Wednesday, July 27, 2011


Many of us have seen the famous scene from "Kung Fu" where Master Kan tells the young boy, "Quickly as you can, snatch the pebble from my hand." When the boy tries and fails, Master Kan then says, "When you can take the pebble from my hand, it will be time for you to leave." I've often said that I believe to be a great coach, you must try to help people become better than you are. When the people I help train make improvements and become better than I am at something or thingS (plural)...I feel a sense of pride.

I have learned some things since becoming a trainer that I did not know before. Trainers and their clients are many times more alike than people think. A lot of us once struggled...or in some cases, continue to struggle...with many of the same issues. I can't tell you how many trainers I know that were once overweight or struggled with some sort of body issue. Because of these similarities, sometimes the people I train teach ME while I am teaching them. I had this happen to me today.

This morning, after the 6AM class was over, I was chillin and talking to 2 of the members of our gyms. The conversation had nothing at all to do with Crossfit or barbells. It was purely personal. We are like a family and so I think we feel more comfortable sharing things with each other that we may not even want to share with our "regular" friends. As we neared the end of our conversation, I was complaining about some things in my life that are making me unhappy at times. I talked about how somedays, I feel like I have a hundred pounds that I'm carrying on my shoulders. Brad said, "Then SQUAT it!" We laughed. A few minutes later, I talked about my adventures with the garbage truck yesterday...about how I heard the truck, jumped up, got dressed, and started literally running to drag a big overflowing garbage can and almost 15 bags, boxes, and LARGE loose items including a Disney Princess skateboard that rode down to the curb. I talked about how my husband always did that and it sucked doing it myself. I continued for a moment down that whiny path and he said, "Yeah, well you're strong so it's okay." The little lightbulb went off above my head and I stopped and thought, "Yep...he's sucks but I am strong." He took his "pebble" and left.Later I came back to teach the 9AM class. Conversation was flowing. I was talking about my t shirts and some exciting things happening and we started discussing what some cool t shirts could be for our gym. Sayings went back and forth and then David said, "I told Jared we should have a shirt that says WWMD?" I looked at him like, "Huh???" He said, "You know...What Would Marsha Do?" I laughed and said, "Oh I bet he LOOOOOOVED that idea!" and we all laughed. As I stood in front of the bar to do some deadlifts, the lightbulb appeared again and I started to think about what David had said and what I have been doing. I realized that people really ARE watching me and I should behave accordingly. I thought about how I would want people to answer the question "WWMD?" Do I want to answer to be cry, or whine, or give up because I am being forced to do things that I'm not good at and that I don't know much about these days?

The answer is no...actually, it's not's HELL NO! I want to answers to be more like this (please forgive the creepy third person writing):

WHAT WOULD MARSHA DO? Marsha would be strong. Marsha would hold back the tears and allow herself to flounder a bit as she learns. And if she cried, it would only be for a short time until she could pick herself up, dry her tears, and do something about what it is that is making her cry. WHAT WOULD MARSHA DO? Marsha would not whine or complain so much. Marsha would find solutions instead of excuses. She would remain positive in the midst of a negative situation. Marsha would DO instead of say. WHAT WOULD MARSHA DO? Marsha would keep putting one foot in front of the other. Marsha would use this time to become more educated and better at things she knows nothing about. She would stop being afraid of failure and get excited by the possibility of becoming so much more.David didn't know it, but he snatched a pebble from my hand today as well. I feel like I was the student today and the people I train were my teachers. What they taught me not only helped me, but it can help you as well. When things seem tough, don't complain about the fact that you are grateful that you are strong enough to do it. When life gets you down or people disappoint you or you are standing in front of a barbell that you are not sure you can lift...ask yourself how you want people to answer the question WWMD, but take out MY name and insert your own. Realize that people are watching and noting you do goes unnoticed. You can make a difference without even knowing it.


  1. So always. And I would totally wear a "WWMD?" shirt too!

  2. Awww...thank you so much Sarah!