About a month ago my client and friend Bill Driggs left for an adventure the majority of us can’t even fathom. Not only is it hard to believe the task he’s trying to accomplish, most people can’t begin to fully understand it.


I met Bill over 5 years ago when I brought my wife Megan on our first date to 2Hopewell. A place where the atmosphere is as good as the food and it quickly became our favorite spot. In fact, it was the place that I proposed and the rest is history so they say.

Bill is the owner of 2Hopewell(as well as Sayulita and Birch Hill Tavern) and there wasn’t a night you showed up that he wasn’t there. I’m a bit of a people watcher and I could easily tell that his energy, attitude, and work ethic are the reasons he has such a successful business. Good food with good staff is a priority but when you’re actions lead by example and you demand the same from your people then good becomes great. He’s a quiet leader and people are drawn to that.

Over the years, and visits to the restaurant I started to get to know Bill. With his sports background and Ironman accomplishments we had some stuff in common. We’d discuss Mission Fitness and he, like most, would say “I have got to stop down there soon to talk to you about training.” Many have good intentions but usually never follow through. I knew I’d see Bill eventually. I never pressed the issue because people need to be ready to commit. You have to be mentally prepared to put in the work, sacrifice, and commitment. If you’re not, then I don’t want to see you until you are.

Finally the day came that I received the email. I was psyched but also curious to hear his response to a question I ask often, “What are we training for and what are your goals?” In a very matter of fact way he replied, “I’m climbing Mt. Everest in April and would like to train for the next 4 months.”

All I could do was smile and say “Awesome, let’s do this!” I was so amped to start researching specific training and also learning as much about Everest as possible. For the next 4 months I watched countless documentaries, read articles, and listened to accounts of great mountaineers.

I knew this guy had something special about him, something deeper, but he just brought it to a whole new level. The immediate respect you have for someone that has made the mental leap to take on the most dangerous task in the world is tremendous. I believe the way to happiness and fulfillment is by pushing boundaries. We must push our bodies to the max and by doing this it enables us to expand our minds of what IS possible. I now had the privilege to be a small part of a man pushing the boundaries to what human beings are physically capable of. This was going to be as much a journey for me as it will be for him.

Over the next 4 months I gained even more respect for Bill as he has a work ethic that is unmatched. Few words were spoken during most sessions, not just because he’s a quiet guy but there wasn’t a break in the action. I would give him a little break and he’d say, “Ok what’s next?” You could tell people like him have a switch in their heads. He turned the Everest switch on and nothing would stand in his way. He had a goal, he now had a plan, and he would see it through to the end. That’s how you get results, how you achieve your goals, and that’s how GREATNESS is born!

Mt. Everest will bring you to your knees unless you have incredible will power and mental fortitude; it will get the best of you! When you attempt something like Everest, pain is inevitable, suffering is a guarantee, and you will question what the hell your doing there everyday!

So WHY do people want to climb and risk losing toes, fingers, or their lives to reach the top of a mountain that’s already been reached?

Personal growth and achievement, that’s it!

The majority of people go to school, get a job, get married, buy a house, have some kids, retire and die. They do some fun things along the way but they play it safe for the most part. They get a cushiony job that pays the bills but yet it doesn’t inspire them. They hate getting up for it and they tell themselves there has to be more to life. Or worse yet, when people are such robots they actually don’t even question that there is more. Stop and think, what’s the point of all this?! Well…what’s your answer? Or here’s another...Why are we here and what’s our purpose?

And the answer to the million dollar question is…THERE IS NO PURPOSE! Now this answer doesn’t sit well with people because for some reason we all need to believe that there is a greater purpose. Why? Why does it have to be more then the fact we are here and the purpose is whatever you make it? Push your boundaries, be kind, help people less fortunate and live life on your terms; that’s life! How many cars you own, how big your house is, who you hang out with…none of that matters to people that really get life.

Those who climb Everest, who are looking to live for experiences, they understand that in order to be happy and fulfilled you must keep being uncomfortable. The moment you start gliding through life you start dying. Bill is a special breed but we all have greatness. You have to let go of what you’ve been conditioned to think and realize life is to be lived!

Before Bill left it was very important to me that I talk to him and let him know my thoughts. I’m not someone that shares my emotions often, but I have learned that when someone impacts your life, you should let them know. Over the last few years, I have spent endless hours slowly reconditioning my mind through books, motivational videos, and surrounding myself with amazing people. I have a long way to go but I’m on the right path towards the person I envision myself to be.

The day before Bill’s departure, I meet him at his office. And with no surprise, he was cranking out work for his restaurants. It’s what <a href="http://www.lunss.com/shop/vintage-inspired-elegant-evening-formal-dresses-59.html">business owners</a> do, we don’t stop and there is no time off. We had the typical cliché dialogue and then had a brief chat about his climb. On the way to his office I reviewed in my head what I wanted to say. Thinking and doing are two different things but I promised myself I would say more than just goodbye and good luck. So as I turned to walk away, I stopped myself and asked for a few more minutes of his time.

In the next 5 minutes I let Bill know the following or at least what I can remember:

“First, I can’t thank you enough for what you’ve done for me in the last 4 months. It’s been an honor and privilege to train someone with the work ethic and mindset as you have. Through the past few years I’ve been working hard to retrain my mind to think outside of what is ‘typically’ expected of us by society. In other words, we can’t expect more from ourselves unless we step outside the norm and surround ourselves with amazing people and situations. To be able to talk with someone that feels fear but doesn’t allow it to limit your visions and dreams is a gift.

I’ve had people close to me come and go in my life. I’ve dealt with some major adversity, mostly self-inflicted, and I’ve persevered. I put my head down and I push on. I don’t feel sorry for myself and I don’t get emotional about most things. I keep a cool head and I don’t get rattled often. My Father was a Marine and I learned to be a rock. With all that said, you leaving is bitter sweet. I’m so excited for your journey and I can’t wait for you to Summit that hill. You’ve earned the right to be there and you belong on that mountain. You’ll be missed greatly though, as you are the first person in my life that has pushed my mind to dream about experiences I once would have thought to be crazy. The greatest gift is to inspire others and for that I will forever be grateful to you.

I know anything less then reaching the Summit is going to be considered a failure to you and I wouldn’t try to convince you otherwise. Remember, this is a journey for you and there is no pressure from anyone else to have you Summit. Everyone else who gets your journey and gets ‘you’ already sees you as that guy at the top.

You have changed my life and given me a new outlook on how I view the world. You’ve taught me that it’s not our bodies that hold us back but our minds. Be well bro, good luck and get to the top.”

About the author

Matt Mund is the owner and founder of Mission Fitness. He is dedicated to helping his clients of all fitness levels achieve their personal goals

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