Mountains of Motivation

Last week I got a surprise present from my brother Matt.  A t-shirt with a Latin phrase on the front:  Res Firma Mitescere Nescit.  He sent it to me as a gift after I had run the Chicago marathon in October but it had been back-ordered until now.  The phrase may not mean that much to you.  But to my brother and I it was a trip down memory lane.  In the 80's my brothers and I all took up bicycling and even entered a local race or two.  One of our favorite movies was American Flyers staring a very young Kevin Costner.  If you like cycling, you'll love the movie. Kevin plays a semi-pro cyclist and doctor at a athletic performance institute and at one point gives his brother a shirt from there with the institutes credo: Res Firma Mitescere Nescit.  In the movie they translate it.  "Once you've got it up, keep it up."  An apt message for me to keep in shape after spending so much time training for the Chicago marathon. But I looked it up online, and the actual translation is something completely different.  It means "A firm resolve knows not how to weaken."  Wow, that's deep! This translation immediately took me to the last 2 miles of the marathon itself, and not my post-marathon training.  It took me to the last 2 miles of my climb to reach the summit of Kilimanjaro. It's been said repeatedly that the most important thing when climbing a mountain is your mental strength, your resolve.  Regardless of what mountains we climb it is our resolve that makes it possible to push past the hardest parts and continue.  It is our resolve that focuses every other strength we bring to the endeavor.  I wear the shirt a lot now and try to keep that impressive phrase in mind as much as possible.  A firm resolve knows not how to weaken!
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