Amazing Story About Exceeding Expectations

The other night I was enjoying a little down time with the family. And so we decided to see what movies were stored on the pvr.

After scanning the list we decided upon ‘Invictus’. Have you seen this show? If you haven’t you should check it out.

It’s set in the early 90’s after Mandela is freed from jail and then becomes president of South Africa. Facing a number of domestic issues to resolve, Mandela turns to the captain of the national rugby team to inspire South Africa at the 95 World Cup of Rugby.

At one point Mandela sits down with Pienaar, the captain of the National Rugby team, to discuss leadership. He asks the rugby player about how he gets the most out of his team. He says:

‘But how do we get them to be better then they think they CAN be? That is very difficult, I find. Inspiration, perhaps. How do we inspire ourselves to greatness when nothing less will do? How do we inspire everyone around us? I sometimes think it is by using the work of others. ‘

This is a powerful way of thinking.

How do we get others, or even ourselves, to exceed our expectations?

What makes us strive for more in spite of obstacles or setbacks?

What causes us to continue on when others not only don’t support you but may ridicule you for even trying?

I believe it has to do with setting up the right environment.

This includes your family, your friends and your coworkers and anyone else you interact with. Because we can be inspired by their actions.

And these actions can fuel and motivate us to greatness.

Consider the story of Zach Krych.

Zach who?

Exactly. Not really a household name is he?

But that’s what’s great about this story.

You see Zach is a 27 year old Olympic weighlifter from Minnesota who trains out of Colorado Springs, CO. I was through the Olympic Training Facility a couple of years ago and remember seeing him train. But that’s not the interesting part of the story.

Back in 2008 Zach was performing cleans which is when the bar starts on the floor and ends up at the top of the chest in one powerful movement.

Everything was going well until Zach rocked backward on the catch position. As he fell back he couldn’t push the bar away from himself because he was strapped to the bar.

***Note to self, make sure to do a blog post about avoiding the use of wrist straps. Hey wait a minute…***

So as Zach tipped back his elbows hit the ground first and the weight had nowhere to go so it broke both his arms.

Since this was at the Olympic Training Facility the workout, and this injury was recorded.

Check it out. It’s 5 minutes in total.

Wow! Can you believe he came back from that?

What was going through his head when he attempted the same weight that he got injured with? And a year plus a day after his initial injury?

And how great did he feel to win the US National Weightlifting Championship?

Because he could have retired at this point. He could have taken the advice of his doctors and never tried to lift 100 lbs overhead again. And no one would have judged him or called him a quitter.

But he knew normal expectations weren’t for him. He knew he could achieve more. And he went out there and did it.

As you get ready for 2011 what new goals do you have for yourself? Do you now think you are capable of more?

In the comments sections let me know what you want and I’ll do my best to help you get there.

All the best,

Chris, ‘always moving forward’

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2 Responses to Amazing Story About Exceeding Expectations

  1. Mike Sanborn says:

    These stories always inspire. I found myself mentally urging him on eventhough it was in the past?? Thanks!

    • Chris says:

      Mike: I’m the exact same way. Didn’t really feel up to a workout at the time. But after watching I was inspired to go and do something.

      Chris ‘always moving forward’

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