Never Be The Fittest Person In The Room
There's the saying : Never Be The Smartest Person In The Room
What this saying is referring to is complacency, challenging yourself and growth. In summary, if you are the smartest person in the room your awareness and motivation for growth is diminished. Areas of greater learning and improvement will likely not be apparent to you. This is both an incredibly comfortable, and detrimental place to be.
The same logic holds true for fitness. Never be the fittest person in the room.
I recently joined a new gym. My current gym is very nice. It's huge, state of the art, all the equipment is brand new, it's very clean. However, my aspirations are leading me down the path of either competing or learning what it takes to compete. When I looked around my current gym, I saw no competitors. That energy, that environment of a more serious level of fitness was missing for me. I knew at that moment that I'd outgrown my main gym.
The people you surround yourself with ultimately rub off on you. You learn things from them either formally or informally. Personally I want, and need more experienced-knowledgeable fitness experts to impart their knowledge onto me so that I can grow. Moreover, there's an energy produced when groups of people come together. When I look around and see others pushing themselves to their limits, I am more motivated to push myself harder and further.