“The Spirit of Sports: The spirit of sports gives each of us who participate an opportunity to be creative. Sports knows no sex, age, race or religion. Sports gives us all the ability to test ourselves mentally, physically and emotionally in a way no other aspect of life can. For many of us who struggle with ‘fitting in’ or our identity – sports gives us our first face of confidence. That first bit of confidence can be a gateway to many other great things!” ~Dan O’Brien (picture above) Olympic gold medalist (Decathlon)
I am not a person of many regrets. I am a firm believer in the notion that our mistakes shape us to be the people that we are, and that we can learn much from them. However, one regret of my youth is that I didn’t play a sport.
I’ve often questioned my mother as to why I wasn’t enrolled in soccer, basketball, or even dance, and her response is the same each time, “You never wanted to do it, so I never pushed the issue”.
And she’s right. It’s not her fault. In high school, I certainly could’ve signed up of my own initiative for track or cross-country, but I chose not to do so. Perhaps this was because by that point self-doubt had already crept in, convincing me that I was in no way, shape, or form an athlete; so much so that my conscious told me I had zero interest in athletics.
I’m quite sure that I am not the only person to join CrossFit with a similar story. But aren’t you glad that we found this sport? Think of the mental, physical, and emotional obstacles that CrossFit throws our way. Think about the confidence that you gain each time you overcome these obstacles. Think of how overcoming these obstacles within the walls of our gym transfers over to your daily life.
Whether you are fitness or performance, scaled or prescribed, elite or moving towards it, a competitor or just here to get fit, CrossFit makes you an athlete; an athlete amongst your peers. Thereby, as O’Brien states above, you “fit-in”. Your race, sex, religion, age, secular profession, and the title before your last name do not matter when you stand in front of that barbell.
I may have found CrossFit later than I would have liked, but, boy, am I glad that I found it…
I encourage you to share what CrossFit has done for you with your loved ones. Share it with those that tell you that they cannot do it because “they have never been an athlete”. Teach them all that the spirit of this sport has to offer.