Nick Gonzalez: Proving I Still Have Something Left In The Tank

W680 nick football 800 The D10 Athlete Profile explores what brings competitors to The D10 playing field...and what they bring away from it. 

Nick Gonzalez
Senior Financial Analyst, Project Finance, Con Edison Development
The D10 NYC
Fundraising goal: Individual (3K)
2019 Marquee Event: Pull Ups (Goal: 26 Reps)

What is your primary motivator for competing in The D10 events?

When I was in high school, I visited a children’s hospital to read books to the children. Those children left a big impact on me. They faced so many challenges, yet approached life with such optimism. I always said if I could give back to them I would. What better way than raising money for a great cause while challenging myself physically and mentally?

How much of your motivation for participating in The D10 stems from its charitable mission?
I’d say about 50% of the motivation is the charitable mission. The other is competing against others and proving to myself that I still have something left in the tank. It’s been almost 10 years since I played my last collegiate game and competed at a high level. Competition brings the best out of us. There’s a lot I want to prove to myself.

How did you first get involved in The D10?
I trained with my twin brother, Chris Gonzalez, last year to support him in his D10 effort. I didn’t realize I could actually compete until a week or two before the event. I thought The D10 was only for financial institutions. I went to watch and saw the level of competition, the support the groups showed for each other, and the dedication of everyone towards the fundraising efforts. I made sure I signed up this year.

Thumb nick gonzalez squats
Nick is prepping hard for June 9th in NYC. Expect him to make some strong impressions in his first D10.

How has The D10 been different from your collegiate or high school sports experiences in terms of training and motivation?
Being a college football player, workouts focused on explosion and power. You maxed at one to three reps, sprints were rarely more than 100-meters. Training for high reps and a 400-meter and 800-meter run is a much different approach. It takes a different type of training.
I haven’t run a 400-meter in competition since I was 18 years old. However, you still need to focus on the explosion and power for the 40-yard dash, shuttle run, vertical jump, and broad jump. It is a different mix than I am used to. In terms of motivation, The D10 training is similar to preparing for college or high school sports. You see some pretty impressive performances by some of the athletes competing. It motivates me to keep my training going to perform even better.

In what ways has your participation in The D10 affected or enhanced your performance at work?
I've always believed that if you push yourself physically, you push yourself mentally. My high school coach always said, “the mind dies before the body”. Part of being able to run longer or lift harder is your mind telling the body it has more to give. I’ve always felt that working out helped with work. It helps with stress, engagement, and focus. The D10 has only reinforced this idea.

Have you made new lasting friendships, or strengthened your professional network, as a result of your D10 experience?
Does my brother count? I am hoping to make some new friends. Watching last year, I saw the way the guys in my brother’s heat supported each other and pushed each other. It was great to see. Whenever you are in the trenches with others, you build a bond. I am hoping to get to know some people on June 9th.

Nick is in his first year working hard to raise funds for pediatric cancer research at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center. Give him a boost with a performance based charitable pledge