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CREED – Top 5 Takeaways from the Latest Rocky Movie!

I love all the Rocky movies. They inspire me. They make me want to work-out in the snow and cold. They make me want to climb huge mountains and scale massive obstacles. Since 1976 when I first saw Rocky in the movies at the age of 5 with my father and brother, I don’t think there is a human-being alive that has watched more Rocky movies combined than yours truly (more on that in a minute).

And one of the most fun things I did recently with my 3 kids (#DadHat) was to see the movie CREED on Thanksgiving weekend. CREED is the latest “Rocky” movie where Apollo Creed’s son grows up to become a fighter and Rocky Balboa (Sylvester Stallone) ends up training him.

As a self-professed “Rocky” lover, I couldn’t wait to see the latest in the long list of great Rocky movies. And before I give you my Top 5 Takeaways from CREED, I have a couple facts to share:

  1. I don’t believe there is a human being alive that has watched Rocky IV more than me. I have watched ALL of them dozens of times. Rocky IV I have easily watched hundreds of times. That movie still fires me up!
  1. I don’t believe there is a human being alive that has listened to more of the “Best of Rocky” soundtracks on cassette, CD, or now MP3 more than me. Yes, I said cassette tape. Many of you probably don’t even know what that is. Look it up. But I have listened to that soundtrack thousands of times.
  1. I don’t believe there is a human being alive that has worked-out more or trained more clients while listening to the “Best of Rocky” soundtrack than me. Heck, I remember doing sprints on ice-filled streets in Brick, NJ, in the mid-80’s listening to Rocky on my cassette player. I remember blaring Rocky in the 90’s when I was in college and training for football.

And I remember playing the Rocky cassette tape when I opened Fitness Quest 10 in year 2000 on my little old beat-up ghetto blaster radio. I remember playing it every time I trained LaDainian Tomlinson for 9 years (He loved it!).

Heck, even today, I still play at least one song a day from Rocky at Fitness Quest 10. Nothing like listening to “No Easy Way Out”, “Eye of the Tiger,” “Burning Heart,” or “Gonna Fly Now” to fire you up!!!

So I digress. Let me get back on track. CREED. Loved it!


Here are my Top 5 takeaways from CREED:
(Disclaimer: Do not read this article if you have not seen the movie and don’t want to know the outcome. 🙂 )

  1. Sometimes you have to be reminded WHO you are…and where you come from…
    In the movie, Adonis Johnson (Michael B. Jordan) never knew his famous father, boxing champion Apollo Creed, who died before Adonis was born.However, since boxing is in his blood, he seeks out Rocky Balboa (Stallone) and asks the retired champ to be his trainer. Rocky explains to Adonis the champion that Apollo was and told him to stop denying his bloodlines. Adonis finally embraces his lineage and fights under the name CREED. And that’s when he goes deep and starts to do some amazing things.

    Hey, sometimes we even need to be reminded of WHO we are…and where we come from. And whether it’s the “mean-streets” of the Jersey Shore or from the hills of “Hollywood,” you can NEVER forget your ROOTS.

  2. “It’s not how hard you hit in life. It’s about how hard you can get hit and keep moving forward….that’s how WINNING is done.”It takes RISK to WIN in life. There are going to be obstacles, challenges, and issues that you face. The key is to run TOWARDS your fears, not away from them.What are the biggest challenges you face in life?
    What are the biggest hurdles that you must overcome?
    What are the biggest obstacles that you must climb?

    Now start attacking them and watch how those fears soon subside. Keep hitting. Keep jabbing and moving. Take risks every now and then. And enjoy the taste of “winning” when it happens!

  3. It’s not how many times you get knocked down…it’s how many times you get back up again…
    In the movie, CREED gets knocked down a couple times. And one time he gets knocked down and is practically out. And he has flashbacks from his childhood. And of course, in true Rocky fashion, he gets up right before the bell sounds.Hey, in life, you and I are going to get knocked down. We are going to get blind-sided. We are going to hit lows. There are going to be great losses. And even pain and suffering. That’s part of life.

