“If you are not embarrassed of the first version of your product, then you have launched too late.”
My first 5k took me 44 minutes. I was totally embarrassed. I gave it everything I had. My lungs burned so bad that I couldn’t smoke a cigarette for probably thirty minutes after the race. I could have waited until I was more prepared but I probably would have run into adversity, become frustrated and lost interest. .
Today, that 44-minute 5k is one of my proudest accomplishments.
Five years ago, I saw, what would soon be, my future wife in the gym. I had to have her. She was so far out of my league that she was on a paid contract in the Big Leagues and I still needed my parent’s to sign a permission slip. I didn’t care, though; she was gonna be mine. I’m not sure anything has ever been so singularly important to me at the present moment. I had to introduce myself to her- the best and earliest version of myself. I totally flopped. I jokingly referred to my male workout partner as “Sweetheart”- she thought I was referring to her- and she quickly scolded me by sternly saying, “I am not your sweetheart.” To make matters worse, on her way out the door, I hollered, “It was nice meeting you, Andrea.” Her name is Amanda. I was totally embarrassed.
I needed to fall on my face in front of Amanda. I had to present the best I had, even if it was a flaming pile of jumbled garbage. I needed to get in front of her if only to fall down and faceplant. In hindsight, it was one of my gutsier moves and greatest achievements.
Von Ralls and I started the Lift Heavy Run Long® Podcast in the garage next to my house. We used a condenser microphone and recorded on our laptop. We sounded like we were talking through soup cans inside a city storm drain. We were terrible. We should have probably been more embarrassed than we were but we weren’t; we were too busy trying to improve. We were too caught up in the process. We were so caught up in trying to figure out what all the buttons did and where all the wires went that we forgot to be ashamed.
The earliest episodes of the Lift Heavy Run Long® Podcast are some of my favorite. If Von and I would have waited until we were comfortable behind a microphone, we would have never recorded episode #1. It was imperative that we struggle through those early versions. There is a beauty in having a great amount of enthusiasm with no direction. Remember, mudding your truck isn’t gonna get you anywhere but it’s a helluva lot of fun.
You see, “The good ole days” are nothing more than the most challenging times that we thought we would never survive but we did anyway. My failed 5k, my faceplant at the feet of the woman of my dreams and the babbling and incoherency of our first podcasts were all terrible things at the moment. However, all of those things today are what I refer to as the good ole days.
Get busy being crappy at whatever you are passionate about. The tough day ahead will someday be another good ole day of the future.
Peace, Love, and all things Beef related,