The best fight I’ve ever fought I credit to my corner man. As long as I did exactly as he said precisely when he said it, I’d make contact first and get the point against an opponent I’d fought several times — but had not yet defeated. Over and over during the three two-minute rounds, if I hesitated, if I ignored his coaching, I’d fall behind. Even when it went against my tendencies, it worked if I’d follow. Amidst the many spectators yelling, I had to KNOW and focus on just one sound without seeing his face. Trusting only the steady voice of experience of the champion sitting in my corner sealed the victory that day.
On the other hand, when training for my first marathon, much unsolicited advice was proffered by people who clearly weren’t suited to give it. Examples:
“Wear the heaviest boots you can find while training so you’re feet feel light on race day.” – compliments of a sandwich shop employee. *
“Run to win or don’t run at all.” – contributed by an overweight gym goer moseying on an adjacent treadmill. *
“Run as far as you can every single day till the race so you are really, REALLY prepared.” – no clue who this guy was.
I was properly trained thanks to the sage coaching of a veteran marathoner and ultra distance runner with well over 60 events under his belt. HE can be trusted.
There are thousands of voices imploring us to do this or that with our lives, telling us what our goals should be, how we should define success, how to spend our time (time = life) etc. Clearly, they are not all to be trusted. Most everyone can whittle that number, hopefully narrowing it to a scant few sources to be heeded. Athletically, this is easier to do than on the great stage of life itself. Oh, but how much more important it is to find the truth for life. This is the only one we have. It can be easily wrecked, but it can also be redeemed — and it’s never too late to find your way back. Know to whom you are listening…consider the source.
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