The Heart of a Champion – How to Build It 1


Two months ago, I uploaded a video on to my YouTube channel of my training sessions throughout a week. In this time, the video has become the most popular video on my channel, viewed over 42,000 times. If you’d like to watch the video, you can do so HERE. I decided to write a short follow-up to explain what I really meant with the video.

For those of you who don’t know me, I’m a Black Belt in Taekwondo and I compete quite a bit. I’ve traveled all over the world to represent the United States at various competitions and have been blessed enough to bring home medals some of the times. The reason I put this video together was to focus on the part that many people often forget is required in order to succeed. On purpose, I included clips of myself training and doing workouts, not highlights of fights and winning.

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“Champions do not become champions when they win the event, but in the hours, weeks, months, and years they spend preparing for it. The victorious performance itself is merely the demonstration of their championship character.” – T. Alan Armstrong

Before the victories, there’s a lot that goes on that isn’t too popular. This happens in the life of anyone who becomes successful, not just athletes. I start my video driving in the car on my way to an early morning training.

“Every time you stay out late; every time you sleep in; every time you miss a workout; every time you don’t give 100% – You make it that much easier for me to beat you.”

I’m the one putting in the work. I have control over my actions and my efforts; that’s what Champions focus on.

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“I’m far from being the best, BUT I know I WILL outwork the best every time.”

You don’t have to be the greatest to compete. You don’t even have to be good to play the game. But you do have to start. And if you want to improve, you do have to put in a significant amount of effort. I remember once during a training session one of my coaches pulled me off to the side to speak to me. He told me that anytime I do a drill, I have to make sure to give 100% and complete it all the way, and if possible to do one extra. He explained how this was what made the difference between an athlete and a champion. If you notice, there’s people in life that will do the minimum to slide by and get through. There’s athletes that will give 100% when people are watching, then get lazy when there’s not. To be a champion, you have to have the mindset of a champion. My effort is how I know that I outwork the best every time.

I will not be lazy.
I will not be ‘like everyone else.”
I will not sleep until I am finished.
I will not leave until I am done. 
I will not tremble in front of new challenges. 
I WILL be whatever I want to be. 
Even if it takes sacrifice, strength, travel, money, even if it takes all my time, I WILL succeed.

When you make a goal, you have to accept there’s going to be a certain amount of obstacles in the way of that goal. But you also have to accept that you’re able to get past those obstacles. Lots of the time, there’s a lot that pulls me away from Taekwondo and training. I’m a full-time college student, I own two martial arts studios, and I’m a YouTuber. And let me tell you, training isn’t always fun. I have a deep passion for Taekwondo, but training comes with bruises, exhaustion, and both mental and physical pain. Traveling to competitions takes money, time away from friends and family, and it doesn’t guarantee you’ll come home with a medal. It also means I have to take time away from my other activities to train, sleep, and eat correctly. However, these are all parts of the goal and your goals are what you have to keep in mind in order to succeed.

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To become better, you have to reach your limits and push past them to create new ones. It’s a process that teaches you that you can always improve and better your best. This mindset is what makes Champions different from other people.

This is the point of my video. It doesn’t matter whether you’re trying to be a Champion as an athlete, as a student, in your career, or anything in life.

If you want to become a Champion, the most important part you have to develop is the mindset of a Champion. Work on this and you’ll be able to take the steps towards accomplishing your dreams.

Work Hard. Dream Big. 


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One thought on “The Heart of a Champion – How to Build It

  • Gary "Garrow"

    Your videos are so inspiring. I like the Heart of a Champion, it makes me want to leave work early and work out- at home or at the “dojang.” My wife and I enjoy your Vlogs also, some funny and entertaining, but mostly your perseverance in overcoming challenges and that nasty ankle injury. Good luck in the open, we’re rooting for you.