Life and Times of the Sharp Family

1000 Days of Thankful...and Counting

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Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Day 840 -- GLG

When I was in 4th grade, I started doing gymnastics at the Great Lake Gymnastics Club (or GLG) in Lansing, Michigan.  GLG was the predecessor to the infamous Twistars Gymnastics.  In fact the head coaches at Twistars were the head coaches at GLG back in the day.

To say that GLG was hard core would be a vast understatement.

With military-like precision, we drilled and conditioned in the warehouse-sized gym for 5 hours a day, 5 to 6 days a week.  We learned at a young age the meaning of discipline.

Each and every practice, we rotated through all four of the events, plus a rotation solely devoted to conditioning.  It was the one we dreaded the most: 45 minutes full of strengthening exercises and other instruments of torture you couldn't even imagine.  I vividly remember hanging from a high bar with a weight belt strapped around my waist and my coach pulling down on my feet desperately struggling to complete a set of chin-ups.  And that wasn't even the worst thing I remember doing.  But my point is not to relive all of that right now.

I am thankful for Great Lakes because my experience there beat into my head the necessity of doing things completely and correctly.  I realized when I was swimming tonight that every time I lose count of the number of laps I have done, I automatically count one less than I think I'm on.  I don't even think about it, I just do it.  When I got to thinking, I realized it was because of Great Lakes.  During conditioning, our coaches would randomly count the number of reps that one of us did.  If it happened to be short a rep, even just one short, the entire group would have to re-do the set.  Our coaches constantly emphasized that doing something only partway or incorrectly was a waste of time and would never help us get any better/stronger/etc. Eventually I began adding 2 or 3 reps to whatever exercise I was doing, just to ensure that  my group wouldn't do extra sets because of me.

I am grateful that the coaches at GLG helped foster this attitude in me.  Maybe it sounds crazy, but I know that I am better today for what I picked up from my them so many years ago.  It helps me in my training, sure, but also in my job to do quality work, which in turn brings more satisfactory results.

Thank God for GLG!

Lord, thank you for the character building of my youth.  I'm glad that I'm not the totally lazy turd I might have been without it.  Thank you for all of the wonderful lessons I learned from GLG and for of the people who made it possible.  In your name I pray, Amen.