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Secrets to Success from Top Athletes

Our success in the gym is a lot like the success we strive for in our relationships, business, and life in general. It involves discipline, hard work, sacrifice, and commitment.

Physical fitness takes time to achieve, requires emotional strength, and the will to push through even when all odds are against you.

We scoured the Internet for quotes from top athletes that motivate us, both in and out of the gym. Here’s a roundup of our favorites:

"Most people focus on the wrong thing: They focus on the result, not the process. The process is the sacrifice; it's all the hard parts--the sweat, the pain, the tears, the losses. You make the sacrifices anyway. You learn to enjoy them, or at least embrace them. In the end, it is the sacrifices that must fulfill you."

Ronda Rousey, Mixed martial artist and judoka

“There may be people that have more talent than you, but there's no excuse for anyone to work harder than you do.”

Derek Jeter, Former professional baseball shortstop

“Obstacles don’t have to stop you. If you run into a wall, don’t turn around and give up. Figure out how to climb it, go through it, or work around it.”

Michael Jordan, Retired professional basketball player

“In the end, it’s extra effort that separates a winner from second place. It takes desire, determination, discipline, and self-sacrifice. Put all these together, and even if you don’t win, how can you lose?

Jesse Owens, Track and field athlete and four-time Olympic gold medalist

"Only a man who knows what it is like to be defeated can reach down to the bottom of his soul and come up with the extra ounce of power it takes to win when the match is even."

Muhammad Ali, Boxer and gold medalist

"Believe me, the reward is not so great without the struggle."

Wilma Rudolph, Olympic track and field sprinter

“Today I will do what others won’t, so tomorrow I can accomplish what others can’t.”

Jerry Rice, Football wide receiver

“Nothing can substitute for just plain hard work. I had to put in the time to get back. And it was a grind. It meant training and sweating every day. But I was completely committed to working out to prove to myself that I still could do it.”

Andre Agassi, Gold medalist in tennis

“Champions keep playing until they get it right.”

Billie Jean King, Former world number 1 national tennis player

“I never left the field saying I could have done more to get ready and that gives me piece of mind.”

Peyton Manning, Former football quarterback

“Pain is temporary. It may last a minute, or an hour, or a day, or a year, but eventually it will subside and something else will take its place. If I quit, however, it lasts forever.”

Lance Armstrong, Professional road racing cyclist

“I really think a champion is defined not by their wins but by how they can recover when they fall.”

Serena Williams, Professional tennis player

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