What Determines Success?

A few weeks ago I ran out to my local Walmart for a few necessities. The parking lot was packed. After driving up aisle and aisle, I caved and reluctantly parked in the far back. As I got out of my car, I noticed a man running from one side of the parking lot to the other. I thought to myself, “maybe he forgot something in his car?” and turned to walk inside.

After a good half hour of shopping I come back out to the parking lot to see this man running in the opposite direction. Um, has he forgotten multiple things in his car? Is this man frazzled? Does he need help?

I load my groceries into the car, get in, make my way out of the vast parking lot, and turn the corner back on to the busy main street. All during this time, I observe as he completes several more sprints across the back of the Walmart parking lot.

At first I found it laughable, as Walmart is notorious as the best people watching location, and I have plenty of good stories of the things I have seen in there.

But as I have not yet renewed my gym membership due to the pandemic and have watched my hard earned muscle melt away, I find admiration in this Walmart Runner. There is something to him that I don’t have.

Maybe it’s his determination to find a place to complete sprints when the gyms and football fields are on lockdown, his determination to persist even if that means bystanders might look on and laugh, his flexibility to make the best use out of anything, even a Walmart parking lot.

While I am behind my computer screen writing about fitness, waiting optimistically for the day I get get back into my gym workouts in a safe manner, this man is making the most out of the least to persist in his goals and overcome whatever obstacles have been thrown at him, ignoring what anyone else might think, solely focused on his goal and what he can do each day to achieve it.

At the end of the day, success doesn’t mean hitting a new PR, achieving a certain amount of fat loss or muscle gain, or winning some sort of competition.

Success means resilience. It means pushing through no matter the size of the obstacle, bouncing back after an injury, prolonged rest period, or junk food binge.

When I think of success, I think of the Walmart Runner.

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