I'm not gifted. There, that's the first step to acceptance. I'm not a tall individual at 5'8", which didn't help my swimming or water polo career. I've been stuck at 160 lbs for about 4 months now and my strength seems to plateau on a regular basis. I don't generally pick up new sports very quickly and I'm pretty much an average athlete all around. Then we have the case of my roommate.
He is about 6'3" and 220. He lifts weights maybe 5 days a month and when he does, it usually consists of many isolation lifts with maybe a power exercise here or there. He (off of his own report) can do a 200 lb clean and jerk x 3. I can do that too, but I lift 3 days a week full body AND swim 3 days a week. He picks up sports extremely easily. He is skilled at basketball and other contact sports. The other day, he did a pistol squat jump up onto a three and a half fort table. I KNOW I can't do that.
This pisses me off. I train my ass off, meticulously follow my nutrition, and stay up to date on the latest exercises and periodization schemes to perform feats of unnatural nature and here my lazy ass roommate who stays up all night boozing, eats Taco Bell and Whataburger on a regular basis, and lifts on the rare occasion he feels lazy can do this shit.
Now you may be asking yourself "Why are you writing about this? What does this have to do with MY fitness concerns? Why should I care about your problems? First off: you're all selfish bastards. Can't you think of anyone but yourself. Plus you're fat.
Okay I'm kidding, but I do have a reason behind the myriad of words I have written above.
I see guys plugging away in gyms, on fields and in pools for hours and hours and wondering why they don't look like the model on the fitness mag or the bahemith in math class. They keep doing everything right as far as they know and read, yet there are still people, seemingly less motivated, lazy people, who are out-performing them on a daily basis.
What we regular people need to realize is that there are forces at work in our lives that are beyond our control: somatotype, genetics, upbringing, and just damn dirty luck. I'm Irish, but I seem to lack the luck gene our people is famous for. My roommate, on the other hand, seems to have all the best qualities: he's mesomorphic (characterized by large bones, solid torso, low fat levels, wide shoulders with a narrow waist), has the Eastern European genetics to back him up and he just has plain old luck.
Now I'm not doing this to try and make anyone feel inferior (you're of the less than 50% of Americans who trains regularly, give yourself a pat on the back), but when I think of all the problems against me (you), I think of the Nike slogan: "Just do it". Seriously, striving to beat that guy who is just genetically gifted will pay off better for you in the long run a better feeling of self worth, higher motivation, and a great physique to show for it.
Like I tell the water polo kids I train when they first step into the weight room, "There is no ego in here. No one is special. Work ethic determines everything." I don't care if one new kid can bench 145x3 and another just the damn bar x3. If the one lifting the bar is still getting the same workout and getting stronger, then both him and me are doing our jobs.
So if you are one of those genetically challenged individuals out there struggling against someone, something, or just some numbers, just remember to keep working at it and the results will come your way. (Inspirational rant complete).