The Courage to Succeed
"When I lifted weights, I didn't lift just to maintain my muscle tone. I lifted to increase what I already had, to push to a new limit. Every time I worked, I was getting a little better. I kept moving that limit back and back. Every time I
walked out of the gym, I was a little better than when I walked in."
During the summer before Dan Gable was a freshman at Iowa State, he worked out with Bob Buzzard. Buzzard had won two Big Eight wrestling titles. He recalls, "Dan was a tough kid. Some days I'd crunch him, some days I'd fool around and let him make some moves. But on the last day before I went back to Eastern Michigan University, I wanted to show him he had a ways to go, even though he had won three consecutive state high school championships." After Buzzard finished with Gable that night, Dan fell to the mat crying tears of anger. Right then Gable recalls, "I vowed I wouldn't ever let anyone destroy me again. I was going to work at it every day, so hard that I would be the toughest guy in the world. By the end of practice, I wanted to be physically tired, to know that I'd been through a workout. If I wasn't tired, I must have cheated somehow, so I stayed a little longer."
Gable decided that he would never allow himself to get tired in a match again. Dan's strength and endurance allowed him to be on the offense all the time, always attacking, always pressing, never giving an opponent a chance to relax or counterattack. After a college career in which Gable won two National titles and lost only one match. He won the gold medal without giving up a point to any of six opponents.