests, such as a “how many reps can you get with your body weight” (I got 11 reps with 230).

But, I suppose the bottom line is “don’t beat yourself up for not attaining the unattainable” and that applies in many areas of life.

Ego and social media
I’ve enjoyed social media. I like the discussions (at least, sometimes, when they don’t involve math). And yes, I do get ego boosts. When?

1. Sometimes it is fun to see people “meet through me” and go on to become friends…and yes, on occasion, they become friends and one of them blocks me! (LOL)

2. On twitter, I really don’t count “followers” nor do I care about the number. But the WHO follows me does tickle my ego a bit:

a) when someone who has a ton of followers but is somewhat selective on who THEY follow follows me…well…I get the happy face.

These two accounts are followed by a ton of people, but follow relatively fewer accounts themselves.

b) then there is the “famous people”: one is a US Senator and presidential candidate; the other is a former boxing contender who once came within 20 seconds of going the distance with the lineal champion Wladimir Klitchko in a title fight.