    But we MUST get back up again. Staying down is not an option. We must brush off the dirt, mud, blood, pain and suffering, and GET UP… and start moving again. It’s what WE do! #GetUpDontEverGiveUp

  4. Sometimes you win, even when you “lose.”
    When CREED finally gets a shot at the title against a bigger, stronger, more experienced champion, he does everything he can to prepare for the fight. Everything! And despite being a massive underdog and taking a licking early in the fight, he continues to “move forward,” “GET UP” after getting knocked-down, and even manages to shift momentum in the fight.In the end, CREED “loses” the fight. But he really “wins” in life. Despite the judges giving his opponent the unanimous decision, CREED won over the hearts of the fans and more importantly, proved to himself that HE is a great fighter. All along he wanted to prove that he was more than just “Apollo’s son.” And that he did. Mission accomplished.

    How about you? Sometimes the scoreboard shows that you did not “win” the game but you played great.

    Sometimes you have decisions that don’t go your way and it ends up being a blessing-in-disguise in the long run.

    Sometimes you achieve a great accomplishment or feat, but you come in 2nd or 3rd or even last place…but its’ a WIN in your book.

    If you always base your happiness and success on what other people do, you will never be satisfied in life. But if you know you truly did your best, prepared admirably, pushed yourself to the max, and went beyond what you thought was even possible, well, that IS winning!!!

  5. “If you BELIEVE…you can achieve.”
    There is no better story in the world on BELIEF than Sylvester Stallone back before Rocky was even Rocky. In 1975, Stallone was broke. Dirt poor. He couldn’t even pay his rent for his apartment.And then he dreamt up the idea of Rocky. And wrote the script in 3 days. He wrote all-day and all-night.

    And when he finally got his first offer for the script, he turned it down because they didn’t want Stallone to be Rocky Balboa. Imagine that. You are practically homeless, you can’t pay your bills, and someone finally offers you a good sum of money (reports are was that it was about $30,000).

    And he turned that down.

    So what did Stallone do? He sold his dog Butkus to get some money.
    Months later, he got another taker for his script and they agreed to let him be Rocky. And the rest is history.

    And yes, he bought his dog Butkus back (for about 10x what he sold it for) and put Butkus into Rocky I.

    Now that is unwavering BELIEF!!!!

    Do you believe in your product or yourself so much that you would sell your dog?
    While that might seem a little extreme, it’s certainly a great example if you BELIEVE in something strong enough, you can achieve it.

    “If you believe…you can achieve.”

Who would have thought back in 1976, that there would be 7 Rocky movies?

And it’s kind of ironic that this time, Rocky doesn’t personally get into the ring to fight (now that would have been weird!). Instead, his biggest fight is with his own mortality as he faces a battle with cancer.

And it’s interesting that now at age 69, Stallone’s role as Rocky has shifted from “small-time lovable loser to world champion to grizzled mentor.” Rocky is now CREED’s coach.

In a recent interview with the LA Times (Oct 30, 2015), Stallone says, “I’m now the same age Burgess Meredith was in ‘Rocky’ — isn’t that weird?” he said. “I’m the guy who’s knocking on the door going, ‘Hey, kid.’ It’s an unbelievable feeling. I’m very proud of it.”

And then Stallone states, “Rocky is the one thing I’ve done right. I’d say my life is about 96% failures, but if you just get that 4% right, that’s all you need.”

My friends, 5 things:

  1. Sometimes you have to be reminded WHO you are…and where you come from…
  2. “It’s not how hard you hit in life. It’s about how hard you can get hit and keep moving forward…. that’s how WINNING is done.”
  3. It’s not how many times you get knocked down…it’s how many times you get back up again…
  4. Sometimes you win, even when you “lose.”
  5. “If you BELIEVE…you can achieve.”

Keep training, keep hitting, and keep getting up again! It only takes that 4% right to become a massive success.

Now let me get back to listening to my “Best of Rocky” music list on my IPod!

Much love,



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