The sun grazed across the surface of the horizon at 6:15 A.M, as I walked into the high school. I sawthis view each day of the summer from my seventh grade year on. I forced myself into the dimly lit gymnasium for weight lifting and conditioning, not knowing what the next hour and a half would hold.
Not only was I waking up in the wee hours of the morning to drench myself in sweat, but I was doing so with varsity wrestlers, track & field athletes, football players, hockey players and other male athletes. Amidst the intimidation, I always seemed to find myself working out side-by-side with the only other girl at that morning session, who also happened to be my best friend, Rachael. Rachael and I gave each other the motivation to keep going. We knew we were working out with the best, so we pushed each other that much harder to perform at their level.
I vividly remember one morning in the summer after 9th grade. This day, Rachael was gone. I was left… alone. Fortunately, I had a kind, compassionate and obligated brother going into his senior year that was lucky enough to receive the task of lifting with me. Nathan and I had gone through most of the day’s workout, but we each had one set left on the bench press. I reluctantly got under the bar and started my reps- down…up…down…up…down… “Nathan, help. I can’t.”
“If you have the energy to talk, you have the energy to finish.”
What? How could he know how I felt in that moment? I was completely exhausted and he comes back with that?
But before I knew it, I had fully extended my arms, finishing that last repetition. Success.
He was right.
I was ready to give up, but Nathan? He knew I had it in me.
I thought I couldn’t do anymore, but Nathan? He knew I could.
How often in our lives do we give up because we think we “can’t do it”? We say we have given it everything we have, but how do we truly know how much “everything” is?
It is so easy to make up excuses. “I’m too busy.” “I am not good enough.” “I just can’t.” But just imagine everything we could accomplish if we pushed just a little bit more. What if we spent 5 more minutes on that math problem, went out of our way to talk to the new kid in school or tried out for the volleyball team we weren’t sure we could make?
Try this with me: hold your hand up and form a fist. Squeeze it as hard as you can.
Keep holding that and now squeeze your first harder.
One more time, even harder.
Each time you thought you were squeezing your fist as hard as you could, but you were able to squeeze it just a little bit more.
This is so true in our lives. There is always a little bit more in us to give. Just as my brother made me
realize I was able to push harder and finish that full set on the bench press, so too can you…
Do one more rep.
Stationed by the ear of corn,