Lessons from Big Jack
For nearly ten years, my morning routine has been the same. Awake around 6, drink a protein shake, and hit up the gym. I’ve been going to the same spot for nearly the whole span. This means I have a pretty good idea of who the gym regulars are, what motivates them, and an idea of what their personal and professional lives consist of. In a strange but truthful way, they have become like a second family.
And every family has a black sheep. The one who doesn’t quite fit the mold.
This is true of my gym family, we do have a black sheep. But in this case, the black sheep is an inspiration.
I remember the first time I saw him. He was wearing red warm-up pants that looked like they might have been issued in the early nineties. He had a striped collared polo shirt on, and he wore a pair of black Chuck Taylor All-Stars, which I attributed as a nod towards his generation of athletes. Big Jack, as I found out he is referred to as, is our black sheep.
Meeting Big Jack was also something I won’t forget. It’s rare that I look eye to eye with somebody. Big Jack stands about 6’5, has a deep calm voice, massive hands, and a kind and genuine way about him. His eyes are sharp, and so is his intellect.
But the most impressive thing about Big Jack inside of that gym, is that he's 85 years old.
Though he may move a bit slower than the other members of the family (who happen to be less than half his age, on average) Big Jack's presence in the gym is as consistent as anyone I’ve ever met. Over the years, I have come to appreciate my conversations with him in the weight-room which typically focus on sports, family, and religious discussion of all things.
I’ve told Big Jack many times that he is a hero to me, as I hope to be as dedicated to my health when I’m in his chapter of life.
As a marketer, I have also often reflected upon Big Jack’s approach to gym time and the parallels it has to building a winning marketing tradition. By anyone’s account familiar with him, Big Jack is disciplined, persistent, and driven. Because of those things, he is absolutely relevant and successful.
As famed motivational author Dennis Waitley once stated “Success is almost totally dependent on drive and persistence.” It’s true of personal success, but also true of marketing initiatives. Though a multi-million dollar marketing budget may elude most professionals, our persistence, if channeled correctly can still command desired goals.
Forbes stated in 2017 that persistence through consistency in marketing is “Priority number 1” because it delivers recognition, trust, greater value, and inspiration. Big Jack is proof of this in his approach to his fitness, and his winning formula is certainly marketing applicable.
And just in case you're feeling like there's too much ground to make up, you're focused on yesterday's misses, or don't just know where to begin, Big Jack has you covered. He taught me this gem which he references from time to time: “Forget the past and blast!”
Big Jack does it every day at 85. What’s your excuse?
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