Big Hero 6(am)

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No, this is not about the movie. (Although the movie was nice.) This is about a student whose name is Hero.

According to him, it has nothing to do with bravery. It was the only word that came close to sounding like his Chinese name.

I could’ve been fooled.

We can choose to define our names. But sometimes our names define us. More than we’d like to admit.

When a senior player comes to see me, he’s usually concerned about distance.

Hero wasn’t. He was obssessed with distance. I guess any guy would be if your clubhead speed measured less than 70mph… with a driver!

He was tired of people driving past him. He was tired of being made fun of. He was tired… literally after every shot. At a little over 5 feet tall, he weighed more than 250 pounds. That’s the equivalent of a normal healthy person carrying another normal healthy person.

He was so heavy that initially he couldn’t qualify for the Cohen diet program. But he fought for it.

Just like he fought for a lesson with me at the earliest possible time.

Part of me was sure he was going to quit after a few sessions. Another part of me was sure I was going to quit.

As months went by, I watched his clothes get looser and looser and looser.

Last week, after almost a year, he finally crossed a water hazard he never crossed before. His clubhead speed had increased significantly. And more importantly, he had lost more than 100 pounds.

He’s definitely not done yet. But at this point, it’s clear that the only thing that can stop Hero from getting what he wants is Hero.

The picture above summarizes his odyssey. And I hope it inspires others out there. The road to improvement may be long and hard. But if there’s one thing I’ve learned from the experience, it’s this: You don’t need to be big in order to cast a big shadow.

You just have to wake up early.

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