I hate it when the crudeness of the world is polarized for everyone to see just how ugly people can truly be. There are many points in the history of the world where people were oppressed and mistreated. Judge and even stripped from their property.
On the other hand, I love to see a story where someone can succeed against all odds. To almost stick it to the same people who are intentionally trying to hurt people.
That is exactly what Jesse Owens did in the 36 Olympics.
A poor Jesse Owens was the first one in his family to attend college. He enrolled at Ohio State University where he would compete in Track & Field.
All though he was gifted with tremendous talent, the road to success would be one of great challenge.
But none of those challenges would be associated with actually competing.
The challenges he had to deal with were one of racism.
Although he was a great runner his own classmates would spew disgusting things to him while practicing. Traveling to other universities would be difficult as other schools were even worse than his own.
Imagine that… First you have to deal with being an opponent & then still have to battle the bigotry of that time period.
His coach helped train him to block out what he called “The Noise.”
People screaming at him would distract him from his technique. One slip up in the 100 meter and it could cost you the entire race.
He had Jesse focus on one thing…
He made him focus on just 10 seconds of quiet.
Once he got focused on controlling the 10 seconds of his race, he was able to drown out everything else. This single technique would help him break 3 World Records at the Big 10 Championships where the pressure was extremely high.
After Jesse’s impressive run in college, he became a world known runner earning him the right to compete in the 36 Olympics in Germany.
They too were dealing with their own cultural issues at the time and many people of the black community wanted Jesse to hold out on the Olympics to make a statement.
For a long time, he contemplated not going because he didn’t want to let people down who looked up to him.
What he found was by sitting out he was letting far more people down.
Showing people it was okay to not fight for what you believe in.
It was America’s opportunity to show Germany the world would not put up with what was going on. A very brave Jesse Owens decided to participate in the 36 games where he would attempt to take home 3 Gold Medals in the 100m, 200m and the long jump.
After successfully dominating his events and setting a new world record in the long jump at 8 meters, Jesse was called on to participate in the 4×100 meter dash as 2 Jewish members on the team were banned from competition.
The two teammates that were excluded came to Jesse telling him to win. That if he didn’t win it would all be for nothing.
The only thing was Jesse had never run this event before. Germany was almost positive that they would take the Gold after throwing in this last minute wrinkle.
When the gun went off and Jesse led off for the US, everyone watched holding their breath. Here was a statement being made by the Americans that you can take your shots at us but our will is strong. When the US team crossed the finish line the entire stadium was in awe!
Jesse Owens a poor black kid from Chicago had shocked the world by single handedly taking down the Germans in the 36 Olympic by winning 4 Gold medals on their turf. It had been 36 years since one person took home 4 Gold medals from a single event.
Standing there at the end was his coach. The guy who had trained him from the beginning helping him overcome all obstacles and paving the path for Jesse to reach his full potential.
We all have something great in us. Our ability to bounce back after setbacks. The way we overcome our obstacles.
We might be far from winning 4 Olympic Gold Medals but each one of us has people who are depending on us. Looking up to us to make a statement in our life that we stand for. To show young people that they too can accomplish great things.
Whether you are looking to lose a little weight or build some muscle we all want the same thing. We as humans want to feel.
Jesse’s triumphant victory makes you feel.
But just like Jesse’s story can make us feel motivated or maybe inspired, it was first his coach that made him feel like he could actually do it.
Everyone needs a coach. Someone who believes in them and can fast track them to success. Someone who is in the trenches with them and truly understands that life brings on many challenges.
I leave you with this…
“With Great Challenges, Come Great Change”
If you were inspired by this story and would like to challenge yourself to great things, you can schedule a Free Strategy Session with one of our dedicated coaches and see if our program is the right fit for you.