By: Kris Thompson

Ben Bergeron is the Coach of the  2016 and (now) 2017 Fittest Man in the World, Mat Fraser, as well as the 2015 and 2016 Fittest Woman in the World, Katrin Davidsdottir.

I’m bringing him up because he’s got some really great insight on things both Welded related as well as things that can help you excel in life. I’ve been listening to his podcast; Chasing Excellence, for a while now in which he talks about various topics and I’ve also recently read his book with the same title. One particular topic I’d like to talk about is Character.

I want you to ask yourself some of these questions:

What are your core values?
What are your guiding principles?
What’s your personal mission statement?
What does your perfect life look like?
What’s your legacy?
Who do you want people to remember you as?

Being able to be true to yourself and answer these questions with the utmost honesty is a great way to define and build your character.   Maybe you want to be known as someone that is humble, grateful or a hard worker. Are you acting in a way that displays those characteristics of the person you want to be?

Now that you’ve decided what your core values are or the type of person you want to be, share it with someone or a few someones, to help keep you accountable. Make sure it’s someone that you trust and would be ok with calling you out if you’re not living up to the standard that you’ve set for yourself, otherwise you might not be willing to listen to what that person has to say. Lastly, keep in mind that these are the character traits that YOU have set for yourself, that YOU think are important, not anyone else.

This can easily transfer to the gym, if you’re an athlete that wants to improve but just hasn’t for whatever reason. Ask yourself these set of questions:

Are you humble enough to look your coach in the eyes, listen to what they have to say and apply it when they’re correcting you?
Do you have the integrity to perform all of the reps required of you?
Are you practicing virtuosity and making sure that you have the basics down before you continue on to a more advanced movement?
Do you have the discipline to practice your weaknesses even though you hate working on them and could just stick to the things you’re good at?

Take some time and think about the questions I’ve asked you and see what you can do (both in the gym and in life) when you put character first.