One or two of you have heard this from me, most haven’t, but in my opinion, it’s discipline in all the little things that separates you from being an athlete or just another dude or chick in the gym.  In fact, I think for most of us, the easy part is making it a point everyday to get in our time at the gym, and who can blame you, it’s a great place to be!  At the gym you’ve got a lot of friends working out next to you and supporting you through tough WODs, the coaches are all knowledgeable and there to help you improve (and good looking to boot!), the music’s kicking, etc, etc.  Sure you work hard and sweat, but overall, for a lot of people, it’s something that’s done for fun.

But then there’s the athlete. No matter ability, background, Rx’d, Scaled, male, female, big, small, young, old; you’re there for something a little bit more.  You’re there because you are driven, no matter what your specific goals are.  Looking to stand on top of that podium?  Athlete. Not even looking to ever step foot on the field, or in the arena, but simply to push the limits of your own physical capabilities? Athlete.  Looking to do something special by rejecting physical complacency? Athlete. They tell you it couldn’t be done, not by someone like you, but you’re going to show them different?  Athlete.

So what’s going to separate you from just another dude or chick having a good time in the gym?  Focus on the little things.

Little things like when you loose count in the middle of your WOD you start over at zero.

Little things like 5 minutes early instead of 5 minutes late.

Little things like, not matter how long you’ve been doing this and how much you think you know, you listen quietly while the coach is talking.

Little things like rising above, and not adding to the gym gossip, because you’ve got a bigger purpose to attend to.

Little things like cheering on those around you, because what’s an athlete without a team?

Little things like taking that rest day when you really don’t want to but your body really needs it.

Little things like kind words and suffering in silence.

A little thing called leading by example.

So this week, when you’re getting your work done at the gym, think about who you want to be, an athlete, or just some dude or chick in the gym.