Bob’s Journey to the Black Shirt

I have been attempting the Black Shirt challenge since my second semester in LDP. I was first introduced to it by a senior member, Nate Lightle, who spoke to me after I earned my yellow shirt. He encouraged me to attempt the black shirt challenge and gave me a brief rundown of the requirements. To me the black shirt represented the next level of challenge in the LDP workouts and I was eager to try. On my first attempt I failed in every single category and felt exhausted by the end of it. This is the point where I decided this was something I wanted to strive for. In order to achieve this, I began training every day over Christmas break, I quickly discovered the swim would be one of the most difficult portions of the event. To meet the bench mark for the swim I applied the principals from a book I read called Grit. This taught me the value of setting goals for each practice and how to implement procedures to set goals. Through my goal setting method, I began reaching the required bench marks in each of the categories, ticking them off one by one.

Finally after nearly a year’s worth of determination and grit, it was time for me to attempt the black shirt challenge again. We started with the swim and I was able to set a personal best, knowing I was fully capable of completing the challenge I gave my best effort at every category. One lesson from LDP that I applied to black shirt was the ability to rely on my team. My fellow LDP member Nelson is an exceptional runner and he helped me keep pace during the final leg of the black shirt. In the end, I was able to meet the requirements and earn my black shirt. I credit my goal setting and planning to part of my success and I will always remember how my team helped me to achieve this as well. I know that with dedication and support of an incredible team we can not only accomplish our goals, but change the world.