Friday Jams: Athletes Don’t Quit

Last night while watching the Big Fat Loser finale they were showing clips from the season. One contest was that the constestant’s had to push a bosu ball up a hill on the beach. Yes, I too felt like snickering as I typed that but these people have done nothing but get fatter in the last 20 years so to their credit, it was hard.

One woman was having a hard time and doing the “one step forward, three steps back” dealio when Bob the “Trainer Personality” screamed, “ATHLETES DON’T QUIT!!!!” Both Matt and I said quickly, “yes they do.” 

Yes. They. Do.

Here’s why. An ATHLETE is someone who has been training for a goal for quite some time. They have made their mistakes and learned from them. I.E. Not quitting when they should have. They have been conditioned to listen to their bodies and know fairly well when to push through and when to call it a day. ATHLETES listen to their coaches and if their coaches continue to present a program that results in failure or injury, they find new coaches. Why? Cuz ATHLETES ain’t got no time for that.

ATHLETES know when to go all out and when to save their strength. I remember reading a post a few years back from an up and coming Brit Strongman. He stated he was going try do a max effort yoke walk a week and a half out from a major contest. The best of the best (Terry and Loz) spoke up quickly, ‘don’t do it mate. You won’t recover for the contest.’ Smart guy didn’t. Well done.

See, Loz and Terry Hollands are ATHLETES. They are not out of shape maniac exercisers that have found a way out of obesity/weakness/whatever you’re looking for.

Please, can we stop throwing around the term ATHLETE to appease some sense of self that needs to be better than we actually are? If you are taking your life and health more seriously, you are doing great! GREAT JOB!! Your life will be better. Keep working. But you are not an athlete, you’re a dude losing weight. Now, of course, ATHLETE may come later. That’s awesome. But for now?

No. Just no. How many of you have seen those who have tried to get stronger and healthier give up because they have “failed” in their endeavor to become yet another stupid American “athlete?” Just be better. Be proud of your work to be better.


Call a jack a jack. Call a spade a spade. But always call a whore a lady. Their lives are hard enough, and it never hurts to be polite. 

Patrick Rothfuss

Training Log

About tosabarbell

For training opportunities at tosabarbell, call or text Juli at 320-296-9313. e-mail to At tosabarbell, I build relationships cultivated in a strength and learning environment. There is no 12 week magic pill program to strength but rather a lifetime commitment to be the very best and most useful human you can be. tosabarbell is a private, home grown gym with three lifting platforms; squat rack; prowlers; throwing implements; bars, bumpers and everything else needed for an effective strength and conditioning program. Straightforward barbell programming including the Olympic lifts; sound (read: not fancy bullshit) diet advance for weight gain or loss; and strong coaching will ensure you will meet your goals such as becoming stronger, more explosive, and better conditioned. I have been coaching teams and athletes for over 30 years. I grew up participating in various sports at various levels but was always drawn to those that require strength training. I have multiple local, national, and world records in the sports of Weightlifting and Highland Games Heavy Events as well as a combined total of 5 World Championships. My 5 years of training and coaching under Mark Rippetoe provided a wide range of influence from some of the top strength & conditioning and throwing coaches in the country. I will strongly encourage tosabarbell athletes to compete (and prepare you to do so.) However, tosabarbell is also for those who wish to be stronger and go through life feeling better. Matt WanAt is a retired Professional Strongman who competed frequently with Strongman Champions League in Europe. He played a year of D1 football with Iowa before concentrating on his Chemical Engineering degree in Iowa City. He is a native of Wauwatosa and still remains a staunch supporter of Tosa East. This blog will be a mixture of strength notes, coaching and nutrition tips, personal shit; bacon delicacies, and a whole lot of fun.
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