Recently a friend wrote me and asked something that at the time I didn’t quite have an answer for, at least not one that would do the question justice. He wrote, “I have been watching what you guys have done with your gym and I love following it, how did all of it come to be? What was the catalyst?” It seems simple enough, How did you guys get here and what was the thing that propelled you there? But I couldn’t for the life of me put an answer together. After a few weeks of pondering I believe I have one. Though not quite a simple answer, an answer nonetheless.
We wanted to build a space that had the capacity for not only a high level of fitness but for provoking words and ideals as well. Everywhere we had been, it seemed that you had to choose between one or the other, at least if you wanted authenticity. We didn’t want people to have to choose, we wanted to make one a byproduct of the other, let these two pillars live and thrive in the same space. Not in spite of, but because of one another. And no I am not talking about a 45 minute workout followed by a few high fives and empty compliments. Something bigger and much more tangible, with substance. We could find the space, build it and lay the foundation for what we wished it to grow into, and we did, because we had to. But the location and the contents of such a space didn’t matter. We were more concerned with the action taken inside of that space and the reciprocated growth that may or may not take shape. A space that had capacity beyond what we ourselves could nurture, this way it was not truly up to its owners but to its members to fill whatever void they felt needed to be filled. We knew it wouldn’t be a space for everyone but those who came and chose to stay would reap the benefits and lessons of their counterparts, and in turn so would we.
Capacity is defined as “The maximum amount that something can contain”. We are defined by what we contain, however vast or shallow it may be. The thoughts that we knowingly (or unknowingly) produce, the content of our character, the energy that we bring with us into every room that we enter. As finite as it may sound, these things can change, and we wanted a space that could foster that change. To be more specific, a change in personal content, for the better, both physical and in turn of mind. Something all people seek, set in motion by questions, physical exertion and people challenging and maybe even demanding more from one another, for the betterment of each individual. So we built it. For us and for any seekers who looked for that change as well, just not those who thought change would or should be easy. Nothing easy is worth doing and if we wanted easy ourselves we never would have set out on this endeavor. We got what we wanted, hard. But hard does not come without reward. Hard things produce durability, resilience and a foundation that lasts long after its creators have gone, and wasn’t that really the point all along? To spark something that would stick with people even if we were no longer around to steer the ship? That is not what is happening, we are here for the long run and do not plan on going anywhere anytime soon. I say this because in the short time since its coming of age, this space has been filled and overflowed with seekers of the highest quality. More good human beings that have changed us and one another in more ways than we could have ever hoped for. People who continually raise their own and in turn, our standards. That is the only reason this space is still upright after the chain of events that early 2020 has had to offer. This is our life now, by choice. We have put everything we have and more into this and pushed every single chip we have onto the table of our choosing. Solely because we believe in the cause and we believe in people. Because of that we do not take the support for granted, it is not lost on us that we are only here because a select group of people decided that they would take a chance on us, and for that we owe a debt.
There is nothing special about what we do here, there is no secret sauce, merely just physical expression of ideals and character. An extension of our content through sweat and a barbell. I guess in a way the gym was a happy accident, though not entirely unplanned it was a sudden and large shift in life as well as a thesis for destruction, because before building anything worth its own weight we had to tear down any expectations we had of what we thought it might be and allow those willing to come along with us the power to make it what they needed it to be. This was followed by a shift I desperately needed and because of that we felt that spreading and allowing others an opportunity at that same feeling was the debt. One that we had no choice but to repay. As humans we want the gratification of “arrival” but that defeats the purpose of all of this. What we will do is continually move the goalposts of our expectations and always yearn and work for more, better and higher. We are not anywhere near the pinnacle of this thing and we may never reach the heights we imagined but if we are lucky enough to repay those who have come along with us, we will be allowed the opportunity to keep trudging towards its peak, one tough question and in turn, one physical action at a time.