Oneil – The hardest working guy at my gym

Tonight (4/27/12), I was doing 90 minutes on the spin bike.  At my club, the spin bikes are in a separate room with a glass wall, so you can see out to the elliptical machines.  I was about 30 minutes in, when I saw this guy with crutches (those short ones that you see crippled people using, not the long ones you get when you break your ankle) walk up to an elliptical.   He sits on the back of the machine, puts his crutches down and hauls himself up on the elliptical.

For the next hour, I watched him work his ass off.  I noticed the grimace on his face that kept reappearing, and I noticed how he would pick up the pace and do sprints, and also how he would really challenge himself with resistance.  I was thoroughly impressed, and motivated.

My workout was a real mental challenge tonight, but every time I thought about stopping early, I looked out and saw this man working his tail off.  I was truly motivated by how hard he was working.

When I was done with my workout, I walked up and introduced myself.  O’neil was a soft spoken man.  I asked him if he minded me asking what his story was.  It turns out that he was injured in a car accident years ago, and was in a wheel chair for years.  He is now out of the chair, and walking with the aid of his crutches, but he has a goal of losing the crutches eventually.  As hard as I saw him working, I truly believe he will achieve his goal someday.

In my brief conversation with O’neil, I asked him if it would be ok to talk again, and learn his story, so I could write about it on my blog.  He agreed, and I can’t wait until I get to talk with him again.  With O’neils continued approval, I will be publishing his story as I learn more.  Make sure to sign up for my newsletter to stay informed when a new post is added to the blog.

So, what’s your excuse?  Why can’t you get off the couch and go for a jog, or ride a bike, or swim laps, or play catch with your kids?

Thank you O’neil for inspiring me, even though I didn’t know your name.  Keep up the hard work.

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